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Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

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AbFabLaur89

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Post 12 Jan 2009, 07:29

Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Here's the place to discuss Sapphire & Steel Assignment 2: The Railway Station!

Fire away! :party:
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Timeless A-Peel

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Post 03 Jun 2010, 18:42

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Wow, look at me, I get to be the first one to properly post in this thread, and I'm the latecomer. I'd better make it good, eh?

Last night I watched the first three episodes of this assignment, so I still have more than half left to go--PJ decided to really go to town. This is, in my experience, the most famous and well-known assignment of S&S--read much of anything about it and this'll be the one they bring up (well, that and the infamous cliffhanger ending that never got a chance to be resolved). This is the one that I've read cited by production team members praising Joanna for her talent, especially the infamous bit where she changes clothes as she walks, and Joanna was able to walk the exact same way in both episodes to make the joins where they switched over relatively seamless. It's also the story featuring the pictures in the soldier's eye, which I've read about (and featuring the aforementioned blood. Yes, Kim, I can handle a little puddle. :lol: ), and which got the show in hot water with the censors, who objected to the content of the eye shots even though no one is shown being shot, etc.

This is also the story with Joanna in that wrap-around blue dress. Now, Sapphire's wardrobe was supposed to be timeless, not reflecting any particular style or period, and they got away with it time, but this one is unquestionably seventies. Purdey could have worn it easily. I've never been big on wrap-around dresses, and this one's a bit middling--it would have been an average Purdey dress--but it's not too bad. Some better boots would have helped--those scrunchy boots I don't find very flattering. However, I'll give them points for sticking Joanna in them because they're high-heeled, and, since she's exactly the same height as David, she towers over him. Being willing to have your male lead appear shorter onscreen than his female co-star is hugely brave for the TV industry, and shows that they were worried about more important things. Very surprising.

Characterwise, Sapphire is, of course, the sweet understanding one, more willing to empathise with the spirits. Steel, alas, I find myself swinging back and forth on. I fear he may become one of those heroes that I have an urge to hit upside the head at times, like Gale-era Steed and Adam Adamant. I don’t have a problem with my protagonists being bastards at a lot of levels, but they have to have some sort of redeeming features that balances it out a little, or, even better, show that the jerkiness is actually a mask for something else. Humour is usually a good way of dealing with this. Right now Steel seems like combo of Dr. Gregory House, with his grouchy, “social skills are a waste of time” delivery and single-mindedness to get things done without bothering with formalities, and no time for foolish humans that get in his way, and Adam Adamant, with his rigid “we do it my way” attitude, and, alas, sexism towards Sapphire. I don’t know quite how elements can be sexist—they’re just human forms of more advanced beings—but it’s there. I can’t help it—it grates on me. Steel orders her around and treats her like she doesn’t have a clue what to do, and he has a tendency to reprimand/blame her when things go on. I know he’s supposed to be grouchy and irascible, but he can do that and still have a healthy respect for his colleague. Like Adam, he only seems to give her any kudos when things get really dire. For me it’s a major sticking point in their partnership, and I’m hoping it’ll evolve past it a little. Maybe lighten Steel up just a little—more of him doing things like the singing bit with Tulley would be appreciated. Exactly the sort of things they’d have House do, and House has a sense of humour. Come on, PJ. It doesn’t have to be slapstick. Black humour will do.

I have to give a special mention to Tulley. These series always like to have a human in there for the audience to identify with, the ordinary guy to play off the supernatural beings. Sometimes they can do more harm than good, but both Rob, and now Tulley, have been well-written, holding their own and helping with their investigation. Tulley’s especially sweet and loveable. Alas, I can sense that he’s going snuff it at some point—Sapphire’s reading included his life expectancy, and I’ll be very surprised if that’s foreshadowing.

