Covert Affairs "Glass Spider" Review: The Man Without a Country

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Covert Affairs S03E08: “Glass Spider”

On the plus side, Annie and Auggie made some itty bitty progress toward being BFFs again and I was vindicated in my belief that Lena sucked. However, in the end, we were left with the small matter of Simon (probably) being dead and Annie in rough shape herself, so I’m going to declare “Glass Spider” a draw. It’s a draw because it currently sucks to be Annie, but it’s totally awesome to be Annie’s TV series.

Auggie and Annie checked out Jai’s secret evidence lair and Annie realized that he was investigating Simon. With Simon suddenly the most obvious candidate for potential assassin, all eyes turned to him and Annie stepped in to spill the beans about her vacay in Cuba and what all Simon did for TRUE LOVE. Arthur and Joan were understandably miffed about the whole thing. I was just happy to get through an entire episode without one of their tired old marital spats, even if the entire vibe at the CIA suddenly shifted to something resembling “Mommy and Daddy are mad because that darn Annie got caught making out with her sleezy boyfriend in the driveway after curfew again.”

Annie claimed that she was cultivating Simon as an asset (lie) and that he was THIS close to joining Team USA (lie) and they should just trust her because she totally knew what she was doing. Basically, “Simon is sweet, mom! He’s just flawed. But I can CHANGE him!”

Momma bear Joan sent Annie off to the mall with a CIA entourage and a warning about dealing with the fallout. Then she tracked down that terrible influence of a co-worker, Lena, for a grumpy reprimand.

Meanwhile, Arthur, despite his irritation at Auggie meeting with Henry Wilcox to glean more information about Jai, met with Henry himself. Henry made it clear that he knew more than he let on with Auggie, but really, we’ve all known that. That entire storyline is just an exercise in patience. I know we’ll get there eventually. I mean, Lena was fairly obvious from the start too.

I honestly didn’t think she would be THAT evil, though. Throw Annie under the bus when the mission with Simon fell apart? Sure. Maybe she’d even go as far as to ruin Annie’s credibility herself for some to-be-determined reason. But I humbly say that I did not peg Lena as the type to totally waste Annie’s charming spy boyfriend before taking Annie out as well. Well done, Covert Affairs. Well done.

For a brief period of about ten minutes, it looked like Annie and Simon would play out in the only way it really could if we wanted them to remain a viable couple. After killing his handler, Simon was cast out of his own spy club. He became the epitome of a rogue agent, forced to become entirely self-sufficient, with no country or agency willing to back him. Annie caught up with him at a busy D.C mall and pitched her deal: If he sided with the CIA, they could live happily ever after. Or something. I thought that was some fairly naive thinking on Annie’s part, though given a choice between crossing her fingers and hoping it all worked out or standing aside and letting her agency hunt him down like a criminal, I can understand why she went with the sales pitch that she did. Also: nice touch, smashing Auggie’s mic.

Annie confessed, “This may have started out as a mission, but it turned into something more.”

Simon said TTYL and Annie went back to Langley to face the music and be grounded FOREVER. No cars, no fake passports, no jetsetting to exotic locales with her charming assassin boyfriend— GROUNDED. DO YOU UNDERSTAND ME, ANNIE WALKER?

She asked about sticking around Joan’s division but Joan didn’t seem to want her around anymore. She tracked down the shooter at the mall and connected him to Jai’s murder, but he offed himself before anyone could take him into custody. (How rude!) Auggie was grumpy about the whole stomping-on-his-mic thing and finally asked Annie if she deliberately let Simon go after the botched mall mission and if she loved him. Cue the awkward silence.

But then, finally, and maybe a little bit predictably, Simon showed up at Casa Walker to rescue Annie from the repercussions of her actions. He painted a romantic picture of a life on the run, a life lived for “each other” rather than “other people” and Annie was totally down with it. She got right to packing: a handful of passports, a few wads of cash from a small contingent of nations, and a photograph of her and Danielle as kids.

It’s ALWAYS the photographs, man. ALWAYS.

While it would be easy, romantic, and liberating to hit the road with Simon and spend the rest of her life hiding from their former employers (I guess?), Annie realized that, unlike Simon, who is truly an island unto himself, Annie has family, friends, connections that depend on her and care about her.

I pick on Danielle a lot because she’s written as an annoying, clueless “outsider” who has no concept of what Annie does or how important it is but truth be told, I’ve kind of missed her since she moved across the country. The move was essential, though. By killing off Jai, by giving Auggie his own encompassing drama to deal with, by taking Annie out of the comfort zone of Joan’s department and plunking her into Lena’s very different environment, and by removing Danielle from the picture almost entirely, the Covert Affairs writers have effectively isolated Annie from her usual support systems. The Annie of Season 1 and Season 2 would have never even considered Simon’s offer and by ultimately refusing to go with him, as hard as that may have been, is a return to herself for Annie.

Unfortunately, we will have to postpone our celebrations. Before Annie could even explain her change of heart to Simon, Lena stepped out of the shadows and efficiently shot both Simon and Annie.

Let the conspiracy theorizing begin!

1. I wouldn’t be surprised if Lena was responsible for Jai’s death. Would you?

2. But WHY?

3. If Lena was responsible for killing Jai and Jai was investigating Simon, do we think that Lena and Simon had a connection? If so, what was that connection?

4. So help me, if we find out that Lena and Simon were a thing and this was all some kind of scorned lover revenge quest and all of Lena’s man-hating hilarity came from having her heart broken by Simon back in the day, I’ll... I don’t know. There’s really nothing I CAN do. But I certainly won’t be happy.

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