Category: dan x amy

What do you think the “tender” mom…

What do you think the “tender” moment would be? Im scared if it happens and i miss it bc i just didnt think it was tender enough lol:/

If I were trying to finish it off at this point, I would give Amy a love interest who makes her happy – and who is actually attractive writers, no more of this Buddy/Leon/Ed nonsense – have her conceive again, and promptly freak the fuck out, after her experience with Dan.

At which point Dan could step up in a different way, and support her/reassure her that things will be all right – and maybe even have him be genuinely happy for her that she finally has someone who’s willing to give her what she wants.

The problem with that as a concept though is that developing Dan to the point where he’s willing to surrender even a little of the hold he has over Amy, and the comfort he takes in being the centre of her attention, is going to take serious work. He’s so innately selfish that I’ve always struggled to envisage a credible scenario where he cares enough about Amy to give her up. I feel like at that point he ceases to be recognisable as Dan entirely.

(And no husband worth his salt would be willing to tolerate the way Dan’s supposedly platonic relationship with Amy has existed in the show so far).

However, the “tender moments” could well only have been referring to the end of 7.03 – or could be something else entirely. I’m not sure my predictions have much value at this point – and I’m even less sure that they’re going to give Dan and Amy an ending I can accept.

(At this point I just want Amy to have a partner who 1) loves her 2) has good sex with her and 3) she finds hot. It shouldn’t be so much to ask).

I think it’s insane of them to keep push…

I think it’s insane of them to keep pushing this tom/selina ‘love’ but to completely dump dan/amy in the trash simply because they’re not good people??? Don’t get me wrong, I find tom and Selina hilarious but dan and amy have been pushed together since the beginning and now it’s like nothing ever even happened?

I find this a bizarre choice too, and I say this as someone who has been rooting for Tom and Selina.

But on a general level, I don’t think the audience has ever had particularly strong feelings about whether Selina should or shouldn’t be in a relationship. Tom is a lot of fun, Jaffar seemed nice, and Andrew should be launched directly into the sun, but I’ve never had the sense the audience is clamouring for Selina to have more romantic plot lines.

Which isn’t to say that they don’t enjoy them, but no one came back to Veep in season 7 explicitly excited to see the outcome of Selina’s romantic plotline (well, except for @selina-meyer).

And the show is asking us to simultaneously believe that Tom loves Selina – despite the fact that when given the opportunity he has never chosen not to betray her – but that Dan doesn’t love Amy, even when she’s the only person to bring out any remotely chivalrous instincts in him over the course of the show.

And I enjoy Tom and Selina. But I find it utterly perverse that we’ve had two scenes of them declaring their love for each other, and yet the closest Dan and Amy have come to acknowledging that there’s anything between them is Amy getting out half a sentence about being together while Dan talks over her about fucking a nineteen year old.

Is this the start of Dan’s redemption ar…

Is this the start of Dan’s redemption arc???

Let me think…

I hate to say it, but I think this episode showed us Dan at about as decent as he is ever going to get. Which is frustrating as hell to me, mostly because…I just feel like Dan, as a character, should be smarter than this.

But I think it’s also worth pointing out that there is a way that all the story beats we’ve seen in the last three episodes play out and Dan is sympathetic. Not in the sense that we see him as justified, but that we understand where he’s coming from.

Amy tells him she’s thinking about having the baby, and he panics. Flat out, no questions, freaks the fuck out. His entire life is about to change and he has no control over anything and he can’t – slash won’t – attempt to exert control over Amy, and so he goes out and fucks every woman who’ll have him in an attempt to feel like nothing has changed, he’s still him, and he can keep living his life the exact same way he always has.

And even Amy deciding to have the abortion doesn’t really solve anything for him – because it’s still a decision he’s outside of, still a decision she can reverse – she is still the one acting and he’s stuck reacting to whatever she does or doesn’t do. He may not even have known it was happening until Sophie showed up at the door, because Amy doesn’t appear to have talked to him about it – she was still treating him like someone outside the decision. Hence, I think, sleeping with Sophie.

