Tag Archives: The Shop Nikita

Nikita “Set-Up” Live Blog/Review (4×03)

6 Dec

Set-UpAll times central.

8:03-Maggie Q. doing pull ups=nice. She must’ve learned from Stephen Amell.

8:07-So here’s an interesting set-up (ha) for the episode: we’ve got someone who others thought they knew in Birkhoff, someone who thinks he knows who he is in Sam, and someone who’s become who people thought she was (but at the same time completely defied expectations) in Alex. Birkhoff’s placing the team in a metaphorical prison while they’re trying to rescue Alex from a literal prison. Plus, you’ve got doubles everywhere; it’s a nice theme of duality we have going here, anchored by the titular character and her struggles.

8:12-I really like Ryan’s conspiracy board; it showcases his character’s devotion to the task and integrates him into the storyline. He isn’t just an authority figure with a meandering storyline anymore.

8:14-Sorry, Nikita, I would’ve thought you learned by now: you can’t exactly trust anyone around you; in fact, can you even trust yourself?

8:17-“I keep self-sabotaging because I’ve never had happiness in my life.” The problem is that when she self-sabotages, she inevitably hurts those around her; I want happiness for her, but she can’t afford to continue on like this as long as she’s in the spy game.

8:20-So it’s a father storyline, hmm? I do like, though, that it isn’t just a simple “he’s compromised” arc or a repetition of Alex’s season 3 story; we’ll see where it goes from here.

8:21-“You changed your name from Lionel to Seymour?”

8:23-So damn excited for the Arrow midseason finale.

8:27-Oh, heavy metal music torture. “Turn up the music on your way out.”

8:30-Alex’s definitely the one who’s grown the most throughout the series. When she says she’s a survivor, it’s 100% true, and Lyndsy Fonseca does a great work conveying both the anger and the determination of her character. Alex hasn’t been consistently compelling, but we’ve come a long way from that young woman in Division.

8:37-Amanda can’t really think everything’s fine here, right? She’s too smart for that.

8:40-“Kind of like an impulse.” “Sorta like when Nikita left you.” Nope, not really. Nikita’s decision was premeditated under the guise of an impulse.

8:48-Alex with some badass moves here.

8:49-Wow, that’s stupid. So Teller just blurts out something that will give away his son; reasonable, eh?

8:55-Please don’t be teasing a romance here; two very similar people forging a grudging and mutual respect is much more interesting than those two starting a romance. Sam/Owen’s a fun presence, but right now, I’m not all that interested in his storyline and I wish they’d get going on that; it’s obvious he’ll be a factor in the remaining episodes, so I’d like to see some more sooner than later.

8:56-We’re starting to see Amanda, slowly but surely, losing a grip on her plan (I want some more clarity on this, by the way, especially since we’re running out of time); we knew it was going to happen sometime, given she’s the kind of person who, while incredibly cunning and cold, is too self-centered for her own good. Yet another Nikita-Amanda parallel.

8:58-“You never cease to amaze me, nerd.” This is a well-acted and very sweet scene.

9:00-“I’m my own boss now.” Well, one thing’s for sure: Melinda Clarke does evil like no other.

GRADE: B+

FINAL THOUGHTS: Well, we’re barreling toward the end of the series, and man, will I miss it. I wasn’t happy right off the bat with Birkhoff’s reveal last week, but I think Aaron Stanford and Judd Nelson do a fantastic job with the emotion, the tension, and the ultimate heartbreak, and I’m happy with the way it’s turned out; it’s a personal story in a final season of personal stories. As for Nikita, we’re starting to get less of her “whiny” side and more of her determination, and it’s great to see everyone else breaking out from their current states; Lyndsy Fonseca is fantastic in this episode, and her dynamic with Crawford–someone who can hold her own with Alex–is compelling. Crawford knows there’s something more to Alexandra Udinov, but she can’t even begin to imagine the depth of her character; it’s really emblematic of the Nikita world’s view of the characters we’ve come to know over these four seasons.

Three more.

Credit to The CW and Nikita for all pictures. I own nothing.

Nikita “Dead or Alive” Live Blog/Review (4×02)

29 Nov

Dead or AliveAfter last week’s thrilling premiere, I’m really excited for the follow up. Check back in at 9/8 Central for a live blog. All times central.

8:02-It’s nice to see the gang back together again.

8:04-Well, that whole doubles plot is a bit too easy, isn’t it? While I do love Melinda Clarke and the work she’s doing as Amanda, I can’t help but lament the fact that Roan was killed off way back when; his vendetta would feel more human (kind of ironic, isn’t it?) than Amanda’s. I just don’t feel very invested in the whole Nikita connection, as great as their dynamic is.

8:12-So it looks like we’re drawing the Owen/Sam-Alex parallels now: two people with trust issues, both with another identity that’s slowly fusing into what they want it to be as their confidence increases. I like the idea; hopefully it’ll help integrate Owen/Sam into the proceedings, much like Alex was last week.

8:13-Nice focus on the evil mouth there.

8:16-I get that this is the type of person Nikita is, but I can’t help but feel a bit annoyed at her whole “Who else is going to get hurt because of me?” attitude. This is something she should’ve come to terms with a while ago and put forth all of her being into saving them, not worrying about them. They’ve proved they can handle themselves.

