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La Femme Nikita: Last Night

Madeline: "It can never be what it was."
Operations: "It can be more than it is."

I had mixed feelings about this one. On the one hand, we had the silly artificial intelligence plot, and the strange commando attack on what looked like Epcot Center. On the other, we had Operations' escalating sexual harassment of Madeline, and Michael going mildly power-mad running Section.

How about that rendezvous in the Tower, huh? I was surprised that Madeline finally gave in. She tried her best to dissuade him. When he had his hand on her shoulder, she even said pointedly, "Desire is always weakness." Why did she do it? I was even more surprised that Operations was willing to leave control of the Section to someone else so that he could go canoodle with Madeline. It seemed so out of character, somehow. What will happen next? A licentious affair? An acrimonious power struggle in Section? (Man, I would love to see Operations and Madeline fighting for control of Section!) Whatever happens, I certainly don't see a white wedding in their future.

The other major development was Michael running Section. Michael likes power, doesn't he? We learned here that Michael is in line to someday take Operations' job. Now, that's something else I'd love to see. Would he be as ruthless, as power-mad? As brutal as Michael can be, I think I'd rather work for him than for Operations. And Michael certainly has Operations' number. My favorite Michael moment was the scene at the end where Michael blackmailed Operations into not reporting him to Oversight.

Nikita's compassion for innocents got her into trouble again. What a surprise. It was all Michael's fault, though. He should have allowed her to check on the little girl instead of making her leave the scene so quickly. You'd think he'd know Nikita better by now. Their confrontation in Michael's office about the Josephine situation left a major question unresolved: did Michael decide to wipe out the family of thieves after all, or did he relent for Nikita's sake? On second thought, he must have succumbed because Nikita would never speak to him again if he had gone through with it. So he did succumb. He must have.

Bits and pieces:

— Michael looked mildly concerned in an impassive sort of way when Nikita didn't immediately come back out of the water. Would he have jumped in after her in another few seconds? Probably.

— Both "twins" can be seen playing chess in the playground scene in Albania. So I guess they're following Nikita, huh?

— There aren't many class five operatives, we were told. Yes, Michael is unusual and strange.

— We had a talking computer with artificial intelligence, so of course there was a "Hal" moment. "I really don't think that's a good idea." He might as well have ended that sentence by calling Madeline, "Dave."

— Where is the Tower? Is it in Section? It must be.

— Madeline and Operations actually have a favorite song. How cute. If anything associated with a Madeline/Operations romance could be called cute.

— In this week's hair report, Madeline suddenly has straight, black hair. I found the change somewhat jarring, although Operations didn't seem to think so. ("You look so beautiful today.") (Note from later: this change was cancer-related. I didn't know about that when I wrote these reviews.)

— Operations: "Part of competence is knowing when to ask for help." Michael: "I didn't think I needed any." Operations: "Do you ever think you need any?"

— Cancelled scene: Operations, Walter, and Birkoff discuss how to take down Brutus. It also has "Hal" echoes; I almost expected them to show Brutus reading their lips.

Let's see. One star for Brutus. Two for the Nikita/little girl plot. Four for Madeline and Operations, and four for Michael as acting head of Section. Does that make it a three star episode?

Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.


  1. Talking computers belong on Star Trek – in any other series, they come across as ridiculous. Combining the silly AI story with Nikita’s pointless “B” story does nothing to salvage this lame script, which reaches embarrassing lows with an unbelievably goofy action sequence and a gypsy “witch”. Operations handing over temporary command of Section to Michael is the only engaging plot thread in this episode. I insist on pretending that the rest is just a bad dream.

    Favourite Scene:
    Michael fencing with Operations over reporting Michael’s “error in judgement”. Without even looking at each other, both men play “chess” by advancing one gambit after another until an impasse is reached, and they acknowledge a draw.

    Continuity Issues:
    Alberta Watson’s hair is different because she was wearing a wig due to the side effects of chemotherapy to battle lymphoma.

  2. It's unanimous: my favorite scene is the same as both of yours, the confrontation between Michael and Operations after giving Michael temporary command of Section One. It was played beautifully, superb thrust and parry, brilliant maneuverings.

    Billie - I forgot to mention that I also enjoy the Where's Waldo game involving the Murrin twins.


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