Throughout the whole thing, Amy doesn’t really fill him in on her thinking or what she wants, and so he keeps telling himself that she’s just “thinking” about it, and it’s a fantasy, and any minute now she’ll come to her senses, and even if she is upset she’ll get over it soon, he knows she will, they can go right back to being partners in crime and nothing has to change. (I think Reid Scott described it as a Peter Pan complex, which seems about right).

And then he drives her to the abortion clinic, probably with some inkling already that Amy’s feelings are more real than that – her reaction at seeing Sophie illustrates that pretty clearly, and being alone in the car together, in silence, would bring home her emotional tension pretty damn clearly.

Remember, he still cares about her – he very purposefully puts himself between Amy and the protesters, which says a lot – but he hasn’t really put himself in her shoes, at any point. And then Amy loses it – and in that little speech she reveals more about her feelings – that she was scared and sad and that she…prayed. Amy. Praying.

Hearing that Amy felt so alone that she turned to religion to try and figure out what to do kind of makes him realise what he did. He abandoned her, probably the only person in the world he actually cares about, when she needed him most – because he couldn’t see that she wasn’t trying to do something to him, she wanted to do it with him, she wanted to have an honest conversation, but he was so wrapped up in his own fears he ran away.

Because the one thing that reliably softens Dan up is seeing Amy in distress – we saw a flash of that in 7.01, and we see it again here. He actually realises – for at least a few minutes – that the rigidity he’s always making fun of, the constant tension, is self-defence, is Amy desperately trying not to be hurt more than she already is.

And behind that wall is someone who loves him – Amy’s line “That’s Dan” makes that clear enough, just her tone – who is in pain. So, he takes her back to the hotel, probably listens to some loopy talk (I don’t know what medication Amy was on, but she was probably advised to sleep it off), and stays with her all night because he doesn’t want her to feel any worse than she already feels.

And when the Jonah offer comes in he tells her to take it – even though he’ll miss her, even though it means things WILL change (the exact thing he didn’t want) – because he knows he fucked up, and put her in a position where she was in pain, and is still in pain, still unsure, even after the decision has been made. And so he jumps at the chance for Amy to try something new, because quite possibly the very first time in his life, he’s putting what Amy needs over what is most convenient for him. Which may set the stage for him finally, finally letting Amy go enough that she can have a real relationship with someone else – or manning up enough that they find a way back to each other. Both are possible at that point of the story.

The problem is – while a lot of that is…implicit in the story shape, the connective tissue really isn’t there. We don’t get any moments with Dan that signal that even that minuscule amount of character development is actually taking place. Not a single one.

Like, Dan is still a near irredeemably selfish prick in my version of the story – but he is an irredeemably selfish prick who seems like a recognisable person. What we get in the show is near schizophrenic – he’s horrifically callous with Amy and her feelings (which I’m relieved Reid Scott confirmed he knows about in an interview, because Mandel’s contention that he is oblivious has never sat right with me)…except when he isn’t. And when he isn’t, he’s honestly sweet and supportive in a way many women would want in this situation.

So I do – in a way – see what the writers may have been going for here. But it’s just horrifically executed on Dan’s side of things. We should be able to watch it and at least have a clear sense of whether he cares for Amy or wouldn’t throw her a rope if she fell off a bridge, but the way the writing is going it’s almost impossible to be sure one way or the other.

And as always, this is not a performance issue – give Reid Scott one scene that made Dan’s perspective clear to the audience and a lot of these issues would go away, even though the story beats would be virtually identical. Hell, show us him rambling to Sophie in a drunken haze – at least we’d know what he was thinking.

(Except for the Meaghan thing. That’s unforgivably cruel no matter how the writers framed it).


Veep – Pledge

This was both not as bad as I expected and also…just tonally all over the place.

1. The writing decisions here are confusing to me. When I said – back before season 6 – that I thought an unplanned pregnancy was a likely outcome for Dan and Amy, it was because I saw it as a tool to make them get to the point – a way of bringing out all the feelings they’ve both been burying for so long.

