Time to dissect episode two, so let's jump right in...
I found it ironic that when Chase unexpectedly returned home, Pamela chose to keep her distance from him for a while, because we were just discussing this very thing (emotional distance) on SpouseBUZZ before the show aired last night. Pamela had gone through a traumatic experience with the bombing at the Hump Bar, and she didn't have a way to contact Chase, so she did what we all do in a similar situation, she dealt with it alone.
Clearly Pamela realized two things; she can go it alone if she has to, but at the same time, she is beginning to realize how frustrating the secret nature of Chase's fairly new job is going to be. Pamela said to Chase, "I needed you then and I couldn't even call you." But, turnabout is fair play, and when Chase told Pamela that he was informed that her van was at the scene, the shoe was on the other foot.
Pamela's Aha Moment came when Chase told her how worried he was not knowing her fate and not being able to call her:
Is this what you go through all the time, not knowing? You are not alone in this Pamela as much as you think you are, you're not.
When we talked with Katherina Fugate, I told her something about that van stuck with me during the season finale last year and she hinted that it would play a role, and it did.
I loved how Chase took charge of the household; cleaning the house and preparing a family dinner for Pamela. Guess that line, "I always have a lot of stuff to do because you're not around," made Chase appreciate how often Pamela is mommy and daddy.
The Joan and Roland storyline has, from day one, been bumpy and sometimes hard to understand and predict, but that changed last night. The two have been living in marital bliss for three weeks. It was heart-wrenching watching Joan struggle to decide whether or not to keep the baby. When she was in the hospital room alone, I couldn't believe she was going to go through with an abortion without notifying Roland or letting him be there, especially after he said he wants the baby, "now more than ever." The closing scene of Joan and Roland watching the ultrasound was very touching. I'm beginning to like these two together.....
One thing I thought was particularly well done was the Roxy/Trevor storyline. When we first see Trevor, he is in Iraq and he's struggling to adapt to the loneliness, the heat, the mail blackout and watching fellow soldiers die, but when his first letter to Roxy and the boys arrived, it had a decidedly positive tone. It's not all that bad and I'm doing just fine. I wonder how many thousands of letters downplay the hardship and heavily accentuate the positive in an effort to reassure the spouse on the homefront and limit the worry, fear and doubt that they may be experiencing? I loved Trevor's letter, and I loved the excitement of the boys and the look on Roxy's face when the letter arrived. Priceless....
I think I teared up during all of the scenes with Claudia Joy, even during her uncharistic meltdown at the PX. It's no doubt going to be a long, tough journey for the Holden family as they figure out how to live their lives without Amanda. Can I just say that I adore Michael Holden? I'm surprised that we didn't see Jeremy, but Denise mentioned to Frank that "he loved Amanda" and was taking the news of her death very hard.
Our gal Roxy is back in fine form. I loved when she busted in the hospital administrator's office and told the Colonel he needed to help Betty out and allow her to stay in an Army hospital instead of moving her to a crummy civilian hospital. When the Colonel explained that since she's not Army, protocol dictates that civilians will be moved when they are stable, Roxy's no-nonsense, sensible streak came through loud and clear.
She had everything destroyed by one of our own so we gotta make it right.
Vintage Roxy.... Another good Roxy interchange came when she and Pamela were shopping at the PX and Pamela was talking about Chase's return:
When Chase is gone, he's just gone, and he just shows up when he feels like it.
Well, it's not when he feels like it, right? It's his job.
More irony? I liked this conversation because it showed a friend who needed to vent, and a friend who lets her vent but reminds her that her frustration with her husband is a bit misdirected. Sometimes we just need to talk things through with a friend to get some perspective.
A few production items: First, the music for the show is awesome. It's perfect, really. Second, I didn't like the hazy, reddish glow that was used for the scenes in Iraq. Not a huge deal, and I understand it's probably for effect, but something about it felt unrealistic to me. Probably because unless there's a sandstorm or that red haze period, it doesn't really look like that over there most of the time. Not a big deal, but just something that I noted.
Last week, some of you said that Roxy appeared pregnant in the premiere. I didn't comment because it didn't appear that way to me, but for those of you who commented, did last night's episode change your mind?
Line of the night, Pamela to Claudia Joy on how to cope with loss:
You have love in your life, use it.
A timeless line.
So, what did you think of episode two?