November 29, 2008

My Own Worst Enemy #5 "The Night Train to Moscow" (2008 episode)

Directed by David Semel. Written by Rafe Judkins and Lauren LeFranc. Created by Jason Smilovic.

One of the reasons Edward signed up for this program was the understanding he wouldn't have any more serious relationships, wouldn't have to endanger his missions because of thoughts of someone waiting back home, wouldn't have to fall in love. When a presidential candidate in Kazakhstan is kidnapped by the KGB, Edward is paired up with the man's wife (Isabella Hofmann), a Russian operative who fell for the politician she was meant to spy on, and all of the lines between real relationships and cover start to crumble.

Take, for instance, Angie, Henry's everyday wife back home. When the hapless half of our hero spots her making secret meetings when she should be somewhere else, suspicions start to arise. Is she a spy? Is she a part of Janus? Is she a member of a foreign operation? Such questions only deepen when he finds out that a photograph from their past is fake.

The exploration here is truly fantastic and naturally plays off of the building sense of paranoia in Henry's mind. And the conflict is beautifully maintained between him and Edward because we've seen how the killer reacts when questions of security are raised, and neither Henry nor we want to see anything happen to Angie before answers can be found. And props to the writers for not going the way I expected them to. It would have been a memorable twist, but an artificial one that would feel like a shock for the sake of shock.

And then there's Edward's relationship with Dr. Skinner. Perhaps it's appropriate that we know little of what's specifically going on beneath the intensity of their romance, because they don't seem to have everything figured out, either.

And it's a shame we may never see the resolution of that plot thread, or get the answers to so many other questions, because this series has been cancelled. From what I hear, there's four more episodes left to air, and I'll be here for every single one of them, but it's a shame a series which not only has a killer concept, but some of the most spot-on perfect execution I've seen in years, from both cast and crew, is getting the axe when there's so much left to tell. *sigh* Such is the life of the TV viewing audience.

My review of My Own Worst Enemy #4 "This Is Not My Son" (2008 episode).
My review of My Own Worst Enemy #6 "High Crimes and Turducken" (2008 episode).

No comments: