Okay, this is an amazing, beautiful, tender ep, and so I'm not going to be quite as snarky on it as I usually am. First of all, it doesn't offer as many opportunities for snickering. Second of all, I get all wrapped up in the beauty of the ep and all the character development, and have little time for snarking. Plus, it's neat to see Saunders try to figure out what strategy will bring Caje around. Okay? Anyway...
Good-bye, French village! Kaboom! Bang bang! Kapow! Gee, this beginning looks familiar. It's the end of the season, and time to recycle even more firefight shots!
I always try telling Caje not to throw that grenade. He never listens to me.
I think this ep is a nice tie-up of Caje's character for the season. In the pilot, he flips out over the death of his best buddy (or maybe because nobody calls him the right nickname). In this one, he flips over killing a Frenchman. In that one, a bottle of wine and a French girl help him un-flip. Same things work in this one. The girl's just a heck of a lot younger, and his intentions toward her a lot purer...
I love that, when Littlejohn finds Caje, his first instinct is to stomp out the fire. Fits with the practical-ness of his character. First, remove possibility of incineration, then soothe sullen soldier.
Saunders is the sweetest in this ep! Gives Caje a few minutes alone, covers the dead Frenchman's face with a rug or something. Again with Vic using physical touch to bring across the fact that his character is reaching out emotionally as well.
Kirby's not very quick to pick up on Caje's problems. Even Doc1 seems to understand more than Kirby. Takes Littlejohn to make it hit home to all of them, but especially Kirby. Hmm.
Saunders Strategy #1: Business As Usual. Just tell Caje it's time to go, see if he follows orders.
Richard Donner makes some of my favorite movies (like "Conspiracy Theory" and "Maverick"), and I really like his direction in this ep. Especially putting the tarp over the camera face, because it makes us feel like we're in the grave too, which is kinda what Caje is feeling right now -- that he should be dead instead of the Frenchman.
Littlejohn is really Caje's best buddy in this ep, eh? Offers to pull guard duty for him and everything.
When Saunders tells Hanley that Caje is fine, they both know he's lying. I love the little look of "yeah, right" that they exchange :-)
Saunders Strategy #2: Buddy Time! Tell stories! Share booze! Offer advice!
Enter: Micheline. What an actress, this Andrea Darvi! She pulls off terrified, but not freaked, with such depth. Wow! The scenes on the boat between her and Caje make me weep. She really cries realistically too, with childlike abandon.
(DA!)--Just gotta mention the hotness of Caje on the boat, in the graveyard, and while kneeling outside the church as he straightens Micheline's hair. WOOOOO!
It seems that both Vic and Rick have been exercising their jaw muscles. When Hanley hollers on Saunders for not working Caje's problems out, Saunders twitches his jaw. Then as soon as Hanley quits yelling, HE twitches HIS jaw. Hmm.
Caje makes a teetertotter for Micheline, and Saunders wanders into view. He gets this adorable wistful expression, like he's thinking, "A teetertotter! I love those! Can I play too?" Very sweet moment.
(DA!)--Caje laughing and giggling! Wow! What a cute grin! And dimples!
Saunders Strategy #3: Tough Guy! "Let's see if you've really got the guts." Yowl, snarl, snap, and bite if necessary.
I love the end, when Saunders carries Micheline to Caje. He really does love kids, doesn't he? And understands, or at least senses, their healing powers.
And then the very very last shot, when Saunders messes up Caje's hair -- I love it! Way to end the season!