Except, they go through it, Amy has the abortion…and they somehow manage to do this without talking about anything. Their relationship hasn’t actually developed or changed in any noticeable way from where it was in 6.10 – in fact, in some ways it seems to have regressed, because Dan’s attraction to Amy seems to have basically vanished, so we still have no clear sense of what his feelings, of any, about her are.

It’s like they want us to believe that the abortion is a difficult enough choice for Amy that she struggles with it and finds it upsetting and isn’t even sure afterwards that it is the right option – but it has no impact on how she feels about Dan? Like, why isn’t she angry with him? He has been nothing but an unrepentant turd the entire time – the woman who cries over whether to have an abortion and all but proposes to the father… and the woman who doesn’t even get angry when that father sleeps with her sister who came to support her through that abortion (again)…it doesn’t seem like it’s physically possible for those feelings to exist in the same body.

The show only seems to take Amy’s feelings seriously every second scene, and it’s giving me whiplash. How is it actually possible for her to get through this experience and not have her feelings for Dan change in any noticeable way?

2. That said – Anna Chlumsky knocked it out of the park. And my god it was cathartic to see someone rip into pro-life campaigners the way they deserve. Like, I don’t have sympathy for their cause to begin with, but anyone who pickets an abortion clinic is the beneath contempt. No one’s best day involves an abortion – and for those who don’t choose it but are forced into it by medical necessity it may well be one of the worst days of their lives – only cowards go after people that vulnerable.

3. I am glad the writers brought Sophie to Iowa, if only because it answers the question of why Amy would involve Dan in the abortion at all after his past behaviour – she didn’t want to, planned not to, and then was forced into it by someone who should have supported her being shitty. Sums up the whole storyline, really.

4. Dan sleeps with Sophie. Again.

Really? After everything that’s happened that shows a lack of intelligence on his part that’s almost…clinical. I’d almost find it more believeable if they didn’t have sex and just bonded over being terrible, terrible people and got really drunk together.

That or it genuinely is self-sabotage on his part. I’d almost believe it at this point, because… Dan’s cold-bloodedness when it comes to relationships has always (to me) been kind of his most interesting and most repellant trait. And yet there wasn’t any of that when Amy realised what was going on – he almost seemed ashamed. It feels out of control in a way his sexual horribleness earlier on in the show really, really didn’t.

5. And yet. There are flashes of something else. He’s in Amy’s room the next morning, sleeping in the chair, so presumably he took her back to the hotel, put her to bed after the procedure (and what was that conversation like) and stayed over to be sure she was all right. Not only that, but at some point he went out and got maxi pads, filled them up with whatever it was (I’m guessing Aloe Vera was in the mix somewhere) and froze them. Which suggests quite a lot of planning for someone who refuses to be involved in any of the conversations about what Amy was going to do. He also puts himself between Amy and the protestors, which is the most protective thing I think he’s ever done.

If they are really going with this interpretation of Dan as loving Amy simply as a friend, but not having any romantic feelings for her, I simply don’t know how to square it with the character as he existed up until the end of season 5 – his need for Amy’s attention was such an engrained part of him that he barely feels like the same person. His attraction to Amy was almost his only recognisably human trait for most of the show. And man it is an unsatisfying way of winding up a story seven years in the making.

It was a strange…staging choice to have him so close to Amy when she’s talking to Teddy, literally breathing down her neck, and then…not show us his reaction to her leaving because he presumably had one. (Maybe I need to watch the scene again?) I would have thought that – from Dan’s perspective – now that Amy’s had the abortion he’d expect things to go back to ‘normal,’ so for him to have no feelings about her leaving calls attention to itself. Like, he could be pissy – because he’s going to miss her – or supportive – because he knows he’s been a shit – but the show gave Reid Scott nothing to play.

6. When you think of the mileage the show got out of Amy leaving Selina in season 4, to have her dump Selina’s campaign in an episode where they’re barely in a scene together feels really, really odd.

