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Tara Ariano

S01.E09: Against Thy Neighbor

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Simcoe ignites a political witch hunt to weed out rebel conspirators in Setauket. Meanwhile, Washington assigns Ben to a secret mission.

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I do like "fife and petticoats", I do, I just really prefer the episodes that are more fife and less petticoat.

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This one kept it moving again. Hopefully it is just the season finale next week & not series.

Big mouth Mary finding that book is a powder keg. Abraham better keep it zipped around Anna from now on or Mary will surely rat him out. She may anyway by accident. Yikes! I was glad to see Selah -- I feared he was dead from aftereffects of The Jersey when we didn't see him at first. I hope for no baby mama drama there/puking in the chamber pot. Mrs. Culpeper, my ass. You are the mistress. Anna's face when she sees Selah should be something. Summer camp is over. Time for you both to go home.

Ben's coldness made sense. A part of him probably shut down when he learned of his brother's death & the thirst for vengeance took hold. I think Caleb was happy to go home, but also to see feeling from Ben again.

I see where Ben got it from... Reverend Tallmadge is quite a force. Long legs, charisma & balls to spare. Like his boy Ben. Good casting.

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What a fun villain Simcoe has become.  To get his commanding officer to basically do/think the way he wants him to he feeds a poison apple to Bucephalus 2.0. (Modest of the commander to name his horse after Alexander the Great's I always thought, hah).  Simcoe really really enjoys his work.

 

Looks like the series ends more then the season ends by the previews.  Yeah there is the first allusion to Benedict Arnold but it is already post-Saratoga where Arnold got his horse shot out from under him like Caleb and Blue Coat Dude were discussing.  The winter is long over and summer is here and time is whizzing by quickly.  Since they don't seem to want to tell the real story of the spy ring I'm fine with a good old fashioned bloodbath ending next week and the show being cancelled.  Cause if Simcoe gets offed in this upcoming episode it would not be fun anymore.

 

Really hating the main character Abe at this point.  Not only does he treat his wife like crap but he never bothers to hang out with his son either.  He makes them both into his ball and chain whilst constantly feeling sorry for himself for no real reason.  And now it's all about screwing the "hot chick" while pretending to himself he is some wonderful noble type.  Wish Simcoe had shot him at the dual and they had turned the series into "The Mad and Merry Adventures of Simcoe" instead.

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What a fun villain Simcoe has become.  To get his commanding officer to basically do/think the way he wants him to he feeds a poison apple to Bucephalus 2.0. (Modest of the commander to name his horse after Alexander the Great's I always thought, hah).  Simcoe really really enjoys his work.

 

That poor horse! Poor thing! Okay, now that was evil. And can I say, I really felt for poor Major Hewett. But watch your back, Simcoe, because if Hewett figures out what you've done - there will be hell to pay.

 

Again, another good episode. Really engaging and good stories. And yes, even the Anna/Abe thing was okay. But I agree about Abe's character. He neglects his wife (and now his son), is banging the hot chick and barely doing spy things. However, he is playing the others now, which I like. I thought the court scene, and him as a magistrate was brilliant. The bullet not fitting and Simcoe's reaction - awesome. In a way, he's the Patriots Simcoe. Messing with the heads of the other side, which is good.

 

I felt bad for Mary this episode. Totally dismissed her before but it seemed like she actually loves Abe. Is it wrong that I want her to get it on with the hottie British Soldier (Baker) staying at her house. He's a sweetie also.

 

Cause if Simcoe gets offed in this upcoming episode it would not be fun anymore.

 

Won't happen unless they really want to mess with history. I think this was mentioned in another of the TURN episode threads, but Simcoe is John Graves Simcoe, who was the first Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada (Modern day Province of Ontario). He's responsible for creating Canada (Upper and Lower Canada (Quebec) to provide lands that United Empire Loyalists lost in the civil war. He also created our (I'm Canadian) initial court system and also abolished slavery here, before England did. The man was a good guy in real life.

