Berlin Station 2.9, first impressions [spoilers!] #richardarmitage

Continued from here. These posts contain spoilers. PLEASE do not read them if you are not watching concurrently with the U.S. broadcast but still want a fresh look at them when the show is available in your region.

***

We had to have a plot resolution, so this episode was noticeably more suspenseful than most of the series. I wasn’t able to suspend my snark. But the way they wrapped this up suggests that they are really done with the series. Given that, I can be slightly more generous than I would have been otherwise.

Richard Armitage as Daniel Miller in Berlin Station 2.9.

Upside: We did get some beautiful shots of Richard Armitage. He really looks fantastic in sunglasses. And in a white shirt with a dark jacket.

Downside: The plot resolution was pretty lame. No surprises anywhere, and the explanation finally offered sort of left me going like, really? After pushing this whole “it’s the highest levels of the U.S. government that are doing this” line for weeks, this is what we end up with?

***

The Siegessäule, slightly west of the U.S. embassy and the Brandenburg Gate.

The episode opened with a beautiful aerial shot of a hallmark of Berlin architecture, signaling the episode was taking itself more seriously, I guess. Then we see Hector waking up in the embassy after a rough night. For a minute, he doesn’t realize where he is. Of course, outside the demonstrators are marching on the embassy.

Valerie has apparently overnighted with Emmerich because she’s still wearing the same awful blouse. She’s also bugging his cuff links.

Reasons to skip traditional fashion: your jewelry could be listening to you.

This is a really tense scene and Ferch and Forbes have played this relationship really well all the way through. Emmerich points out that Valerie must have known Hector, and she backpedals a little; she “sort of knew him.” He looks at her suspiciously and says he can’t have liabilities. She has to be on the same side as him and he’s not changing his objectionable political tune. He wants to know her decision to quit the CIA wasn’t just a whim and she assures him it wasn’t. He wants her to stay in and then offers to send her a car.

[My personal feeling about this: there were anti-U.S. demonstrations in Berlin for years, probably decades, off and on. I don’t know that individual Americans ever felt unsafe in Germany in the way Emmerich implies she would be.]

At the embassy, they’re yelling “USA Go Home.” I’m pretty sure they’d be yelling “Amis ‘raus!” But whatever.

Hector is disturbed by the TV coverage and wants Kirsch to come to work, but he’s too busy packing his kid back to the U.S. In process he has to confess that he works for the CIA.

This whole plotline felt largely divorced from everything else in the season, and here it’s a tempo decelerator. Moreover, I don’t get how, if Noah was that angry in previous episodes, that now he’s all wide-eyed about the CIA. I guess this is how the liberal elites like to see their parenting working these days. I know a few angry teenagers now and this isn’t how they behave, but whatever.

Just as Robert waves goodbye to Noah (Frost is taking him to the airport), guess who shows up!

This is the most appropriately dressed we’ve ever seen her! I guess that’s because she doesn’t work there anymore.

Poor Kirsch — he can’t run his own station without either former boss dogging his footsteps. This scene joins up the two strands of the plot: Yates with her knowledge that Emmerich was running Ganz, and Kirsch with his awareness that Nick Fischer bought the final hit on Gerhardt.

“Well, that doesn’t make any sense at all!” A reaction I have often had to this plot, but they actually say it here, and it’s not the only time we will hear it in this episode.

Back at the Grand Hyatt Potsdamer Platz, Nick Fischer is getting ready to leave his room and April and Daniel are lying in wait outside.

And we get this seriously beautiful picture of Richard Armitage as Daniel Miller in Berlin Station 2.9.

April is having a bit of a crisis about her decisions and Daniel is reassuring her that things often don’t materialize as expected and if you hang on you get another score.

Nick Fischer, I mean, Bradford Winters’ brother, waits for his car while displaying a huge phallic symbol in Berlin Station 2.9.

