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Alias: The Orphan

Nadia: "If it weren't for him, I don't know who I'd be."

Yes, but who is she?

We learned a lot about Nadia in this episode, but do we really know her? Roberto Fox, and his betrayal, made Nadia what she is... much like Sloane's betrayal of Sydney formed what Sydney finally became. But despite even more provocation, Sydney didn't walk into Sloane's office and shoot him dead, did she? "You killed him." "And I'd do it again." She'd do it again? Nadia wanted to be good, and couldn't bear it when she discovered that Roberto Fox hadn't made her good. But is she good now?

From a character development standpoint, this was a stunning episode. Nadia is a fascinating character, and Mia Maestro's performance was Emmy-worthy. How many twelve-year-olds would have the courage to attack a grown man in order to save another child? How many teenagers could commit over one hundred and thirty crimes before getting caught? Was Nadia on her way to becoming a criminal mastermind like her mother, or was she always longing to be good? The fact that Nadia has been betrayed by everyone makes it easier to understand how she can deal with having Sloane for a father: she expects duplicity from everyone, and who can blame her?

Having the meandering Bill Vaughn plot re-integrated into the Nadia plot made it more interesting, although the Sonia Braga character's connection to Bill Vaughn is still unclear. She said at one point that it was her duty to protect Nadia. Duty? Was she a Rambaldi acolyte, after all? She seemed oddly menacing in that final scene in Lisbon. I wonder if we've seen the last of her? I'm sure we haven't heard the last of Bill Vaughn; I'm now expecting him to turn up alive. Hell, he's probably staying with Irina, wherever she is.

Cesar Martinez loved Nadia. Roberto Fox loved Nadia. Neither of them knew what she was capable of doing. Sydney and Sloane love her now. Need I state the obvious?

Bits and pieces:

— The teen makeup and shorter hairstyle were so effective that I wasn't sure at first that teenage Nadia was still Mia Maestro.

— In that final scene in Lisbon, Sonia Braga said that she'd overheard Bill talking on the phone about Nightingale? with Nightingale? Black Sparrow was Katya's code name; could "Nightingale" be Elena, sister number three?

— The fingerprint file was interesting. I wonder if there's a huge file somewhere on Sydney, since she never seems to wear gloves either.

— Sydney and Nadia both run when they're upset.

— Is there a famous scene in a movie where someone pulls a water pistol during a robbery? That scene seemed familiar.


In his week's Jack and Marshall show, Jack cut Marshall off with, "Marshall, not the time," and Marshall responded haughtily with "Vaughn asked me to lunch."

Sydney: (to Sloane) "She had a relationship with him, she can use him. You of all people should appreciate that." Ouch.

Roberto: "In the words of Albert Einstein..."
Diego: "Don't blow yourself up."
Poor Diego.

Sydney: "My father used to encrypt my crossword puzzles; the least of my childhood dysfunctions."

Marshall: "Bow before me and weep, encryption gods."

This week's...

... itinerary: Minsk, Lisbon, and a lot of Buenos Aires.

... hot look: Jennifer Garner is hard to beat, but Nadia's teal blue dress and dangly earrings trumped Sydney's black dress and blonde curls. This time, anyway.

This episode was different. It focused on a character other than Sydney, most of it was in Spanish, and there were many flashbacks. The flashbacks in washed out colors were all good – colorless, like Nadia's world view? And doing the whole thing in Spanish was effective. They could have done the whole thing in English, intimating that it was Spanish, but that wouldn't have worked for the present day scenes. Bravo, for departing from formula. Not that I don't like the formula.

Is this episode a four? Perhaps not, but at the very least, Mia Maestro's performance deserves a four.

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

1 comment:

  1. Mia Maestro did an incredible job here, and it's interesting to compare her reaction to Fox's betrayal to Sydney's reaction to Sloane's identical betrayal in Season One. Nadia is a shoot-first kind of person.

    I looked up Jose Zuniga (Roberto Fox) to see why he looked familiar. Turns out he's been in everything ever made, ever. That's why. :-)


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