And it would make sense for Amy to jump onto Jonah’s campaign as a way to avoid her feelings about Dan and Selina, except that the show doesn’t let her express any feelings about Dan and Selina, so it winds up feeling…weirdly inconsequential. Like, it should be a big moment in the show – it should feel like a hard choice she has to make, at least emotionally, and yet…precisely because the show underplays it so much, the moment falls flat.

I think they’re afraid of giving Amy the feelings she should have – because it would take them to a very real emotional place, and the feelings might suffocate the comedy (though, it’s got to be possible to write Amy losing it on Dan the way he deserves and still be funny) – so we end up with a story structure that only makes sense if feelings that we never see depicted are driving Amy’s decisions. The show’s basically eating its own tail.

7. They tried the “Selina makes fun of millennials” angle in season 6 and it wasn’t funny then either. If they must do this, I wish they’d find a way to at least be witty about it. Julia Louis-Dreyfus almost makes it work, but she is doing some heavy lifting.

8. Selina and Tom James. “Curse your sudden yet inevitable betrayal.” How on earth did she not see that coming?

9. Jonah’s wife seems like such a genuinely nice person. I’m enjoying the actress.

10. So, did Buddy somehow successfully become Governor after Amy dumped him? That’s how they refer to him in the debate – but he wasn’t Governor when they met, just Secretary of State, so when did he get elected?

11. The Buzzfeed plotline feels…odd, coming so shortly after they fired all of their journalists.

12. If Leon hitting on pregnant Amy is all they’re going to do with that storyline from season 6, I wish they’d never introduced the damn thing. The comedy earlier on in Veep always came from the writers not losing track of the characters as real people, with recognisable psychology, even when they were doing something outlandish – not endlessly amping up their awfulness. It’s like everyone’s on coke.

13. The must cutting satire is the character of Kemi – who’s kind of an amalgam of Obama and Bernie Sanders, and completely, utterly vapid. Which is probably why the show pulls its punches with her – she made me miss Danny Chung precisely because that never happens with him.

14. If anyone has pics of Amy’s abortion outfit, please send them on for Veep style purposes.

I know there are still several episodes left a…

I know there are still several episodes left and anything can happen, but I’m confused by that photo we saw of the cast on the last day, where Amy is wearing white. Do you think Amy’s pregnant, or was it just a weird angle? Do you think Amy gets pregnant by someone else? Is there any chance it could be Dan’s? How do you think the finale spoiler fits into this?

Short answer: no idea

Long answer: I bloody hope so.

If they are going to give us such an upsetting context for Amy’s choice to have an abortion early on the show, with it being impossible to escape the feeling that it’s not a free choice, but one made under immense emotional pressure from Dan and Selina, it will be much easier to accept if she gets another chance at having the baby she seems to want.

Also, while you’re not wrong that it could just be a weird angle, I think Amy looks more pregnant in the white dress pic, than she did in any of the early season picture, and…we were right about them.

Any speculation I come regarding the ending feels like it is virtually guaranteed to be wrong, but I can see it going either way. I’ve always thought it’s possible to write Amy falling for someone who isn’t Dan, and who knows… maybe she blossoms, meets someone else, and moves on. Maybe Dan makes things up to her somehow, and handles a second pregnancy in a more mature manner (it would not be hard).

Maybe they end up together in the present, and then a flash forward shows that things fell apart at some point. Maybe, Amy discovers the pregnancy, instinctively tells Dan to fuck off because after the current shitshow she simply doesn’t want to take the risk of letting him in, and he marries a twenty-two year old as a kind of retaliation – in which case the ‘win’ Reid Scott has been referring to at the end of the show, is him finally sorting things out with Amy. (I should say, I don’t find the idea of him marrying a twenty-two year old palatable in any way – but it is marginally less repugnant of him to do it at forty then at fifty-five).

Basically, I can see a variety of ways in which to write it – and I don’t think they have pushed Dan (yet) to the point where it is completely unacceptable to the audience for Amy to give him another chance, though they are pushing up very close to that line.



