So what do you make of Amy "pretending to want to commit to Ed" in 2.10? Is it mostly circumstantial (whe's considering leaving her long time professional relationship with Selina so she wants to lock down a personal? More that despite not being really into him, he was easy enough to be with and she was ready to say that she wanted to be with someone?
It’s worth backing up a bit here, and explaining my headcanon for “why Ed.”
Because I agree, Amy never really seems all THAT attracted to him – and Anna Chlumsky doesn’t have much sexual chemistry with the actor (I don’t know what his name is), which doesn’t help.
But, honestly, I think that was part of what made Ed appealing to her. It seems likely to me that Ed was the first man she dated after Dan, and I think knowing that she had the upper hand – that Ed was more attracted to her than she was to him – was comforting. (And okay, we don’t KNOW that, but I think it’s more likely than not).
There was never any danger of Ed breaking her heart – and since she’d been burned by Dan, that made Ed a very safe option. He was training wheels in other words – a chance for Amy to put herself out there without ever putting too much at risk. And given how focused on her career Amy was at that point in the show, I can’t imagine that she wanted to fall in love with anyone. Falling in love would be distracting, and pull her attention away from politics, and she might have to make compromises to keep the relationship going.
With Ed, she could go on some nice dates and have interesting conversations and semi-regular sex, and never have to worry that she’d develop serious feelings for him or get hurt again. I mean, even the way she talks to him in 2.10 – about drinking tea and reading the papers – doesn’t exactly scream passionate love. (To put it another way, Ed was attractive for all the ways he WASN’T like Dan).
It’s hard not to think that Ed knew that, on at least some level. Hell, Amy may have been attractive to him for very similar reasons, we don’t know. But he’s so thrown by Amy appearing to consider a genuine relationship, that I doubt he’d given the possibility much thought. (The way he suddenly becomes enthusiastic once he realises Amy will be working on a presidential campaign always struck me as rather sketchy, though Amy doesn’t seem to notice).
As to why Amy develops an interest all of a sudden, I think it’s actually kind of a pattern with her? Being kicked out of the White House clearly played a role in her relationship with Buddy becoming as serious as it did – and she finally sleeps with Dan again after Leon’s story comes out and it seems that one or both of them may go to prison.
In other words, when her career is in danger or is somehow dissatisfying, Amy kind of compensates by focusing more on her personal life. And, I’d be willing to bet that the reverse is true, though we haven’t exactly seen it – whenever Dan broke up with her, I’m SURE she immediately threw herself straight back into work. That’s certainly what she did after ending things with Buddy.
With that in mind, I think it makes slightly more sense. Selina leaving the ticket in 2.10 could cause Amy all kinds of problems – bear in mind that at that point in the show, Amy had never worked for anyone else (at least, in season 4, Amy says she’s worked with Selina for a third of her life – and I don’t think she’s OLD enough to have had any other bosses). Dan, Sue and Mike ALL immediately start looking for other positions – Amy doesn’t, and it’s hard not to suspect that it’s because she doesn’t really know how to. She’s not all that good at selling herself, and I think she’d struggle to just call up a Senator and make a pitch. (In fact, Amy may still not know how to do that – Dan probably did it for her at PKM, all of BKD know how skilled she is (in fact, it kind of seems like THEY approached her), and Buddy would have given her any job she wanted).
And there Ed was – stable, sensible and pleasant to be around…an ideal life-raft. (I should also say, I really doubt Amy KNOWS that she’s doing this – it’s all probably happening at a subconscious level).