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Friday, July 16, 2004

The Glitter For Brains TeleMarathon: Alias!

Warning: Contains Spoilers!
We're watching all the rubbish so you don't have to! Today, it's Season Three of Alias!
Even the most devoted fans no longer seem to know what is going on anymore. And not enough wigs this season by a long chalk!
 Ah, now. See. This is the thing. No-one seems to stay dead in the Alias universe. With the finale being called 'Resurrection', we half-expected Amy Irving to wander in with her improbable bubble-perm, back from the dead again. We're going to plumb for Evil Francie, due to the fact that she was shot fatally and then survived. And that, our dears, is the very definition of a TV pointless death.
(But secretly we're glad. We want Evil Francie and her relaxed, Jackie Brown locks back as the season villain next year all the way through.)
Oh, gods, too many to mention! Who isn't feminine, evil and up to no good? And that's part of the problem: with Sydney's sister prophesised to have a big scrap with her ("One will survive..." is the doom-laden message), Lauren's motivations all over the shop and Isabella Rossi- er, Derevko turning her gun on her niece at the last minute for no good reason, the show is plagued by them. Although they're not really machiavellian - that implies that they have a deeper agenda that they are aware of. Which they clearly don't, as characterisations are seemingly decided with a dice roll, with poor Lauren being the perfect example: was she actually evil? Misguided? Brainwashed by the Covenant? One week, she was happily having it up her from all directions that point Sark, the following she was incredibly possessive over Vaughn to the point of almost scratching that tubby gay best friend Eric for so much as looking at Vaughn hopefully.
Lauren getting a good spadeing by Vaughn. We, at Glitter for Brains, have always been a big fan of that 'klllong!' sound.
The season finale. The. Whole. Damn. Thing.
When it comes to Alias season cliff-hangers, we like a little bit of Rambaldi mystery, a decent cat-fight and for them to blow the special effects budget on some hilarious yet wonderful set piece. This year, we got the CIA Rotunda 'blown up' by dropping a couple of fluorescent lights to the floor and a bit of smoke, and the rest of the action set at some mine works somewhere. That transpire to have nothing to do with Rambaldi at all! Boo!
Second on the Missed Opportunity list is Lauren's last words. We were hoping for some pithy resolution, some catty remark to the woman she lost to. Instead she falls into a mineshaft, shouting some nonsense about bank numbers. Ask yourself - would you do that? Or would you just say 'Your father's evil and you're one big experiment! By the way, I hate your hair this season! Erk!'
We know we would.
Third is the severe absence of Will (Tippin' My Concrete Every Time He's On Screen). But we did get him in a pair of leather trousers for one ep. And bare-chested. (blink)
Oh dear. We seem to have spangled ourselves, the desk, and the legs of the person sitting opposite.
What is it with you and the Space Nazis?
'Dear Mr Rambaldi,
We once believed you to be secretive and mysterious. Now it appears that you've got an invention for everything, including impregnating people across time, and a magic printing press. Next season, we half expect your - now rather common - inventions to be turning up in the latest Sunday Mail supplement, or your on-screen endorsement of Remmington.
Love, as always,
The Gays
Alias appears to have jumped the shark. Particularly with the introduction of masks that enable Lauren to look like Sydney (i.e. giving her a foot in height and hiding those hamster-like cheeks away under those of a chiselled former dancers). Oh, and the satellite that can pinpoint brainwaves from anywhere in the world - if they ever have to find someone again and this isn't mentioned, there'll be trouble from the Glitter camp. Oh yes.
We know that Alias was never a drama per se, but with previous seasons, we could look forward to semi-solid characterisations and consistent motives - either you were good until tagged 'it', or inherently evil to start with. And we used to forgive Alias' little leaps of logic (getting from one side of the globe to the other with a mere flash card and no jet lag) but this season is now taking liberties. With the Rambaldi plot-thread now refusing to be resolved, Alias now feels like latter seasons of The X-Files that kept spinning it out its confusing 'mystery' for the sake of it. With that, the final of Season Three is a gloopy mess of misdirection and odd motives. And throws up yet another mystery about Sydney's childhood. Look, for goodness' sake, we've already had one of those!
Next: poor us! It's Enterprise!

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