"For All the Tea in China"

A review by Jenni:

It's been a rocky few days but as of these last couple of hours, I feel more at peace.  So I'm really looking forward to sitting back with my chai and watching this episode which I'm not sure I've seen since it first aired.

What I love about this episode:
Wow, they really get you right off the bat in this one.  It's so hard to see the young Chinese mother leave her baby.  One thing I liked a lot about TBAA was how they could convey so much in so little time.  And sometimes without needing any words at all.

And I think we have another reference to life before birth...  After picking up the baby, Gloria says "It's me... Gloria.  Remember me?"  I love the idea that we're in Heaven before we're born.  So death is just like going back Home after being on a journey.  Yep, she goes onto say "First you were in Heaven... tonight you're in China."  Love that.

While Lady Barrington is a bit... something... I do agree with her that a cup of tea can be really healing.  Cups of tea have been doing me "a world of good" for a long while now.  I have a feeling my chai lattes are not what she had in mind, though.  I do drink other tea, too.

This husband is awesome.  I love what he says about how even if their marriage is the only thing they create together, he'll be a lucky man.

"I believe children are a gift from God.  And if you're ready to accept that gift, He can handle the complications."  I hope that Monica quote always proves true.  Sometimes I'm not sure.  Free will can mess things up. 

The one thing I really remember about this episode is being intrigued by how Gloria could be holding the baby and, at the same time, the baby would appear to be laying on her own to mere mortals.  It makes you look at the world differently.

Oh...  I'd forgotten about all those angels by the cribs.  Here come the waterworks.  Such a beautiful image to think each lil baby has an angel to care for them and play with them and tell them stories.

I'd always wished there was an Asian angel.  I'd totally forgotten about this guy at the nursery.  I wish he had a name, though.  Still, I'm glad TBAA was so inclusive with showing angels of many nationalities.  Not that any of them actually were white or black, etc.  But I'd like to think angels take on human forms of all ethnicities.

Aww.  Edward continuing to call Lady Barrington as such is touching.

"God does not will all that happens in this world.  But He does will something good out of everything that happens.  But for that you have to trust Him to take you to places that you're afraid to go."  I LOVE that quote from Monica.  I believe that totally but sometimes other Christians seem to disagree with me and think that I believe God's power is limited.  I don't.  And I do believe that quote may be why I was meant to watch this episode tonight.

I may not be the hugest Gloria fan but she's really sweet with Rose.  "God loves you... and so do I" made me tear up... again.

As emotional as it made me, I love how "It Is Well..." trails through out this episode.

Seeing Lady Barrington reunite with her friend caused tears even on re-watching.  I really do love how the two stories from two different eras are interwoven here.

What I didn't love about this episode:
It's a little derivative of "Manny."  Although I do prefer this episode.

Not nearly enough Andrew time.

Lingering questions:
Not to sound crass but... why doesn't Lady Barrington just keep quiet, let them adopt the baby without interference, and then realize it's not like they'll stop having sex?  Having a baby might be what they'd need to relax.  Don't get me wrong.  I think her genetic hang-up is misguided.  But if that is her chief concern, it's not like having an adopted child would preclude eventually giving birth.  Two grandbabies are better than one, I would think.

Parts that made me feel swoony:
Aww.  Loveliness on the staircase looking upset...

Freaking out...  There's only about 9 minutes left and that's all we've seen of Andrew.  I know there was a scene of him at the nursery.  I hope THC didn't cut it...

Finally... he's back at the very end.  But I do think THC cut him out of other parts.  Sad...  Yep, they did.  The touched.com episode guide has a photo of a scene that's definitely not in the THC version.  Augh.

Random thoughts:
Music: Tess plays "It Is Well With My Soul" on the piano and sings along with Angela Lansbury joining in.  I started sobbing.  I listened to that song a lot in January.  Later, Lady B. remembers a service at her parents' church where the congregation sings that song.  And still later, she sings the song to her granddaughter.  And her best friend joins in.  Wow.  Lovely moment.

I'm afraid that sometimes I do think along the lines of Lady Barrington when she comments on how any reprobate can have a child but good people need to get investigated.  That's something that's terribly, terribly hard for me to understand.  Especially when those good people don't always get a child and some may have many children and hurt and neglect them.  It breaks my heart.

Scenes Hallmark cut:
- They cut some of Rose's birth mom at the beginning.  After she lays the baby down, she runs off.  She grasps a tree, sobbing, then falls to her knees.  It's terribly wrenching.

- So here's what THC stupidly cut...  Right after Andrew appears on the staircase and sees Lady Barrington burn the China pamphlet, it goes to Gloria at the nursery.  She's telling Rose that her parents' names are James and Sarah and they're wonderful people who God picked just for her.  Andrew approaches.  Gloria looks up and says "Andrew?"  He shakes his head (in dismay... don't think he was denying his name!).  She asks what the matter is.  He responds "There's been a complication."  They both look troubled.  The camera closes in on Rose.  It goes to commercial.  So maybe it's not a hugely necessary scene but Andrew had so few scenes in this episode...  Anyhow, after the commercial it goes to the scene of Tess at the Barrington home which THC keeps.

Further on down the road...
Well, glad to be able to watch this without freaking out over THC cutting one of Andrew's very, very few scenes!

I was going to try to not drink any more tea whilst watching cause I feel like I'm maybe drinking too much.  But it occurs to me that this is a very stupid episode to try that with...

I still love Gloria saying that the lil one was in Heaven first.  I believe we're somewhere before we're born.  Whether Heaven or not, I think it's a nice place.  Maybe the mind of God.

Oh, I grasp the importance of tea time all right!  That's why I have it at least four times a day...

Sigh...  And there he is!  Just briefly around 16:30 but lovely...  And I do need tea!

I have to agree with Lady Barrington on one point...  It does upset me that so many people can easily have children and not take care of them or teach them well and yet some people who would be awesome parents have to go through all sorts of hoops to get pregnant or adopt.

I still wish we'd been given a name for this nice angel fellow counseling Gloria.  Maybe the credits will say.

I still really love Monica's quote about how God doesn't will everything but wills good out of everything.  That's what I believe.

The end of this episode gives me goosebumps.  Mostly because of the two ladies singing but TBAA also had this particular bar in their score that popped up occasionally and generally has that effect on me.  It just occurred to me that I can't remember the last time I noticed the score on a show currently on the air.  Oh, I guess Belle's Theme on Once Upon a Time but it does seem like TV scores used to be a lil more stirring.  Of course, I also watched more TV...  Who knows what I'm missing.

Well, sad about the lack of Andrew but it's kinda nice to not have to spend gobs of time capping.

Drat, no help IDing that angel via the credits.  Or via IMDB. 

A Word from Travis:
I love Mrs. Lansbury in this episode (I’m only aware of her work in “Murder She Wrote”). Mrs. Lansbury played a character who seemed to display villainous qualities but, who was really a hurt individual who needed to open up her broken heart to God so he could put the broken pieces back together. The part towards the ending of the episode where Mrs. Lansbury’s character are reunited with her long lost friend is a tearjerker.

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