Behind the Scenes *masterpost*

Just in case you wanted to read the whole thing in chronological order.  Obviously, it hasn’t been written in order, so hear and there details will slip (and there’s an egregious mistake in Chapter Four, where I have Amy realising about the text message screw-up much later than she did in canon… but I think it still rings true emotionally).  Sometimes the stories overlap in time, but I’ve tried to stick with what I think is the most sensible reading order. I will try to keep this updated with new chapters, as and when I write them.


1. Chapter Nine: Three Dates

2. Chapter Two: Thinking of You

3. Chapter Seventeen: All Grown Up

4. Chapter Twenty-Two: Belle of the Ball

Season One:

5. Chapter Six: Listening is Gold

6. Chapter One: Baby-Daddy

Season Two:

7. Chapter Five: While You Were Sleeping

8. Chapter Thirteen: The Wrong Remedy

9. Chapter Twenty-Six: Clothes Maketh the Man

10. NEW Chapter Seven: Little Black Dress

11. Chapter Fourteen: Set Fire to My Tie

Season Three:

12. Chapter Ten: Comrades in Arms

13. Chapter Twenty Four: Accept No Substitutes

Season Four:

14. Chapter Eight: Amish Prom

Season Five:

15. Chapter Twenty-Three: Too Tired to Lie

16. Chapter Eleven: Nightcap?

17. Chapter Three: Three Times (though technically, this is a “What If?” and so doesn’t fall within the timeline)

18. Chapter Twenty: Ignorance is Bliss

19. Chapter Twelve: Love’s Opposite

20. Chapter Four: The Girl Who Came in From the Cold

21. Chapter Fifteen: And Then There Was One

22. Chapter Twenty-Five: The New Normal

Season 6:

23. Chapter Sixteen: What Doesn’t Kill You

24. Chapter Eighteen: The Appetite Alters

25. Chapter Twenty-One: Out of Her Shell

26. Chapter Nineteen: Where We Stop Nobody Knows

A new Behind the Scenes (albeit, a slightly weird one).  I’m not totally sure this fits with canon (though it doesn’t break it).

It may help to have read my endless Veep Style posts to make complete sense of what’s going on here.

Clothes Maketh the Man
Post-Helsinki, pre-Catherine’s birthday party – the Veep crew do a Secret Santa.

Veep Spoilers

I have a ton of asks about this, and thought it would be easier to sum them up in one place.  For anyone who is unspoiled, this post should explain it. 

Putting in a cut for anyone who doesn’t want to be spoiled.

TLDR: They do not fill me with optimism, to say the least – but I can accept a lot if it means an end to Pining!Amy.

Okay, so some of this ties into things we’re already aware of, and plays into my sense that the time jumps are the most crucial element in how the story the is playing out.  

Assuming the spoiler is accurate, I see two options for how this could go, though I think one is more likely than the other.  I have a lot of different thoughts on this, so apologies if this is a bit back and forth.

In the flash forward at the end of the series, Dan and Amy are separated, and Dan is married to a twenty-two year old.

I don’t love this for a number of reasons.  But, as I said last night, the only reason I can think of to introduce such a big change at the last minute is to dramatically undercut everything that came before. If Dan continues to be an irredeemable pig right up until the last moment in the ‘present’ having such a last minute reveal doesn’t change our perception of anything – it merely confirms it.

The appeal of this as a story decision, in other words, is that it allows the writers to have their cake and eat – they can put Dan and Amy together in the present, even give them some relatively tender and sincere moments, safe in the knowledge that they will also be confirming their mutual terribleness in the end.  (Though, as always, I would love to know what Amy is supposed to have done that is so awful?  Sure, she says dreadful things, and she’s abrasive as all hell, but within the world of the show that is hardly an outstandingly bad trait.  I cannot get my head around how that is in any way equal to Dan’s relentlessly heartless treatment of every single woman who has the misfortune of meeting him and being attractive).

David Mandel worked on Seinfeld, which I know had a policy of “no hugging, no learning,” so I can see how it would be appealing to him as a structure. I can’t say that I am terribly fond of it though.  

