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USA (ended 2014)

Covert Affairs S04E04: "Rock a My Soul"

Oh boy. Okay, Annie Walker, here's the thing: In theory, yes, your life outside of the office is more important than the one inside the office. It's generally frowned upon to be the workaholic parent who misses little Jimmy's school play in order to work late. It's also not out of line to get pissy if your current romantic partner keeps blowing off dates to answer email or pick up extra shifts. Typically. There are, of course, exceptions to every rule. If your boo is about to get evicted because he or she needs that extra shift to make rent, then maybe you should chill the hell out and buy your own grande mocha latte. Also, some jobs are just plain more demanding than others and don't leave much room for schedule autonomy and when/if you choose to date within that pool, you either have to accept that fact, find a happy balance, or bail. 

I'm not a spy, nor do I have any BFFs who are spies (as far as I know), but I'm gonna go out on a limb here and assume that espionage falls somewhere near the more "demanding" end of the employment spectrum. It just seems like one of those jobs where, like, if someone stuck a bomb in a laptop hidden inside the venue of a fancy dinner meant to honor some government official, you kind of have an obligation to go disarm it with porn—even if it interferes with date night (and yes, that was a Chuck reference).

So I guess I'm just having a little bit of trouble wrapping my head around this endless whining about TRUST and how Annie and Auggie can never ever have any secrets from each other EVER unless they want to become sad and bitter like Joan and Arthur... who actually aren't all that sad and bitter anymore and are actually rather wonderful.

It just seems incredibly naive—uncharacteristically so for Auggie—that either of them would think they could have a serious romantic relationship with one another while occupying their current roles in their current work environment and not be forced to hold certain things back. The whole idea seems especially unrealistic considering Auggie's short-lived promotion to head of the DPD where, if he'd kept the gig for more than a single episode, he presumably would have been responsible for supervising operatives other than Annie, missions that she wouldn't have been involved with and had no business knowing anything about. Chances are, Auggie's position would have granted him a higher security clearance than Annie, giving him all kinds of information and insight that she just wouldn't be privy to. Even her insistence that he reveal what he was doing for those undocumented six months in his transcript... uh... it was secret? Duh? As in off-the-books-and-can't-be-made-public-for-an-array-of-reasons, even to his ladyspy girlfriend? (And maybe even especially to his ladyspy girlfriend, given her penchant for going off the books herself?) Is this really something a professional spy is having a hard time understanding? It would be one thing if all this was taking place back when Annie was still a rookie, but for all intents and purposes, she's not so green anymore. 

I understand not wanting to be Joan and Arthur (even though, again, their relationship is pretty positive at the moment), and I'm not advocating for OMG SECRETS in relationships because that's how you end up with "Surprise! I'm Albuquerque's most feared meth peddler!" or "Surprise! I stole some dead soldier's identity and faked my way to being a advertising executive and banged like every female that I ever exchanged words with!" or "Surprise! I have a fully grown, homicidal son in South America who hates my guts!"

I'm just saying our girl might need a small reality check. 

Which is why I was really happy with that last scene in which Joan acknowledged the difficulties Annie and Auggie are facing without being all judge-y and weird about it, and actually appeared to act like the mentor we've been waiting for her to be. Okay, the mentor I've been waiting for her to be. I didn't appreciate getting smacked in the face with the Auggie/Annie, Arthur/Joan parallels this week, but I like where the show is going so I'll take some Tylenol and forgive it. Joan and Annie's relationship has the potential to be deeply revealing for both of them, but especially for Joan, who hasn't had much opportunity to show us her softer or more thoughtful side. The dynamics of her relationship with Arthur are fascinating, and it'll be interesting to hear her honest take on what makes them tick.

I also liked the big reveal about Auggie and Teo, mostly because it made his over-protectiveness and apprehension about Annie frolicking around Colombia a few episodes ago less painfully out of character and actually very much in character for him.

Patience is not a virtue that I have. Obviously. 

So, Auggie's missing six months were spent training Teo to be a vengeance-spewing death-machine. I wasn't terribly surprised—what else was it going to be?—but the truth about Helen threw me for a (small, but enjoyable) loop. The reveal also grants Auggie admission into Arthur's very exclusive Secret Dead "Wives" Club, further strengthening the line connecting Annie and Auggie to Joan and Arthur by giving them such mirror-y pasts.

This week's mission involving a husband-and-wife team of Chinese diplomats working for Henry Wilcox seemed almost like an afterthought in the wake of so much heavy character blah blah—I love the character blah blah—but it was every bit as important as the "more important" parts of "Rock a My Soul," even if only to remind us that Henry Wilcox is, like, soooooper-douchy, and Covert Affairs wasn't kidding when it ditched the Girl Power! opening credits for a solemn black title card. Covert Affairs is a SERIOUS show now. You know, except for when it's all teenage romance with the whining and the googly eyes and the office flirting. STOP IT, THIS ISN'T A CW SHOW. 

Kidding, I <3 CW shows. 

No, but really, I need Annie to stop. I'm running out of Pepto.


– Oooh, Calder goin' stateside. What are your predictions? Is he working with Wilcox?

– Lol @ Wilcox being all, "MUST BE NICE TO STILL HAVE A MALE HEIR, A-DOG." I almost want Jai to have a sister just to up the jerk status on this dude.

– I know she was only around for one episode, but I'mma miss Wendy's sass. "She's annoying." <3

– You know what else is annoying? Obvious over-long product placement, Jaguar. 

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