Monday, May 27, 2013

TV on DVD Review: Covert Affairs - Season 3

Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: More good action and better arcs
Cons: Most arcs still inconsistent
The Bottom Line:
Plot arcs emphasized
Some better developed but
They make season good




"I Got Into a Bit of a Scuffle.  You Should See the Other Guy.  Because I Can't."

For season 3 of Covert Affairs, the writers tried to up the on-going story portion of the show.  Yes, there are still some stories of the week, but story arcs became more important.  Unfortunately, they still didn’t quite click.

Season 3 starts with a bang, literally, as one of the main characters dies in a bombing.  We were promised that this death would drive and rest of the season.  Honestly, at times it feels like they forgot about this to focus on other stories instead.

The big stories that the show did focus on?  Annie Walker (Piper Perabo) was transferred to a different division of the CIA.  She now reports to Lena (Sarah Clarke), someone who has a reputation for taking much bigger risks.  She’s also a rival going back years to Joan (Kari Matchett), Annie’s old boss.

One of Annie’s first assignments from her new boss is to get close to a target any way she can.  As Annie’s feelings for her target grow, will she cross the line?

Meanwhile, in other developments, Auggie (Christopher Gorham) proposes to his new girlfriend and gets stranded with her in Egypt.  And he returns to Iraq, ostensibly to help another soldier wounded there deal with his emotional issues from the accident.

Of all the shows on the USA Network I watch, this is near the bottom of my list.  I enjoy it, but I’m not addicted like I am with everything else they do.  When they killed off the character and promised to follow that thread through most of the season, I thought we’d get something very interesting.  However, it really did feel like the writers and characters forgot about it.  Yes, they’d talk about it every so often, but very little advancement really happened.  It feels more like they didn’t know what to do with the character, so they killed him off, but they still don’t know what to do with the character even after death.

Fortunately, the other stories they had advancing were interesting.  Annie goes to some dark places as the season progresses, and I enjoyed watching that part of the journey.  She and Auggie continue to have a great relationship and love their scenes together.

The fact that this show really is filmed on location some of the time certainly helps things.  There is something that makes things seem more real when they are filmed in the part of the world where they are set.  Even when stuff is filmed at the studio, I still buy the locations as a result.

The acting continues to be great on the show.  All the leads know their characters and do a fantastic job bringing them to life.  In addition to Sarah Clarke, Oded Fehr is back for a major arc.  Both of these recurring actors are fantastic.

All sixteen episodes from the season are included on four discs in their native widescreen and full surround sound.  In addition to the episodes, we've got a blopper reel and some deleted scenes to enjoy.

While this still isn’t the strongest show on the USA Network’s roster, it does continue to entertain.  Fans of the show will certainly enjoy adding season 3 to their collection and start looking forward to new episodes of Covert Affairs coming soon.

Season 3 Episodes:
1. Hang on to Yourself
2. Sound and Visual
3. The Last Thing You Should Do
4. Speed of Life
5. This is Not America
6. Hello Stranger
7. Loving the Alien
8. Glass Spider
9. Suffragette City
10. Let's Dance
11. Rock 'n' Roll Suicide
12. Wishful Beginnings
13. Man in the Middle
14. Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps)
15. Quicksand
16. Lady Stardust

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