To digress slightly, it reminds me of the way Alien 3 so callously disposed of Hicks and Newt.  Now, defenders of that decision point to the Alien universe being dark and violent, with terrible things happening to people all the time.  The problem is – and this applies to Veep and Game of Thrones and Alien and half a dozen other stories – the ‘world’ of the story having particular traits is not an excuse for the creators of the story to disregard basic dramatic logic or character consistency.  Even in a world that is utterly illogical, characters need to behave in a coherent manner.

So, to do all the work that is required to put Dan and Amy together, to develop Dan to the point where we can feel not utterly miserable at the thought of him and Amy as a couple, only to then pull the rug out from under the audience at the last possible minute just feels cheap to me.  Like, sure, you’ll get a laugh – but the trade-off is that any sense of the characters’ actions in the preceding seven years having meaning will be lost.  It will be a reductio ad absurdam – Dan will not have changed – he will still, twenty plus years after he’s introduced to us, be the scumbag who exploits extremely young women and taunts Amy because she dares to have feelings.

Not only that, but by having him relentlessly go after women in their late teens and early twenties, they will really have doubled-down on making him effectively Jonah.  To the point where it feels like character assassination?  Like, when Dan was introduced, he was the kind of charming asshole where you knew that somewhere in Amy’s head in every interaction, deep, deep down, there was a voice saying “Don’t sleep with him, don’t sleep with him, whatever you do, don’t you dare sleep with him.”  Marrying a twenty year old at fifty isn’t remotely charming – it just turns him into the kind of man women steer clear of in bars. It makes him gross. (Especially, I should say, if he and Amy have a daughter, which seems at least possible – his wife would be…maybe six or seven years older than his child, at most).

If they must go down this route, I want them to turn Dan into Tom James, not Andrew.  And that does seem at least a possibility to me, that there will be the implication that, despite having other partners, and marriages, and careers, they are still hung up on each other, ceaselessly drawn back to each other’s orbit no matter what.  That seems to be as close as Veep can come to creating a genuine romance.

Or, there is the most palatable version of this, in which Amy has moved on, found happiness (either alone or with a partner), and Dan is the one pining away – still acting out in ridiculous ways because after knowing each other for more than twenty years, he still can’t express his feelings to her in an acceptable way. 

After so many infuriating scenes of Pining!Amy, there would be some satisfaction in that.

Dan really spirals after Amy goes to work for Jonah, marries someone in a fit of pique or pig-headedness.  Now, if there is a time-jump somewhere in the middle of the season (between 7.03 and 7.04 seems like the most likely place, though we don’t know anything concrete about any episodes past 7.04) we might not necessarily have to see his wife terribly often – perhaps not even find out about her until the final episode.

Maybe he comes back, with a slightly more rational (that is, connected to reality) attitude, and we find out at the end of the season that the reason is that marrying someone and having to arrange a hasty divorce, was the cold hard dose of consequences he’s needed for a long, long time.  And, having hit rock bottom, he’s finally starting to grow up, just a little.

I think that is a possible story – by which I mean, I can see a way to write it that allows Dan and Amy to stay substantially in character.

But, I don’t know that it’s a likely story.  I don’t know that it appeals to the instincts of Veep’s writers – it doesn’t seem like the kind of narrative joke they like to construct.

That said, I may well be wrong.  I may be very wrong.  We don’t know anything concrete yet, which I would urge everyone to remember.  

It’s more important to me how they tell this story, that they put an end to Pining!Amy and Dan’s abuse of her, that they stop having him take her for granted and treat her as though she’s undesirable.  Because the framing at the moment is pushing him well over the line into being abusive – if he continues to treat her so nastily, I’m not going to want her anywhere within a hundred miles of him.

A resolution to their story, and Amy getting to feel like a desirable, attractive woman for the first time in god knows how long, is the extent of what I need the show to give me.

What are you thoughts should we still be hopef…

What are you thoughts should we still be hopeful? Or just prepare ourselves for the worst

I will have a proper response to this tomorrow – when I am less in need of sleep and have thought about things more – but for now…I’d just say that any show where Tom James and Selina are ‘in love’ despite all their…everything, is always going to have a slightly skewed view of romance.  Other partners, marriages, divorces, massive personal betrayals… none of them necessarily have much bearing on whether people love each other or not, at least in Veep.

