I am very well aware that I have gone off on a few too many tangents lately, but this is what season three does to me. I really do love Season three, and maybe it is because it is the season that makes you think more about character motivations rather than Rambaldi. Although Rambaldi is still a big mess in my mind, I do understand it more and more each time. I also realize that my tangents or rants generally go more with how Vaughn is dealing with things. I feel like I need to do this because since the show is about Sydney and Vaughn is secondary to her, we see scenes where Sydney is able to explain her frustrations to someone like Weiss, Jack, and even to Will. But we rarely get to see Vaughn be able to express his frustrations. He is able to talk to Weiss, and we do see that at times, but once again the show is about Sydney, so they can only focus so much venting from Vaughn to keep the story about Sydney. But as I mentioned in the last post, I felt that we needed to go into Vaughn’s reasons for not wanting to believe that Lauren was the mole and that she was working for the Covenant. Also anything that I say here is nothing but my opinion and what I infer from watching. Also a weird thing has happened to me as I have gotten deeper into this blog. I have really gotten to know these two characters, and I hope that after so long of watching patterns and finding clues, you can predict what they may be feeling. I guess you can characterize some of my tangents as fan fiction, since I don’t have a firm knowledge of what happened in between scenes, but I don’t consider it as fan fiction, but more as filling in the holes based off of clues given. I said I would try and keep this brief, so here goes.
I think that overall Vaughn tries really hard to do the right thing. For him following the rules isn’t always the right thing, sometimes we see that to do the right thing, you have to break the rules. But overall Vaughn wants to go home at the end of the day and feel proud of what he has done and be proud of his actions. So at the beginning of the season when Sydney came back into his life, even though he loved Sydney more than anything and wished that he could be with her, he knew that it wouldn’t be right to leave Lauren for a past girlfriend that he thought was dead. It was something that we have watched him struggle with over the last 18 episodes. Some episodes Vaughn struggled with this ethical dilemma more than others. But as Weiss said to him; “You’re a good guy, you don’t want to hurt anybody, but you’re pretty much guaranteed you’re gonna hurt everybody.” What Weiss forgot to mention was that in the process, he would also hurt himself trying to not hurt either woman. With his good guy mentality, Vaughn is very protective over the people that he cares about. I believe that if Lauren had made a similar suggestion that Sydney was the mole, he would’ve been just as upset or actually even more upset than he was at Sydney. As much as I dislike admitting this, once again, one of the main reasons that he denies the possibility of Lauren being the mole is that he does love her and feels he has to defend her.
I have always said that Sydney is very capable of playing dirty when she fights with anyone that she feels has betrayed her. Until this season we haven’t seen Vaughn have to fight too much. He is very good at keeping his emotions in check. But this season we have seen him blowup at Lauren over how she treated Sydney when it came to turning her in to the NSC over Lazarey. We saw him become incredibly angry with Jack when Jack put Lauren’s life in danger. He has attempted to tell himself and Sydney that he was happy with moving on, but overall, we don’t see Vaughn say much that isn’t the truth. But when Vaughn is already upset and contemplating the fact that Lauren may not be the person that he thinks that she is, then to have Jack come in and ask him to watch for signs of duplicity, we finally see Vaughn get upset and tell flat out lies to Jack, saying; “You never respected me. Never thought I was worthy of your daughter. So I'm not surprised you're so quick to think Lauren is betraying me. But whether or not you or Sydney believe me, I know the life I'm living, and I know the woman I am married to. Lauren is not Irina, and I am definitely not you.” Now I have to dissect this speech a little, pointing out just how much Vaughn wants to get under Jack’s skin. So while it isn’t exactly right on topic, this seems to be the most appropriate place to do this.
- “You never respected me.” - While Vaughn may believe this, especially after the hatred Jack had towards him after finding him married. But we have seen time and time again how much Jack depends on Vaughn. In addition, when it comes to Sydney, there is no one that Jack trusts more than Vaughn to take care of Sydney.
- “Never thought I was worthy of your daughter.” – I will give this one to him, but only with a small margin. I still believe that Jack had given Vaughn his blessing to marry Sydney before she disappeared, but no father ever feels that any man is worthy of his daughter. But in Jack’s defense here, if Jack didn’t think Vaughn was good enough for Sydney, there would have been no way that Jack would’ve allowed Vaughn to be the one to spread her ashes.
- “So I’m not surprised you’re so quick to think that Lauren is betraying me.” – This statement actually puts less value on the statement that he made about Jack not thinking he was worthy of Sydney. If anything to me it tells me that Vaughn thinks that Jack wants him to leave Lauren so that he can go back and make Sydney happy.
- “But whether or not you or Sydney believe me, I know the life I’m living, and I know the woman I am married to” – Out of all that he has said so far, this is the one that is the one that makes me doubt everything that he has said to Jack. We already know that Vaughn believes that there is only one person in his life that matters to him and that is Sydney. So even if he doesn’t like what she is saying, he does trust her and doesn’t think that she would do anything malicious to him, like making the accusation without a good reason. Here Vaughn only knows the life that his alias of Michael is living, and he is seriously questioning who is married to and why.
- “Lauren is not Irina” (Laura) – I had to add the parenthesis around Laura, because it was so clear to me when Vaughn’s wife was named Lauren that it had to have something to do with Irina’s alias being Laura Bristow. But for Vaughn, to marry anyone that is similar to Irina Derevko, the woman who killed his father truly scares him. While it isn’t clear to Vaughn yet, Lauren and Irina are so alike it’s laughable. Besides the name thing, they were both recruited to seduce a CIA agent that would be central to the needs of the agency that they are working for. In the episode After Six, we find out that Irina once had an affair with Sloane; in the same episode Lauren and Sark begin sleeping together. And if Vaughn knew how many times Lauren has attempted to kill him and Sydney, he would be devastated.
- “And I am definitely not you!” – It is this that Vaughn is the most afraid of. He has seen Sydney be in too much pain over the years because of Jack, and that is the last thing that he wants. But we have already seen that they have the same goals, which is to ultimately protect Sydney at all costs. Jack has also admitted to Vaughn of them being similar and Vaughn didn’t mind it then, but when it comes to the topic of betrayal. Vaughn does not want to be that similar.
As I mentioned above, Vaughn doesn’t want to turn out like Jack, at least in the terms of how unhappy Jack is overall. But I still believe that Vaughn respects Jack and does think of him as a father figure. But if Vaughn admits to Lauren being the mole, he has to consider what ramifications having a traitor for a wife would do to him, and he has seen what it has done to Jack and it really does scare him. He doesn’t want to turn out as bitter and unemotional as he sees Jack. But despite not wanting to turn out to be like Jack, after speaking with him, Vaughn immediately starts looking for these signs of duplicity that Jack had mentioned. He may not want to turn out like Jack, but he certainly isn’t going to be led on for as long as Jack was.
The final main reason that I feel that Vaughn is hesitant to admit that Lauren is the mole is Sydney herself. Ever since her return he has struggled with not being with her and being her number one person as he was before. And if Lauren really is the mole, he would always have it in the back of his mind, and sometimes at the forefront that he has wasted the past few months yearning to be with Sydney, yet playing the good husband all in vain. He has wanted nothing more than to be with Sydney, and now seeing that he was being duped, and played he becomes very angry. While over the next few episodes we will see Sydney and Vaughn come back together, we also see a very different side of him, and that is due to Vaughn having to reconcile these feelings of wanting revenge versus wanting to be with Sydney.