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July 28, 2014

Generation Kill: Bomb in the Garden (mini-series finale)

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Aug 25th 2008 9:40AM

Generation Kill: Bomb in the Garden (7 of 7)
(Part 7 of 7) "Dude, check it out. I wrote U.S.A. with my piss." - Person

All that for nothing. Not much was gained and so much was lost. Over the span of Generation Kill we've all marveled at the ineptitude and idiocy of the people running the show over in First Recon, but not until this episode did it become clear that it wouldn't have made a difference who was in charge - dumb or stupid. This was a losing battle before it even began. Operation Iraqi Freedom? US military PR at it's finest.

After arriving in Baghdad, the team finally began to realize that their stay was at an end. It became even more apparent as they surmised command's general plan of attack - ask questions, look important, and leave. As Iraqis looked on, thirsty, hungry, and tired from being terrorized by looters, Fick (along with the rest of the men) could do nothing. It was depressing as hell. How exactly were they supposed to bring freedom to these people if they couldn't even help them solve the most basic of problems?

I could go on and on about how much this truly pisses me off, but I'll save that and just offer some thoughts on two things that really stood out for me:

  • Ray - I was waiting for it. He'd been quiet, stopped taking Ripped Fuel tabs like candy, and didn't have a mission anymore. You knew he was an outcast and that people like Rudy had been a thorn in his side since high school. But in the marines, he was a different person - an equal. And all it took to strip away that bond was a game of football. Everything he hated about people like Rudy and what they had done to him came out. It was as real as anything depicted on this mini-series. Great moment.
  • Fick - He finally said no and meant it. When he wanted to go out at night, help people, stop looting, and bring rations to the hungry, Encino Man said no. But when the Fedayeen were out in force, making it beyond dangerous to send out a night patrol, that's when Encino Man said Oscar Mike. Insane.

Overall, the episode was a lot of reflection, especially the end when they all watched Lilly's video. I couldn't figure out why this episode was originally called "The Man Comes Around" until Cash's song started playing over the "feature presentation." As the macabre highlights of the war flashed on screen, it got depressing again. All that bloodshed and nothing to really show for it.

Just memories, both good and bad - Wright's "serpentine motion," the "light" Iraqi hitting on Garza, Espera talking about his family, Colbert disarming the bombs, Fick telling Wright "he might write a book one day" (which he did), Cpt. America actually sending men into a mine field at night, and Ferrando saying getting shot at excites him. These are the men fighting the war on terror but instead having to corral grown men who literally steal candy from children. I'm beating a dead horse, but I'll say it again: this isn't what they were trained for.

Should Fick have followed Encino Man's order?
Yes, absolutely. It's his job.34 (9.7%)
No. He did the right thing and saved lives.224 (63.8%)
He probably could have lied and Encino Man would have never been the wiser.93 (26.5%)

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Argus

I know this is a late comment, but what did people like Rudy do to Ray? All I saw most of the time was people call Rudy gay because he worked out alot and ate mostly sushi back home.

August 30 2008 at 9:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
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August 27 2008 at 4:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
puddy77

Great episode and great mini-series. And with the repeated theme that this was an elite recon group that was grossly under-utilized in the war, I laughed out loud at the scene where the four marines secretly infiltrated the office occupied by those other marines... just to vandalize it. It was probably the the only time they really used their advanced skills.

August 25 2008 at 12:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Borat

Fick could have lied the same way Lt. Winters did in Band Of Brothers, to protect his men.

What a great miniseries. Though I still think Band Of Brothers is the best, this is a close second...great job by everyone involved.

August 25 2008 at 12:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
puddy

Great episode and great mini-series. And with the repeated theme that this was an elite recon group that was grossly under-utilized in the war, I laughed out loud at the scene where the four marines secretly infiltrated the office occupied by those other marines... just to vandalize it. It was probably the the only time they really used their advanced skills.

August 25 2008 at 12:52 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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