In the meantime, I don’t know if this will make anyone feel better, but a speculative What Might Have Been, based on some of what we know about the rest of the season: Future Imperfect.

(I wrote this really, really quickly, so please forgive its many, many faults).


Veep, 7.02: Discovery Weekend

First thoughts, probably disordered

1. Clovis was one of Veep’s most cutting episodes, taking aim at the supposed saviours of the universe in Silicon Valley, and showing them to be every bit as shallow, narcissistic and corrupt as the DC cast. I feel like this episode wanted to do something similar, but couldn’t quite get there. Like, most of the jokes were about the William Fichtner character (amazing casting btw, I never knew he could be funny) being a closeted gay – which is not that unusual for a man of his age – and narcissistic, instead of taking aim at his presumption that he has the right to subvert a democracy because he made a lot of money.

2. Dan being dragged by the harem of twinks was glorious. More please. He’s more than overdue a long spell of abuse, after everything Amy’s had to put up with. I want to watch that segment on repeat for hours.

3. The show went back to its perennial favourite joke of “Selina tries to give a speech and fails horribly” which – I know this seems strange given how awful the rest of the show can be – is the one I really cannot stand. Cringe comedy is not my thing, so I was watching it with my fingers in my ears.

4. For all the abuse Amy took from Selina, I feel like she kind of got the last laugh in this one. Tom explicitly describes Michelle as his Amy, and guess who he’s having an affair with.

5. As for Tom and Selina…SELINA. How many times are we going to wind up going down this road? Every time he’s nice to her it’s a cover for a scheme to fuck her over, every single time. I’d tell her to get a grip, but I think that ship sailed about thirty years ago.

That said, things do seem more…settled between them than they were previously. They have at least both been open about the feelings they like to pretend they have – the closest thing to a happy ending I can imagine for Selina at this point is settling down to share heart medication with Tom at the age of 82 (assuming she’s finally accepted the end of her presidential ambitions) and this episode didn’t actually close the door on that possibility.

His poor wife.

6. “What, were you wearing a full-length mirror?” was genuinely funny. (And a joke that’s aimed more at Dan than Amy, take note).

7. Called it! Selina gets in trouble for talking to Mike as though he still works for her, and isn’t a journalist.

8. Jonah and Beth actually seem quite well suited – she even thinks he’s funny.

One of the things I was becoming increasingly unhappy with after season 6 was the show’s handling of sexual violence – the way it used harassment or assault as a kind of spicy condiment to jokes, cheap ways to kick up a zinger, rather than realities of the political environment. (This might have been in my thoughts when I plotted out You Were Always On My Mind).

To my relief, they appear to have at least backed off making the sexual assault jokes with Dan, however vile he is in other ways. But I’m…not totally sure how I feel about the #NotMe gag. Like, it is funny – but it also seems to feed into a narrative of treating #MeToo like a shallow internet frenzy, rather than a serious political movement. There’s a refusal to acknowledge that women’s rage is legitimate that bothers me.

But then I thought that off hand line from Selina – “that’s bad now” – was incredibly telling of how much she absolutely is a product of a political environment that treated her with the absolute bare minimum of respect. Turns out relentlessly sexually harassing women and granting them respect based only on their fuckability is bad for them – who knew? (Aside from every feminist on the planet).

9. Oh Amy. This is exactly what I was afraid of – that her decision to have an abortion would be in a context where it’s entirely framed by Dan’s awfulness, not her own wishes.

I’m not even saying it’s a bad decision – I’m adamantly pro-choice – but man does it play into one of the more insidious arguments against abortion rights, that granting them allows men to evade their responsibilities as partners and parents by forcing women to have abortions. With as rare as honest depictions of abortion are in popular culture – something like a third of all women have one at some point, though you’d never know it – this is one I really do want Veep to get right. If the Irish referendum experience taught me anything, it’s that when an honest discussion is had about the realities of why abortion is necessary, people make the right choice for society, whatever their personal feelings might be.

