TURN: Washington’s Spies Our Man in New York Recap – Previously in Episode 5, Abe Woodhull enlisted in General Arnold’s newly formed American Legion. All the better to spy on him, but also because General Washington wants to capture him alive and make an example of him. Mary Woodhull has moved with toddler Thomas to the rebel camp, angry at being kept in the dark about husband Abe’s dangerous new mission. Relationships are more than a bit shaky in Benedict Arnold’s house as wife Peggy’s secret love for John Andre has been found out. The very important shocker at the end of the episode was the sudden return of Major Hewlett as head of British Intelligence in the colonies. How and why that occurred had yet to be revealed.
TURN: Washington’s Spies Our Man in New York Recap
TURN: Washington’s Spies Our Man in New York Recap images from amc.com
Episode 6 begins with some clever spy craft when Talmadge arranges a loud and public fake fist fight between Caleb Brewster and rebel sergeant John Champe. The fight is for the benefit of the troops and camp followers, among whom are some suspected spies. The setup is that the disillusioned Sergeant Champe would defect to the British though he would, in fact, be another of Washington’s spies in the British ranks. Another part of the deception is that Anna Strong is creating a logbook of intelligence misinformation which will be planted with the British.
A dangerous meeting between Major Hewlett and ‘Private Woodhull’ was arranged by the arrogant and condescending General Arnold. It’s an intense, awkward affair asHewlett broadly hints to Abe that he knows he’s part of the Culper Ring. The question left open is why, as head of British Intelligence, he doesn’t immediately throw Abe into lockup.
Further espionage intrigue involves Mrs. Barnes (Tina Benko), outwardly a camp follower but actually a spy for the British army. She has been suspicious of Mary Woodhull from the beginning and she’s trying to dig into Mary’s past. When she finds that Mary is actually one of the Woodhull Tories, it first appears that Mary’s in deep trouble. The discovery has the opposite result as she reveals herself as a Tory plant in Washington’s camp. She offers to conspire together with Mary against the rebels.
Meanwhile, ‘Our Man in New York’ of the episode title is going about spying on Major Hewlett. He finds it odd that Hewlett has a chat with fellow spy Robert Townsend in the coffee house. But Abe is not the only adversary who is interested inHewlett’s return to the colonies. Simcoe sees him in Townsend’s coffee house and makes plans to have him killed. From previous episodes, we know that the two are sworn mortal enemies.
The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men
Simcoe hires two blackguards for the hit while he arranges an alibi for himself. While the two assassins are making arrangements to kill Hewlett, Simcoe reveals a bit more of his sadomasochistic nature by spending a kinky night with his favorite prostitute Lola.
It’s certainly a dramatic coincidence that Abe is rooting around for intelligence in Hewlett’s residence at the same time two of Simcoe’s men are planning to kill Hewlett. One of the men waits outside with a wagon for escape while the other slips in through a window. Instead of finding Hewlett, the thug finds himself entangled in a life and death struggle with Abe. Hewlett happens to be returning home. It’s a mad jumble in the dark but Abe and Hewlett join together in purpose. They dispatch the thug and dump his body out the window into the waiting wagon. Instead of a successful hit, the remaining thug shows Simcoe the dead body in back of the wagon.
In the aftermath of the attempted assassination of Major Hewlett, Abe and Hewlett are forced to explain themselves. We know that Abe is there to scoop what intelligence he can from Hewlett’s offices. But what motivated Hewlett to return to America? He explains to Abe that he failed to sell his officer’s commission because it was of little value in a war the British were losing. His only option was to return to the colonies with monthly payments to support his counterespionage. He made up fake books to justify the expense, essentially paying himself for faked intelligence information. His ultimate motive is to get enough money to buy himself a modest home where he can pursue his real interests – science and books. The impassioned Abe jumps at the chance to recruit Hewlett, offering him the estate at Whitehall if Hewlett would help him capture Arnold and eliminate Simcoe.
We saw last episode that Abigail’s son Cicero, as Arnold’s body man, offers to assist Abe in spying on the general. Unfortunately, Peggy Shippen overhears them talking. But when she brings her suspicions to the attention of her husband, the proud and arrogant Arnold takes it as an affront to be so counseled by a woman. Especially when that woman is his wife, who he feels has betrayed him. Peggy Shippen is between a rock and a hard place and puts Cicero to the third degree. Cicero holds his ground but is forced to admit he was aiding Abe in his spying efforts. But realizing that her husband disdains her, and that he is an impenetrable fool, she makes a spot decision to join the side of the American rebels.
Other Episodes of TURN Washington’s Spies reviewed on TV Eskimo:
TURN: Washington’s Spies Season 3
TURN: Washington’s Spies Our Man in New York Recap characters and cast include:
Abraham Woodhull – Jamie Bell (Snowpiercer, King Kong, Jumper, The Adventures of Tintin, Billy Elliot)
Ben Talmadge – Seth Numrich (Private Romeo, Gravity, How to Kill a Mockingbird)
Caleb Brewster – Daniel Henshall (The Babadook, These Final Hours, The Snowtown Murders)
Mary Woodhull – Meegan Warner
Judge Richard Woodhull – Kevin McNally
Anna Strong – Heather Lind (Boardwalk Empire, Demolition, Mistress America)
Lt. John Simcoe – Samuel Roukin
General George Washington – Ian Kahn (The Box, Homeland, Billions, The Unusuals, Bull, Secrets in the Walls)
Benedict Arnold – Owain Yeoman (The Mentalist, Troy, American Sniper)
Peggy Shippen – Ksenia Solo (Black Swan, Orphan Black, Lost Girl)
Robert Townsend – Nick Westrate (Ricki and the Flash, Care, Beach Pillows)
Major Hewlett – Burn Gorman (Jamestown, And Then There Were None, The Man in the High Castle, Game of Thrones, Spies of Warsaw, The Dark Knight Rises, Torchwood, Layer Cake, Bleak House, The Oxford Murders, Pacific Rim)
Mrs. Barnes – Tina Benko (The Avengers, Flesh and Bone, Brotherhood, Royally, That Awkward Moment)
Abigail – Idara Victor (Mad Men, Rizzoli & Isles, Vegas, The Choir)
Cicero – Darren Alford (Same Fruit Different Tree, House of Cards)
Lola – Riann Steele (360, The Tunnel, Crazyhead, Sket, Hamlet)
Marquis de Lafayette – Brian Wiles (Public Morals, Lady-Like, Blue Bloods, Person of Interest)
John Champe – Chris Webster (About a Boy, Hidden, DCI Banks, American Assassin)
Motlow – Jon Patrick O’Brien
Sergeant Dowling – Michael Dempsey (Black Dog Red Dog, Guiding Light, Gotham)
Brant – Hunter Emery (Orange Is the New Black, The Affair, Blue Bloods)
Alexander Hamilton – Sean Haggerty (Lincoln, John Adams, Hard Boiled)
Comte de Rochambeau – Zack Zublena (The Bold and the Beautiful)