When they let Kirsch know, he wants April to follow Fisher and Daniel to return to the embassy to babysit Hector. (Not clear why Hector needs a babysitter; he’s trapped.)

Daniel (Richard Armitage) gives April his gun because Fischer is carrying, remarking “there aren’t enough people to go around today.” HUH?? There are way too many characters in this show. No shortage. There is, however, a shortage of guns, at least by U.S. standards.

At the embassy, the demonstration continues as Esther Krug, her sidekick who I never bothered to name, which I will now officially regret — his name is Stefan — enter the embassy to see Hanes. They will be joined shortly by “Kroll,” who’s the German foreign minister.

German fans recognize him as police chief Klaus Borowski, the Tatort star from Kiel. He’s been promoted. Guess there aren’t enough German authority figures to go around, either.

They’re informed that this will be their last communication — if they don’t surrender Hector de Jean in 12 hours, the entire station will be declared persona non grata (this is a typical measure taken to address suspected espionage — Russia and the U.S. do this to each other all the time). Script is a bit unclear — I thought they were saying they’d expel the CIA people but then they say that Hanes would be the first to go, so maybe they would expel the whole embassy. Not sure.

After the Germans exit, Kirsch lets Hanes know that they have Hector de Jean and also that Nick Fischer paid for the hit on Gerhardt.

Fischer? He’s shocked, shocked I tell you. [this is something else I found not especially plausible given the information we already have — bookmarking for now — we will come back to this later.]

Informed of Fischer’s participation, Hanes blames it on the Russians. (OK, wait, except people of Hanes’ stripe are supposed to be friendly with the Russians. His lines at the end of this scene don’t make a whole lot of sense if we’re supposed to believe the ending the show gives us. Why would Fischer pay his lunch money to support the PfD? Wasn’t the whole jaunt to Norway and the fish torture supposed to show that Hanes paid Fischer?) After Kirsch leaves, he makes a phone call and invites Frost to his office.

As Daniel enters the embassy, Esther is leaving. She extracts from him the information (via silence) that Hector is in the embassy.

Sort of uncool: Esther (Mina Tander) uses her knowledge of Daniel (Richard Armitage) to read him about Hector’s whereabouts in Berlin Station 2.9.

He won’t tell her the whole story, however, and she threatens him with the end of–. (OK, at least she now has this concrete diplomatic deadline, so the timed threats make a big more sense.) This was a pretty good scene. But it doesn’t square especially well with the trajectory of their relationship. It feels like there’s something missing. This entire episode wants us to believe that they have an intense emotional connection for which we have seen no evidence.

But she’s definitely got his number. Richard Armitage in Berlin Station 2.9.

April has meanwhile been following Nick Fischer and his oral phallic symbol.

To one of the more famous flower stores in the former West Berlin, Blumen-Koch. Which is super conspicuous and not especially convenient to the Potsdamer Platz hotel where he was staying or Messe, where he’s going.

In the station, Daniel is worried they’ll be tried. Kirsch doesn’t seem to be. They meet with Hector, who is struggling with the vending machine diet.

oh, and also with the fact that he’s stuck in the window-less embassy.

Kirsch and Hector yell at each other; Kirsch blames Hector for creating the problem and Hector points out that he helped them out. (This has been confusingly scripted all along — why isn’t more of the responsibility for that decision sticking to Daniel?) Daniel wants to use the tunnels to get Daniel out. (Interesting — I would have guessed that the renovations and the new building would have precluded that possibility.)

They get into a food fight which causes Kirsch to leave, and narrowly misses Daniel (Richard Armitage).

Hector whines a bit and then Kirsch sends Daniel back out. (He needed to come in for this?).

