Some thoughts on the episode.
I agree with everyone, I'm not thrilled about the investigation. I'm not thrilled about the hack story either. Mostly, because I don't think they had to go there. I read that they didn't do the campaign because the primary campaigns are ongoing and they didn't think it was what people wanted to see but I'm not convinced. First of all, they could have done whatever they wanted, so they could have easily kept the campaign above the belt and gone for clean campaigns. Second, if they thought viewers didn't want to see a campaign, what made them think that they'd want to see an investigation? To me, it sounds like CBS had a say in the matter or, at the very least, that CBS' decision to cancel the show played a role in their choice of story.
I'm also torn about them showing the presidency in the first place. Bess getting elected at the end of the show would have felt like a nice conclusion of that chapter of hers as Secretary of State. Now, they've kind of opened the next chapter but we're only going to see a very small part of it. On the other hand, I do like that we get to see it. I'd just have liked to be able to see it for longer than 10 episodes if that happened.
Maybe it’s just me but what was up with the many times that they referred to Bess as commander-in-chief? I know that she is the commander-in-chief, I just thought they overdid it a little. The stylist did not need to refer to Bess as that, for example. She could have just said she got the President to sign off. I thought that was a little odd.
Bess and Henry dancing was a cute moment and made me smile. (Although, for a second, I thought they were going to start making out :P) And Bess pulling Henry away from the couple to keep him from telling his joke made me grin. Nice call-back bringing that joke back.
I wasn't 100% sold on Henry's involvement with the arts. Yes, he wrote books and is well-read but it never seemed to rise to the level that would make me think he'd be interested in making the arts one of his issues as First Gentleman. I think it would have been nice if they'd dropped a sentence or two tying it his interest to Allison and her career choice.
I don't think they'll have many "jobs" after this one, so Henry's wish to have jobs in their house from now on may not be that much of an issue. (That exchange made me curious as to what they'd do after her presidency. I find it really hard to guess with the two of them).
I love Colbert and I loved him even more when he got to say that the word for guys like Henry was annoying. He's certainly spoke for me, at least, with regards to Henry's many "talents".
I wonder if it was weird for Colbert though. I mean, he's had Daly on the show and suddenly, he had Daly on the show as his character Henry.
I’m not sure if they did it on purpose, but I thought it was an interesting contrast, switching from Henry at Colbert to Bess in the Sit Room. Very defining of their current roles.
I get what Mike B said about wanting to work behind-the-scenes and it's probably right with regards to his character, (and I think Kevin Rahm killed it when he was talking about relationships with people) but I absolutely loved the dynamic he and Bess had in this episode and that we got to see a couple of different dynamics between them.
I thought that he had to correct himself as he addresses Bess came across as very authentic to the character. Loved the exchange after Bess emerged from the bedroom and the moment when he talked to her about Gordon and we got to see his softer side.
I like Blake as Bess' assistant, probably because he's been one more or less the entire show, so I don't mind that he's "ROTUS" (seriously?) but I'm with Mike. I'm not convinced it's a promotion.
I think Morejon was the obvious VP choice. I don't know if they had plans to go there as far back but ever since the Christmas party in S4 when she pushed him to do the right thing about the landmines, I assumed that he might end up as her VP pick down the road. Why turn an adversary around otherwise?
I'd have loved to see why Morejon decided to join the ticket. Of course, he was kidding himself thinking he could control Miller. If Miller became President, all he'd have to do was give an order and Morejon would have to follow it. But did he realize that? If so, what made him realize it? Or did he tell his wife about Bess' offer and did she sort of steer him into accepting? Darn 10 episodes.
I liked when he acknowledged that he didn’t have Bess’ courage. It was one of my favorite moments of the episode and showed how far they had come and that no matter their disagreements, he really respects her. (And, I guess, he did have the courage after all).
And speaking of, something else I'd have liked to see explored was Iran's response to the retaliatory strike. Especially since all we got was "Israel says it's Iran and we're saying it, too, so they did it". I wish they'd have had the time to spend some more time at confirming that Iran was actually behind the hack. But, I guess, since we didn't see any fallout we're supposed to assume that that was the case.
Holding the press conference to announce the Iran hack is so very Bess but after all these years, did she really not see the response coming?
I’m in love with the bedroom scene, when Henry comes in, Bess asks questions and then continues to talk until she expects Henry to answer. Whoever wrote that really did a great job observing life! And I thought it was brilliantly acted, too. (The whole episode was, really).
I thought the look Bess gave Henry when she mentioned that people could talk about their sex life was priceless and I liked the call-back to the pilot right after. But I think it would have worked better if they had changed the end to the dialogue, with Henry actually saying the right thing this time. It felt a bit awkward this way. Although, I did love that he just gave back the remote.
Who picked out the rusty wall color for the living-room/den and what’s more, who picked out that animal painting? Does that go with the mountain scene from one of the potential campaign headquarters they showed in the S4 finale? 😛
It does not look like something Bess and Henry would pick out.
Whoever cast Miller did a fantastic job. That guy really came across as gross and creepy. I guess, the way they dressed him played a huge part in that. But I did wonder who’d want to have an affair with him. Ew!
Loved when he sort of lost his temper with Bess and all she did was give him a look and he pulled himself together.
Bess showing up at Russell’s was another nice call-back to the pilot when Conrad showed up at Bess’ place. And this time, they did change things a bit and I thought it worked really well.
The dialogue was great, especially, the way that Russell greeted her and that he compared weeds to lobbyists. That is so Russell. And something about Bess apologizing for dropping in unannounced cracks me up. I think it’s the fact that she’s travelling around with a multi-car motorcade and dropping in unannounced makes it sound like she’s snuck up on him which seems rather impossible.
I think the speech Bess gave at the end of the episode is one of the best they ever wrote, if not the best. And we got quite a lot of it, too. Loved it.