Option C: None of the Above

*** SPOILER ALERT!!! This post contains spoilers about Covert Affairs Season 5, especially episodes 1 and 5 of that season.***

Well, it’s time for the verdict. Many of you read my post about the future of USA Network’s Covert Affairs, in which I feared it would turn into 24 but hoped it would reinvent itself. Last week’s episode marked the end of the first five episodes of the new Covert Affairs, and I’m afraid to say the verdict is in.

When I wrote my earlier post, I should have allowed room for Option C: None of the Above. I had completely forgotten the third and much more depressing direction the show could follow. But sadly, today we must face the truth: Covert Affairs has become a soap opera of the worst order.

Hayley (Amy Jo Johnson) in the new season of Covert Affairs.

Hayley (Amy Jo Johnson) in the new season of Covert Affairs.

I had cautious hope for the season as it began. I liked the Chicago office bombing plot, and felt the new element of independent contractors that was introduced. The seemingly neat wrap up of Annie (Piper Perabo) and Auggie (Christopher Gorham) I knew was just a ruse, and there would be feelings that would crop up later to make things interesting.

What I didn’t like was Calder’s (Hill Harper) new diversion, and the set-up of Caitlyn (Perrey Reeves) for Arthur Campbell (Peter Gallagher). I also didn’t like Hayley (Amy Jo Johnson) very much. And by the fifth episode, all the good things are gone, the bad things are still there, and the whole show is getting worse.

I understand Covert Affairs is a double entendre title, and as such I have always expected a certain amount of adult content. But the show was also smart, witty, and mature. Now, it is none of those things. Calder having sex with Callgirl (Nazneen Contractor), Auggie having sex with Hayley, Auggie having sex with Natasha (Liane Balaban), Caitlyn wagging her butt in Arthur’s face… Not to mention the stupid “rough sex” scene Annie had to do at the close of the fifth episode.

Caitlyn (Perrey Reeves) in Covert Affairs.

Caitlyn (Perrey Reeves) in Covert Affairs.

(And Calder is in love with the call girl now? Can you say West Wing rip-off?)

If you’re wondering, yes, I’ll be watching the new episode tonight. I truly wish that the show’s writers and directors will begin to correct their downward spiral and right the havoc wreaked by loss of purpose. But I’m not getting my hopes up.


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