8:19-HUGE gun there. Love it.

8:24-Nice to see Sonya out here in the field, too.

8:27-I hope this whole “It’s bigger than Nikita” plot doesn’t become too convoluted; the last thing a short season needs is some huge conspiracy. What this should be about is a deeply personal story about Nikita, NOT about the Shop.

8:32-And here lies Nikita’s flaw: she’s all talk when it comes to her friends; she’s an inherently individual person. She realizes that leaving will hurt her friends, so she puts up a facade, trying to make herself believe that doing everything herself IS better. That’s why her excuse to Michael is “You didn’t get hurt!”

8:40-Nice, some Amanda-Alex and Amanda-Nikita phone calls.

8:49-So it seems like they’re sending Nikita down some type of redemption storyline, which isn’t a bad idea. She’s had to sacrifice her morals myriad times over the years, and she’s now even more conflicted. It’s great that Michael understands the shit Nikita’s gone through and still does what needs to be done.

8:54-“I forgot how much I need you guys.” I think she’s still trying to convince herself that going off by herself was NOT a good idea, now that she’s back.

8:57-“I’m done fighting for us.” This is a very sensible decision by Michael, yet it’s heartbreaking to watch Nikita’s own personality and sense of righteousness bring about the downfall of the relationship. She just shouldn’t be going through all this, even though at the same time you could say she kind of deserves it. That’s the essential conflict of this whole series; it’s the whole duality motif of spy vs. person, much like the doppelgangers tonight.

9:00-Yeah, not too ecstatic about this Birkoff reveal. I hope the writers surprise me somehow, because this isn’t needed if it’ll lead to a bit of wheel-spinning.

GRADE: B

FINAL THOUGHTS: As expected, this is a step down from the premiere and its explosiveness. Still, there’s lots of stuff to like here: the Owen/Sam-Alex dynamic, the Nikita-Michael dynamic, and the Nikita-Amanda dynamic. The show’s really strengthened the characters here, and hopefully the next episodes deliver; it looks like Alex is being set up, which is an interesting storyline to take. As for Birkoff, time will tell. Four more.

Credit to The CW and Nikita for all pictures. I own nothing.

Nikita “Wanted” Live Blog/Review (4×01)

22 Nov

WantedHere we go! It’s the final season of Nikita, and I’m excited to cover these final six episodes for you guys. This is a very under the radar, surprisingly fantastic show that, while I’ll be sad to see leave us, should go out with a bang. Check back in at 9/8 Central. All times for this live blog are central.

8:03-So this is a pretty creepy opening. It’s a nice reflection of what Nikita’s deepest fears are and what keeps her away from her friends.

8:06-I must say, this is an incredibly well-paced opening five minutes. It’s great seeing all the characters again, and one of the virtues of a short season is absolutely no filler at all. The show sets the context for all their situations and even provides a pretty cool action scene; we should be in for a ride.

8:15-Hey, it’s Birkoff and Ryan! I really like Birkoff’s “She had five allies and she left” line. As much as they love Nikita, it’s understandable that they’d harbor a bit of resentment over her leaving them. Nikita’s always been a solitary presence that grows to become attached to those she needs to survive, and she’d much rather sacrifice herself than allow those she cares about to perish.

8:21-Melinda Clarke’s doing some fantastic work with this character; at first, it seemed as if she would pale in comparison to Percy, but she’s really come into her own and transcended the cliche her character could easily fall into.

8:28-Nice to see the team working together again, as well as another one of Nikita’s “nerd”s.

8:31-“I’m on a rooftop, you idiot. What do you think I want?”

8:33-“Turn off the spinning wheels of decapitation.”

8:35-This Birkoff-Nikita conversation is very telling; it really conveys how attached these people are and how dependent they are on each other. It’s an inherently beneficial, yet dangerous, situation, but ultimately, it’s necessary. Nikita trapped in front of a fan is a pretty nice metaphor for the situation; she’s alone, but only her friends can help her avoid death.

8:37-Ugh, Aimee Teegarden deserves better than that show.

8:39-I enjoyed Birkoff’s line about Nikita deciding to shoot her way out of the building.

8:41-Pretty cool action scene, yet again. Although I feel like Alex was saddled with some meandering storylines earlier, I’m glad she’s becoming more integrated with Nikita’s storyline again.

8:44-There’s some great acting from Q and West here; the strained, yet loving, looks in their faces are expertly played by both, and I’m looking forward to see where this goes next.

8:51-Now Q does some great work with her looks of regret during this car scene. In fact, those thoughts running through her mind distracts her from the guy sneaking the gun out and leads to her getting shot. She barely gets out here; she may not be so lucky next time.

8:55-It’s Owen! No, Sam!

8:58-And now an explosion. How much better can this get?

GRADE: A-

FINAL THOUGHTS: What a fantastic premiere. If the rest of the series is this good, I’ll be ecstatic. This episode does a nice job of setting the scene and throwing us into the fray, moving the pieces at the speed of light while still staying true to the characters. We get some perfect action sequences and Alex’s storyline is surprisingly good; it nicely complements the awesomeness going on in the forefront. We’re definitely in for a ride.

Credit to The CW and Nikita for all pictures. I own nothing.

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