This article has some content you might find disturbing!Reason Salty language from your extremely classy correspondent.
Chevy Makes Good Things Happen For The Decadent Bourgeoisie
Philip's Camaro doesn't make him happy for long, thank you very much President Reagan!
You Can Listen As Well As You Hear, So Quit Being So Precious About It
Situation: Martha likes all her co-workers at the FBI so much that she doesn't want to spy on them for Clark anymore.
What Makes It Awkward? If she really digs in her heels on this issue, Clark will be fucked, but she'll also fuck herself, because the whole reason for their marriage will no longer exist.
How is order restored? Initially, Philip doctors a recording of Gaad, Stan, and some other dude talking about Martha, making it sound like they all think she's ugly enough to require a bag over her head if any of them were to initiate sexual congress with her, in order to make her hate their guts and have no further compunction about spying on them. But when Philip's about to play it for her, she cuts her hand, and the moment he spends helping clean up her wound makes him feel tenderly toward her, and he doesn't play the recording after all, so...in terms of order getting restored on this matter, let's say it's still TBD.
Buck Up, Little Comrade!
Who called the meeting? Vasili (remember him???).
What's it about? Israel traded Baklanov for one of their agents who'd been captured by the KGB and then he got repatriated to the Soviet Union while his wife and son were still in the U.S. and had no idea what happened to him, and now Baklanov is kind of blue.
How'd it go? I'll say this for Vasili: he knows how to butter a guy up. He creates rapport with Baklanov by saying he also got kicked back to the Soviet Union, but that he wasn't in as good a position as Baklanov is, because Baklanov's super-duper-smart and that makes him so very valuable! And Vasili was kind of down when he got snatched out of America too, but look at him now, in charge of this whole lab! And look over here, it's all the information Philip stole from the Arpanet that Baklanov couldn't look at when he was in America! So maybe Baklanov should eat something and check it out! It's all-you-can-eat borscht day in the cafeteria! Baklanov looks like he might be ready to be talked into sciencing again -- which is a good thing, because back in America Oleg and Arkady are discussing the Stealth airplane technology that Baklanov knows how to design, and they seem pretty jazzed about it! -- so I guess it's a good meeting.
Destroy The USA In Your Chevrolet
The Symbol: Philip's new Camaro.
The Scene: Philip and Henry roll up the driveway in this dumb muscle car, then get out and start air-guitaring. Elizabeth comes out of the house, sees this scene, and makes this face.
The Meaning: Philip is starting to do TOO good a job acting like a decadent American dickhead.
Also: Purses!What? What's wrong? Is it the car?I just-- I want you to be happy.Come on, Elizabeth. Don't you enjoy any of this? Sometimes? This house? Your clothes, all those beautiful shoes? It-- It doesn't make you bad at what you do, it just makes you a human being. Don't you ever like it?That's not why I'm here.But don't you ever like it?We have to live this way. For our job, for our cover. Five miles from here, there are are people who are living--Do you like it.You know how I grew up. It's nicer here, yes. It's easier. It's not better.
Fight! Fight! Fight!
Lucia vs. Larrick
Larrick has just come home from a run or an extremely schlubby errand when he gets shot in the back of the neck with a tranq dart by, who else, Lucia. She apparently expects it to take him down a lot faster than it actually does, because after shooting him she hangs around yammering at him, giving him a chance to get close enough to her to grab the gun and, after a struggle, shoot her in the leg with it, right before succumbing to sweet, sweet sleep. He probably has the advantage because she's like half his size and thus his dose will wear off a lot faster than hers does, so way to go, Lucia, maybe try shooting from closer range or RUNNING AWAY UNTIL THE TRANQUILIZER TAKES EFFECT NEXT TIME (if there is one) (there won't be).
Winner: Draw...FOR NOW.
Love, Hate & Everything In Between
Don't UnderESTimate The Importance Of Shared Interests In A Marriage
Stan is in the middle of staring in horror at the dot matrix printed Oleg made him get when Sandra appears in the doorway to remind him that her est graduation is happening that night. He's like, uh, what, oh right, cool, and she's like, ugh, whatever, and the way he doesn't ask to go and she doesn't ask him to go kind of points up the fact that these two can't even be bothered to hate each other at this point. All of Sandra's great new friends will probably soon be trying to isolate her from her loved ones, so all of this is great for them, because it seems like that'll be pretty easy!
