Covert Affairs "Rock N' Roll Suicide" Review: Go Go Gadget Go-Pack!

Covert Affairs S03E11: “Rock N’ Roll Suicide”

When we last saw Annie Walker at the end of “Let’s Dance,” she had just wasted villainous double agent Lena Smith... and having a stare-down with her ex-boss’s bullet-riddled corpse is exactly where we found Annie upon our return. With a quick phone call to Auggie, it looked like Annie would be back in the U.S. of A. in no time... and then she got arrested. Oops.

Annie’s woodland chase was certainly one of the higher-caliber fights we’ve seen her in over the course of the series, and it served to highlight just how far she’s come since her time at the Farm. Yes, she got caught, but only because one of her pursuers got her from behind—and before we cry “rookie mistake!” let’s keep in mind how many baddies she was up against. As we could see when the camera pulled up to give us a birds-eye view of the whole incident, Annie held her own against four soldiers who easily outgunned her; two were clearly unconscious and one was barely standing. Not bad, Walker. Not bad at all.

But she still got arrested, so that sucked. It also set off some red flags back in the States when Arthur’s superiors got wind of the massive security compromise that Annie’s arrest presented. With the CIA unwilling to claim Annie as their own since her mission was off-off-off the record and the Russians unwilling to admit that they'd arrested her, Annie was pretty much on her own and growing increasingly sleep-deprived as her captors kept her awake at all hours, removed her bed from her holding cell, and interrogated her regularly. However, they were less interested in what she'd done to Lena than they were in how much she knew about charming-but-dead Simon’s activities.

Finally, after two weeks, it appeared that Annie had been rescued. I held my breath thinking it might have just been some sort of hallucination due to sleep-deprivation but no, it was everyone’s favorite charming Mossad agent, Eyal. Hey, Eyal. You are looking fine, sir.

On another note, are there any men on this show who AREN’T carrying around buckets of charm? Besides Arthur.

Auggie recruited Eyal to rescue Annie when it became apparent that the CIA wasn’t going to be much help. I’m always amused by the implication that in Covert Affairs’ version of the CIA, everyone can do whatever they want and no one cares unless it becomes a national security risk. Arthur, obligated to reprimand Auggie for launching his own off-the-books rescue mission, wagged his finger, then jumped in with an assist because Joan yelled at him for doing his job earlier in the episode. Sometimes I just want to grab Joan and remind her that YOU. ARE. PROFESSIONAL. SPIES.

Back in Russia, Annie almost blew it all because now that she’s done being a badass, she must return to being a general goody-goody. She insisted on going back to check on Simon’s sister because Interrogator Alexi threatened to arrest and torture her to make Annie talk. Eyal pointed out that Simon’s sis was probably fine since there was no point in using her as leverage against Annie without having Annie in custody. Logical, yes? Yes. But in the throes of her guilt trip/shame fest, Annie wasn’t thinking very logically. She convinced Eyal to take her to Simon’s sister, at which point she promptly switched their passports and handed over her go-pack, the set of squeaky clean identification meant to help her escape. It’s not like Annie would need that later, right?

Eyal probably would have had an easier time getting Annie out of Russia if he had just knocked her out for the duration of their adventures. He totally considered it. Without Annie’s go-pack, legal means of public transportation were out. Auggie managed to recruit a pair of Polish cargo pilots to leave their cargo bay doors open during a fuel stop in Russia so that Annie and Eyal could slip on board their plane and after duping their way onto the runway, it looked like Annie and Eyal were in the clear.

And then the plane got searched. Back in the Alexi’s custody, Annie commented on the watch that she'd snagged from the Interrogator-in-Chief during her escape because she wanted to “take something from him.” It had a nice little engraving from Alexi’s grandfather and she wondered aloud what the message, and Alexi’s apparent sentimentalism, said about the person he really was. I missed Annie’s touchy-feeling people-reading skills. If we could fuse those with her badass, take-no-prisoners approach to hunting Lena down, I’d be pretty happy.