That leaves the plot. Well, it’s hard to review when I only have 3/8’s to go on, but it’s all right so far. It hasn’t drawn me in quite as much as the last one, but maybe that’s because I don’t have the novelty factor. Sapphire’s experience of the soldier’s death was very well done—you can really feel her experiencing the horror and suffering of war. The idea of the dead recruiting others for some unknown purpose is a nice idea, but I need to see more before I can really judge it properly. Right now the last thing I’ve seen is Steel finding Sapphire and Tulley passed out in the corridor, in period costume, and Steel himself has stuck his jacket through the invisible wall, only to see it turn into the World’s Ugliest Cardigan. The cardy’s sinister in itself. We’ll see if Steel’s brave enough to put it on… :wink:
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Kim

Post 03 Jun 2010, 21:15

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

I don't want to say too much yet since you haven't seen the whole assignment. Suffice it to say, I was a little concerned we were going to have to drag you out from under the bed with this particular assignment. I watched it last night so as to be able to keep up with any future discussions and despite numerous re-watches, there are parts that still make me jump and I wondered how you were doing with those. There is some great atmosphere in this assignment, more so, in my opinion, then in the others.

I have to admit, I was surprised at your dislike of Steel. His name fits his character so well...Hard, cold, immovable...Sapphire has her moments of, for lack of a better word, callousness as well, though she does soften it just a bit.

I'm not going to say any more until you've seen the rest of this assignment. But I have a feeling, we're going to have a great discussion coming up very soon. :grin:
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Post 04 Jun 2010, 01:15

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Kim wrote:I don't want to say too much yet since you haven't seen the whole assignment. Suffice it to say, I was a little concerned we were going to have to drag you out from under the bed with this particular assignment. I watched it last night so as to be able to keep up with any future discussions and despite numerous re-watches, there are parts that still make me jump and I wondered how you were doing with those. There is some great atmosphere in this assignment, more so, in my opinion, then in the others.

I have to admit, I was surprised at your dislike of Steel. His name fits his character so well...Hard, cold, immovable...Sapphire has her moments of, for lack of a better word, callousness as well, though she does soften it just a bit.

I'm not going to say any more until you've seen the rest of this assignment. But I have a feeling, we're going to have a great discussion coming up very soon. :grin:


I was kind of worried the whole show was going to put me under the bed, frankly. I can be strange in what bothers me, but I think the hardest bit is not knowing what to expect from a show. I like to know its boundaries so I can be prepared for them, and so whenever I start something new that might be a bit dodgy, I'm ill at ease with it for awhile. Part of the reason I love sixties TV is the overall innocence of it--no gore, no swearing, no sex, negligible violence. On the flip side, one of my all-time favourite shows is Life on Mars, which has all of the above, plus added racism, sexism, and a creepy little girl who pops out of a TV set. I don't know how to explain it--I just have my own little boundaries about what I'll enjoy and what I won't. In the end, if I like a show any and all of the above can add to it. If I don't, all those factors just give me extra reasons not to watch. But so far S&S is going anywhere near my comfort zone, thankfully. :yes:

I get that Steel is supposed to live up to his namesake, but I just inherently have problems with characters who have absolutely no humour to them. I'm not saying he has to do his stand-up act or something, but it's all played too straight. Even if he takes himself seriously and someone else takes the mickey out of him, it'd be good. But that combined with the way he treats Sapphire makes him hard to take. I just keep going back to Adam Adamant--Steel must respect Sapphire or he wouldn't work with her, but I wouldn't guess it from the way he treats her. I feel like he's impatient with her right up until he needs her help, at which point she's suddenly deemed "competent" enough. This is probably down to the writing, but I hope they make them seem more like comrades as time goes on. I kept hearing about the sexual tension between them, but I haven't seen it yet. I'm sure Sapphire has her dark moments, too, but she hasn't treated Steel like he's an idiot yet, either.

You're definitely right, though--we're going to be talking about this a lot, methinks. :lol:
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Kim

Post 04 Jun 2010, 02:04

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

I see what you are saying about Steel. I think I've always looked at him and accepted him as "alien", therefore he can't be seen the same way as you would a "human". This is why, I think, Sapphire doesn't get offended per se'. There is more I want to say on this, but I'm not exactly sure how to put it into words. The one person I had a love/hate relationship with was Lead. I liked him and I didn't. Much like a friend or family member you love, but they get on your nerves sometimes.