There Has To Be A Twist
Who called the meeting? Oleg.
What's it about? Those reports he wanted Stan to get for him.
How'd it go? Bad for Stan, who tries posturing with Oleg, to the effect that if Nina still gets caught after Stan folded on this thing, Stan will hold Oleg responsible. Oleg's like, shrug. Stan pushes harder, and Oleg's like, "It's hard to think in these circles, to trust each other when really we can't. We've fallen into something together." He claims he doesn't want anyone to get hurt: "Why would I?" Then Stan hands over the reports, so: good meeting for Oleg! But Stan's not exactly a gracious loser, as he grits, "We're not in anything together." Stan, dude, I hate to be the one to tell you, but you're in one thing together. Actually, probably two. Three if she lets you put it in her butt.
SexDeath And Lucia
Situation: Larrick woke up before Lucia (duh), tied her up and gagged her, and got in touch with Elizabeth to come deal with it/her.
What Makes It Awkward? Lucia thinks Elizabeth will save her, because she hasn't been paying attention.
How is order restored? Elizabeth very reluctantly makes a deal with Larrick: in exchange for his freeing Lucia and giving them the passwords for the camps when they're available, The Center will leave Larrick alone forever. But as soon as Larrick releases her from her restraints, Lucia lunges for a corkscrew on Larrick's kitchen counter and tries to attack him again. Larrick easily overpowers her, grabbing her in a chokehold and gripping tightly, and though Elizabeth had drawn her gun when Lucia made her latest attempt on Larrick's life, she lowers it and lets Larrick choke Lucia out permanently, Lucia staring at her all the while until the light goes out of her eyes. Which is sad, but on the other hand, who trained this idiot? And couldn't she have had some pride and not played directly into all the stereotypes about Latina hotheads?!
Love, Hate & Everything In Between
Adultery Sure Seems Fun!
Stan meets up with Nina at the safe house and tells her he gave Oleg the reports. She should be thrilled! But instead, she's morose. Even Stan isn't so naive as to think this gets him out from under Oleg (that is, not the same way she's under Oleg), but he thinks it buys them time. She says that if anyone at the FBI finds out he's done this, he'll go to prison, but Stan promises that he won't get caught. She's so grateful that he's done this for her that she gets all emotional, and sure, then there's kissing, and probably sex, but Lord, these two are the worst ad for AshleyMadison.com I've ever seen.
Situation: Bob and Kristen, the Jenningses' neighbours, come home from their trip to find an intruder in the house.
What Makes It Awkward? It's Henry, who's fallen asleep in front of their Intellivision.
How is order restored? Bob and Kristen pop next door to return Henry, and let Elizabeth (and Philip, who walks in mid-conversation) know what they discovered, and since they're obviously reasonable people who've known the Jenningses for a while, they're extremely nice about it (although Bob does say they didn't call the police, which...why would they?). Fortunately for Henry, Elizabeth and Philip have other shit to deal with (which is: she has to tell him how badly wrong things went with Larrick and Lucia earlier), so as for restoring order with Henry...we'll get back to that.
Fight! Fight! Fight!
Oleg vs. Nina
Arkady's barely finished congratulating Oleg and Nina for turning Stan (he's just finished reading the Beeman report) when Oleg pulls Nina into a corner and starts "seductively" bossing her around. He wants to take her out to "the wildest disco in town," and has anticipated her objection -- that they can't be seen together -- by inviting a bunch of other people from the diplomatic corps, so it'll be a giant group date and won't draw any attention to them. But she "seductively" refuses, saying it's too risky. A little edge gets into his voice as he warningly says that he went to a lot of trouble and that he can't "dis-invite" them, but Nina's like, "You can do whatever you want." It's a polite fight, but still, someone is victorious and someone is going to the wildest disco in town with a bunch of dudes.
Winner: Nina...FOR NOW, and seriously, what is her endgame.
Stan's trip to the Mail-Delivering Robot to retrieve the results of his request for code word clearance on Baklanov (which: denied) includes a complaint from Martha that people are just leaving classified files on it for anyone to grab. GET YOUR SHIT TOGETHER, THE FBI. ARE YOU TRYING TO MAKE SURE MAIL-DELIVERING ROBOT LOSES HIS JOB?! IT IS A RECESSION!!!!!
