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Musing Review: Pan Am – Ich Bin Ein Berliner (S1, Ep3)

Submitted by on October 10, 2011 – 8:29 amNo Comment | 3,499 views

This third episode of Pan Am brought us a mediocre story on the backdrop of some great history. Like all period shows Pan Am has the ability to weave well known history into the storyline of an episode.  This episode did just that, and did it quite well.  We found ourselves watching as the crew worked a chartered flight of journalists from New York to Berlin so they could cover President Kennedy’s famous Ich Bin Ein Berliner speech on June 26th, 1963.  This permeated the whole episode and we got to see a depiction of what it was like in Berlin during his speech.  They did a great job showing how exciting of a time it must have been and it was nice to see it.

The overall storyline of the episode was pretty minimal and underwhelming.  Kate had another spy assignment (of course it went awry) and Captain Dean had to schmooze with some German officials on behalf of the airline.  We saw some attempted romantic interaction between First Officer Ted and Laura and learned about Colette’s past.  The most exciting part of the story was Maggie and her enthusiasm.

I am really starting to love the character of Maggie Ryan.  She’s really proving herself to be smart, witty, funny, and strong.  She is a go getter.  Her story this week was her goal to meet President Kennedy.  We found out that she was a precinct captain during his campaign and she missed out on meeting him after his election.  Nothing would stop her from her goal.  She got herself a press pass for the speech and even snuck into a party at the American mission but never made it to meet him.  Thankfully in the end she got to see the President up close and they did a nice job of showing his silhouette.

We also learned that Colette was orphaned during world war two when the Nazis invade France.  That made her trip to Germany especially difficult and she had a hard time coping.  She had bad flashbacks and had an incident with some German dignitaries at the party.  I’m not sure how much that’s going to translate into future story lines, but it did add much more depth to her character this week.

The story was told as pretty much one big flashback this week.  It started in real time, jumped forward 24 hours, then back twelve.  It was an alright narrative for a mediocre episode.  The history weaving made this a better episode than it really should have been.  Next week’s episode looks like it could be good as the crew travels to some tropical paradise.  I’m still committed to watching.  Will you watch with me?

Catch up on Hulu or ABC.com.  Watch Sundays at 10:00PM on ABC.

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