Spin (Les Hommes de l’ombre) s2 ep 3

I wouldn’t have thought you could make an episode about a Presidential coma, an international hostage crisis and a Russian oligarch who wants to buy a French fashion house boring but somehow, this week’s Spin manages it.

Things begin promisingly enough with Marjorie being rushed to l’hôpital dans l’ambulance – sirens and a convoy and toutes les choses – but somehow, as the story progresses, the health of Le Prés becomes far less important than how Gabrielle’s dealing with it. And Gabrielle’s dealing with it by ignoring the Constitution, trying to temporarily assume power herself and keeping the rest of the country in the dark about what has happened to their elected leader.

Initially, of course, neither Madame Marjorie nor Monsieur Kapita are too impressed with this palace coup. Elisabeth, now apparently a constitutional scholar, takes it upon herself to tattle to the (previously unseen) PM who, entirely properly, seizes power right back and provides one of the few laughs of the ep in the process when he keeps right on enjoying his excellent Élysée lunch while the Gabster storms out in a big huff like she’s a teenager not allowed to go out on a school night instead of une femme adulte not allowed to ignore the rules of French democracy.

Simon, meanwhile, argues in vain for informing the media, pointing out to my utter delight that pretending Le Prés took a little dizzy turn instead of actually being on the brink of death is – wait for it – a “STATE FALSEHOOD.” The first “STATE FALSEHOOD” of the season! I think I actually cheered.

This being “Everybody Loves Gabi” week, though, no one can resist the combined power of the barrette and pencil skirt suit for long.

Elisabeth, bored with hanging out at her critically ill husband’s bedside, drags her along to a bar, smiles, gazes, and generally seems so smitten with her that I’m genuinely surprised she tries to go home with the random homme from the bar instead of the Gabaroni herself.

Simon, meanwhile, enjoying his food a lot less than the PM – “I hate it but I wanted to eat something I hate. Do you ever get that?” Um, no – takes a few minutes break from being weird about his daughter and sleeping on his couch in his work clothes (every week he’s there on that couch in the same white shirt and black trouser combo! Does the man not have any concept of PYJAMAS?) to be weird about his co-worker and watch her sleep on her couch instead. He smiles, gazes and clasps Gabs’s hand (but not yet her visage, for those on Face-Stroke Watch), and generally seems so smitten with her that it stands out even in the middle of the French government equivalent of PANIC STATIONS! “I’ll leave you to flirt,” snarks a colleague, leaving the crisis meeting about the hostages in high dudgeon. Not a shipper, then, eh?

Even the random fixer-type that Ludo and Deleuvre get themselves mixed up with has Gabi-related feels. Ostensibly there to try and broker the sale of a steel company to his Russian boss – I’d have been much more interested in Hermès too, in fairness – Monsieur Middleman gently reminds La Secretary-General of their whole lotta history together before offering his services as an international hostage release broker on commission. This is unlikely to be une bonne idée, given what we hear from Bend It Like Beckham Hussan, whose advice not to go near Bakian seems entirely sensible even if he is in the throes of Ludo-related jealousy at the time.  Yo Gabba Gabba herself isn’t around to hear it, though, and it’d be a gross violation of scriptwriting law to bring in a super-shifty dude with a super-shifty past if he’s not going to do something super-shifty and expose it so I’m guessing Monsieur Middleman will be around to hold her secret over her head un peu longer. Malheureusement.

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12 thoughts on “Spin (Les Hommes de l’ombre) s2 ep 3

  1. CJ Cregg February 27, 2016 / 10:21 pm

    PS – I meant to say I noticed that Apolline or whoever it was asking “How can CNN journalists be better informed than the Élysée?” was a DIRECT lift from a West Wing episode I happened to see a few weeks ago. Tsk.

  2. MooreOfThat February 28, 2016 / 1:52 am

    I haven’t gotten a chance to see this one yet (in English subtitles) but is this the episode where Ludo only comes on briefly to answer the phone? ZZzzzzZzzzzZZzzzzzz.

    So eating hamburgers is a food Kapita hates but has a desire to eat anyway? O.o

    I don’t understand the marketing on this series at all. They keep comparing it as “The West Wing” except with sex. We’ve already covered how it’s nothing like “The West Wing” (except for lifted dialogue apparently) but even it’s sort of falling down on “WITH SEX” part too isn’t it? Yes, there is sex, but the headlines make it sound like some sexy sexy drama and it’s a lot of Mr. D looking bored, Kapita stroking faces and others looking in the camera dramatically. Unless Simon’s weird relationship with his kid is supposed to be….eh.

    • CJ Cregg February 28, 2016 / 10:48 am

      Ludo had a few scenes in this one so I think we must still have the one-second phone appearance to look forward to 😉

      Fair point about the marketing. Has there even been any sex in s2 at all? They talk about it but I feel like they’ve left it in s1, not that s1 was 9 and a half Weeks or anything.

