"Labor of Love"

A review by Jenni:

What I love about this episode:

I admire Meg's commitment to her profession and the well being of all patients.  Delivering your husband's baby by another woman... sheesh.  But she does it and with such kindness to Olivia.

I like Andrew a lot in this.  I feel quite swoony through out but you can see the section below for elaboration.  In short, I just love that Andrew seems so astounded by Brian's disregard for Meg.  And he's pretty darn vocal about it!  Which makes Andrew seem chivalrous.  And that's lovely!

Speaking of Andrew's irritation with Brian, I vastly prefer Sam's reaction to it than the one Tess sometimes has when Andrew gets riled.  Andrew had every reason to be upset!  Rather than scold him, Tess-style, Sam just chuckles and acknowledges Andrew's distaste for Brian and his behavior.  Thank you, Sam!  I don't want any of the other angels to throw Andrew a parade or anything but simple validation of his feelings would be nice.  And I think Sam gives that at least a lil bit.  And he also acknowledges Andrew's wrecked vacation which is nice. 

I like the idea, which is repeated, that children are the evidence of God's love.  It's very sweet.

What I didn't love about this episode:
My feelings about this episode have been tempered a little.  I now see that Meg wanted her marriage saved.  Based on her early conversation with Andrew and later lines to Monica and Brian, it's obvious.  So whereas I used to be ticked by the angels' push to save the marriage, I no longer am.  Now I'm just ticked by the rushed, contrived feel to it.  This isn't one of my favorite episodes for that reason.

The first red flag that goes up for me is when Sam (after kindly acknowledging Andrew's feelings which I loved), says that bit about humans making mistakes.  But Brian's affair isn't just any mistake.  It's an affair!!!  I think this episode shows complete disregard for some of the potential after-effects of adultery.  What if Brian had exposed an unwitting Meg to a STD?  Is that just a mistake?  Was Brian in any way using finances shared with Meg to support his life with Olivia?  If he'd not been discovered, did Brian intend to just lead a double-life?  We don't know.  And unless Sam did, I think he was a lil too blase about this.

I just think Meg is being asked to consider too much, too soon.  I'm not saying her marriage shouldn't have been repaired.  But I don't believe setting out to repair it on the same day she learns Brian's been cheating for months is fair or realistic.  I believe God can heal marriages wrecked by adultery.  But in real life I think God works along with human psychology.  After all, He created our psyches.  And I don't think your average human can process betrayal, commitment, and forgiveness to this degree in a matter of hours.  I would like this episode much better if it didn't seem to rush Meg's and Brian's reunion.  Instead of their hand-holding at the end, I think dialogue demonstrating their intention to work on their marriage but yet maintaining some distance for a while would have been infinitely better.

I do find it a little troubling that while earlier Andrew said children are the evidence of a good marriage, not meant to fix relationships... this episode kinda gives me the idea that baby girl is going to fix Meg's and Brian's marriage.  After all, Meg first tells Brian she wants the baby.  Later she says she wants them to be a family.  That disturbed me.  It made me wonder if Meg didn't just want the baby and was accepting Brian back as a means to an end. 

Lingering questions:
I wanna know if Andrew ever got to Paris!  Something tells me no...

How come Celeste seems so much more mature here than in "Angel of Death"?  Yet Gloria stayed pretty immature through out her 2 seasons on TBAA?

Do you think Celeste realized that the film "Death Takes a Holiday" is about death going on vacation and romancing a woman?  I'm thinking no since she describes Andrew's vacation as "death takes a holiday." 

Who is Andrew's supervisor?  We know from "Beautiful Dreamer" that it was Sam.  Here Sam says he's Tess' supervisor.  Is he still Andrew's?  Or is Tess Andrew's supervisor?  She seems to be but is that ever actually stated?  If it is it just seems odd that Sam would supervise Andrew and Tess and then suddenly Tess is supervising Andrew.  Like they were once equal and then Tess surpassed Andrew.  Or maybe has AOD Andrew gone past needing a supervisor but Caseworker Andrew still does so whomever is handy (generally Tess) becomes his supervisor?  I'm confuzzled... 

How did Andrew know the baby was going to be a girl?

Why does Andrew act like he's just now starting back with caseworking?  Seems like he was doing that pretty often in Season 3, prior to this episode.

Parts that made me feel swoony:
I love Andrew in this episode!  It kinda makes me bemoan his eternal bachelorhood.  Although, intellectually, I know that's muy importante.  (If Andrew can throw in some French, I can throw in some Spanish.)  I mean the guy just can't believe a guy would forget his wedding anniversary.  Which seems to suggest if Andrew had one, he wouldn't forget it.  And then he seems shocked that Meg's husband doesn't realize how amazing she is.  Which makes you think mortal Andrew would realize.  Sigh... 

And I *love* that Andrew gets pretty ticked with Brian.  Maybe "ticked" isn't often associated with angels but he was right!  Andrew comes off seeming like Meg's protective older brother (which he is in a way, I suppose).  And I just love anytime Andrew seems chivalrous towards women. 

And poor Andrew!  His vacation gets ruined and Celeste pours water on his pants!  No Eiffel Tower and soggy pants.  Some vacation!  And he hadn't gotten one in 100 years!??!  So, in other words, an AOD worked WWI, WWII, countless non-global wars, etc. and didn't get a vacation afterwards?!?!  I'm glad angels apparently don't have a labor union cause that'd be strike-worthy for sure!

When Andrew tells Brian "We believe in you"...  I like the idea that Andrew believes in us.  A lot.

I don't think Andrew ever complains about getting his vacation ruined.  He's resistant at first, of course, but once the ball starts rolling... Andrew's all angel.  He's awesome.

Random thoughts:
 This episode kinda seems like a meeting of the Annoying Fliers Club.  Andrew, as much as I love him, would have been totally
annoying to have sat around.  Who wants to hear some guy try to learn French during their flight?  Okay, so maybe we'd like to hear Andrew learn French but your average person... probly not so much.  And Meg starts rattling off about her marriage to a complete stranger.  And then that older lady is just terrible!  She's gossipy, she steals her seat mate's blanket to give to Celeste, and she won't let the poor guy sleep!  Yikes.

This is completely stupid but, back when my brother would occasionally watch this with me, when Andrew says "Quel surprise!" we both thought it sounded like "Kill the priest" and were wondering what the heck that was supposed to mean!

If I were having a baby, I think I'd like to have Andrew there.  I think he'd be calming.  Or at least something nice to look at.  Of course, then he'd probly want to hold the baby and I'd already be emotional and seeing that... well, assumedly I'd care about the baby's father and not still be obsessing over Andrew but that would still be hard. 

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