Monday, November 14, 2005

"Solo" Answers

The post for Episode 6 “Solo” was bombarded with questions. I am hoping to clear up a few of those for you.

SOLO
I found some interesting connections between the episode and its title, “Solo.” We can automatically connect the title to Rachel and her first solo mission. The title can also be related to the fact that she’s alone, that her family has been placed in witness protection and she is now on her own. Sydney is also solo, alone without Vaughn. I found the contradiction of the title and the final scene of the show interesting as well. In the final scenes we see several instances of family. Sloane visits his daughter in the hospital; his only living family. Rachel pulls a picture of her family from her desk, and Syd is playing Vaughn’s recorded voice to their baby. These scenes would indict both loneliness and despair, but also the comforts of those you love (Sloane holding Nadia’s hand, Rachel’s picture and Vaughn’s voice.)

The Vaughn Tape:
At the end of the episode the camera pans into Sydney’s room where she is playing a recorded tape of her and Vaughn on a mission. The comm. conversation was an instance we did not witness as an audience. Though it could be possible that this conversation transpired while Sydney was in Syberia acquiring the music box from the icy caves, I am fairly certain Jack was on the other end of those comms. I have a feeling the writers fabricated the tape, as to incorporate information or clues, such as “of course, we’re in this together.” The playfulness between the two on tape was important too. It was a reminder of how comfortable they were working together and how much she depended on him.

As for if tape proves Sydney knows whether Vaughn is alive or not, it’s hard to tell. Though it would seem strange to have the baby recognize the voice of someone that is no longer living, it could have been a sentimental moment. Sydney might have been listening to the tape for herself and sharing it with her baby, or she might have played the tape so that the baby will recognize his/her father’s voice upon his return.

Side note: The conversation on the tape reminded me of the “Guardian Angel” comms conversation in season 1. Sydney is scheduled to meet face to face with Ann Espinoza, in order to open a briefcase containing a Rambaldi code. She requests that Vaughn be put back on her case and when she turns on her comms he is there on the other end, watching her from a 200 mile orbit.

Three Rings of the Rule of Three:
Though I have yet to go back and study the various rings of Sloane, I am certain in “Solo,” that he is wearing 1 single ring that is composed of 3 rings. I do agree that the ring receives heavy camera time and whether or not this is intended is unclear. As I have said before, everything on Alias is done for a reason. Always remember the rule of three. If it’s mentioned three times or more, it’s important.

I suppose each ring could represent the members of his family; Emily, Nadia and himself.
We can dig deeper and define the ring as a symbol of love and devotion, which he shows toward Nadia in this particular episode. The 3 bands may prove to be nothing more than a ring symbolizing those feelings.

Sidenote: Jennifer Garner makes various comments about Ron Rifkin’s hands and rings in the audio commentary season 1 finale.

Mr. Drink Water:
Arvin Sloane used to be a rather thirsty man. I have made several comments on this blog pertaining to Sloane’s consumption of water. Throughout season 2-3, we can see Sloane pouring or drinking water in each of his scenes. Uncle111 may have a better understanding, but I was under the assumption it was explained at the end of season 4. Apparently he drank the water in order to become immune to the “disease” that is spread when Elena launches the red ball. However, I remember hearing something to the effect that Sloane thought the water was good, that by drinking the water it changed human behavior for the better, as mentioned by the Sloane Clone during his APO interrogation. I will look into this further for more information.

You all have been asking some great questions. I believe I have enough material to hold us over the winter hiatus. Side note: I am on the hunt for some guest writers. If you are interested and you have an idea you would like to research and write about, please contact me. I am looking to expand the site and offer more information, and this upkeep requires a bit of assistance.

Again, thank you for all the support. Happy Blogging!

PS. There will be scheduled blog maintenance today at 9pm PST. Sorry for the inconvenience.

16 comments:

Tammy said...

I realized a scene I remember vividly from season 1 may answer a question about why Sydney chose to play the tape of Vaughn (whether he is alive or not...). After Danny died, we saw her sitting on the floor in her apartment replaying the answering machine message that had his voice on it. It seems she is a sentimental spy!

Kiki said...

Good job Tammy. That's what I am talking about. What a call back! Yes, Syd has a little place in her heart for the voices of her lost men. Nice connection.

srg-alias said...

That's a good observation Tammy. My impression of that scene was that Syd played that recording one last time to hear Danny's voice before recording over it with a new message. I'm of the mind that Syd would want the baby to recognize Vaughn's voice because he's still alive somewhere and will be back once the baby is born, but then again, I'm also quite sentimental. :)

steph_bristow said...

girlscout, what topics where you possibly wanting researched? perhaps it could be our "winter break assignment" LOL!! anyway let me know. i've just finished season 3 and i'm on to season 4. (currently my seasons 1 and 2 are on loan) i've recently got a co-worker hooked! but if i can help i'd be glad to!

srg-alias said...

Regarding Sloane's ring(s), I specifically remember noticing his wedding ring being a double band. I noticed this when he got it fixed so the Alliance couldn't track him (s2 either in the Phase One episode or the one before it). I'd assume the 3rd band is maybe Emily's, but they sure did give it a lot of "camera time" as GS pointed out.