Next Time: Toyota
The Symbol: Philip's new Camaro.
The Scene: Philip's just been told, by Kate, that a Soviet submarine went down, killing 160 men on board, due to a catastrophic propeller malfunction based on the plans Philip and Elizabeth stole; apparently, the Americans have been planting fakes, and that was one of them. This makes the Contra operation all the more strategically important -- since it will expose American hypocrisy -- but in the meantime...pretty sad about that sub.
The Meaning: Philip's new car stands for all that is seductive but ultimately destructive about this horrible country that Philip is re-sworn to destroy!
Mr. Reagan Says "We Will Protect You"; Elizabeth Doesn't Subscribe To This Point Of View
It is just SPECTACULARLY bad timing for the Commander-in-Chief to be giving a speech on TV when Philip comes home to tell her about the bad propeller plans his underlings planted for them. At least they have the comfort of knowing they will DEFINITELY kill Larrick when he gets back from Nicaragua, but still.
Name: Ronald Reagan. Age: Early 70s. Occupation: President of the United States of America. Goal: To maintain America's very high defense spending -- and according to Elizabeth, in order to achieve it, "He'll do anything. He doesn't care. Kids. Nuns. Journalists. He doesn't care." Sample Dialogue: "The Soviet Union outspends us on defense by 50% -- an amount equal to 15% of their Gross National Product. During the campaign, I was asked any number of times, if I were faced with a choice of balancing the budget or restoring our national defenses, what would I do? Every time, I said, 'Restore our national defenses,' and every time I was applauded!"
Wrap It Up
After striking out on his attempts to get code word clearance on Baklanov through normal channels (and getting a curt refusal from Gaad when he suggested killing Oleg), Stan goes WAY up the chain of command to the DOJ to get in on the investigation! Deputy Attorney General Warren says he can't help Stan! Stan's like, "Can't the President?" He then launches into a whole speech about Oleg and his science and technology mandate and how he knows he's for real super-duper-close to solving this whole thing except for "the goddamn bureaucracy"! Warren's like, "Beeman. I am the goddamn bureaucracy." And Stan's like, "That's why I'm here. Sir." CUT TO: Stan getting busted down to dogcatcher before the season's through! (Not a spoiler OR IS IT???)
Having determined that the best way into the camps is through the septic system, Philip and Elizabeth lead an actual septic guy through some woods to pump him for the information they need to sneak in! When the guy's exhausted his usefulness, Elizabeth pulls her gun out, but Philip stops her, insisting that it'll be enough to tie him up and gag him and leave him there to wait until they're done! Philip Jennings: Soft On Fellow Citizens Of Propeller Saboteurs!
Arkady is terribly guilty about The Center's part in the propeller incident! His nephew's in the Navy, and though he wasn't on the sub, he could have been! But Oleg has heard some shit from his super-connected father! Moscow's trying to blame the Rezidentura for something that wasn't its fault! They rushed the propellers without sufficient time to test and put the wrong size on the craft that went down! One sub went down, BUT! Arkady and his people are responsible for getting Moscow access to Baklanov, Arpanet, guys in Lockheed and Boeing, and now Stan! All the people whose job it is to keep the Soviets out of the Stealth plane business -- all fucked! Nothing can ever stop the Soviet Union now!
Their spying done for the day, Philip and Elizabeth finally remember that they have a home invader they still haven't disciplined and that they've left dangling for, based on costume changes, two days! They enter and sit on his bed and don't even have to say anything for him to start running his mouth! He feels awful! But he didn't steal anything! He wouldn't! He's not a bad person! He knows the difference between right and wrong! He didn't think there were really any victims! "Once I did it, it seemed so easy to keep doing it!" He doesn't want the neighbours to think less of him! But ultimately the thesis statement of this whole pitiful ramble is "I'm good! I am! I'm a good person! I swear! I'm good! I'm a good person! I swear! I'm good! I'm not going to do it again! I swear! I'm good!" Etc.! Do Henry's parents still have such a clear sense of good and bad anymore? MAYBE THEY CAN DRIVE THEIR NEW CAMARO TO AN ETHICIST AND FIND OUT!