To put your mind at ease, Sapphire does get a few jabs at him later. Not in this particular mission, but in later ones.

As for the sexual tension...I'm not so sure I see it that way. Is there some? Yes. Is it dominant? Not in my mind. I can't say too much here since you have more episodes to cover yet, but once you do, we can go over why I am thinking the way I do. (Now that's a thought that should make you run to your room and hide under your bed. :lmao:
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Post 04 Jun 2010, 03:49

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Kim wrote:I see what you are saying about Steel. I think I've always looked at him and accepted him as "alien", therefore he can't be seen the same way as you would a "human". This is why, I think, Sapphire doesn't get offended per se'. There is more I want to say on this, but I'm not exactly sure how to put it into words. The one person I had a love/hate relationship with was Lead. I liked him and I didn't. Much like a friend or family member you love, but they get on your nerves sometimes.

To put your mind at ease, Sapphire does get a few jabs at him later. Not in this particular mission, but in later ones.

As for the sexual tension...I'm not so sure I see it that way. Is there some? Yes. Is it dominant? Not in my mind. I can't say too much here since you have more episodes to cover yet, but once you do, we can go over why I am thinking the way I do. (Now that's a thought that should make you run to your room and hide under your bed. :lmao:


Yeah, I think the nub of the matter is that their relationship isn't adding up with what I'm being told it is--we're supposed to see them as partners and equals, but the way the dynamic plays is "superior-subordinate" to me. I feel as though Steel has no confidence in Sapphire's decision-making/investigating abilities, and that weakens their team dynamic for me. Again, these are initial impressions, and I have lots of episodes still to go, but I noticed it in Assignment 1 and gave it the benefit of the doubt, but I'm still finding it here and it's nagging at me. Again, if the characters weren't meant to be equals it wouldn't stand out, but they are so it does. As such, I don't feel much of anything between them, other than annoyance on Steel's part, so sexual tension doesn't come into it at all. This makes me sound grouchier than I am--I really am enjoying it for the most part--but I'm hoping this is growing pains and that character dynamics will grow over time.
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Kim

Post 04 Jun 2010, 04:24

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

I think I'm going to have to watch some more of the assignments this weekend and look at it from your perspective. Purely for educational purposes of course. :angel:
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Post 04 Jun 2010, 11:37

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

The interaction between them does change a bit as the assignments progress, but I agree that Steel does live up to his name and has the tendency to treat Sapphire like an inferior.

As for the sexual tension: there is some in a later assignment, but it's hardly worth mentioning in my opinion. You could just as easily overlook it.
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Post 04 Jun 2010, 16:31

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Philippa wrote:The interaction between them does change a bit as the assignments progress, but I agree that Steel does live up to his name and has the tendency to treat Sapphire like an inferior.

As for the sexual tension: there is some in a later assignment, but it's hardly worth mentioning in my opinion. You could just as easily overlook it.


I suspect things will evolve as the show goes on, but at the moment that's how they appear to me at the moment--most of the time, Sapphire's investigations are directed by Steel. He tells her what to do and how, and gets upset with her if things don't go according to plan. At the moment they don't even feel familiar or close enough to be friendly equals, let alone for there to be any sexual tension. Again, it may evolve, but I suspect I'm going to side with Philippa and see it as negligible.

Kim wrote:I think I'm going to have to watch some more of the assignments this weekend and look at it from your perspective. Purely for educational purposes of course. :angel:


It's hard to see stuff quite the same way when you have the whole series to go on versus someone who's only seen a small part of it, but if you rewatch assignment one, note how many times Steel directly orders Sapphire around and how often she takes on the role of assistant, and how little initiative she takes in the use of her powers without Steel's permission. It's quite striking.
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Post 04 Jun 2010, 17:13