Kiki said...

Steph-Bristow, thanks for volunteering. I will keep everyone "posted" (haha, a little blog humor)about topics in the research process and will ask a couple of questions of all of you to get more information. We have a lot of great ideas all ready. Thanks!

Robetron said...

HS (alternating the accronyms of your nick-names is a little like cypher text)

I am with you all the way on your explanations. I have only one thing to add regarding the rings. I forgot to record the episode so I couldn't go back a review, but I was thinking about it anyway. If there are three rings, I would think it would be symbolic of the three women in his life whom he loves most: his wife, Nadia, and don't forget Jaquilyn.

O/T - is that a new picture? Is it you?

From SRG's last post, I let my mind wander a bit. I had forgotten about the tracking/ recording device inseted inside Sloan's neck. If someone needed to find him and remembered that all of the Alliance members had them, they could use the signal. If it is a passive device, they could restart it again and find a way to bypass the fake info sent by the bio-tech-boy whom Sloan killed. Any thoughts on this?

Kiki said...

Robetron- That is a new pic, and yes it's me. I thought I would stop hiding and let everyone see me.

I am with you on the rings. Each could symbolize the woman in his life; Emily, Nadia, Jacquline. But for some reason I would think Sloane would have a ring for Sydney. Hmm.

And very interesting thoughts on the tracking devise. I think something is up, P5 or Alliance related. The tracking device kind of fell off the map after season 3. Hmmm.

lulu said...

As far as the French thing goes, I just finished watching seasons 1,2, and 3, again. Vaughn and Sydney found Neil Caplan in S2 because of French mercs Vaughn used in the past. Vaughn is French. So is Renee. This week's eppi has a french title. I think from the beginning this whole french thing has been there.

Anonymous said...

I have an idea I think might make for a great read with proper research. I have always been fascinated by the difference between Jack and Sloane. In the pilot, Jack reveals to Sydney he is one of the "Alliance of Twelve." Did he join Sloane in the beginning as a mole right away? Or was he disillusioned with the CIA, left to join Sloane, and then changed his mind and became a double agent later on?

Also, I have noticed that Sloane is always portrayed as a bad guy, perhaps as his bad deeds are always selfish in nature. But Jack has done some terrible things throughout the show, including killing Haladki in season 1 and hanging Javier Parez in season 3. We instantly forgive him for these, though, as these acts are in protection of Sydney.

But later in season 4, we learn that Jack participated in Sloane in torturing a suspect for information by cutting off his fingers. My idea for a subject is this: Where is this line between good and evil drawn? Why is Sloane a "bad" guy and Jack is a "good" guy? Is it nothing more than their motive? Does the end justify their means? I would be fascinated to explore that issue more...

pkrm said...

I have an idea I think might make for a great read with proper research. I have always been fascinated by the difference between Jack and Sloane. In the pilot, Jack reveals to Sydney he is one of the "Alliance of Twelve." Did he join Sloane in the beginning as a mole right away? Or was he disillusioned with the CIA, left to join Sloane, and then changed his mind and became a double agent later on?

Also, I have noticed that Sloane is always portrayed as a bad guy, perhaps as his bad deeds are always selfish in nature. But Jack has done some terrible things throughout the show, including killing Haladki in season 1 and hanging Javier Parez in season 3. We instantly forgive him for these, though, as these acts are in protection of Sydney.

But later in season 4, we learn that Jack participated in Sloane in torturing a suspect for information by cutting off his fingers. My idea for a subject is this: Where is this line between good and evil drawn? Why is Sloane a "bad" guy and Jack is a "good" guy? Is it nothing more than their motive? Does the end justify their means? I would be fascinated to explore that issue more...

srg-alias said...

pkrm - I think that's an excellent topic, very good question, where do we draw the line? Would we consider Jack to be evil if he were in Sloane's current position and made a deal w/ the bad guys to save Sydney?

Kiki said...

PKRM- Awesome topic and actually I am in the middle of a similar piece about Jack and Sloane. That is agreat direction for it! Stay tuned!

Tammy said...

I caught something while watching "In Dreams" of Season 4 last night... Arvin Sloane's ring only had 2 then. I'm guessing he did add a 3rd ring to represent Nadia. There was one shot where his hand was by his face and the camera brought it into focus. Don't know what that means other than I found it interesting!

Thomas said...

If you look here (http://www.accidentalsexiness.com/wp-content/gallery/cooper-rifkin-tennis-091211/fp_7866725_stosurwilliams_victory_mar_091111.jpg), you will see Ron Rifkin is wearing three bands on his ring finger. Seeing as this picture was taken more than four years after Alias went off the air, my guess is that the three rings are Ron Rifkin's; not Sloane's.

Raechel said...

I think the three rings (started as 2 rings) Sloane wears are not for Emily, Nadia and him- but for Emily, Nadia and Jacquelyn. Jacquelyn is the baby that Emily lost at birth.