So back to some actual plot. April is following Fischer and Valerie is following Emmerich to Messe, where people are laying down flowers for Gerhardt. Frost is driving into the embassy although the protestors are not making it easy. He meets with Hanes, who wants his help because he’s a “people guy.” Frost should talk Hector into surrendering and “save Berlin Station in the process. Sounds like the redemption of Steven Frost to me.” Frost points out that Hanes needs help.

and he’s sorry, oh so sorry, for trusting Nick Fischer. He never shoulda done it. He knows that now. [again, apparently we are expected to believe this]

Frost doesn’t believe Hector will listen and doesn’t want to step on Kirsch’s toes and doesn’t understand why he should care. Hanes: it’s about saving the future of American intelligence in Europe! If Germany expels the Americans, others will follow! (This is why they don’t actually let the ambassadors run diplomacy or intelligence. Sigh.) It’s hard for me to be calm here about how stupid these lines are, but I didn’t believe what led up to them anyway.

At the memorial, April and Daniel observe Nick Fischer picking up a dead drop (the clue is that the flowers he’s choosing the information from were from the same flower store — does Blumen-Koch have an espionage discount?). It’s never clear to me exactly what Fischer is picking up here or why he needs it.

But Daniel certainly looks sharp. He and April plan to suss out the flower shop to figure out who left the message for Fischer. This is why they need the dead drop for the plot — to figure out who is communicating with Fischer. It’s just not clear what Fischer learns from the drop. Anyway.

Back to Valerie briefly — she’s walking near the intersection of Fasanenstr. and Kurfürstendamm (not clear why, entirely, although once upon a time this was the main shopping thoroughfare of West Berlin) when she discovers a tail, whom she escapes by stepping onto a bus rather taking the expected U-Bahn.

Later she will tell Yates that the tail looked German. Does he look German to you? He mostly looks anxious to me. Given that something like a quarter of Americans have a German ancestor, don’t we all look German, too?

Back at Messe, Emmerich is delivering a flower tribute at the Messe site.

I thought he was going to do a Willy Brandt but apparently he wasn’t overcome with enough emotion. Heino Ferch as Joseph Emmerich in Berlin Station 2.9.

He’s approached by Nick Fischer, who insists they need to meet at 4 p.m. Daniel sees them, and due to the bugged cuff links, Valerie and Yates, sitting in a CIA safe house (I guess), can hear the conversation. Daniel reports that he’s going to follow the flower-shop clue.

Richard Armitage as Daniel Miller in Berlin Station 2.9. Because I can and because it will be a while before I can again.

Valerie and Yates try to figure out who the tail is — “Joseph’s friend in the BfV” is her suggestion and this surprised me a bit — we know from Esther that there are PfD supporters in the BfV but not who they are or whether they have met with Joseph. Hmm. Anyway, Valerie doesn’t know if Emmerich has made her.

At the station, Hector learns that Fischer has Macao gambling debts from his stint in Cambodia. Kirsch doesn’t care. Hector thinks maybe China is running Fischer. Kirsch still doesn’t care. They snipe at each other some more. I don’t care. I just don’t care. Kirsch is patched into the conversation with Valerie and Yates. They discuss the 4 p.m. meeting which they need to “take over and control.” Kirsch admits he’s nowhere on Fischer and waiting on Daniel and April for info. (This line will be valid for him for most of the episode.)

and Valerie feels bad, oh so bad, that Emmerich played her. Yates encourages her to get back at Emmerich.

Somehow Emmerich has made his way to the US embassy and with a bullhorn is inciting the crowds to ever more noise and frustration.

This was kind of a neat touch — the black flag is actually an anti-neo-Nazi slogan (keep your environment clean). Antifa? Counter-demonstrators?

Inside the embassy, Kirsch is pacified into having Frost help him out with Hector.

The whole time I watched this scene, I thought — three men in a pissing match. Von wegen Feminismus. Or as we say in English, feminist show, my foot.

Then Frost delivers a big speech in support of public servants and against people who paid to be ambassadors. (Usually they don’t do that with prestige or strategically important positions, but whatever.)

He’s outraged, outraged I tell you, that someone would betray the public trust with or for money. Oh, wait, yeah, the embezzler. Honestly, it’s like the scriptwriters think we weren’t paying attention last season.

