Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Extra Froth: Numb3rs: A Brief OTP History Lesson

Recapper's note: This originally started off as the opening for the recap for "Guilt Trip." Unfortunately, by the time I was done writing it, I realized it really needed it's own, separate post of SQUEE!

For those of you who know me, you know why I just squeed all over the start of this extra froth post. For those of you that have no idea what I'm talking about - let me introduce you to my OTP, the good 'ship Don/Robin.

A Brief History of Don/Robin
Don and Robin met while working on a gang case in the second season. Robin (who was instantly more interesting than Don's current flame, Nadine, the sex-kitten DA) was horribly underused in the eppesode yet still made an impact on your humble recapper. 105 days later, Robin met Don again at a local shooting range and some flashback to high school moments happened in the car - that is, until Charlie called. (ETA: It's been pointed out that even though I always love blaming Charlie for stuff like this, since I did claim it was brief history and not how Spy would wish it to have been, I have to be clear that the FBI interrupted. PS: I never claimed it would be 100% accurate but Admiral Andrea is intent on keeping me honest.) This is also the start of my issues with Don picking up the phone at the wrong time. Though their moments together during this eppesode were brief, they were hot and funny and fairly realistic - all things I want to see in a relationship.

Robin was often talked about afterward but not seen. I had a horrible feeling that my 'ship was about to be sunk, when Liz arrived on the scene. This was not the Liz we know now. While she was snarky and gorgeous and brilliant, she was the one thing that made me loathe her with every fibre of my being, she was clearly a threat for my OTP. While I love Liz now, as Athena to Nikki's Artemas, we did not start on friendly terms.

Then came the most traumatic eppesode in the history of Numb3rs, at least, the most traumatic for me, "Blackout." It began with what I thought was Don cheating on Robin. Sure, they tried to distract me by having a scorchingly hot scene between Don and Liz but I would not be distracted, as proven my my screencap at the time.
After this eppesode aired, I demanded that my therapy, for all my pain and suffering, be paid for by TPTB. At the end of the eppesode, Don revealed that Robin had broken up with him, and that made me support any therapy Don would need later on in the season. Yes, I blamed the chief Fedcake for the breakup, as well as TPTB.

I would like to say that my response to Liz was very mature, considering the severe emotional trauma I went through.
Actually, now that I look back, perhaps I wasn't as mature as I like to tell myself. Again, this time in my fandom life was not a happy one. I was allowed a few emotional outbursts, considering I never did get compensation or a shout out as an apology from any of the Numb3rs PTB.

Over the next 525 days (yes, I counted), I never forgot Robin. I must admit, there was a moment of weakness, where I begrudgingly accepted the relationship between Liz and Don. I felt I had no choice. Even though I made either an explicit or implicit reference to Robin in every one of my recaps, I was trying to accept that I might need to move on. Oh, I should point out that I just picked five random recaps from that time to link to in the previous sentence. I'm so confident in the number of times I mentioned Robin, be it in print or in one of my audio recaps, that I don't even feel the need to check.

Do I even need to mention that I was happy when Liz broke up with Don? It may have taken three attempts to finally end it, but I rejoiced when it was over, and finally felt some true affection for Liz. She was no longer that relative you tolerate because you have to. She was now that relative who is quite cool, but won't find their place in the family until an appropriate partner comes along - in Liz's case, Nikki.

Back to 525 days after the tragic breakup. Robin made a return to Numb3rs, and it's a good thing I live alone, otherwise everyone would be deaf from my squeeing. I found out the original exit of Robin was unplanned. The actress went and had a baby. Since I lost Robin for 525 days and Megan for a portion of the third season I declared a moratorium on procreation. Apparently, a recapper's demands are not respected because two of the reasons for the final exit of Megan were Diane Farr's twins.

Upon Robin's return, Don had to save her life, to which I owe him my eternal gratitude. For a good portion of "Checkmate" I was convinced TPTB were really trying to break me by bringing back Robin for one eppesode, only to kill her off. Luckily, this did not happen, and I was rather impressed with myself for very tempered and well thought out reaction to the relaunching of the good 'ship Don/Robin.
Trust me. That response was very restrained.

Let me digress a moment and point out a shorter version of the history of the good 'ship Don/Robin appears in the "Checkmate" recap. It was not written by me but totally played into my meglomania theory of events.

The couple lost no time, with Robin appearing in a couple more eppesodes in the fourth season. Again, Don and I had to have a very serious chat about picking up the phone at the wrong moment. I was worried that the newly resumed relationship was too fragile to survive, but I was, to my joy, proven wrong. Robin could do things like call Don on his bullshit and yet he would still buy her watermelon candies. This is true OTP material, people!

As the fifth season rolled around, I was given even more hope in the permanence of my OTP. Robin and Amita, the potential Mrs. Eppeses, attempted to bond. It was deliciously awkward since neither of them are (thankfully) insipid giggly women. Robin also worked on both of the Brothers Eppes (not like that) until Charlie finally started the process to get his clearance back.

I had a moment of panic when a private law firm started noticing this AUSA (the acronym stands for: Aweseomly Underused Single Attorney) and Robin went to interviews in New York City. When she didn't take the job, I turned into a big pile of fangirly goo.

The current state of my OTP has them dealing with some heady issues. Don's recent discovery of his faith caused some unfortunate but realistic friction. Despite this, the couple is in it for the long haul because, as Robin put it, "Don Eppes finds a shrink and God in the same year. I can’t wait to see what happens next." Also, she had to support him through the reappearance of Buck Winters, all the while trying to work out exactly how much space Don needed, without pulling away from him altogether.
In conclusion, here we are, three years from where an AUSA and a Fedcake first met. Throughout the past three years, they've gotten together, broken up, risked their lives, bickered, worked things out but not without some serious bumps along the way. Thus, here is the brief history of my OTP, flaws and all, and I love them for it.
Final thought: SQUEE!!! (It had to be said.)


  1. LOL! Squee indeed! I recently corrupted a new recruit into Numb3rs but she is currently a Liz and Don fan. (She's only on Season 3) We will see if she changes her mind in Season 4. *fingers crossed*

  2. Squee indeed! And minor point? When Don and Robin get interrupted in the car at the firing range, it's not Charlie, it's the FBI calling Don to Nikki's house/murder scene.

  3. @Greenleofiend you need to convince your friend of the awesomeness of this couple.

    @AA: Don't you know? When it comes to Don being interrupted, I always blame Charlie. I'm consistent like that. I will change it though.

  4. :snicker: Glad I could keep you honest!

  5. Oh nice one Spy! Minor point honey, you can't use AUSA anymore. She may be awesome and underused but she better not be single!

    Just thought I would point that out. I am very fond of Liz and I am so glad she's not leaving. Admittedly the non-move has left me rather confused as to her current position. I mean is she in Organised Crime? Narcotics? Is she a member of Don's team, whatever department HE's in? (What department is Don in? He's handled everything from organised crime to terrorism to counter intelligence, surely that's not normal?) If she is a member of Don's team, doesn't she outrank David? If she isn't in Don's team...how often are we going to see her?

    She was going to be given her own team as a supervisor of the Organised Crime section. Doesn't that make her the same rank as Don? Or something like that?
    Oh my head is spinning

  6. @trevellion: Since Liz didn't take the job, she's still a member of Don's team, not an equal. Now, if David gets the relief supervisor position, David will outrank her.