 

The town of Simcoe, Simcoe Country and Lake Simcoe are all named after him (I live a short drive away). There is a nice statue right in downtown Toronto of Simcoe. Our Civic holiday (First weekend in August) is to honour Simcoe.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Graves_Simcoe

 

And I did not know this but he sent the very first Valentine's day letter (on record) in America. Very cool. So much for the portrayal of a sleazy guy on the show. But I will say that Samuel Roukin plays a villianous Simcoe really well.

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I didn't see where Abe was pulling his all-nighter in studying the law (theory at least). I guess it must have been at the cafe, because if it was at his house, then Mary is to blame for not knowing why the bed wasn't slept in, and if it was at his father's house, then why didn't Mary see him pulling the all-nighter there (or alternatively, already know he wasn't sleeping at the house that night)?  And seriously,  if a toddler can find your hiding spot, its not a very good hiding spot.

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I thought it was a very good episode. It moved along quickly, and I liked the mental sparring of Abe and Simcoe, each knowing just what the other was about. The reveal about the rifle and ball seemed a bit basic -- would've thought Simcoe had all the evidence tied up neatly, although I guess he never expected to truly need his ducks perfectly in a row. And in the end, he didn't anyhow. I liked Abe's veiled threat that he was still on a mission to collar the REAL assassin. In fact, I'd have to say that this was the best I've liked Abe all season, were it not for the rough, barn, secret sex, intercut with flailing, death horse, opening scenes.

The end was unsettling, with Mary finding the code book. I like how the writers planted that little seed of a hideaway way back in episode 2, and we now see that it wasn't just a random bonding scene between Abe and Sprout. Mary is in no mood for sweet now. Who will she go to with the book, and how will she use it to get whatever it is she wants?

I hope they're able to justify the raid on Setauket (if not tactically, then thematically) so it isn't just about saving Ben's daddy and Caleb's uncle, or about ending the season (and possibly the series) with a gunfight bang. I mean, Caleb and Ben have been insubordinate all series, but they're on orders from Washington, here. We're talking about the big picture defense of Philadelphia! Ben, not 20 minutes earlier, is talking about things not being personal, but when it's his personal, that's different. On the other hand, hooray, for the writers giving most of these characters layers and dimension. (Rev. Tallmadge was all kinds of impressive. I'd wanna save him too!)

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Apparently the real Simcoe may not have been so much of a good guy either, at least not during the war.  On the AMC forums, someone posted the following:

 

It’s hard to discuss Simcoe’s activities in the Revolutionary War without the context of the Queen’s Rangers. Let’s begin by saying the "Queens Rangers" depicted in TURN is not QYR established in Canada at a later date;. That said, the QYR, like the American Army “Rangers” and the “Queen’s Rangers” of the Rev War all trace their lineage to the original Queens Rangers of the French and Indian war.

The “Queen’s Rangers” of the American Revolution was an American Loyalist regiment created by British General Howe specifically for Robert Rogers to lead. The unit was intended as a reprise of the Queens Ranger's unit which Rogers led during the French and Indian War (AKA “the 7 Years War”). Roger's Rangers were known as a tough "no-holds barred" frontier unit. Depending on your side in that war they were either cunning or ruthless; bold or vicious. Robert Rogers, notable frontiersman who led the original Queens Rangers during the French and Indian War, was both a hero and villain to both sides in both wars. After the F&I war Rogers launched several failed ventures, squandered his investors fortunes, was thrown into debtors prison in England, became an alcoholic, and got out of debtors prison after the revolution started. He arrived in 1776 British-occupied New York where he first tried to sell himself to the British Army, then tried to get a better deal from the Americans, who discovered his mercenary loyalty and briefly jailed him before he escaped and accepted the British deal. Gens Howe and Clinton didn't trust him, so he was only allowed to recruit from the dregs of society – bars, jails, deserters, and prison ships, to form the new Queen's Rangers, who are accurately depicted in the show as a group of shady cut-throats. They were ruthless, barbaric, and allegations of rape, pillage, and plunder against citizens hounded the unit throughout the RevWar. 