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

All right, so I managed 2 more episodes last night. Naturally, as soon as I write about my dislike for Steel, he does something halfway decent by going into the submarine, er, let's call it a "window," to save Sapphire and Tulley as they slowly reenact the suffocation of three workers now haunting the station. In order to achieve this, Steel not only has to risk suffocation himself (never mind that he's an element and presumably survives without air in all sorts of other dimensions, but I guess these time window/bubble things don't care about stuff like that), but also must willingly wear the World's Ugliest Cardigan himself. Well, actually having watched the episode, it becomes apparent it's actually a sweater vest. But it's still seriously ugly. Steel risks major public humliation from all the other elements as a result--I'm sure Lead would find it hilarious. :lmao:

Truth be told, it took me a second to realise they were meant to be in a sub. When I saw Sapphire pass out in the last episode, I thought her touque was actually a twenties' cloche hat, and she was a victim of a bombing or something. But no, sub it is, and Steel works, uh, steelfully to get everyone out safe and alive. This entails having to pick up unconscious Joanna. Joanna's always getting picked up unconscious--see Target. Somewhere out there in 1979, Gareth looked up from greystreaking his hair for Deathtrap and said a silent prayer of thanks to David for doing the lifting for a change, because that back surgery of his was only a couple of years off. Thanks, David. Gareth's scene was more swoonworthy, though. :lol:

Naturally, having done something nice, Steel then has to do something to reaffirm his characterisation as Unfeeling Bastard. Tulley's still got a good .4 years of life left, so heck, he doesn't need any air. Why Steel, how very House-ish of you--Hugh Laurie would be so proud. Sapphire looks annoyed with his attitude and ghost-baiting, and perhaps considers teleporting off and helping Gareth with the grey-streaking instead. He'd probably appreciate some help with the bits rounds the back. :lol:

That’d be a shame, though, because Joanna essentially owns these two episodes with her performances. This seems surprising considering she spends a good chunk of the start of the first one lying in that corridor, and an equally large chunk at the end with her eyes closed, her consciousness disconnected from her body because Steel broke the séance circle too soon. (Here’s an idea—run while holding hands. It can be done.) Not only does she get a bit chippy with Steel and his methods, but she does some fantastic acting while under the influence of the various lost souls. First she does her great little masculine voice while channelling the dead submariners, complete with sneer. Joanna can sneer better than anyone in the whole world, as she proved again and again in AbFab—her top lip goes so far up it should be physically impossible. The disdain is palpable. Not content with playing a bunch of young men beautifully, she then switches over to playing a schoolteacher, putting on a completely different voice and persona as Eleanor, who was having a relationship with a much younger ex-student (We’re getting into Torchwood territory now. Hide the rose petals!). She also instinctively doesn’t like Steel—boy, I can’t imagine why. I actually like that they’re willing to not write Steel as infallible—his methods, for all they’re blunt and straightforward, don’t always work. Tulley’s actually better at talking to the ghosts and getting information than Steel’s hardnosed way. It’s nice to see the humans actually sometimes know better than the powerful trans-dimensional beings. It’s more interesting that way.

The cliffhanger leaves Sapphire as another lost soul, on the platform with the rest of the ghosts, and made me wish I had time for another episode and didn’t have to go to bed. Looking forward to the next part… :happy:
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Post 04 Jun 2010, 18:30

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Wow, those are some detailed observations there Timeless :lol:
I have to say I've forgotten much of the details because it's been nearly 2 years since I last watched them. But I do remember vividly the whole submarine sequence, and I found it quite scary and brilliantly acted by Joanna. Her acting is so versatile, and the more different characters you see her play, the more it shows ^^
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Post 04 Jun 2010, 18:46

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Philippa wrote:Wow, those are some detailed observations there Timeless :lol:
I have to say I've forgotten much of the details because it's been nearly 2 years since I last watched them. But I do remember vividly the whole submarine sequence, and I found it quite scary and brilliantly acted by Joanna. Her acting is so versatile, and the more different characters you see her play, the more it shows ^^


Hey, you get me watching these things, you're going to get wordy posts. That's part of the bargain. I know they can get detailed, but I just talk about what occurs to me as I watch the episode. Sometimes this involves poking a little fun at what watch, but I always mean it affectionately. :wink:

