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Date Posted: Wednesday, February 01, 09:13:49am
Author: Nell
Subject: I think the reason that I was interested in this (r)
In reply to: JayBee 's message, "I understand your metaphor, now that (r)" on Tuesday, January 31, 07:13:06pm

is because it is in their sexual/romantic lives that we most see the main six acting most independently of (in defiance of?) the other constraints on them, there as a result of being in Section. I guess, ultimately too, I do think that how people approach their sexual partners is quite telling. (I also think that abandonment is the ultimate infidelty - so, um, I was thinking about it as part of his whole 'treatment of his lovers/wives thing.)

In all of - to continue with Paul - the other parts of his life and his actions and choices can be (not must be, but certainly can be and canon seems to suggest should be) viewed as political/strategic within the context of Section.

It feels to me, as a viewer, that about the only time I get to see Paul acting for himself is when it comes to how he treats those with whom he has relationships that are to some degree outside the bounds of Section itself - Madeline, Steven, Corriene and Willy. The two he had sexual affairs with - Madeline and Corriene (one with marriage, one without), he is ultimately willing to sacrifice to his greater ambitions. (I know - canon makes reconciling saving Madeline at all costs iin S2, vs. leaving her to be blown up in Red Cell's lair in S4 somewhat tricky....but still, it's what we've got to work with.)

The two he did not have affairs with (that we know of!), Steven and Willy, he goes to extraordinary lengths to *protect* from Section, and by extention, his greater ambitions.

I think that does reveal something essential about Paul's basic character - that relationships with women are less valuable to him than relationships with men. That it is in the relationships with Steven and Willy that Paul, in his own obscure way, tries to adhere to notions of loyalty and fidelty and protectiveness, whereas in his relationships with women, in particular women he slept with, neither loyalty nor fidelty nor protectiveness ultimately prevail. He uses them, and moves on.

That Madeline killed Charles is also part of - to me - the issues raised by a consideration of 'adultry' as a larger metaphor. She killed him *because* he was her husband - if he had just been any old operative trapped on a deep cover assignment (leaving aside the likelihood of that!), she would have brought him in and drained him dry of all intel before deciding his fate. I think you could argue that she believed to kill him was, in this instance, all she could do to protect him. It was her last act of loyalty or fidelity to their relationship, to him as a man, to save him from what would inevitabely come, and at her hands, if he was returned to the Section.

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