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'Alias' nostalgia react: Will is so going to die soon

Season 1 | Episode 5 | “Doppelgänger” | Aired Oct 28, 2001

Oh my God. Will Tipton (AKA Bleached Bradley Cooper) is going to die soon. He is so, so going to die soon. Before I can even process the spy stuff and Francie’s personal life this week, I need to talk about Will and how his days are numbered.

He’s been investigating Danny’s death (still), even though Sydney has told him not to several times and has done her best to lie to cover up all of the inconsistencies he’s uncovered. His latest find: the woman who also missed the flight Danny was scheduled to take the night he died.

Will sets up a meeting with her (after promising Francie, in addition to Syd, that he won’t keep investigating), and she ‘fesses to an affair with Danny. The whole confession feels stiff and it’s full of kind of meaningless cliches (“I knew he was seeing someone, but I guess I wasn’t thinking about her,” and “It was just one of those relationships that happens until it doesn’t”). Will listens to her story stoically and with no follow-up questions. It’s so unjournalist of him! The audience gets a chance to think maybe he’s decided to really let it go after this interview, but then it turns out he does have one question: He looked up the social security number of the woman who had the ticket (he has a guy, I guess) and found out that she DIED in the ’70s. So what’s going on with that?

The woman, obviously a spy, but not a great one, gets befuddled and leaves.

Will is about to die. He is calling spies out on their fake identities. On the bright side, that would get rid of the trite love triangle we have a-brewing.

In news other than the impending death of Will:

Spy Stuff: Sydney’s partner, Dixon, is capable of extracting a bomb from inside a man, even though he’s only had basic field medical training. At least Sydney acknowledges how absurd this is, but that only kind of helps. The crazy has been kicked up several notches, very quickly.

The case of the week involves the real CIA apprehending an SD-6 source and planting a CIA operative in SD-6 to face interrogation (WORST. JOB. EVER.). The real source only wants to talk to the head of SD-6, which presents a problem, since the CIA needs his information not only for themselves, but to feed to SD-6 to get their fake source out of there. All of her double-agent work is starting to spell suspicion around Sydney, and Dixon even confronts her straight up. She lies to him (but seems to almost not; I kind of think she would have just told him if it weren’t for what happened to Danny. She’s not really a great spy).

Even though things eventually work out with the source, it barely does. The CIA doesn’t even slow down and assigns Syd to sabotage the next SD-6 mission she goes on. Dixon plans for this and brings an extra detonator (NOT AN EXTRA DETONATOR), blowing up both the building they were assigned to destroy and all the CIA dudes inside who were working with Sydney. She freezes and tears up, and Dixon should have no doubt now that she’s up to something.


Also, I loved this title card … probably more than I should have.

Francie Watch: I love Francie. She’s so warm and genuine. She’ll probably die at some point, sacrificed to the plot like a martyr just to spur Sydney to action in a big way, but for now I LOVE her. She goes a little crazy-ex-girlfriend this week, planning a whole Halloween party just so she can invite Charlie’s nephew or something in the hopes that Charlie will bring him. It’s elaborate and pointless; Charlie doesn’t bring him. Will advises her to just talk to him and not shut him out, which is sound advice, but will she take it? Find out next week in Alias: The B-Plot. 

Why is Sydney so bad at this double-agent thing? Why can’t Will just stop doing absurd things like running social security numbers and confronting people desperate enough to have a fake identity? Did any of this strike people as odd back in 2001? Sound off in the comments!

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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