John Graves Simcoe, like Robert Rogers, is a figure whose reputation depends upon which side you learnt your history. Simcoe's start in the British Army was lackluster. He apparently was sufficiently low to attract Robert Rogers' attention for recruitment into the Queen's Rangers notorious office cadre. At one point all 16 of the Queens Rangers Officers were court-martialed. Although not fully exonerated, Simcoe was one of the two officers retained in service. The rest were given various degrees of punishment; 14 were additionally dismissed from the army as "unfit for service to the Crown" - a damning judgment considering the need for officers during time of war. Later in the war Simcoe rose to the rank of Lt Col of the Queen's Rangers and grew to become a competent commander. The Rangers performed well at the battle of Brandywine, capably at Germantown, and consistently under Arnold, Phillips and Cornwallis in the 1781 Virginia campaign. But, Simcoe and the Rangers’ off-battlefield behavior found consistent rebuke and their reputation as cut-throats preceded them. Upon the British approach to Petersburg in April 1781, their commander, Maj Gen William Phillips, felt it necessary to issue an order directing the Rangers to note that the British Army was present in America to promote order and to protect the lives and property of the citizens. Phillips knew that the Crown needed to restore the colonies to the empire by winning hearts and minds; not by burning, raping, and murdering. During that Campaign Simcoe was ordered to keep a journal of his activities, which he did and later edited and published. When read alongside contemporary accounts by other participants in the same actions Simcoe's account appears consistently self-serving. This is the “Mr Hyde” of Simcoe evidenced in the USA. But… After the war Simcoe relocated to Canada, along with many of his fellow Rangers and about 25,000 dispossessed Loyalists: kindred souls willing to dismiss Simcoe's wartime conduct as a necessary evil; many who wanted their own activities forgotten as well. Simcoe became “Dr. Jekyll” - a key leader in the development of Toronto, particularly the road system, and served the Crown ably in his later years. As a result, the Canadian remembrance of Simcoe is justifiably based on the post-war political career he mounted in Canada in which he served his constituents and Canada well.

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John Graves Simcoe, like Robert Rogers, is a figure whose reputation depends upon which side you learnt your history. Simcoe's start in the British Army was lackluster. He apparently was sufficiently low to attract Robert Rogers' attention for recruitment into the Queen's Rangers notorious office cadre.

Have we ever seen any interaction between Rogers and Simcoe on the show? I can't recall, but that's a gold mine there! Well, more like a land mine!

Edited by Kabota

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To add to Sarah's shopping list, I totally used to have the mirror the maid was cleaning in Woodhull's house. Well, obvs a different one, but it looked just like it! Good ol' Ethan Allen: both the guy and the furniture store.

 

I enjoyed the reb's snarking about General Arnold's personal veracity. Given how beloved Arnold was generally, it's a nice detail to add, especially among soldiers who would know how, if any, far-fetched a story like that would be.

 

Root's delivery of the line "I'll stay here" made me snort iced tea.

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Even with the affair nonsense, I really liked this episode --- see what happens show when you focus on spy and war drama - it's entertaining.  Mary finding Abe's code book and the possible ramifications are all the family drama you need - there was no need to bring in a love triangle; too bad you waited until episode nine make that happen.

 

It's too bad that show seemed set up for failure from the get go; between the bad time slot (really, up against Game of Thrones?), lack of advertising, odd pacing, and dreadful first episodes I don't think TURN ever developed the following that would warrant a second season.

 

It's too bad because I think this could be a very good show - as long as it focused on spy and war drama and kept a brisk pace.

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One of the things I like about this show, like the John Adams miniseries a while back, is how they show what things were like before the Bill of Rights.  The types of things the first ten amendments to the US constitution address are shown in action.  The trial of the "conspirators" was hardly impartial, and the Major was judge and jury. 

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The reveal about the rifle and ball seemed a bit basic

Honest, I was waiting for the line, or some variation therof:  "If it does not fit, we must acquit". 

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I read that the History Channel will be doing a Revolutionary War drama. If it is a good as "Vikings"...

I hate Simcoe. Killing that poor horse was revolting. I just can't stand sneering villains.

Honest, I was waiting for the line, or some variation therof:  "If it does not fit, we must acquit".

