Spin (Les Hommes de l’ombre) s2 ep 2


To make up for last week’s Fitoussi deficit, we kick off ep 2 with Ludo in full-on charm mode, cultivating the doe-eyed but not exactly docile NotMrs Hussan. “You look stunning,” he says, which might be over-stating it for a breakfast meeting, but since Mean Bambi NotMrs H is only human, she laps it up, shimmying into the restaurant and onto Team Ludo with alacrity.

Mr H himself is less amenable, however, and, rather than giving up Marjorie or Mrs Marjorie, Ben There Done That turns on Rose herself instead, but that backfires on him pretty spectacularly, since all it does is feed la femme’s jealousy and send her right back to Ludo in her shortest skirt.

I think we all know where that’s going.

Of course, Ludo, smarter than the pair of them put together, easily works out there’s no smoke without a raging inferno and it looks like Lis is at the centre of the flames. Job well in hand, he placates the smitten but somewhat venal Rose (compliments about her hair are all well and bien but her services still “won’t be free”) with minimal effort and puts her back to work spying on Bento Box, while he starts digging into La Première dame’s connection with Amaury Desplantes for the real dirt.

Arch-rival Simon, meanwhile, a man with an infinite number of black suits but no ties, is trying to broker a deal to save Marjorie’s government, while distracted by his adult daughter getting on with her life and his co-worker Gabrielle being obnoxious to him in that special way that men on tv can’t resist but men en réalité are much less delighted with.

For once, Juliette is unmoved by Papa’s possessiveness and refuses to fill him in on her top secret, deeply uninteresting doings, while Mama Apolline politely tells Simon to naff off back to New York and “let her go.” Since Mama Apolline is then immediately mugged, mind you, the message doesn’t quite filter through the macho fog around Simon’s tête and, instead of backing the eff off, l’homme simply ups his stalker game with a creepy voicemail and creepier letter to Juliette, because this whole storyline is getting weirder by the week.

Having struck out with his daughter, however (Eugh), France’s top PR man has considerably more success with Gabi who, once she gets a rant or two off her chest, eventually decides to stop fighting both the man and the inevitable, introduce him to her (“adopted” as everyone is strangely keen to keep telling us) son and recommend Le Prés tell him what Benny Hill Hussan knows.

“It’s private. It’s a woman’s reputation,” says Marjorie, which is a curious way to describe causing death by dangerous driving, but neither Simon nor I are entirely confident this will keep a lonely, frustrated and near-suicidal Big Ben from spilling the beans. “Hussan is a kamikaze loaded with dynamite!” panics Simon, and, having suddenly become the stupidest person on the planet, decides the best way to defuse the situation is to go and order Ludo NOT to look into Lis any more and certainly NOT to sleep with NotMrs H.

Ah ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

If anyone out there believes Simon telling Ludo NOT to do something is going to have anything but the opposite effect, hit me up – I have some magic beans and a holiday home on the moon to sell you. Meantime, though, at least some of Simon’s other strategising pays off; Palissy is pacified, the vote fails and the government survives. Although we might not be able to say the same of Le Prés. The strain of watching Kapita and Gabi save his job combined with the effort of coaxing Lis up off her chaise and back into the public eye has obviously taken its toll. The “headache” he complains of throughout means the end of the ep isn’t any sort of surprise, but it does make me wonder, given what happened to the previous incumbent, if any of the TV presidents of la république actually manage to survive a full term. Nous verrons bien.


4 thoughts on “Spin (Les Hommes de l’ombre) s2 ep 2

  1. MooreOfThat February 20, 2016 / 10:46 pm

    This episode was much better since Ludo got to hang about more in a very nice black coat filing his true bad guy role. Notice how Bambi aka Xerox girl (and I am glad to know that I wasn’t the only one who thought Bambi when she came on the scene) is in a nice tannish colour coat to show us she is one of the good guys about to be devoured by Ludo and his darkness.

    Simon is forever being told by his wife to head back to NYC. It’s always the first thing out of her mouth it seems. “You should really go back to New York, no one wants or likes you here.” “You should really head back to New York where you have a job.” “Listen, go back to New York, your daughter thinks you’re creepy and politics are shit here.”

    Point one for Appoline, Simon has infected her with his face stroking problem.

    Ugh to the continued secret love affair between Simon and his daughter. *Cringe* That note was all sorts of creepy “I went to sleep, darling.” Ugh.

    Gabby besides being in work mode (her clip in her hair as our weathervane) also is a hoarder of funky lamps that she places all over her office.