Joanna was exceptionally brilliant in this one, and I was thinking as I watched it how different her leading roles have been--Purdey isn't anything like Sapphire, who, in turn, is nothing like Patsy. I think it's a bit of a shame that nowadays they like to only give Joanna Patsyesque outrageous women--it's like she's gone from the original stereotype of "pretty girlfriend" to something else. I guess that's why Sensitive Skin is seen as such a triumph. ^^
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Post 04 Jun 2010, 22:43

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Philippa wrote:The interaction between them does change a bit as the assignments progress, but I agree that Steel does live up to his name and has the tendency to treat Sapphire like an inferior.

As for the sexual tension: there is some in a later assignment, but it's hardly worth mentioning in my opinion. You could just as easily overlook it.


I agree Phili. I've heard others talk about the sexual tension, but I don't really see it. Not very much anyhow.

And Timeless? Just wait. Things are about to get extreme in my opinion. Grab your pillow and hold on. :yes:
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Post 04 Jun 2010, 23:32

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Kim wrote:
Philippa wrote:The interaction between them does change a bit as the assignments progress, but I agree that Steel does live up to his name and has the tendency to treat Sapphire like an inferior.

As for the sexual tension: there is some in a later assignment, but it's hardly worth mentioning in my opinion. You could just as easily overlook it.


I agree Phili. I've heard others talk about the sexual tension, but I don't really see it. Not very much anyhow.

And Timeless? Just wait. Things are about to get extreme in my opinion. Grab your pillow and hold on. :yes:


I think some people just want what they want, even if what's onscreen doesn't match with it (see: slash). They're elements--I find it difficult to ruminate on their sex lives. :lmao:

Things get intense, do they? Lummy. Where's my pillow?
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Post 05 Jun 2010, 17:24

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

It was episodes 6 and 7 last night, and with them came the first sense of S&S as having a modicum of affection for each other, as evidenced by Steel's desire to get her back, and his conversation with deceptive "ghost" Sapphire--they mention how well they know each other, and Steel refers to her as "the Sapphire he's come to love." Right before she tries to stab him with some flowers. Sometimes those magic moments just don't go the way you'd like. :lmao: It's quite a tense sequence watching her try to stab him, actually, and you can see the horror and Steel realises she's gone over to the other side--literally--and is now one with the dead. They string Steel up in some (imaginary) barbed wire, in what is probably the most horrific scene in the episode, not because of what it shows but the soundtrack in the background. (I actually spotted that Steel wasn't cut by it pretty quick, but I couldn't tell if that was relevant, which it was as it proved it was fake, or if it was just the censors telling them "no blood.")

No, really, it's nice to finally see some proof that they actually give a damn about each other (that kiss on the cheek has been leapt on by every S&S shipper from here to next Tuesday. I can hear them squealing). We get a nicec little scene where Steel tries to work out whether Sapphire's back to normal, and there's some really nice comraderie between them after that. Unfortunately, Steel has to immediately revert to Callous Bastard mode, starts dragging Sapphire around, telling her to make contact with "the darkness" to send them back those 12 days it's dragged them off course, and planning nasty things for Tulley. I've always known he was going to snuff it, and I'm expecting it for the last episode--it's pretty obvious when he asks Tulley about his family that he's calculating the damage. It's sort of unintentionally funny when Steel worries about the cat, though. "Well, I was going to use you to combat the forces of darkness, but you have a cat, so that's out. I can't orphan a cat!" Steel--nearly undone by a cat. Dead people, no problem, but dead Fluffy is one step too far. :lol:

I'm going to be sad when Tulley goes, though. True, he got himself into the mess by messing with stuff he probably shouldn't, but he's a decent little man who really only wants to enjoy his old age--he's an innocent. He's in over his head, and you can't really blame him for wanting to make a run for it when it all goes wrong, something he clearly feels terrible about. He's kind, and some of the things he does actually helped out S&S, so offing him seems a bit unfair, but I guess that's the point. Still--he reminds me of Mr. Bumble in Honey For the Prince--I didn't want him to die, either. Next episode's curtains, in more ways than one...
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Post 05 Jun 2010, 17:57

