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  1. Please forgive the bluntness Mulva: Because good people have enough character not to rat on aquaintances? Or in a free society people mind their own business and don't stick their nose into others affairs especially when there's been no harm? Either of those options would be a morally legitimate, if not currently culturally favored, reason. "Treat others as you would want to be treated."
  2. I seem to remember someone cheekily calling the 5:00 cocktail hour the equivalent of the "WASP sacrament". That's how it's used in Gilmore Girls. Rigorously observed by the traditionalist generation and especially observed by the old "upper crust". This is AS-P writing from an excellent talent for observation, in my book. I've been around that particular set from time to time (although they are aging out) and for them not to have a drink in their hand at 5:05 P.M. would be the equivalent of the sun failing to rise in the morning. Also, for the sake of learning something new...does anyone know a gracious way to suggest that some people would be happier if they just lightened up a little? Because I don't know one and, as I tend to be on the "spiky" side, I'm making an effort to learn how to say what I'm thinking without offending too many people. Perhaps I should just suggest they could use a drink. ;)
  3. Monica with the bird on her head reacting when Chandler says he loves her. The only time I've ever seen a thanksgiving turkey look touched and surprised.
  4. 1. Maybe Cora is developing some sort of dementia and has forgotten that she's invited Ms. Bunting to dinner before. 2. I applaud Robert for his restraint with Ms. Bunting--the word "shrew" did not come up and the riot act was not read in full. Had Ms. Bunting been a Mr. Bunting I would have been very tempted to "escort" him out personally. 3. The breakup between Mary and Gillingham seemed unreasonably passionate given the ho-hum "tryst" scenes in the hotel. They may as well have been "arranging matches" over the morning paper for all the excitement the week seemed to inspire in them both at the time.
  5. First, thank you for answering my post. I think that's the great thing about this show is it brings up issues like this and these issues make us think. Now Krista lied she did not "evade, make excuses or soften the blow"--she lied. And she did so twice to Amy. It is a "social rule" not to lie to others. Amy knows this rule, Krista knows this rule, everyone knows this rule. We can all be hypocritical about this rule from time to time but it doesn't mean the rule isn't there.
  6. Amy certainly can "switch" very quickly and she does so here but not without cause. The scene in the conference room really is the "volta" for the entire episode and really for Amy's entire character. The mendacity of Krista and Damon are brought to the fore and then put in conflict with Amy's character. Rather than allowing Amy to make her presentation out of kindness or even compassion it's revealed Damon just did so to make Amy an object of ridicule. Krista pretends to be kind to Amy, but the look of resentment and contempt on her face at the conference table as Amy begins her presentation is unmistakable. At least Krista's friend Janice is more honest about her disrespect for Amy and it makes me like her approach more than Damon's and Krista's. At least we know she isn't going to stick her knife in from the back, metaphorically speaking, Janice makes it known to Amy that she doesn't like her and will simply stick the knife in from the front. The things said about Amy after her speech are merciless. There is a certain disgust that I share with Amy when it comes to mendacity, especially the sort which masquerades as if it comes from the heart. Of course this falseness is often seen as an incredibly useful tactic in this day and age where you don't actually have to have qualities of character like courage, grace, love, etc; you just need to play the "polite" part. It enforces itself with ridicule of the type seen here. It's refined in junior highs and high schools across the country, as Amy herself points out and is often strangely encouraged these days in many settings which are otherwise deemed "professional". Everyone in the conference room with the exception of Amy and Janice (with the exception of her ironic speech on "CleanMeds"), remind me of Brother Man and Sister Woman from "A Cat on a Hot Tin Roof", but now freed even from the restraints of pleasing Big Daddy. Amy's response to the whole affair is to metaphorically "burn it all down". I understand the hurt and the pain the character is feeling, but the knowing decision she makes to hack e-mail addresses is--as we've come to expect from Amy--a glaring overreaction. But it only makes her character more interesting! What purportedly began as a "peaceful and loving" attempt to alert the company to ways they're harming people has now become a full blown, no holds barred war of destruction. She tells herself that she's really doing it all for good and against an evil company when really she's doing it because people whom she thought were her colleages or friends treated her abominably in a conference room. But such distinctions are often difficult for her, as are categories. She projects and splits and pivots is now one person, one attitude, now another. Other people, other objects also are now one thing to her then suddenly the opposite either horrible or wonderful but nowhere in between. The company=the boardroom for her somehow and she carries that tempting, but false approximation forward into her new campaign. The combination of completely positive and completely destructive aspects of Amy which White manages to combine in the character are enthralling. Here she is striding down the hall in her yellow skirt completely human, compassionate and loving now suddenly pouring gasoline down the hallway. Chilling, truly frightening because we sense she is truly capable of ANYTHING including running over whatever or whomever would get in the way of a vaguely reasoned but intensely felt "purpose".
