Covert Affairs: No Quarter (2010)

Country: United States
Director: Allan Kroeker
Starring: Piper Perabo, Oded Fehr, Kathleen Gati, Christopher Gorham, Kari Matchett, Peter Gallagher
Music: Christopher Tyng

In this the fourth episode of Covert Affairs, Annie Walker (Piper Perabo) is sent to Geneva on a mission. The job is simple. She is carrying a metal suitcase which she has to exchange for a like suitcase carried by a Mossad agent at the airport. It’s a simple switch, then a flight back home.

But at the airport before the exchange can take place, a bomb goes off and Annie’s mission is thrown into chaos. She flees the scene with her case, immediately making her a suspect for the bombing as far as the local Swiss police are concerned. After contacting the local agent, she seeks refuge at a safe house.

I always believe that the best Covert Affairs episodes are the ones that deal with petty office politics back at CIA headquarters in Langley, and in that respect, No Quarter does not let us down. In the US, some information has been leaked to a reporter, and at HQ each of the operatives is ordered to undertake a lie-detector test to find out where the leak is coming from.

When Annie checks in with HQ, she finds that her usual support person, Auggie Anderson (Christopher Gorham) is not available – he is taking his lie-detector test. Annie thinks that this is unusual that she cannot contact Auggie, and coupled with the fact that her mission seems compromised – borne out by the explosion at the airport – she decides to break contact and go it alone.

Well, not quite alone. The Mossad agent that Annie was supposed to meet and exchange suitcases with, is also wanted on suspicion of the airport bombing and too is hiding out in Geneva. It just so happens to be the same safe-house that Annie is using. Together they must get to the bottom of the security breach and find out why they’ve been set up.

The Mossad agent, Eyal Lavine is played by Oded Feh, who is becoming a regular face in espionage themed television shows. The beauty of casting Feh in this role, is that you are never really sure if he is a good guy or a bad guy to the end. I wanted him to be a good guy, but his characters from shows such as Sleeper Cell and Burn Notice (or as Equinox in Batman: Brave and the Bold), sort of paint him as the bad guy… and the script deliberately plays on this element.

So far, this has been the best episode of the series, skillfully combining the best of the ‘Annie on a mission’ elements, and the internal politics of being a CIA operative. As this series goes on, I must admit I am enjoying it more and more, but I still wish that they would be a bit more generous with the underlying story-arc, concerning Annie’s past and a rogue CIA Agent. Once again, this episode could be considered a stand-alone episode, and not essential over the long term.

Covert Affairs: No Quarter (2010)

One thought on “Covert Affairs: No Quarter (2010)

  1. I agree that the best ones deal with the petty office politics in Langley. I’m in no rush, however, to get back to the overall arc about her mysterious ex, so I prefer the “standalone episodes,” personally. I really love this show–more and more with every episode–but it seems like a fairly predictable route they’re taking with the backstory, and something more appropriate to Alias than this otherwise more realistic workplace procedural.

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