Tuesday, June 26, 2007

This all started with a BABE!

Remember the pilot? Of course you remember the pilot. Danny gets down on one knee and proposes and Sydney is ecstatic. And then all this elation and normalcy is out the window the minute Danny Hecht says the word “baby.” Baby, family, future- a couple of choice words for a young international super spy. In that moment (on the couch in their old apartment), Sydney feels she is forced to tell Danny about her position at SD-6, which of course, leads to his demise. This, in turn, leads us on a 5-year journey with Sydney Bristow, as she ultimately takes down Sloane, time and time again, avenging not only Danny’s death, but Francie’s, Will’s kidnapping, Vaughn’s near death and Nadia’s murder. The Alliance, Rambaldi, CIA, Covenant, Prophet 5, we would have heard nothing about all of this if someone hadn’t yelled procreation.

Last night I was watching season 5. Yes, I had the strength to put the DVD in the player and actually sit down and watch four back-to-back episodes. Watching Sydney give birth and then care for little Iz only reminded me of how this whole story got started. She had to tell Danny about her job- clearly he was thinking of settling down and having a family and she was thinking about globetrotting and catching bad guys. It seemed only fair that she tell him the truth, to prepare him for the sort of life she had already been living. That back-fired, we know, but in the end, Sydney was ready to embrace this baby, family, future scenario, and kudos to her for doing so. Forget the whole “working mom” bit. Simply- Sydney Bristow deserved a damn break. She deserved some down-home normalcy and it don’t get more normal than rocking a baby to sleep on the lid of the dryer and pouring tall glasses of lemonade for guests.

It is only implied that Sydney and Vaughn went back to work after Irina’s death- and that the birth of their second child set the play in motion to leave the CIA and settle on the beach- looking back now, that seems like the most logical scenario. We always knew Sydney wouldn’t be able to stay away- and for Vaughn, the CIA had been his whole life until he met Sydney. Irina told Sydney during Isabelle’s birth, that she had to choose between being an agent and a mother- she would either fail at one or both. She chose to be an agent and she told Sydney that she would have to make a choice too- she couldn’t do both. Sydney simply said, “Watch me.” And look, after 5 years, we have watched Sydney Bristow make a family with everyone around her- Francie and Will, Jack and Nadia, Weiss, Marshall, Dixon. And if all that didn’t prepare her for motherhood, then I don’t know what would have.

We have known from day one that Sydney had a knack for compartmentalizing. She had this uncanny ability to move from one mission to the next, from her daily life to her professional life and no doubt, from spy to mother. It just seems funny now- to look back on the old Syd and see the precise moment her world changed. The precise moment our world changed- the TV world changed. All because of baby.


Page48 said...

Given Sydney's experience with family life, it's a wonder she wasn't frightened away from having kids of her own.

Jack and Irina hardly set the standard on which Syd would eventually set her sights as a parent. Her own sister's father was Dr. Evil (Sloane) for crying out loud. She witnessed the trauma of Dixon's kids losing their mother while they were quite young. She herself had no sibling experience until Nadia came along 30 years into the game.

All her friends (Will, Francie, Weiss, Vaughn) were childless, so what did Sydney even know about family that made her want to settle down and have one of her own? Was she hoping, in a way, to roll back the clock on her own life and relive it through the future Izzy in a way she thought her own life should have unfolded?

Or was it no more complicated than the sound of that biological clocking ticking away? Let's face it, 99.9% of all women seem to have that inexplicable urge to inflict another lawless, ritalin-pissing, dope smoking, cell-phone-toting, skateboard riding, gangta rapping hellion on an already burgeoning world population.

Whatever her reasons, it's just a shame for us that Sydney Bristow couldn't have waited a few more years to raise her little beach bums, so we could have benefited from an extended run of "Alias".

And then there's poor Danny. Lying in a gorgeous cemetery, guarded by palm trees and a stiff summer breeze, while Vaughn shags his fiance silly in a tropical paradise. Is there any justice in that? Women move on so quickly.

srg-alias said...

ah page, such bitterness, but you're right that Danny and Francie really got screwed in the Alias world. I remember I wrote an article a while ago on the tragedy of Francie, how she never even knew about Syd's double life and had no idea why someone who looked exactly like her came into her restaurant and shot her in the head. At least Danny had some kind of clue from Syd's confession, but still, pretty sucky.

I don't know season 5 as well as the first 3, but I do remember Syd confessing in one of the episodes that she was worried about being a good mother, especially since she had pretty crappy role models growing up. Obviously Iz wasn't planned, if Syd had a family anywhere in her plan it was definitely in the future, when things would be "safer" as she put it. But as we all know, there's always another bad guy (or girl) that comes along. Waiting for things to be safer would mean it would never happen, a "happy accident" was prob the only way Syd would settle into the family life.

Girlscout said...

And let's remember, Sydney did not move on quickly. It took Syd and Vaughn nearly 1.5 seasons to get together. That seemed like forever!!! We wanted them together the minute they were in the same room. Come on!

If someone moved on fast it was Vaughn, when he married Lauren. 6 months? Wasn't it 6 months? Or 9? Either way, that is a short amount of time for a grieving man. And didn't Weiss say that Vaughn "wasn't cavalier about moving on." Lies! He married the first bleach blonde tramp that came his way- and man- wasn't Syd pissed "if it had been me? I would have waited!!"

Page48 said...

Yes, GS, Vaughn did move on at warp speed, but he was targeted by enemy forces. This wasn't nature taking it's course, this was entrampment (yes, spelled with an "m"). Men are not to be judged harshly for caving in to this kind of blonde manipulation.

Srg, poor Francie didn't even get a funeral or memorial service, not even a graveside visit from Syd (with a bitchin' soundtrack). She was just eliminated, probably an acid bath to destroy the evidence of murder most foul. A cruel twist of fate for yet another member of Sydney's extended family.

Sydney was able to protect the world, but the people around her? Not so much.

SomeJPH said...

Since Alias is on Netflix these days, I decided to relive my old addiction. In the moment you described -Sydney on the couch and Danny talking babies - there's a song playing in the background. I think it's the Sundays, but does anyone else know for sure?