  3. ashleywills February 29, 2016 / 12:54 am

    I can’t believe I’m still watching this absolutely shower of a “drama”. It’s seasons 2 yet it’s descending ever more into am-dram, if not student film territory.

    But somehow I will watch next week because somewhere inside I hope is the nugget of something. How can a show with such natural high stakes be so dull to watch? It has more exposition in it than Bill Gates has good intentions.

    We need more Ludo! More Deuleuvre! Abolish the wife!

    • CJ Cregg February 29, 2016 / 10:40 pm

      Hi Ashley – I did start off watching it with the same hope as you, but I think that hope has died now. There is a germ of a good show in there but I don’t think it’s ever going to come to fruition. As you say, the stakes are incredibly high but the show is weirdly plodding. To be honest, I’m now really watching it for Ludo and because we get to chat about it here….

  4. Bill March 1, 2016 / 9:16 pm

    So, we are now halfway through this second season, and I am definitely a glass half full optimist. In that there are only three more episodes left of this nonsense! Two minutes in and Simon utters the dreaded words “state falsehood”. My heart sank. Then I saw Marjorie giving the performance if his life as a coma patient who twitches, and I was cheered again.

    Simon is a pig. Gabrielle ought to have been commenting on the three portions of chips, at least, and two burgers on that table, rather than his eating food he hates. Bet if Arthur ‘I am only here to say what the audience is thinking’ had been there, some lighthearted bantz about Simon and portion size would have ensued.

    I laughed when Palissy mentioned that Juliette was hanging out with guys who are into drugs and cars, and Simon Looked terrified at the mention of cars and begged him to stop talking. I assume Simon still hasn’t got his licence, but this now seems to be a living nightmare for him!

    Am pleased though that this week the wardrobe department focuses on jewellery. Where Mrs Marjorie managed to find herself a lovely pair of oversized gold hoops is anybody’s guess, perhaps from J-Lo in 2009? The terrifying middleman seems to be wearing a signet ring from well known jewellery store Pandora, which makes me think he’s no threat to, well, anything at all. Mind you, given that I couldn’t care less about any of these characters, what his intentions are with the hostages is not something I will fret about. Deleuvre has that covered weirdly.

    House of Cards returns Friday, which unpopulcult are not covering. Third season was much poorer, but at least it is a show with twists and turns and dastardly deeds, and females characters with a bit of substance . And a signet ring with a bit of power behind it! In as much as a gold ring on the pinkie finger can be a sign of power and whatever else it is supposed to show.

    • CJ Cregg March 3, 2016 / 11:01 pm

      I was struck by how worried Deleuvre was about the hostages too! I wish the writers would make up their minds about him – is he a ruthless horror prepared to perpetuate a “state falsehood” and incite a race war in pursuit of power? Or is he a fairly reasonable politician who cares deeply about the hostages’ welfare and also doesn’t want to use rivals’ personal lives against them? Seems to depend on the episode.

  5. ashleywills March 3, 2016 / 11:43 pm

    When Marjorie collapsed and was rushed to hospital, I hoped, for a minute we might see something akin to Spin’s own version of the moment Jed Bartlet was admitted to the ER post-Rosslyn. You know, something genuinely thrilling, compelling and accurately portrayed what’s at stake.

    Instead we have the French president in bed twitching like the maniac in the village play.

  6. Jed Bartlet March 6, 2016 / 8:22 am

    Yeah, this was no better than OK. I appreciate that Simon gazing adoringly at the sleeping Secretary-General isn’t ideal, and was inevitable, but if it means that he’s moved on from his daughter and her undesirable friends it might be for the best. I’m more concerned about his sleeping arrangements. He’s the communications advisor (?) to the head of state of one of the most important countries in the world, and he has to sleep on the couch? Get the man a bed.

    • CJ Cregg March 6, 2016 / 7:42 pm

      I’m sure he had a bed in s1. I remember his daughter was using it while he was away, he took it back when he returned and she whined that her old single bed wasn’t big enough and made him buy her a double so she and her fella could be comfortable. I remember that annoyed me tremendously. Buy your own bed, you spoilt brat!

      I wonder if he’s just sleeping on the couch because he’s waiting to catch her coming home. Or maybe she sold his bed.

      • Jed Bartlet March 6, 2016 / 8:16 pm

        Did he not wander through into (what used to be, being as it’s his apartment and all) his bedroom, which still had a bed in it? Maybe not. My attention was wandering a little.

        • CJ Cregg March 6, 2016 / 8:18 pm

          He definitely wandered into a bedroom with a double bed in it in the apartment. I suppose we should be thankful his daughter wasn’t in it for him to gaze at. *shudder*

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