Pan Am - "Ich bin ein Berliner"
Which Pan Am do you guys prefer? The fluffy, fun period piece with girls avoiding their moms and standing up for their rights against that old lady who forces them to wear girdles? Or the Cold War spy drama? Critics seem to prefer the fluff, and while that is better done, without the Cold War drama, it might come off as shallow or stakes-free. Because what real problems do these women have other than that?
Ern loved this episode because there was German in it. Ern is trying to learn German, and it’s slow going, but it will happen. Leeard likes this show partly because she thinks the CIA handler is cute. We’re not liking Laura yet. She’s still a bit dim and helpless for our tastes, but in the ‘60s she was probably raised to be that way, and maybe she will get a little bolder as the series goes on and she gets more life experience.
Laura turned down a kiss from Pilot Ted, who excuses his attempt by saying that she’s so pretty he cannot be blamed. Later, they talk and Laura gives him a smile, so it seems like she’s not completely turned off by this guy. We are.
Maggie is a die-hard JFK fan. She knows he is going to be in Berlin where her layover is, and so she does not give up until she convinces one of the reporters on her flight to hook her up with a press pass. We are not Christina Ricci fans (she should have stopped after The Addams Family), but Maggie is a fun and very tenacious character. She gets a wave from Kennedy for all her trouble. The silhouette looks nothing like him. The shadow is a little bigger than we would have thought Kennedy was, anyway.
But we did feel for Colette in the last scene when she said that she came to try to forgive, but it wasn’t possible. She and Dean are getting closer, which will cause triangular drama if and when Bridget comes back. We feel like she should. The Dean character should get both information and closure there.
Kate’s mission goes awry this week when her contact, Greta, is compromised, and Kate wants to save her from the Commies. But her handler is all, “That’s not our problem.” Kate makes it her problem. She sneaks Greta into a party dressed as a Pan Am stewardess and hands her off to someone who can get her out of the country. Her handler is not pleased, but Kate is still allowed to be a courier.
This episode went for our emotions by referencing the German occupation of France/the Holocaust/WW2. It was only a little more than 20 years ago that this happened, so it seems fitting that the show addressed it while the girls were in Germany. We were a little annoyed with Colette having to sing in German and cry in front of everyone. Also, she was rude to several German people who may or may not have had anything to do with the terrible events that caused Colette to lose her parents.
Colette also got all up in Greta’s lederhosen for delivering bread to the enemy when she was about five years old. Like she had a choice. Colette is still adorable though. And her singing voice is decent too. All the bad things happen to her! Getting lied to by a married man, having no family, and possibly crushing on Dean, who is in love with Bridget is a lot. Unfortunate things need to happen to other girls, because Colette is stealing the ensemble show.
We actually like both the spy stuff and the fluff stuff. We think they both need to be done better though. The spy stuff needs to be fleshed out a little, we need to hear or see what happens as a result of one of Kate’s deliveries, and it needs to make more sense. Maybe Kate should hook up with her handler too. We did not like the flashforward. Overall, we liked the episode.
Episode grade: B
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