For the first time this season, an episode of Covert Affairs left me wanting a lot more. "The Outsiders" had its entertaining moments, but there were definitely more aspects that didn't work than those that did.
The problems have to begin with the utter lack of Peter Gallagher. I'm aware that every character isn't going to be able to be fit in every week, but I will complain week in and week out when Sandy Cohen fails to make it on screen.
The complications continued with the strange realignment of personnel. Auggie was back in his comfort zone, but Reva - still being in the department and out in the field no less - continued to throw me. At the end of last episode, it seemed like she was going to head back to where she came from, but "The Outsiders" began with her out with Annie. Why was there hardly an explanation for why she was still working with them?
I understand that Jaimie Alexander was probably paid to do a couple episodes, but that's no excuse from a storytelling perspective. Why they would send such a newbie into the field didn't make much sense. Granted, it wasn't supposed to be as challenging a mission as it turned out to be, but let's take a few more precautions here. This is the CIA.
As much of the hour was spent with Annie and Reva attempting to escape the Belarusian police, we were able to witness a number of Ms. Walker's talents. Her fantastic linguistic skills came into play as she sweet-talked and sang with the dumb Belarusian guards, but it was her ability to throw back three straight shots of strong vodka that really allowed her to escape their grasp.
A lesson from Covert Affairs: Learning to drink mass quantities of vodka can help you in difficult situations!
She is certainly smart, but if she is so intelligent, why was she attempting to help Reva walk by bracing her strong leg? Instead of the one with the ankle she sprained earlier? There's your goof of the week right there!
The most interesting part of the episode, though, was left to Danielle, who showed just how much she cares about her sister. She was sincerely worried about Annie and her passport, which makes me upset that she has no idea what her sister does for a living. Will they ever allow Danielle to know the truth? If not, it's going to get more and more difficult to not portray her as such an ignorant individual.
Annie's excuses are good, but they're not THAT good. Danielle should be a bit more suspicious by now.
Also interesting? The fact that Annie and Reva were saved because the former wanted to take the unexpected route. Auggie knew she would do the unexpected. I knew she would do the unexpected. So why wouldn't the bad guys know she would do the unexpected? In the CIA game, you have to figure that the unexpected is the standard. It's a mind game, and you have to think four steps ahead of your enemy. The expected move might really be the better choice in some instances. Now my head is starting to hurt.
At least we learn the truth about Auggie's blindness next week. Hard to imagine that won't make up for this misstep of an episode.
Dan Forcella is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.