Each of them pulls in his dick and so Frost can talk to Hector. Then there’s the whole fraught moment of re-entering the station but I’m tired of wasting blog storage space on Frost. Frost and Hector have the expected conversation where they hate each other, and then they whine, and then they like each other.

But not without some misogynist complaining about Esther, who’s a big meanie. Hector thinks she hates him personally. If so, I can’t imagine why.

They have the “once a spy always a spy” conversation, and I found myself thinking: so that’s what this season’s plot was about? Two assholes have a mid-life crisis? Three if you count Emmerich? Please. Frost hints at a solution that involves getting around a situation by going through. Uh-huh.

Briefly, Daniel (Richard Armitage) and April are figuring out how to manipulate the flower shot for the info they need.

Shift back to Emmerich’s apartment. Valerie can’t get in because the locks have been changed. German efficiency!

Also, Emmerich wants his real cuff links back. I guess the bugged ones weren’t hypoallergenic.

This is another great scene, because another layer has unraveled. Emmerich knows he’s been bugged and she reproaches him with tailing her. I think the reason that every single scene between these two works is that we’ve got enough information to find all of them credible — i.e., we’re not being asked to take certain moods on credit, as we constantly are between Daniel and Esther. And it works despite the fact that it’s not credible — although the show wants us to believe it — that Emmerich apparently let Valerie into his apartment the previous night not thinking she’d get up to any spygirl shenanigans. Sorry, it’s just not plausible that he really thought she would just get his stuff and come back. In any case, they’re still lying to each other with every word and yet it still works.

She lied to him, and he’s shocked, shocked I tell you.

She’s mad that he was involved with Ganz and the explosives thing. This is really well played — it looks like he’s getting physically threatening, and then she plants her feet and stands up to him. The tension screams from the screen here.

Unfortunately, the writing then takes a dive. When Valerie accuses him (with Nick Fischer) of ordering the hit on Gerhardt, he explodes. And why is he mad?

Because Americans have been running around Germany for seventy years doing whatever they wanted.

It’s hard to know how to respond to this. Here are three options.

(a) this was what the whole plot was about last season. This is more or less word for word what Hans Richter says about why he wants the CIA officers killed at the end of Berlin Station 1. And I say again: do they think we weren’t watching?

(b) it’s true — Americans have overstayed their welcome in Germany and probably most Germans would agree with this on at least a low level. However, no German would formulate a plot to assassinate a political candidate — involving a potential terrorist explosive thingie — just because they’re frustrated with American influence. Talk about overreaction.

both (a) and (b) — i.e., this is lazy writing.

Emmerich says it was a false plot and nothing was going to happen after they were arrested for exchanging weapons. I don’t really believe this because that was sure as hell not how Otto Ganz was acting. I think he was pretty well certain he was going to blow the place up. (Or I suppose you could say that was why he didn’t tell his daughter anything — because nothing was going to happen?) Valerie doesn’t believe it either. Except the writing is poor here — Ganz wasn’t a member of the PfD, if I recall correctly, just someone convenient for Gerhardt t exploit. And yeah, getting rid of your party head because of her relationship with U.S. donors — see (b) above. And the next line doesn’t make sense: “Germany has been taking handouts from American ever since the end of the war.” Not really. Yes, through the 1980s. But not really for most of our lifetimes. Or maybe he means a different war than WWII (although when Germans say “the war” that is usually what they mean; for Americans “the war” is usually Vietnam). Anyway, wasn’t Emmerich taking a handout from Fischer, since he was the one paid for the Gerhardt hit?

[and: ongoing question that pops its ugly head up again at this point — didn’t the whole Norway adventure establish that Fischer got his money from Hanes? I assumed that Hanes’ weird statements about Fischer were deflection.]

It’s all a bit sloppy. In any case Valerie is going to make Emmerich meet Nick Fischer so they can keep unraveling the plot, I mean, finding the people responsible, or she will “destroy his career.” Hmmm.