    I like Marjorie, but I don’t. When he told Simon off for being too friendly, it was like a crash course in the pitfalls of the French language with their vous/tu issue. I did like how the rain made a special guest starring role in their talk and it left Marjorie’s coat wet except that when he re-entered the car his coat was completely dry. It doesn’t rain on the French president.

    How fortunate there is a Russian client of Ludo’s (of course ALL his clients are Russian) to just randomly want to invest in French government things. I found it bit weird that now Simon can also dicatate who Ludo is going to sleep with.

    And I guess you can use the old cliche that because I like Ludo, I find all his “romantic” interests annoying as hell. But seriously, why is he being paired with such horrible characters? Valentine was a mess and this one. Between her wide-eyed stare and her shallow comments about now having issues with Liz because “she’s old” and her comments about her hair….no one cares Rose. I don’t think Ludo even cares with his benevolent smile.

    So now she wants to work with Ludo because she can speak English. *spoiler* you can figure out why I coined her Xerox girl.

    • CJ Cregg February 20, 2016 / 11:50 pm

      Ooh yes, Ludo’s coat was tres chic. He was looking all kinds of stylish. Good catch on Bambi’s coat, too 😉 .

      Cliche or not, I’m with you on his love interests. The writing for all the women on Spin is awful and sexist anyway but I think it’s worse for Ludo’s ladies (cringe) because the show is desperate to paint him as a heartless womaniser and they think they can do that by making all his romantic interests victims or parasites, instead of fully functional, strong women who can go toe to toe with him, in a way which would be infinitely more interesting for both us and Ludo himself. I agree with you he’s already bored with vapid Rose / Xerox – and who can blame him? – but he’s going to sleep with her anyway, because y’know: plot + Simon told him not to. Simon is an IMBECILE. He should listen to his wife 😉

      “It doesn’t rain on the French President.” HEE.

      • MooreOfThat February 21, 2016 / 12:45 am


        I did laugh when Xerox met with Ludo at that hotel to tell him Ben There And Did It had kicked her out of former Mr. D Love-Shack. Ludo couldn’t even be bothered to put down his phone for a second and answered with that very emotive “uh-huh”.

        And what kind of breakfast table was that? It looked like they were in a cocktail lounge more than a dining establishment. Ludo was laying it on thick with his whole “You look stunning!” Down, boy.

        I agree the writing of the women on this show is pretty crap-tastic. They’re all various shades of horrible. The “good” ones come across sort of cold and indifferent and ice queens and the others are just idiotic. It seems to be a qualification that in order to be unfaithful one has to be out of their mind. Valentine was popping Prozac and Liz can’t just be depressed, no she has to be depressed AND bipolar. I kind of get the feeling that this show was written for men, he seems to have a lot of testosterone world-view in it.

        And as much as I love Ludo, I do think when he gets into his yelling scenes, they come across slightly comical. Like when he was yelling at his receptionist because they hadn’t found the dirt on Liz yet. His voice or something makes me giggle.

        What was with Appoline and Simon’s last meet? Does Appoline even care about her kid? She is all “She’s interested in kids leaving to fight in Syria” *shrug* At least Simon had the decency to look alarmed. But their ending words were even more weird.

        “I am being successful….what does it all mean?”
        “Are you depressed?……”
        “Yes.” *leaves*

        Okay then.

  2. Jed Bartlet February 22, 2016 / 6:32 pm

    Liked the politics this week, not so mad about everything else.

    As soon as Ludo told Rose that she looked “stunning”, I concluded that he’s going to frappe that at some point, and as you say Simon telling him not to just sealed that deal. And Simon’s letter to his daughter was just – well, my question remains this. Is their relationship actually supposed to be – i.e. written and played to be – creepy as hell, or did French audiences think it was perfectly normal and it’s just us, with our prudish Anglo-Saxon reserve, who think it’s less than wholesome? And is he going to be able to drag himself away from his daughter for long enough to follow up on the flickers of interest from Mme Secretary-General?

    And I still don’t like the new Appoline.

    But I enjoyed the political horse-trading. I’m finding it hard to imagine why anyone would vote for Deleuvre, mind you, because he has to be the least charismatic politician in history. And Marjorie can just eff off with his “don’t be too friendly” chat. If I were Simon I’d have told him to sort out his wife/corruption/keeping his job problems himself and gone back to New York, like everyone keeps telling him to do. (After a swift cinq à sept with Gabrielle, naturellement.)

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