Monday, September 9, 2013

S3 E13 - After Six

As the episode opens we see Sydney and Vaughn on a mission together.  Not much is said, or happens within the mission.  But it does show that even if they aren’t going to be together, they are going to have fun doing their spy thing together and being friends.  I liked seeing them get ready to bass jump off the side of the mountain. 

Back in LA, we find out that it may not be as good as they made it look.  After being told that once their new target, Cummings, is found they will go in and pose as clients and that they should be ready to go once they have the info.  They both share an awkward glance, which didn’t go unnoticed by Jack.  You can tell that the experience in North Korea is going to make it difficult for them to figure out a way to work together as just friends.  
Later on we see that Sydney is meeting with Dr. Barnett, who we haven’t seen since Dixon’s wife died back at the end of season two.  Sydney tells her, that in theory, now that she knows what happened to her over the last two years, she should be able to move on with her life, but when she looks towards the future, all she sees is Vaughn.  After being asked about North Korea, Sydney admits to her and Vaughn kissing and tells Barnett that what happened there makes it difficult to deal with being his partner, also admitting that she’s having a hard time dealing with having to go on another operation with him.  Barnett asks Sydney how she would feel if Vaughn left his wife for her.  She initially tells her that she doesn’t know, but goes on to say that she doesn’t think that he would get a divorce because of her, but he would get a divorce because Vaughn and Lauren don’t belong together.  Barnett hears this, and asks Sydney if Vaughn belongs with her.  Sydney is silent for a few moments, and then asks Barnett; “Have you ever felt that someone’s your soul mate?”   With that statement, I wanted to cry for Sydney.  How is she supposed to move on, knowing that if she hadn’t died, she would still be with Vaughn?  Knowing that even though he is married, he only really loves her, at least if Vaughn was telling her the truth in the Korean cell.  It must be unbearable to have to watch Vaughn be with Lauren, and not with her.
I think that had Francie or Will been around, Sydney would have had that conversation with them, but right now, she only has her father to confide in, and she doesn’t talk about that part of her life with Jack, so she needed to talk to someone.  So I find it interesting that immediately following her statement about someone being your soul mate, we see Vaughn with Weiss and a similar conversation starts.  Vaughn and Weiss are at a bar playing pool, and Weiss tells Vaughn; “You know what? You’re a good guy, you don’t want to hurt anybody, but you’re pretty much guaranteed you’re gonna hurt everybody.”   Vaughn has no idea what Weiss is talking about, and asks him about it, but Weiss says he’s not sure.  To which Vaughn tells him that it’s helpful advice, but Vaughn can see where Weiss’s thoughts are going.  Weiss then tells him; “What do you want me to say? If you think I’m gonna tell you to stay in a loveless marriage…”  But Vaughn interrupts him saying that it isn’t a loveless marriage. But Weiss retorts back with a “Whatever… And if you’re waiting for me to tell you to leave your wife for another woman, you can forget about that, too.”  Vaughn contemplates this for a moment before asking; “Do you think you can be in love with two people at the same time?”  Weiss looks at him and gives him a quick no; which is obviously of no help to Vaughn and his current situation.  But Weiss not being able to keep a serious conversation up for a long time goes on to say that he did have the same intense feeling for Sporty and Posh Spice.  Vaughn looks at him, and then asks him who didn’t.
So this is where Lauren and Sark begin to work together, I would think that if you are still reading this, you have seen Alias and you are familiar with all of their goings on.  I am not a Lauren fan, as you well know by now, and I am not a Sark fan.  I only like seeing Sark when I get to see Vaughn beat him up.  That is entertaining to me. I realize that Sark and Lauren end up talking about Sydney and/or Vaughn, but unless it truly pertains to how Vaughn and Sydney’s relationship will move forward, I am going to attempt to not include it.  Now back to the episode…

Sydney is at her apartment and has made herself a TV dinner, with a beer in her hand.  It’s amazing how they demonstrate her utter aloneness here.  She looks a little disappointed by her dinner, but doesn’t look depressed.  But the scene in general shows how alone she is, with the single beer, and the single portion inside the TV dinner.  So she surprised, yet happy when her dad shows up with takeout.  They talk business and he explains her cover when she meets with Cummings.  Then Jack attempts to be casual when he tells her that he expects that Vaughn will be going with her.  She looks up, and tells him that she figures that he will.  He then goes on to tell her that its well within reason to ask Dixon to send someone else.  Sydney protests this, telling him that if she is sent on a mission, she is going.  Jack then explains that he meant that she can request that someone besides Vaughn go with her.  We then see that Sydney takes Jack’s advice and asks Dixon if Weiss can be her partner on this mission instead since he was the one who had the contacts to locate Cummings.  Dixon is hesitant, but agrees to send Weiss.