10. Square-dancing while suffering from morning sickness seems like a uniquely hellish prospect – though at Amy’s stage of pregnancy (which has to be at least four months, per the timeline) it has usually dissipated, somewhat. Not that Veep seems terribly clear about the timeframes.

11. Dan is 39 and a half! My geeky head felt quite relieved to have that nailed down – and also that Veep has finally given up the pretense that Dan is in his early thirties. Reid Scott hasn’t been pulling that off in a while (from what I recall, he has two kids under three, so the poor man probably isn’t getting much in the way of sleep). For what it’s worth, I’d assume Amy is being played at Anna Chlumsky’s actual age, or slightly younger – for Amy to be older than Dan at this point just wouldn’t track. So the actual age of the younger characters is probably Amy to Jonah to Dan – which is what has always seemed most sensible to be given the character dynamics involved.

12. Dan is just…vile in this episode. Sleeping with a 19 year old (and…I know Reid Scott is handsome, but still, a waitress at the hotel – this is getting into Dominic De Villepin territory), who has the same name Amy chose for their daughter and telling Amy about it? That’s downright cartoonish. And…gross, on just about every level. No wonder Amy made her snap decision, he’s being utterly repulsive.

13. That said, I think Amy is being almost as self-absorbed as Dan here, though far more justifiably. She’s so desperate for some sign of maturity in him (understandably) that she doesn’t actually listen to him – any honest assessment of his little period of introspection would have made her realise how meaningless it was, certainly not a reason to effectively propose to him. And I get it, I do, because she loves him and she’s wanted a family (of some kind) for a while now, but even so.

14. For what it’s worth, when Amy makes a decision she tends to stick to it, so I wouldn’t expect much in the way of dithering next episode. What I am baffled by is, going by the episode description, Dan comes with her to the clinic. Based on what I just saw…why? Why would she want him there, or anywhere within a hundred miles of her? (Or to ever have physical contact with him again, as disgusting as he’s being).

What would you say are specific instances wher…

What would you say are specific instances where it is clear that Dan has feelings for Amy? I’m trying to think of some and I can’t really think of any moment where it’s like clear he is into her. Because sleeping with her could just mean nothing for him! Or could be everything to him! We get like no scenes from his perspective and it’s infuriating because I need to know how he feels!!!

The only scenes from Dan’s perspective I can think of in the last two years are the bar scene in 5.02 (the camera shows us his disappointment at Amy leaving and the momentary hesitation) and the interview scene in 6.03.

And that is absolutely purposeful.

If they fill us in on Dan’s perspective, the suspense will be lost – once his feelings (such as they are) are clear, we know how the story ends.

For what it’s worth, I am expecting this to shift soon. If Amy flips out on him in 7.03, and shortly after leaves, which is what seems likely to happen, I think the show will start to put us in his perspective and the suspense will be generated by whether or not Amy’s going to give him a second chance or not. (She should kick him in the nads first).

As for moments that make it clear he’s into her, I can think of a few. His explosion of jealousy over Ed, not sabotaging her when they were competing for campaign manager, wanting her to leave Selina with him in season 2, scooping her up to come work with him in season 4 (which he really didn’t have to do), offering her a job in season 6, taking time during his panic attack to tell her what a good friend she is…

There are a lot more overt moments from Dan than you might think – he just tends to express his feelings in rather backwards ways.

I also think that in some ways, Dan’s feelings for Amy have been more openly portrayed than hers for him. I don’t think we’ve ever seen her gaze at him the way he has at her in 6.10 or 7.01 – also, see this promo pic for 7.02.

You know Dan’s looking at Amy, even though she’s barely in the photo, because of the smitten look on his face. She would never be that open with him – the closest she’s come is 5.02, and even there, she’s not nearly as open.

I’ve always argued that Dan is more in love with Amy than she is with him – he’s just a profoundly terrible person, so it doesn’t express itself in remotely admirable ways.