Madam Secretary: (S03E07) “Tectonic Shift”


This episode started with an adorable and then heart breaking look into Elizabeth’s past. 

We know her and her brother butt heads a lot because they’re both strong but very different personalities. It appears as if they were squabbling since they were young, like most siblings do. 

The family, without Elizabeth, went out for ice cream. They got into a car accident and the only person able to move was her brother. He didn’t know what to do or how to help his parents. He just screamed for help. We don’t know how long it took for help to come but you can tell that it was certainly a defining moment in his life. 

Cut to modern day Elizabeth searching for a picture of the two of them because he is visiting with his family and he’ll throw shade if he doesn’t see one. She is trying to get him a more stable job state side so that his wife won’t leave him and his daughter will have a father who is present. 

When they arrive the cousins meet and there is instant bonding. But an earthquake happens in Venezuela and Elizabeth has to leave. The Earthquake takes out the entire 3 person line of succession for the country. An opportunist, the former president’s son, captures aid workers and holds them hostage in return for the US recognizing him as the legitimate president. They don’t want to do this because he is not legitimate and will not be blackmailed. They come up with a plan to have a more legitimate person be placed in power but there are hiccups. They end up having to trick the douche bag into thinking the US has endorsed him. They do so by filming an endorsement, with the opposition who denounced it, and send it to him. This gets the hostages released  and with their help the legitimate leader is patched up and set in place. 

That’s the A story. 

B Story: Her brother makes a good show of wanting to change. He gets the job but almost immediately turns it down when he hears about the situation in Venezuela. After Elizabeth confronts him he tells her that one of the reasons he is the way he is is because he couldn’t save their mother’s life. Elizabeth was under the impression they died immediately because he did not mention that for a few minutes their Mom was alive and he tried to help but couldn’t do anything to save her. She was distraught after hearing this news. He left anyway, without saying good bye to her. She went to meet him at the airport and he was there. He never made his flight. He was taken aback by the fact that when he said good bye to his daughter it didn’t even phase her that he was leaving. His presence in her life was inconsequential. He stayed. They talked. Looks like we may see more of him in future episodes. 

C Story: Nadine has to do a favor for the wife of the former Secretary of State. You know, the one she was having an affair with. Looks like the wife doesn’t know and even though Nadine goes to tell her she changes her mind. Looks like that secret will live on…for now. But we kind of all think the wife suspects…if not already knows. 

Buss laugh moment of this episode: When they talk and her brother says his gift to her was not mentioning their Mom survived for a few minutes. She said return it. She’d prefer something from the gap. I just love how she defuses tension with quirky humor. 

Punched in the feels moment of this episode:   When they get into the car accident and he screams what can he do, knowing no one will answer. The finality and hopelessness of the situation was heartbreaking. 

Made me ponder for a sec moment of this episode:  If a natural disaster such as an earthquake were to occur in Venezuela, how close to the truth would this episode be? 

Awesome episode as usual. Looking forward to next week’s episode. I hear things get hostile with Russia. 

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