OMG! I said "If the ball doesn't fit, you must acquit" during that scene. Great minds, etc. :-)

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^Oh, you beat me to it. So that was all Abe right? He didn't load the gun by accident, he knew that was going to happen? Because it was awesome that Simcoe looked like a dbag,

 

That's what I got from it since he was flying off the handle yelling at the Reverend. And then when the Rev was all "if you listened to all my stories, you'd know it was a Penn rifle." Well, yeah, jackass. Abe just got you off a hanging. I quite liked that. More Pissed Off Abe please.

 

Even with the affair nonsense, I really liked this episode --- see what happens show when you focus on spy and war drama - it's entertaining.

I said the same thing: Do Spy Things. 

 

This seems like it should have been a summer show to me. Like starting now. Honestly, why cancel it? What else have they got? 

 

If the ball does not fit in the musket, you must say 'fuck it.' I need to throw this around with my writing staff.

Edited by ganesh

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Killing that poor horse was revolting.

 

One of the few things I know about horses is that when you offer them something to eat, you should not cup your hand as Simcoe did, but rather hold it flat. (Oh yeah, don't poison them.) Horsies' bites hurt a lot, and holding your hand flat minimizes the risk of nips. Of course this was a well-trained Hollywood horse, but still.

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I enjoyed this episode but as usual I have a few questions.

 

Why did Mary say it was her fault to Richard that she asked him to release Selah Strong?  She did so because she thought Selah would reunite with Anna.  He didn't, she thinks he is dead and he is with the rebel army.  Why is that Mary's fault?

 

Who shot Richard?   It would seem to be someone working with Simcoe, right?  Simcoe had someone steal a page from Elder Tallmadge's bible and use it as wadding?

 

Why haven't Ben or Caleb bothered to send word to Setauket that Selah is alive?

 

Does the actor who plays Simcoe actually have a voice that is that high pitched, or is he putting it on (like I think the actor who plays Moriarty in "Sherlock" does).  If it's put on, why?  To be purposely irritating?

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I enjoyed this episode but as usual I have a few questions.

 

Why did Mary say it was her fault to Richard that she asked him to release Selah Strong?  She did so because she thought Selah would reunite with Anna.  He didn't, she thinks he is dead and he is with the rebel army.  Why is that Mary's fault?

 

Who shot Richard?   It would seem to be someone working with Simcoe, right?  Simcoe had someone steal a page from Elder Tallmadge's bible and use it as wadding?

 

Why haven't Ben or Caleb bothered to send word to Setauket that Selah is alive?

 

Does the actor who plays Simcoe actually have a voice that is that high pitched, or is he putting it on (like I think the actor who plays Moriarty in "Sherlock" does).  If it's put on, why?  To be purposely irritating?

 

 

Richard was admonishing Mary because she wasn't honest in why she want Selah released and while she did confront Anna she never confronted Abe about her suspicions.

 

I thought the show hinted that Will Robeson shot Richard at Simcoe's request ...... Simcoe brought up Captain Joyce's "murderer" going free and what role Richard played in letting Abe walk an episode or two earlier (even though we know that Robeson killed Joyce and was set "free" at Robert Rogers insistence to "spy" on Setauket Simcone does not).

 

Selah was released under the same Samuel Tallmadge and I know there would be ramifications if it were known he was released from the Jersey under false pretenses (even if it was at Robert Rogers command).  As far as not letting Anna know Selah is alive, I imagine that that knowledge could somehow compromise the spy ring.

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I enjoyed this episode but as usual I have a few questions.

Why did Mary say it was her fault to Richard that she asked him to release Selah Strong? She did so because she thought Selah would reunite with Anna. He didn't, she thinks he is dead and he is with the rebel army. Why is that Mary's fault?

I think Mary is more bemoaning the fact that things did not work out as she'd hoped. Finding out that Selah is "dead" has actually brought Abe and Anna closer together. I believe that it is more Papa Woodhull who is stressing Mary's fault in her marital issues, admonishing her to take direct action to save her marriage.