Switch to a decelerator — I feel like the show should be speeding up here, not slowing down.

At least now we know where they were taking these park shots from earlier.

Valerie and Kirsch meet to update us on the status of the plot strands. Daniel and April are searching the flower-shop database. Still. Valerie is pursuing Emmerich but doesn’t believe it’s him. Kirsch agrees there’s another party but he can’t ask the NSA for help because “they’re in shut-down mode.” Hmmm. Deus ex machina? Kirsch is going to have to go to Hanes and his super-secret information facility. Valerie has turned Hanes.

I think we’re supposed to read Kirsch’s nervousness as sexual tension, but it’s a hard sell.

Switch to Valerie outfitting Emmerich with a bug in his German flag lapel pin. She tells him not to ask leading questions, provoke Fischer, or display emotion. Emmerich wants to convince Valerie that he really did love her. She seems skeptical.

The noise outside the embassy is getting louder as Kirsch invites Hanes into the station. He needs Hanes’ help, so now they agree to be friends and shake hands. Had they only done this before! (G-d, they act like they personally invented compromise.) They go into the secure conference room.

The leadup to the Fischer / Emmerich meeting begins. They’re somewhere near Dannewitzplatz and the American Church, which looms ostentatiously in the background. They drive to the Arminius Markthalle where the meeting seems to be taking place.

Rather than putting in a picture of their meeting I’ll put in a picture of Daniel listening to the bugged conversation.

This is a weird conversation because Fischer and Emmerich know each other already. Emmerich accuses Fischer of wanting to give him the same deal that Gerhardt got, i.e., money and then the U.S. government (not clear who that is because it’s not the CIA) will take over the PfD. Fischer is eager to say that isn’t what he wants — they want to support loyalty to Vaterland. At this point everyone in the show plus me goes “what??” As April says, “is this guy the Naziest of them all?”

Cut briefly back to Hanes and Kirsch in the conference room consulting Hanes’ super-secret intelligence facility (which turns out to be one guy with about eight computer screens). Kirsch tells Hanes this is someone in connection with Fischer, i.e., connected to the hit on Gerhardt.

Back to the Markthalle. Emmerich demands to know who’s paying. He’s aggressive enough that the ladies are bothered. Me, too. I assumed that Emmerich was trying to mess it up on purpose in order to signal to Fischer to get away. Sure enough, Fischer realizes what’s happening, talks into the bug about “who’s listening,” and as Valerie rushes to try to help, he hits Emmerich in the larynx and flees on a motorcycle whose number plate they can’t read.

A chase ensues and April has mad driving skillz, as we have seen before. This is a better chase than last week due to the weaving in and out. April eventually collides with the motorcyclist and Daniel gives chase on foot.

Except. OH SHIT. Daniel gave his gun to April and doesn’t have it anymore.

Luckily for Daniel, April gets out of the car and takes a shot and saves his life. It turns out that:

(a) she’s skewered the guy right through his right eye. What a shot!; and

(b) it’s not Nick they’ve been chasing.

April helpfully asks whether it isn’t Esther’s sidekick. (Stefan.) You wouldn’t be able to tell if you haven’t seen the show because I have never actually pictured the guy in any of my recaps. I guess now we know why he was superfluously included in all those scenes.

Finally I put a picture of him in.

They’re finding out the same thing — it’s Stefan — at the super-secret intelligence room just as this is happening.

 

Daniel doesn’t believe it.

Hanes doesn’t believe it.

And most of all, Esther doesn’t believe it.

While they’re standing there, April against seems to have qualms about her career and Daniel thanks her for saving his life. Yates helpfully announces in a mildly stentorian voice that “this rogue network” goes beyond Stefan and Fischer and they solemnly agree. April wanders off to grieve for her lost innocence.