Earlier, Eyal and Annie had deduced that a last-minute change took place between her assigned interrogator and her actual interrogator since Alexi’s name didn’t match the name on Eyal’s intel. That, coupled with his obsessive interest in what Annie knew about Simon, seemed to point to a connection between the two. Annie flexed her intuition muscles. Eyal played along. It turned out that Alexi was a double agent himself who'd been working with Simon and feared that if Annie knew about him and spilled the beans, it would be off with his head. Instead, he aimed to make it off with Annie’s head

But wait, what’s that? Eyal had a go-pack of his own with a handy-dandy new identity that he’d totally be willing to hand over to Alexi if Alexi promised not to shoot them? I thought the deal was made a little too quickly, but honestly, after watching Annie and Eyal hit roadblock after roadblock, I really just wanted them to get home already. So even though Alexi’s eagerness to snag the go-pack and help his prisoners fake their deaths and make an escape was almost laughably neat in comparison to the rest of their fumbling escape attempt, I’ll allow it. Lena Smith is dead. Simon has been avenged. Annie’s name has been cleared. Let’s go home and do whatever it is we have left to do this season.



Spy Notes


1. My one pet peeve: When Alexi was interrogating Annie, he spoke English. Annie answered him in Russian—I’m assuming because she was trying to keep her Russian identity going. But by answering him, even in Russian, she revealed that she understood English. If she thought that answering him in English would have raised too much suspicion... isn’t it still suspicious that she understood him at all? Wouldn’t it have made more sense to feign ignorance?

2. Do we feel bad for Arthur? I kind of feel bad for Arthur. On one hand, yes, it was frustrating to see him regard Annie as little more than a “line item,” to quote Joan. On the other hand, isn’t it his job to be the detached one? A healthy concern for his underlings is a good thing, but in his line of work, he’d never get anything done if he agonized over every single person in the line of danger.

3. Annie’s insistence on checking Simon’s sister: guilt trip or a return to our friendly neighborhood Annie?

4. Is this the last we’ve seen of Simon’s sister?

5. So Lena was a double agent who betrayed the U.S. I’m assuming Alexi was a double agent who betrayed Russia? They’re all connected to Simon. Eyal wants to read Annie in on all the Simon intel. Is your conspiracy theory radar going off? What do you think was the actual nature of Simon’s work?

6. Do you think there was more to Jai’s involvement than having the misfortune of sticking his nose in an explosive corner?

Comments (29)
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Annie speaks many languages, and from time to time has good insight into others' emotional baggage (probably relates to them, since she's bogged down by her own emotions). But they need to reel her in until she's able to see beyond her own emotions, and also at least occasionally obey orders! When I imagine real CIA agents watching this show, I see them slapping their foreheads and yelling at the screen.
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In russia, particularly moscow/st. petersburg (where her cover was from) the majority of people know english
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Annie should do more coop missions with Eyal, love that guy
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This episode had me the moment I knew Eyal was in it. Seriously...give me him....all the time. He's my favorite recurring character and my favorite covert guy right up there with Auggie. Oded Fehr is fanfrickintastic. I will never get enough of him, his great character and the wonderful chemistry between Eyal and Annie. Okay so I just really,really,really love Eyal. Sue me. Well don't...I have nothing to give.

- Didn't bug me too much.

- I never feel bad for Arthur, but then again I don't feel anything for Arthur at all. The only time I enjoy seeing him onscreen is when he's accompanied by Auggie, who has that fantastic way of going off on him while calling him "sir". Love it.

- More like annoying. I really felt bad for Eyal and his frustration mirrored my own. It's like, I love you Annie but get your shizz together chica! Eyal like a little danger so this mission was right up his alley and he has a loyalty to Annie, a kindred spirit, but damn girl, don't take advantage of that by making the extraction more difficult than it needed to be! I think at one point I wish he would have knocked her out and hauled her back to the states unconscious.

