Covert Affairs Review: That's Persistence

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After last week's exciting romp with Eyal, "Hello Stranger" wasn't as overtly entertaining, but there was still plenty to enjoy out of this midseason hour of Covert Affairs.

First and foremost was Annie's persistence. She set her mind to the fact that Sayid was a certain way, and Annie Walker didn't stop until she proved it. The Yemen Prime Minister's Chief of Staff was steadfast on keeping Annie and the CIA out of his life, but the operative was able to chip away at him.

Annie in Yemen

Whether it was continuing to quote the article that she knew he wrote, and him denied having any part of, or finding enough time to make it so they were not actually strangers, Annie put in the work that eventually led to a phone call from the turned-asset to end the episode.

During Annie's mission, Joan told her to get out of town in order to remain safe, and she also came up short on providing safety for a potentially turned Sayid. Combine that with the fact that Annie figured Joan for the one who had Eyal profiling her, and you have one unhappy operative.

I don't know how I feel about Annie putting in for a transfer. On the one hand, I like the possibility of her working with Lena again and she seemed charmingly confident in her decision to leave in Joan's office. On the other, it kind of felt like she was just crying because she didn’t like her situation.

Joan, meanwhile, was nothing but kind to Annie upon her return. She wanted to have a heart to heart with girl, telling her to ask any questions she had about what happened. I felt bad for Joan when Annie basically said "Screw you, I'm jumping ship."

It's not like Joan doesn't have other things going on either. It's not fancy dinners and romantic walks on the beach for her and Arthur. The latter seems to be well on his way to the Chinese Ambassador position and it seems to be causing a rift in their marriage.  

Other than a cute "what if" game with Annie while she was making decisions in the field, Auggie was out of the main story this week. His own little adventure with the DPD therapist was nearly as exciting as everything that went on with Annie and Sayid.

Watching her don a blindfold to see what it is like for Auggie to walk the streets was awesome. Not only was it interesting to see him take the initiative in his therapy, but it led to an awfully revealing fact about his life.

At one point he couldn't handle it. Auggie got fed up and walked into traffic, hoping that the cars would finish the job that explosion failed to. That is some serious truth and honesty he shelled out to the shrink. Luckily for him - and for all of us fans - the cars were able to get out of his way in that moment.

Auggie has obviously grown since then, but I'm sure there are many more issues the man needs to work out. I, for one, can't wait to see him attempt to do that over the next couple of episodes.

What did you all think of "Hello Stranger?" Was it a let down after "This is Not America," or was it your favorite yet? What do you think about Annie putting in for a transfer? How about Auggie's field trip?


Editor Rating: 3.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.8 / 5.0 (74 Votes)

Dan Forcella is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.


The episode was fair. I missed having Simon around. I suspect the transfer request might have come out of the discussion with the asset where they discussed disagreeing with mentors and what if anything you could do about it. I did not see Annie as arrogant so much as wanting to connect with this asset she felt kinship with and needing to be successful after all of the losses she has sustained both personally and professionally recently. I see Annie as struggling to find the balance that works for her between the everything by the book approach Joan uses to run things and the "anything goes" way Lena does. Both approaches are valid depending on the circumstances but their effectiveness depends on their execution which is what Annie is seems to be working out. I found the conversation about how she had two women mentors who support her even if they disagreed to be interesting because while I think Joan is, I am not quite sure about Lena. I even see Simon as a kind of mentor as she knows he is a spy and is observing how he operates as she spends time with him. As far as the profile goes, Annie was unhappy about it and the inability to help her asset. I know she believes Joan ordered the assessment. However, Eyal only ever said "a superior" ordered it so I question that assumption. While I do think that it may have been a contributing factor for Annie in requesting a transfer, I do not think it was the only reason. I wonder if the leaving of the form blank may be setting her up for a compromise. With her continuing pursuit of Simon, if she is at least moderately successful, it could lead to a stint in the OSP/"black ops" division. I think it would be interesting to see her float between working with Joan and Auggie in the DPD and the OSP. Wish there was more information on Jai's death too. As the impetus for the season, there has been precious little progress.


Any person who talked to their boss the way Annie did would most certainly would get fired. the CIA, I think they would tell her to turn around, your fired. Even if she was right it did not matter. Her boss gave her an order and that order should be carried out. Annie has been arragont since she left the other position.
I know this is a tv show and we are watching fiction, but let's make it a little believable. as for Auggie give us a little more of him, with Annie. I mean a little hug that shocks us and means something. Let him realize that she likes him, and I don't mean like a friend. These two are in my opinion, are two of the main characters, let's get it goining so the season is not is the last. Startle these two when then hug a little to tight or too long. Let the doctors come up with a new procedure later, for the eyes and Auggie be a great candidate. Let this make it till the next season. Put some excitement at home for Auggie and and take Annie down a couple of notches.


Setting of mayo clinic in Rochester mn - I don't think so.


Annie is annoying!


It's driving me nuts. Who is the guy who works for the agency. I think this is the first time I've seen him on this show, but he used to be on another show and I can't place him. He's kind of thin faced, gray hair (now) and green eyes and a cocky smile. Any names????


the episode sucked.


Boring, filler, waste of an episode. Oh no, the State Department is chasing us! Fake danger!


Arthur is leaving, so Annie can take his place, full of herself as she is, don't you think?


@John G. - She might be irresistible for you but I can't watch her big mouth and her ugly smile any more.


This episode showed that Annie wasn't just joining the CIA because they recruited her for her language skills as the entire first season suggested. She didn't join to avoid or to find her lost love either - a recurring theme. She joined because she'd been following international events and wanted to serve her country. This is shown through her following Sayed since college days.
This episode furthered the plot line that Jai brought up about who you trust, protocols, and how to get things done at the CIA. And it furthered Annie's independent streak that Lena fostered in her time with her. She got a taste of independence and has been bucking authority and trying to prove herself over and above prior notions ever since. She is upset that she thinks Joan ordered the evaluation. She feels stifled and unsupported at the DPD, so I understand the transfer request, but I thinly it was premature. She may find new problems in another division.
My only problem with this episode is that the writers are forgetting that the friendship between Augie and Annie is a large part of the success in seasons 1 and 2 and this season they are disconnected, not really talking about what's going on personally. Annie is dealing with her SIS leaving, Jai's death happening right in front of her, and her feelings for Augie, Simon, and her mentors all alone. While Augie is dealing with Jai's death, lost love, and the lack of support from Annie. I'm not a shipper, bit I think their friendship is integral and missing lately.

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