Esther is really angry that on top of everything else that’s gone wrong, they’ve killed her deputy, so naturally, she gets into a car with Daniel to go on a drive to resolve their issues, because it’s really advisable to have important conversations while cutting through heavy Berlin traffic. Brief cut to Fischer blithely ditching the motorcycle into the hands of a helpful henchman, abandoning his helmet and gloves, and exiting into the U-Bahn at Viktoria-Luise-Platz. (This whole plot line implies that he knew ahead of time that his meeting with Emmerich would be bugged, no? Or maybe just could be.)

Another interesting scene — they are both highly emotional. I’d again buy it more if I felt like there were some actual history of an emotional connection between the two.

We do get Daniel driving again.

Daniel tries the obvious strategy — telling the truth. He informs her that they traced Fischer (“our officer”) as the assassin of Gerhardt, but that in effort to pursue him, he got away due to a decoy — Stefan.

“It doesn’t make any sense!” Indeed, Esther. Even the characters in this show are bothered by the plot.

She thinks he’s trying to assign blame to her; he swears he’s telling the truth and he doesn’t understand it, either. However, they do know that it wasn’t Hector. Esther isn’t especially worried about that. She thinks he’s scapegoating her to save himself. He wants to know if she’s still going to scapegoat Hector.

He wants to like, tell the truth.

She says if they go public all their careers are over (om, om ??) and besides there is no time.

Cut to a picture of the U.S. flag burning. I wonder frankly how this impacts audiences. It’s a pretty standard thing to do at a protest and I assume dozens of U.S. flags burn every day. Is this supposed to be inflammatory? Anyway, the protest has reached a fever point with arrests and incendiary devices.

Hector the Martyr — yawn. Take some responsibility, man.

In the embassy, Hector is going to give himself up, but at least to me it was obvious some kind of ruse was going on, given the language here. Hector is never going to “be Hector de Jean again.” It was all a shell game anyway, it was going to collapse, etc., etc. As Hector exits the embassy, we see the aerial shot from the beginning again — ooh, this must be serious. We see shots of Hector, the riot, darkness, then there’s a gunshot, Hector falling, and an ambulance. Hector, Kirsch and Daniel are in the ambulance.

Cut to a funeral. You will recognize this motif from (I believe) Spooks 6 and the Ros storyline, with her first funeral. I’m not sure why an American would have a German Catholic funeral (I suppose de Jean might be a Catholic sort of name but it also could be Huguenot) or be buried in a German cemetery where someone will try to dig it up immediately for proof.

Don’t they look solemn? Isn’t this a great look for Richard Armitage? At this point Daniel is sooo much sexier than Lucas was at the beginning of Spooks 9, and Lucas was no slouch in that department.

Anyway. Even Augustus (the black transgender friend) is there. Windup scenes: April visits Lena in prison to sympathize about how they were both tricked and Hector gets the CIA Bible verse in English on his headstone. Valerie and Emmerich are meeting in a CIA safe house — it looks like she’s running him as an agent now. Hanes tells Frost at a fancy meal that there’s a whole entire network of rogue agents who want to push a far-Right agenda!

This was one of the things I ended up finding least credible — after pushing the whole “it’s the ambassador and the administration conspiring to destroy the world as we know it,” now it’s a rogue network of extremist agents? Who just duped Hanes into cooperating? I suppose. But honestly if you’re going to propose something like that, go big or go home. This was just stupid. However, it is located in Capetown, a seemingly extraneous detail until you see the last frames.

Leaving the cemetery, Kirsch and Yates agree they “got a win.” Even if it was ugly.

And then this:

So it turns out that Esther agreed to let Hector fake his death, and so he’s escaped; he sends Daniel a photo of his view. It seems like Daniel and Esther are going to stick together (somehow) — that’s the implication. Again, the emotional register here was simply wrong for me, given their past. The last time we saw them together, they had an emotionality that seemed inappropriate to their history and now they look like an elderly couple fading off into the sunset together. Don’t get me wrong. If I could detach this from its context and trajectory in the story I would probably really like it. Maybe I will get to that stage someday. I am sure this will be a long-remembered scene in the fandom.

