Tuesday, December 26, 2006

The One, The Only...

...Sydney Bristow. It only seems right to start with the one person who is the basis for all Alias glory- Sydney Bristow. So, yes, I sm starting out of sequence with 5.12 "There's Only One Sydney Bristow." Love it!

First and foremost, the episode starts with Sloane and the 12. Now, are we suppose to care about the 12? Because I don't care about the 12. And Prophet 5, is that the 12? The 12 need Sloane to convince Sydney to get back in the field so they can get access to her DNA. But, why need Sloane's convincing with they solicited the expertise of Anna Espinoza- who in turn, kidnaps Will Tippin. And why did they need a Sydney double again? To get the location of the bunker with all the info? I AM SO CONFUSED.

Sidebar: Um, wouldn't it have been freakin' mindblowing if the 12 had been the Alliance dudes? I mean seriously, mindblowing, insane, outrageous and wow, it would have made perfect sense. They were the ones that started this whole Rambaldi hubbub.

Moving on, Sydney leaves little Baby Iz (with the chubbiest cheeks) at home with the super nannies, pulls on a red wig and slides back into the field. I mean really, a red wig! Love it! Marshall on comms, love it! There is just something so exciting about Mama Syd on a mission. She looks good!

Will is in room 147, hanging out with a bomb in his head. If that's not classic Alias, I don't know what is. Anna comes in, slices Syd and the 12 or Prophet 5 or whoever begins "capturing her DNA." Will and Syd share a precious moment on the plane home and though the scene lasts about .3 seconds, it's the best scene of the whole freakin' eppy! And... the scene is ruined by the bomb in Will's head. A BOMB! Shit. Oops... shoot.

To save Wll, Ann asks for Page 47 and then Rachel asks THE QUESTION... who is Rambaldi? HAHA, now that is funny. Who is Rambaldi, who is the Chosen One, blah, blah and it used to be so entertaining. Not so much anymore.

Intro into the infamous Sydney and Anna showdown- cases being thrown, along with punches, love it. Will's head is beeping, red DNA goo is falling and DNA is collecting and Anna's lips on the glass. AHHHH, good show old chaps, good show.

Um, why is Kelly Peyton driving that car? I think the power has gone to her head. She gives Sloane what he needs to help Nadia and the freaks turn Anna in to Sydspinoza. Yikes!

Okay, Page 48, Uncle, Robetron, you wanna explain all this 12 crap to me? What are everyone's thoughts on this eppy and which should I watch next?


Page48 said...

I just watched 5.12 last night.

I'm impressed by Sloane's rapid deterioration of moral conviction in Season 5. He spent much of Season 5 showing touching concern for the wellbeing of APO personnel, specifically Rachel, Sydney, and of course Nadia. In fact, he cried real tears when he had to dispatch Nadia for 30 seconds in order to cure her. On a dime, he comes to accept Nadia's death as no biggie, he orders Rachel's execution, and he guns down Sydney's father. It's almost as if the series had been canceled and character evolution gave way to character substitution.

I'm also impressed with the way Dixon is beginning to resemble Bob Marley.

I'm not sure I understand the whole point of the 12, either, GS. It seems highly derivative of the Alliance. Clearly ,they were set up to take a fall at the hands of Arvin Sloane just as the Alliance was sabotaged by Sloane a few years earlier. It worked better the first time.

I love the super nannies. They're so over the top but they were great. They had to be Men in Black, too. There just isn't any way that Jack would send in a couple of soccer moms to look after any grandchild of his.

I think Sydney (JG) looks great, too. I think that extra beef looks fab on her. At times during the series, she appeared a little to skinny for her own good.

I'll defer to Uncle and Robetron when it comes to plot detail. They are the true plot hounds, and besides, I'm full of beer. My love of Alias has always been more about character interaction, the lies, the deception, the love and the hate. Hence my endless drivel about Syd and Dixon at the oil rig.

Sounds like you've got that Alias passion welling up inside again, GS. Go for it!!!!!!!!!!!!

Page48 said...

Oh, and as you (anyone) are watching Season 5, see if you can come up with the total number of times that Syd says something to the effect of "you don't know me very well". That's something that really stood out like a sore thumb to me when I was watching the first run of Season 5.

Kiki said...

Hahaha, nice recap Page. I agree. What happened? What exactly was the point of Nadia too? I mean, they brought her in and then killed her off. I didn't see anything meanful happen for her. I was watching her death scene and it was so anticlimatic. Boring, I nearly fell asleep. I mean, seriously, there was no reason for her to die, other than she was the "only" thing standing in Arvin's way. But why would be be so "okay" with his own daughters death, but fight for years to protect Sydney even when she was out to get him? I shake my fist at you writers!

Also, I mean, you would think the writers, sitting around in a room throwing around the idea of the 12 would stop and think "HEY! What if the 12 was the old Alliance? What if they were secretly pushing the buttons all this time, like they had in season 1." It would have made perfect sense- Sydney going after the one group that took so much from her in the first place. Oh man, this whole watching the season over thing is really making my blood boil. Oh, and I love it when Sydney calls Anna a professional. Like old friends having coffee. Love it!

uncle111 said...