  7. Ooooofffff. This episode is like a punch to the stomach. "What is the worst thing that can happen?" Fortunately, most of us don't have to face the answer to such a question. Helen has had to do just that. And really it's just so horrible she really can't deal with it. She still spends her days haunted by it. "But Helen that was 20 years ago." Not for Helen. For Helen it's still fresh with her, the pain of losing her husband. And it keeps her from risk and it keeps her from living in the way that trauma can. And really none of us have an answer for that, for finding life again after such horrible trauma. Don't forget there are people out there who've had to deal with such horrible things. Maybe they may watch this episode and not feel so alone in their grief. The writer makes no point with the story, presents no affirmation or meaning. In the end he does as we all must and simply present the scene and: "till their grief is fled and gone, we do sit by them and moan." (On Another's Sorrow, William Blake).
  8. Everyone is crazy. There's just loud crazy (Amy and her borderline issues) and quiet crazy (Abaddon, Krista, the HR manager). With Amy we find her unable to truthfully deal with her decisions regarding Dougie and her attempts to manipulate him almost bordering on delusion. Instead the entire problem is reduced to his lewd behavior when there were two sides to the story. Abaddon is crazy. We see HR handling one issue of decency regarding it's employees--sexual misconduct--with a thorough investigation and a good deal of time and resources spent. At the same time it's spying in a completely indecent way with its employees by putting them under an oppressive system of surveillance and harrassment resulting in a great deal of turnover and worker dissatisfaction. But, "It's just business." Abaddon is at war against itself and a hypocrite in its morality. The workers go along typing in the information which harms their fellow workers out of a quiet desperation that keeps the whole crazy thing moving forward. Speaking of "quiet desperation", Krista lies to Amy directly to her face. When Amy confronts her about it Krista claims an inability to deal with Amy and then starts calling Amy crazy. I wonder. I mean that's the stock answer right? Amy's the crazy one? But consider the contrast the writer puts forward: last episode Amy manipulated Dougie by pandering to his lust. She can't really deal with the morality of this and Amy denies she's done anything wrong in a repressed, almost delusional way and Dougie's sexual harrassment becomes the "real" problem. This episode Krista lies to Amy (manipulates her) to keep her quiet and when confronted with this she starts labelling Amy as being the problem. Krista, just like Amy, cannot directly confront her own negative behavior and must turn it completely into Amy's problem. The truth is they're both reconciling their behavior in similar ways--both by being hypocritical. The only difference is that one person "rocks the boat" and the other is happy to manipulate and evade to buy their life of "quiet desperation". Krista and Abaddon have similar styles when it comes to addressing conflict. Their style may produce a more quiet atmosphere but it comes at the price of producing a great deal of denial, hypocrisy, indecent and irrational behavior. A crazy bargain when you think about it, but it's a bargain that everyone makes so that makes it okay....right? But in the end the story does not truly deal with ANY of the hypocrisy critically. With the image of Amy wildly waving the protest sign it leaves off with a scene of affirmation. It's almost as if the writer is saying "Yeah everyone's crazy, life's crazy...ain't it wonderful?"