- I honestly don't know. I kinda don't care.

- Everything is conspiracy theory in my book.

- Possibly.
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Eyal + Annie = <3 But we all know that wont happen. Eventually Annie and Auggie will hook up though, I see them as more bro and sis. I love any ep Eyal is in. I could watch an entire show just devoted to Eyal. That guy oozes charm from miles away.



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Did anyone else notice Joan's new found love of pills? When did this happen?
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Midol. This episode fell on Joan's special time of the month. Does everything have to be an addiction? Some times, people just have to take pills.
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rofl
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I can't help but think how much more I would rather watch a show about Eyal than anything about stumbling spy, Annie. I think this emphasized what the first half of the season said. Basically, Annie is a moron that lucks her way out of things. And I still have issue with killing off their best big bad. Lena was a good villain, she could have been a good villain for this season and even next season. To give Annie some type of reason to raise her game up. But no. They killed her. Eyal saved her... again. Annie screws up by being ninny like and Eyal saves her yet again. But yay Annie! she is so baddass. No, she isn't, she is foolish and at this point really should be dead or Burn Noticed. Because she keeps traipsing around the globe while using her own name. The Russians had her and her real name her picture, that should be out for everyone's intelligence agencies and she should be nullified as an agent. So I am not sure how they think she is supposed to continue as a spy, even a crappy spy. Not to mention that she doesn't listen to anyone. She is a bad spy and should have caught a bullet midway through last season.



Notes.

1. That is your peeve. He knew who she was. They knew she was after Lena. What do you think she told them. Oh this random Russian girl is after me for some unknown reason. Of course he knew she spoke english. She is just too stupid to realize there are actual competent spies out there.

2. No, She is a line item. She is a grunt that goes into dangerous areas and gets shot at. And dying or getting caught is part of the job. And she is a poor one at that, that is more trouble than she is worth. Maybe if she listened to anybody or followed orders. But at this point Arthur needs to do an evaluation to see if all of her crap is worth it. And the truth is she isn't. And that is his job, he should have disavowed her as soon as she didn't come back. And told them by all means shoot her.

She isn't even patriotic, she has almost quit, twice! Over guys! Not her family, not anything else but guys. One of which she was explicitly told not to fall for. And was given the speech that it was BS that women can't separate emotion from the job. And now she is moving on to Eyal. Actually scratch that, they should use her. As a case in point of what not to do as a female agent.

3. It isn't neighborhood friendly Annie. It is compromise yourself Annie and have someone else save the day for you. Which Eyal did again. She needs to head back to the Farm and be retaught that as an intelligence agent you use other people and not use yourself.

4. Probably not, I like her and think she could be a better spy than Annie.

5. Who knows what the writers are going to pull out of their arse. My guess is Simon was trafficking Nuclear weapons. He stored one at Annie's house, she is going to trip over it while getting out of the shower. Do ten different random things, then eventually call the CIA and then get a medal.

6. Oh yea, Jai. Whom this all started from. At this point I hope he knew he was being tracked to kill and set up a body to be blown up instead of him and he is staying away from Annie and the idiots that run the CIA like Arthur and Joan. He might have been a legacy that got his job because of daddy. But he wasn't an idiot. He figured it all out, without help, without tripping over anything and suddenly being successful. He did it. If I were him I would be hold up on a deserted island with a gun with one bullet in it, with a note attached that says. "Use if Annie or any of the other morons find you".



Great review Mary Ann.
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Thank you! And great responses!



I'm worried that we will go completely back to Old Annie. I've really enjoyed this season compared to the previous two where I'll admit, I basically hate-watched the show because Annie DID seem like a terrible spy and it was all "rah rah girl power" except most of Annie's stories revolved around pining for various men.