The next time we see Sydney and Vaughn together, Dixon is telling them as well as Jack that someone is killing high ranking members of the Covenant. So Sydney and Vaughn will be leaving for Chamonix within 30 minutes.  Marshall walks in and asks if they are moving up the timetable to go back to Chamonix, he is told yes.  Marshall tell them that while the equipment needed to get through the lethal response areas is ready for them, he hasn’t been able to access the security system so they don’t activate the alarm systems.  Since he figures it can be done remotely he tells Dixon that another person would be needed to set up the remote uplink.  Dixon then tells Jack that he will join Sydney and Vaughn in Chamonix.
On the plane, Sydney and Vaughn are going over the equipment and making sure that everything is ready to go.  Once they are done with that, they give each other tentative glances, but immediately look away and an awkward silence takes its place.  Vaughn then tells Sydney that he knows why she requested Weiss for the last mission and that he understands.  Sydney looks at him for a moment, and then tells him; “Every day I wish I could go back in time. But I can’t… And as much as I… As much as I still have feelings for you, I won’t be the other woman, not ever.”  You can see that saying this to him, hurts her, but she is very determined.  He looks at her and tells her that he knows.  Before they can say anything else though Jack comes in and they talk more about the mission.   This is something that I have gone over before, but seeing them admit it to each other, and seeing how hurt yet determined it makes both of them is still heartbreaking.
One thing that I have to note, is where Vaughn calls Lauren from the plane, she is off killing the cell leaders with Sark the only thing that he tells her is that he will be out of town for a few days, he’s not telling her about his missions anymore. Also when she tells him to be safe and calls him love, he doesn’t reply knowing that Sydney is nearby, only hangs up on her, seeing that the conversation is over.   I can’t help but wonder if he is questioning if Weiss was correct when he called the marriage a loveless marriage.

Once in Chamonix, Sydney and Vaughn are very focused on their mission, as they should be since they are going to be going through what is referred to as the kill zones in a lethal response security system, and there are three zones and have to do it in under five minutes.  They make it through the first zone without a problem.  The second zone, which is electrified, is electrified more than anticipated, and they have to repel down the middle.  Vaughn gets down safely and then steadies the rope for Sydney to go down.  Unfortunately while Sydney is going down, the pipe breaks and Sydney gets a little jolted.  Vaughn becomes very concerned at this point, but doesn’t cross any boundaries, however in the next zone, which is an acid shower, after he shoots the showers with sealant, he takes Sydney by the hand and they go down the hallway hand in hand.  I think as they do this, they don’t even notice that they are doing it and they don’t ever acknowledge it either. They retrieve the object that they were after, but their five minutes are up.  They barely make it back into the kill zones, the sealant isn’t holding up to well by this point and as they make their way through, they are constantly touching to other to make sure they are safe.  They make it past just as they sealant breaks and the guards are sprayed down.  As they make their way out of the tunnel to where they began, Sydney is out and is waiting for and only watching for Vaughn when two guards come up behinds them.  Luckily Jack is behind them and shoots them before they can shoot Vaughn or Sydney.  So overall, not much happens during the mission, but we do see that their instincts to protect the other are still there and even though they have agreed that nothing more will happen unless Vaughn is no longer married, they still hold hands to help the other. 

The episode ends with Sark and Lauren being made co-leaders of the North American cell of the Covenant.  But Lauren is told that this new position doesn’t absolve her of her duties working overtime as an agent for the NSC.  It is also suggested that she rein in her husband’s extra-curricular “Sextiviites” and is given an envelope containing unseen pictures.   After seeing the pictures, once Lauren gets back to the Rotunda and sees Sydney, she approaches her very coldly and tells her; “I see what’s going on between you and Michael, so let me be clear.  Stay the hell away from my husband.”  Then Lauren walks away from Sydney.   I can only imagine that someone with in the Covenant has ties to the Korean prison that Sydney and Vaughn were held in, because they have been pretty damn good any other time. 

So overall, this episode really doesn’t move the relationship forward.  In fact in a way it sort of stops it for a small amount of time.  The two of them acknowledging that there will not be, or ever will be an affair makes it very clear that Vaughn has to make some choices, and he will have to choose which woman he loves more.   Also this episode focuses so much on the other story lines that I don’t find relevant that they don’t make much time for Sydney and Vaughn.

  • Items I found Noteworthy… 
    •  Carrie goes into Labor while Sydney and Vaughn are going thru the Lethal response kill zones and she decides that she doesn’t want to have the baby until she and Marshall are married, so Weiss ends up marrying them after getting certified online. 
    • Sloane is holding on to a secret that will affect both Jack and Sydney.

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