Something fishy going on 4×09 Lipet Seafood Company
Fish and chips
The scene opens with a fish, dead, lying on a bed of ice being wheeled through a fish factory. It looks as if it is just about to be prepared for market. The fish is lifted onto a bench and has its belly sliced open. Fingers fish around inside and pull out a plastic bag containing a chip- a timing chip (as we are to find out later). This is clearly no ordinary fish, no ordinary fish factory. This is the Lipet Seafood Company. The chip is about to be inserted into some sort of device. Suddenly all hell breaks loose. Commandos are attacking the factory. There is gunfire. Men die. The device is popped into a handy carry case and is whisked away. Freeze the scene there…
All is looking pretty fishy at the Lipet Seafood Company isn’t it! Fish and chippy fishy.
Let’s stop for a moment to consider the witty use of ‘fish and chips‘ in this whole scenario. Fish and chips (fries, if you really must) have a long and proud tradition, originating in England. A fusion food which traces its roots back to Spanish Jews who settled in England in the 17th century. They brought with them the practice of dipping fish into flour and then frying them. From there developed the idea of dipping them into flour and then into a batter before frying them. The first ‘Fish and Chip Shop’ was opened in 1860 in London by a Joseph Malin, who sold “fish fried in the Jewish fashion”. Deep fried chips (slices or pieces of potato, not what we Brits call crisps which are potato chips in North America) are first mentioned in Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities (1859).
Fish and chip shops became very popular throughout the UK, especially but not uniquely in seaside towns. Fish and chips can be found accompanied with such delicacies as ‘mushy peas’, gerkhins (dill pickles), pickled onions, pickled eggs. Splashed with vinegar (brown malt in the south, white in the north and Scotland), sprinkled with salt perhaps also squirted with tomato ketchup, or even mayonnaise.
Feeling a bit peckish now are we?
One boy, two fish names. Funny.
The scene opens with a man we have met before, a lawyer, who we haven’t exactly been encouraged to warm to, sitting in the back seat of his car ranting at a police officer who sits in the front. Despite the man’s protests and bullying tone the police office remains unresponsive. Suddenly, for no apparent reason, the officer opens the door of the car and gets out. Our lawyer friend looks a little bemused by this event. What on earth is going on exactly?
Come on now, you knew who was going to get into the car seat beside the befuddled lawyer didn’t you. Of course you did.
Reddington sits himself down next to the lawyer with a sigh and a grimace and a, ‘Well this is a sticky wicket’, and we just know we are in for a bit of fun- fun for us, not quite so much fun perhaps for the lawyer. Ignoring a casual use of blackmail involving a very real threat to ruin the lawyer’s blossoming career, shall we take a peek at the funny little story Reddington uses here? Here is a lawyer with the unusual first name of Marlin and, of course, Reddington has met someone with that name before. In the particular case of the boy that he knew years ago, not only ‘blessed’ with the name of a fish as a first name but with the surname Trout. One boy, two fish names. Funny.
Of course, what we have just witnessed here is Reddington hooking a Marlin and reeling it in. There are many more fish in the sea.