While she still had her WTF moments this season, I enjoyed the fact that she was at least a little more independent in the first half, capable. Falling for Simon was dumb, but the writers did a good job of forcing us to question both Annie and Simon's true feelings for awhile, which was impressive.



I would totally watch an Eyal show though. Totally.



"My guess is Simon was trafficking Nuclear weapons. He stored one at Annie's house, she is going to trip over it while getting out of the shower. Do ten different random things, then eventually call the CIA and then get a medal."



Pretty much.
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Well Burn Notice is teetering on the edge of the toilet. I say USA can this and Burn Notice and develop a show for Eyal the Mossad spy. We should write someone about that.
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If Annie's such a bad spy why do you even watch the show?
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Just stopped after this episode. I was on the fence after the summer finale. I still think they made a huge mistake killing off Lena. If this show needs anything (and it needs a lot) it is a big bad, someone to give Annie a sense of purpose and a reason to raise her spy game up a notch. It didn't have to be a constant battle between the two, but to reintroduce Lena every few episodes. It would have given the show a sense of direction that it currently lacks. Now she is just going back to meandering around the world and stumbling over success.

Plus it is really fun to hate on this show. I did end up watching the premier of AHS and boy did I regret that. And I am not watching New Girl, and I loved the premier of The Walking Dead. So I need a show to hate on.
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This episode kicked the series up a notch! I did not see Eyal coming to break Annie out of jail. Very well done.
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A totally pleasant surprise! Love me some Eyal.
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This episode was brilliant! This season has been really entertaining!

And Yes I think Annie/Eyal has much more chemistry than Annie/Oggie...
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Overall, this was a great season. The best so far, although I felt that Annie was getting a tad obnoxious at times. Can't wait for season 4!
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i hope there is more Jai's involvement.
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1. I think the first question was "what is your name", which even an average American can recognize in at least a couple different languages, so I would guess most Russians would recognize that in English. I've only met Russians who are visiting America, so it is an admittedly non-representative sample, but they'd all had some English in school. I believe the second question she responded in Russian with "I don't understand", which is a completely valid response to anything when someone is babbling at you in a random language.

2. No, I don't feel bad for Arthur. Annie is about to die and he is mostly worried about his job. Arthur is a prick.

3. I think this was just the inability of someone who is sleep deprived to follow logic.

4. I think so. I don't see what use she serves.

5. I'm assuming Alexi was just generally corrupt like everyone in government.

6. Not really. Jai seemed like a simple character to me.
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Great episode. Joan doesn't seem like the pill popping type. Are those anxiety pills? I think Annie will have a some road to recover. To me I think she was very close to giving up.
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I bet for Joan as the big traitor... It doesn't fits her behavior on this chap...
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"I'm Jewish, what do I know from guilt?" Classic.
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Loved that line.
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Annie's lines in Russian at the beginning of the episode were not answers. She just kept saying that she didn't understand and it's all a bit mistake and she's Pinja Stanis from St. Petersburg. She clearly pretended not to understand Alexi one bit.
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Ahh that makes sense!
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It's easier to understand a language than speak it. When I stopped practicing Spanish, I could understand what was being said to me, but I would respond in English because it was less work. It could be assumed that Annie was pretending to be someone with passing knowledge of English since a lot of countries encourage students to take a second or third language?



I haven't watched the episode yet, but if she was sleep-deprived, maybe she didn't even register that she was being spoken to in English--she just remembered that she was supposed to be Russian and thus needed to speak Russian, and her brain was pretty much on auto-pilot?



*shrug*
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It was a great episode. I loved it. Can't wait of the next episode.



I have a feeling that the key Simon's sister gave Annie maybe important later on. Maybe that steam chest isn't empty like she told Annie it was.
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I never once thought that the steamer trunk wasn't empty good theory!
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This was a incredible Fall Premiere Eyal is officially my TV hero for life!

I'm super psyched to see how the rest of this Season plays out!
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