At the risk of sounding like a one theme critic, I think a lot of the questions you ask, KIKI, arise from the fact that they so often made things up as they went along. This becomes most problematic when they are adlibbing the one series long plot theme- anything to do with Rambaldi. They didn't have all the details worked out ahead of time, so when they came up with a cool twist or shocking idea or scene related to Rambaldi or someone's pursuit of him, they often painted themselves into a corner and would just throw some cheap fix at it, which created another problem down the road.

Having said that, I'm guessing the use of the 12 is supposed to have some kind of mystical allusion to the 12 of the New Testament- Jesus' inner circle.

Nadia's death was a bandaide for the problem of the prophecy regarding either the Chosen One or the Passenger dieing. They didn't have much time to work it in since the series was ending so abruptly. Having it be at Sloane's hands had a nice symmetry with regard to his deluded "faith" for which he was willing to commit any evil.

Sloane going back and forth between good intention and utter evil is simliar to Irina. They were both torn between family and Rambaldi. People who have faith in nothing will often commit horrible acts. People who have faith in the wrong things will commit the worst acts.

The super nannies were GREAT! They would have been a wonderful addition if the series had continued.

As I have also said before, as super fans we actually know more about the story than the writers. For them it was only slightly more than a job. For us it was a true passion. Our minds demanded more from it.

Robetron said...

Um, as far as the "12" go, it stands as just another example of the writers setting up a really good story, which they ran out of time to develop. Just like the Rachel subplot, just like the Grace subplot, just like the prophesy subplot, etc., etc. ...and the list could go on & on from season 5. The 12 were supposed to cause Syd concern because it was like the problem of seasons 1 and 2 had started all over again. This stood out as evidence to her that she would never get out of the spy business. You are very right. It would have been better if the 12 turned out to be something more significant than plot-fodder, ready to be murdered at Sloane's whim.

Regarding the scene of Nadia's death, it would have been so much more effective to show Sloane bawling like a baby, holding his prescious daughter in his arms, getting her blood on his hands, clothes, and face. Then he begins to curl up in a ball on the floor as he screams "No, no, no!" Then, cut away to some other event, but return to Sloane on the floor, his twitching becomes slower, and slip up for a close-up as he rises from the floor with a completely insane countanance, the blood on his face and the look in his eye showing naught but Rambaldi-madness. Now wouldn't that have made her death so much more dramatic?

BTW - I started writing to develop the continuing story of the Bristow/ Vaughn family adventures. So far all I have had time to do is the first scene. When I have something worth sending for you to post, I get it to you ASAP.


Robetron said...

P.S. to G.S.
Congrats on the Wash. State Cougar mascot getting the ESPN mascot of the year award.

Interested in my comments regarding my Michigan performance in the Rose bowl? Check here:

Page48 said...

This is it. The first day of the first year post-Alias. I just finished watching "All the Time in the World" for the first time since May, and it still sucks. And, BTW, have we figured out what is up with all the gaping neck wounds (Nadia, Renee, Sydney) of the last few episodes? There must be more to this than meets the eye. Actually, I think it was a cruel bit of writing to have Renee die thinking that Sydney killed her, I mean that's just plain, old-fashioned cold.

I love Sydney's smile when Jack tells her his wounds are "just a scratch". Who was he kidding?

I'm struck by the ease with which the metal frame (never mind the glass) gave way under Irina's weight. Does the woman weigh 115 pounds? The metal is sheared off for crying out loud! It wouldn't withstand a heavy rain.

Killing Jack, so unnecessary, ditto killing Tom, although I don't really give a toss about Tom.

Having the luxury of watching 1.1 and 5.17 over and over again, I love the change in Jack and Sydney's relationship. Almost completely estranged in 1.1 and then the gut-wrenching goodbye in 5.17, they have come a very long way. In 1.1 Sydney asked Jack "how do I know what you're telling me is the truth?". In 5.17, she said "I love you, Dad". In 1.1, she said "I'd like to be alone if you don't mind." Her last words to her father, "I don't want to leave you here". No doubt about it, I love the Bristows.

Robetron, I agree that Sloane should have been shown to be in considerably more pain over Nadia's death. Most people show more emotion over losing a family pet.

Alias was brilliant, unprecedented television, IMO. It's hard to accept that we're on our own from this day forward.

PS. I watched "Elektra" the other day (because I miss JG and all things Alias), and I couldn't help but notice Elektra saying to the young girl, Abby "we'll find each other".

kellie said...

WOW - it is hard to add anything meaningful to these great comments. Anyway, I too am still confused about the 12. Why was it so easy to assemble them in a room and kill them? Why would they accept Peyton in Sloane's place at the meeting after supposedly being brilliant enough to pull strings in the espionage game for decades largely undetected? Also, how is it that APO/the CIA didn't have their faces, but they were able to find them to take pictures of their faces?

I know, it is because there was no time to develop the stories and it all had to be wrapped up in just a few episodes. I think I would have preferred the 12 to be a resurgence of the Alliance or something other than a new (old) organization that basically does the same thing with a different name (ditto with the Covenant).

Still love the show and am grateful for the closure they did give us. Uncle, I think you stated it beautifully when you said, "For [the writers] it was only slightly more than a job. For us it was a true passion. Our minds demanded more from it." There is something satisfying about never being satisfied - it's like a great unsolved mystery that keeps you thinking.