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Covert Affairs – Auggie goes rogue … and shirtless

Auggie's vacation to Istanbul turned into a revenge caper as viewers learned how Auggie lost his sight.

- Season 2, Episode 7 - "Half a World Away"

First things first: A grievance.

Dear USA Network people,

I realize that the actor, Chris Gorham was shirtless in this episode and looked very fit indeed. It was kind of hard to miss his high level of physical fitness because you replayed the same scenes of him shirtless twice. Plus you added this  handy graphic at the corner of the screen, “Want more scenes of shirtless Auggie? #covertaffairs.” That seriously undercuts the spy drama, which isn’t supposed to be a beefcake show, right? — A regular Covert Affairs viewer.

For the record, I like the character Auggie Anderson. He’s smart. He’s charming. He doesn’t seem to wallow in self pity about his disability and in fact relishes overcoming people’s lowered expectations of him because of his blindness. He doesn’t strike me as one who’d seek bloody revenge after hearing a snippet of a man’s voice on a recording he’d made of a jazz concert in Istanbul while on vacation.

As we watched the flashbacks of a then-sighted Auggie in Iraq, who was tasked with finding and taking out an enemy leader, we saw Auggie’s team get pinned down by enemy fire and then observed Auggie enter a building and kill several people, including the chief target. However it seemed uncharacteristic for the Auggie we know today to use an innocent flight attendant to get him in close proximity to the turncoat who hurled that bomb under the Army vehicle which killed Auggie’s colleagues and blinded him.

While it appeared as though the rest of his crew died either by gunshot wound or from the bomb explosion, when I saw current day Auggie prepping for the mission with a short, curvy knife, I expected to learn that Auggie had been tied to a chair and tortured or intentionally blinded by the enemy, something really gruesome because I figured something intentionally gruesome was the only thing that would motivate this even-keeled guy to turn so rogue. I get that Auggie still harbors rage about the lethal incident — for the betrayal, for his lost colleagues (including the guy who loved the jazz music which Auggie once mocked) and for the end of Auggie’s work as a field agent — but his character doesn’t seem like one who’d go on a violent, personal revenge mission where he put a random civilian (Charlotte from Lost!) , with whom he was sleeping, in potential danger.

Obviously Auggie isn’t a cold-blooded killer — he’s no Jack Bauer — as evidenced by his unwillingness to blind the man who’d blinded him when he had the opportunity to do so after besting him in a very uncomfortable fight scene where a now-blind Auggie grappled with a sighted man. Auggie, for example, would’ve had no idea if anyone was coming up behind him or if his opponent was pulling a hidden gun from his sock or something. This fight scene was unorthodox to say the least.

But I loved how during this episode, Annie was the one who provided Auggie with the intel and set him up with resources. She was the voice of reason on the phone, pulling up files on the computer and feeding him valuable tips. It was a refreshing change.

However as much as I like Auggie, I didn’t like this side of him as we’ve witnessed nary a hint that there was a darkness brewing beneath the surface, unlike, say, Jai Wilcox, who always seems as though he’s ticked and harbors deep resentment about … something.

Photo Credit: USA

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Categories: | Covert Affairs | Episode Reviews | Features | General | TV Shows |

4 Responses to “Covert Affairs – Auggie goes rogue … and shirtless”

July 24, 2011 at 1:39 PM

I think you missed the key reason Auggie was so angry…rewatch the show and see that the TERRORIST he was after was part of his CREW. He’s the one that he overheard on the walkie saying he was going to complete the decoy (or whatever he said). The terrorist / traitor was the guy who spoke in the older farmer’s native tongue, first tended to the injured soldier, etc….but then he throw the bomb under the humvee. that’s why auggie was so ticked and I’m surprised how many reviewers missed it………..

July 24, 2011 at 1:40 PM

Auggie’s ticked because the TERRORIST was a TRAITOR. Rewatch the show–he was part of his crew…..

September 12, 2011 at 9:51 PM

This episode actually gave Auggie depth as a character and Chris Gorham did an amazing job with the range of emotions played out on the screen. Auggie is protective of those he holds dear – we see that time and again with Annie. Imagine being in a military unit where one of your OWN is actually the very terrorist you’ve sworn to hunt down. Imagine still that your brothers are killed by this person you trusted. Further, imagine your sight taken from you. Yes, we see a relatively well adjusted Auggie in the DPD but he’s not a saint. Of course this episode gave us a change to gawk at Chris’ lovely body (so incredibly jealous of his wife…seriously)…but it’s the desert, they’re playing football…someone has to be shirts and someone has to be skins. It was a way for the writers to show the type of person Auggie was BEFORE he lost his sight. We see a fit, funny, and competitive Auggie. Yes, we see that in the character in the present time. The experience shaped him. We know he went to Iraq after his experience with Natasha. We KNOW because we see the book in his bag that he STILL loves the woman (despite what we learn in the show). The need for revenge – well, as much as we want the lovable nerd that is Auggie Anderson it is so much more fulfilling to know that he is a good PERSON despite the dark crevices in his personality…and that ANNIE could be that voice of reason. It’s a great commentary to their friendship…and a precursor to their future relationship as more than friends. Just my dos centavos.

September 27, 2011 at 3:15 PM

Abolseutly first rate and copper-bottomed, gentlemen!