Who shot Richard? It would seem to be someone working with Simcoe, right? Simcoe had someone steal a page from Elder Tallmadge's bible and use it as wadding?

Yep, that's all correct.

Why haven't Ben or Caleb bothered to send word to Setauket that Selah is alive?

At this point, Selah is off the prison ship due to Robert Rogers' sketchy intervention. Although Judge Woodhull had issued him parole, Selah was already removed, falsely, as Samuel Tallmadge. Having no knowledge of Selah's parole, Ben has testified to British authorities that Selah is Samuel. No doubt, Ben is trying to avoid having Selah end up back on the ship -- but should he, at least, give Anna a hint that Selah is safe? It doesn't seem as if it would be that difficult; however, every communication between the links is a risk and creates opportunity for compromise. So, Ben invokes Sackett's rules to justify withholding the information. It reminds us that Ben is not above keeping things from his friends if he feels it benefits the/his big picture. It also serves to stir up tension among the members of the ring.

Does the actor who plays Simcoe actually have a voice that is that high pitched, or is he putting it on (like I think the actor who plays Moriarty in "Sherlock" does). If it's put on, why? To be purposely irritating?

I think he plays it up sometimes to add to Simcoe's individuality. It can definitely be irritating, as well as deceptively mild, and/or creepily menacing. Works for me!

I thought the show hinted that Will Robeson shot Richard at Simcoe's request ...... Simcoe brought up Captain Joyce's "murderer" going free and what role Richard played in letting Abe walk an episode or two earlier (even though we know that Robeson killed Joyce and was set "free" at Robert Rogers insistence to "spy" on Setauket Simcone does not).

ETA: Oops, I didn't see that OakGoblinFly had already answered. And we both used "admonishing" lol. With all the quotes, I'll screw it up if I try to delete and paste, so I'll just leave it, but add that that's a really interesting angle I hadn't thought of. I was disappointed that

nothing ever transpired between Rogers, Robeson as agent, and Abe as handler

as the season went on.

Edited by Kabota

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At this point, Selah is off the prison ship due to Robert Rogers' sketchy intervention. Although Judge Woodhull had issued him parole, Selah was already removed, falsely, as Samuel Tallmadge. Having no knowledge of Selah's parole, Ben has testified to British authorities that Selah is Samuel. No doubt, Ben is trying to avoid having Selah end up back on the ship -- but should he, at least, give Anna a hint that Selah is safe? It doesn't seem as if it would be that difficult; however, every communication between the links is a risk and creates opportunity for compromise. So, Ben invokes Sackett's rules to justify withholding the information. It reminds us that Ben is not above keeping things from his friends if he feels it benefits the/his big picture. It also serves to stir up tension among the members of the ring.

 

 

 

Do Ben and Caleb have any idea that Anna went to the prison ship to free Selah?  Between NOT knowing that Anna went to free Selah and thinking he is dead and the fact that Selah was released under a different name (Samuel Tallmadge) I can understand why Ben and Caleb haven't contacted Anna yet (plus, you know spy/war stuff for Washington).

ETA: Oops, I didn't see that OakGoblinFly had already answered. And we both used "admonishing" lol. With all the quotes, I'll screw it up if I try to delete and paste, so I'll just leave it, but add that that's a really interesting angle I hadn't thought of. I was disappointed that

nothing ever transpired between Rogers, Robeson as agent, and Abe as handler

as the season went on.

 

 

That was disappointing ... so much potential and it was left by the wayside all for stupid love triangle angst. 

Edited by OakGoblinFly
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Do Ben and Caleb have any idea that Anna went to the prison ship to free Selah? Between NOT knowing that Anna went to free Selah and thinking he is dead and the fact that Selah was released under a different name (Samuel Tallmadge) I can understand why Ben and Caleb haven't contacted Anna yet (plus, you know spy/war stuff for Washington).

Not sure I follow the logic on how they're aware, but apparently Caleb and Ben do know that Anna thinks Selah dead. When he and Ben are riding side by side, Caleb says something to the effect that Selah wouldn't be so full of spunk if he knew his wife thought him dead. Edited by Kabota

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