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

I found it quite scary too when Steel was hanging there in the barbed wire. And the music does add to the spookyness of it all. I like Tully as well, and I hadn't made the connection before, but I agree that he does resemble Mr. Bumble!
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Post 05 Jun 2010, 18:37

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Philippa wrote:I found it quite scary too when Steel was hanging there in the barbed wire. And the music does add to the spookyness of it all. I like Tully as well, and I hadn't made the connection before, but I agree that he does resemble Mr. Bumble!


Yes, the barbed wire bit is quite scary and shocking--haunting, really, especially when you first see it. :yes:

But Tully is really sweet, and both looks and acts like Mr. Bumble, who I was so upset they killed off, so I know I'm going to hate Tully's death, too. Don't kill the sweet guy. :lol:
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Post 06 Jun 2010, 01:42

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

How he dies is what gets to me. :crybaby:
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Post 06 Jun 2010, 01:50

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Kim wrote:How he dies is what gets to me. :crybaby:


I'm dreading it already. :shock:
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Post 06 Jun 2010, 17:39

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Well, I finally wrapped up assignment 2. Naturally, this was the one with the infamous full-eye black contacts that they had to use anathesia drops to put in. They made Joanna's eyes all blurry, and when the contacts went in she was completely blind, just like poor Sapphire. They then proceeded to accidentally forget about her on the set and all went to lunch, leaving her on her own, afraid to walk anywhere because she couldn't see a thing--absolutely terrifying for her. Onscreen you can see that one of Joanna's eyelids is open more than the other. The drops paralyzed her eyelids as well, and either that or irritation or something is clearly making one eyelid droop. I've seen screengrabs of Joanna like this, so the shock value wasn't there for me (though it is profoundly disturbing to look at), so instead I spent most of the scene wincing over poor Joanna's eyes. And they make her put them back in for another scene, too! What sort of sadists were the S&S people? :shock:

I'd also read about Joanna having her face covered with raw meat, but I didn't expect it in this one, so that did make me jump. They only flash it quickly onscreen, but it's absolutely disgustingly horrifying. And gross. Poor Joanna. TNA made her do a lot of things, but none of them involved putting meat of her face or things in her eyes. Maybe Brian Clemens was saving all those plots for season 3? :wink:

Anyway, as predicted, and as was foreshadowed, poor old Tully is sacrificed to the darkness. Sapphire may be callous is other episodes, but she's absolutely horrified that Steel is willing to sacrifice him--as she said, she promised him he'd be all right, and she's ethical enough to want to keep it. The way she quietly leaves the room when Tully pops up is very understated and humanising. Naturally, Tully has heard the whole plan before he makes his presence known, and goes willingly, which makes it better somehow. I thought I was going to have to watch him go after being tricked by Steel or something, which would have made it even worse. I have to admit I don't quite get why he's going to serve as a substitute for all the soldiers--he was supposed to live 5 more years, yes, but where's the resentment going to come from? Tully goes willingly, and he doesn't seem the sort of man to bear a grudge--that's part of the reason I like him so much. So is it Time's resentment from being cheated out of five years of a man's life that's going to fuel the darkness? Is that it? And wasn't Tully only .4 years from death anyway, or did I hear it wrong? So a little bit confuzzled on the conclusion. At least we get to see S&S leave at the end, though.

Bottom line: did I like it more than Assignment One? I'm not sure--One had the novelty factor behind it, which changes things. Joanna got more of a chance to flex her acting muscles in this one--she channels the darkness wonderfully, as well as a fake "frightened" Sapphire. This one did go on too long, though--six parts would have been adequate. But I liked the enclosed setting of the house better than the station. I think it might be a dead heat.

On to Assignment 3...
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Kim

Post 06 Jun 2010, 18:15

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Was Tully a willing participant by sacrificing himself? I'm not so sure Tully fully understood what exactly was going to happen, so in my opinion, that's where the resentment comes from. I think he thought S&S had a plan that involved him, he was scared, but Sapphire had promised him he would be all right. When he discovers just what is involved, his very life, he resents being used as a sacrificial lamb and that the two of them used him for this purpose.