A few caps because I can.

That teasing look.

Again, the teasing look.

Richard Armitage thigh – thumb combo!

Cheesy but still warm shot.

And Hector’s on a container ship out of Capetown. Whatever. I’d have been just as happy if they’d have actually killed him. But I guess he’s decided to chase the Nick Fischer rogue spy network.

More in a while. But that was the end — not a bang but a whimper.

~ by Servetus on December 4, 2017.

12 Responses to “Berlin Station 2.9, first impressions [spoilers!] #richardarmitage”

  1. […] Continues here. […]

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  2. This was really very funny in a dry way. About halfway through, it popped into my head that you would be perfect giving editorials for Weekend Update on Saturday Night Live, or the late night shows. Just substitute say… Trump and his cronies. Hysterical! 😂😂😂

    Like

    • Thanks! There was a lot of snark floating around the living room last night that seemed to seep into this. The news has been such a disaster lately.

      Like

  3. Preemptively, THIS MENTION OF TRUMP IS MINE, AND MINE ALONE. IT IS NOT INTENDED TO CAUSE ANY POLITICAL FIGHTING ON THIS BLOG. If you feel the need to respond, tweet me. Leave Servetus alone, it has nothing to do with her!!! S, I apologize for not considering this possibility when I was writing it. I meant it as a compliment.

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  4. Call me a sap, but I really liked the closing scene and finally found Daniel and Esther’s relationship plausible. They finally seem to trust each other. Perhaps I am adding a deeper interpretation to Daniel’s last statement than the writers intended, but I thought he was referring to something bigger than their relationship when he said that there were all sorts of things they weren’t supposed to do. More like, their collaboration on Hector and his informing her about the Norway CIA guy represented partnerships for the greater good.

    I also enjoyed the relationship between Kirsch and his son. It is nice to see a teen boy depicted as caring and smart. I thought their relationship was more convincing than most on the show.

    However, the rest of the story was really unexciting and unconvincing to me. What is frustrating about this show is that it is almost good: beautiful scenery, attractive cast, strong acting, a cool vibe. And then the silliness and superficiality of the writing makes for implausible plots and characters that it is difficult to care about. Too bad!

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    • I think what bugs me about the Kirsch / Noah storyline, frankly, is that you know that if any woman in a story like this had “child care problems” it would turn into this huge thing. Somehow Kirsch manages to have the kid who just calls and makes philosophical objections? I didn’t buy it. For me, it just ate up time. And like much in this show, the emotional envelope didn’t make sense.

      re: Esther and Daniel — snark warning: I guess if the script tells us something often enough, we believe it. It’s not that I don’t want to see a happy ending for them, I just don’t see the buildup. Like I said, if I hadn’t watched this whole show I probably would have liked this scene. I will have more to say about it — the lack of substructure isn’t the only thing that doesn’t feel truthful about it.

      It’s really hard to understand how this show could have gone wrong as badly as it did. As you say: all the pieces were there.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Ah Serv …you snark? Snark you say? lol…Sorry if nothing else the best thing about this show has been this commentary summation of it. The characters and plot have just been so totally unlikeable and unwatchable that if not for RA this would never have stayed on my screen past the first few episodes.
    Daniel and Esther no….I do not buy how they jumped from one level to another without a bridge in between. This show to me is a sample of how not to write a spy show. It’s pretty bad when the scenery and country take over for the actors. But thank you Serv, after reading your commentary I just have to watch the last show now, if nothing else it gave some great shots of Daniel and “countryside”.

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    • I think you could watch that final scene between Daniel and Esther with the sound off and it would be just as good.

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  6. […] It emerges that Steven rescued Hector from Johannesburg, where we saw him headed at the end of 2.9. (I’m wondering if they didn’t get the film subsidy for shooting there and that’s […]

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  7. What is wrong with this page? I want to read your snarky recap 🙂

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