  9. Loneliness and Partnership. Amy's somewhat obtuse nature when it comes to understanding other people comes out most strongly with Tyler in the car. The direction is excellent, showing Tyler's trembling hand and good acting as well communicates a deep, lonely pain. Amy's babbling and her "concerns" seem silly then vain while we're watching Tyler. Amy just has a block where she cannot truly connect with other people. THAT is behind her loneliness. Then we have Amy with her willingness to use manipulative means to get what she wants, contrasted with her desire to do "good" in the world. "I'm not like whoring her out am I?" She says with a smile and a laugh, as if just saying the words absolves her somehow. She finally does the right thing when confronted with Dougies behavior at the night club. Dougie makes me a little sick to my stomach. He's stuck at a perpetual age of 13 and can't help himself, but he still makes me somewhat ill. I don't fully understand or buy Amy's view of the whole affair at the end of this episode. I wonder is the viewer meant to understand here? Or is that we're meant to see Amy unable to resolve the true difficulty and she simply runs to the default setting she took on in therapy?
  10. Kristina's character's moral high ground position should have been honestly challenged...what? more often? once? I honestly can't remember Kristina's sanctimonious side being ever seriously challenged by another character. Drama isn't about putting forward a point of view you secretly agree with (perhaps the writers do, perhaps they don't but the show seems to indicate they do) and never providing conflict for it. Drama is all about conflict, if it's not then it's bad writing. I believe, overall, the show is effectively written with spots of good to very good writing, but in Kristina's case...well I would say to the writers that they missed an opportunity there. I would also point out, over the years, the exceptional talent of some of the actors involved often brought some periods of very run of the mill writing up by quite a few pegs.
  11. Is that unpopular? Because I feel the same way about their acting. Ted plays and excellent rake and his infuriation at Diane's character seems completely real.
  12. I thought the point of the episode had much more to do with friendship and relationships. The way they can seem one way to you at times and actually be another. The effects of letting jealousy run rampant and the nobility of letting such low, petty things go--thinking the best of your friends and giving them the benefit of the doubt. The point of Sandy's drawing in the book, in my mind, is to enable the writer to demonstrate how she actually thinks and feels about the people in her life, including Amy. She draws beautiful things with the names of people in her life because she thinks so well of them. Perhaps she butts in because she sees the good in people and what they're capable of? Something else which is interesting is this: had Amy sent the text then Sandy would never have finished drawing the flower. Everything which both of them took away from a friendly, needed experience would have been ruined. Why was this preserved? Because Amy was actually able to recognize and let go of one of the crazy reactions she has which take her over about half the time and wind up ruining the good impact she would truly like to have on people and events. As for Helen's reaction to Sandy. Well, in my opinion, Helen does her best to wall herself up from life and from interactions with other people. Amy says as much when she says that "we can't all just be happy with flowers," or the like. To me it's good to see Helen shaken up and to be upset about someone intruding. Helen lives within walls that she's built from her own fear. Further, Helen doesn't like anyone intruding into the reasons and problems behind her reactions to life, but she is perfectly willing to turn the spotlight on Amy's difficulties, as she does when discussing the nature of her friendships. Interestingly, however, Helen leaves flowers for Amy while she does this. I think the writer is pointing toward a question again, asking us "Okay what do the flowers that Sandy draws and Helen leaves mean?"
  13. From the interview in New Republic: http://www.newrepublic.com/article/books-and-arts/111959/can-mike-white-change-television-tk
  14. THAT is what I love about the character thank you for spelling it out for me. She is AUTHENTIC. Not pleasing, not nice or polite but honest. It is refreshing to see such honesty in a society where we all lead such buttoned down "...don't say this in this group or that in the other." for fear that we might embarrass ourselves or make someone else uncomfortable. That is the critque I think the writer is making. She shows the "half-life" that everyone else in the show is leading and that we are too, held back afraid to just be themselves. I also think the extreme blowback that she seems to instill in many people is EQUALLY interesting and says more about them than it does about her. She is threatening to people in large part because of her honesty. She has moved outside the unspoken playing field and it scares the heck out of people.
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