Am I reading more into it then what is actually there? Probably, but that's been my feeling from the first time I saw this.

I agree that this could have been six instead of eight, however, I'm glad they didn't cut any corners, leaving us with unanswered questions.

As for the settings..I prefer the train station over the house, but just barely. The train station lends itself to being haunted by it's very old feel. However, the thought of an average house, lived in by an average family, suddenly becoming a place of fear sends delicious chills of psych horror through me.
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Timeless A-Peel

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Post 06 Jun 2010, 18:53

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Kim wrote:Was Tully a willing participant by sacrificing himself? I'm not so sure Tully fully understood what exactly was going to happen, so in my opinion, that's where the resentment comes from. I think he thought S&S had a plan that involved him, he was scared, but Sapphire had promised him he would be all right. When he discovers just what is involved, his very life, he resents being used as a sacrificial lamb and that the two of them used him for this purpose.

Am I reading more into it then what is actually there? Probably, but that's been my feeling from the first time I saw this.

I agree that this could have been six instead of eight, however, I'm glad they didn't cut any corners, leaving us with unanswered questions.

As for the settings..I prefer the train station over the house, but just barely. The train station lends itself to being haunted by it's very old feel. However, the thought of an average house, lived in by an average family, suddenly becoming a place of fear sends delicious chills of psych horror through me.


My impression was that he'd been standing there listening to S&S talk about what was going to happen to him the whole time. He doesn't look surprised or puzzled when Sapphire retreats. He waves a sad little good-bye to Steel. He seems to know that he's going to die--maybe not exactly how, because we don't know how the darkness kills its victims--but he definitely seems to know this is it, and accepts it. It's possible he'll resent it, but I feel that he understands, at least as best he can. For me that little wave tells me he knew exactly what was going to happen. Didn't make it any less sad, though. :no: But there's a lot of room to maneuver--it all comes down to how long he was litening to S&S, I think.

I think the reason the house resonated with me was because Britain is home to so many old, old, old houses that have seen so much history, not all of it pleasant, so the idea of it lingering on there actually feels more like a likely scene of weird goings on than the train station, and it's nicely justaposed by the way it's lit--lots of warm light--and the orfinariness of it all--it has a stove and a kitchen table, and kids doing homework. A lot of the horro comes from how mundane it all is, or, should be. I think I just liked that cosy feel to it better.
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Kim

Post 06 Jun 2010, 22:21

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

I have to admit, I didn't do my homework this weekend, so it's been quite awhile since I've seen the ending. I'll have to watch again and see if I get the same impression of Tully knowing the whole plan or just part of it.
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Timeless A-Peel

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Post 06 Jun 2010, 22:57

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

Kim wrote:I have to admit, I didn't do my homework this weekend, so it's been quite awhile since I've seen the ending. I'll have to watch again and see if I get the same impression of Tully knowing the whole plan or just part of it.


Yeah, it's all down to an individual reading in the end. All I know is that I got the impression when they turned around and saw him on the stairs that he'd heard most or all of what was being said, and knew he was going to end up being the final sacrifice in the plan. His forlorn little wave seems to back that up. He doesn't try to escape, and he doesn't ask for clarification of what's going on. Steel doesn't seem to feel the need to explain any more. So little is said that it makes me think that he knew what was going to happen to him--there's no convincing or cajoling. Everything seems to be understood. But I'd love to see your interpretation of it when you watch it again. :yes:
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Post 08 Jun 2010, 07:13

Re: Assignment 2 discussion [contains spoilers]

What a brilliant review Timeless, you summed up many of the feelings I had when I watched the Assignment a few months ago. I thought the range of Joanna's acting in this particular case highlighted her talent and depth of acting perfectly. It was a scary situation I think, but the first assignment scared me more.

I better get on with the other assignments now!
"Darling, sweetie, darling!"
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