A TV milestone of sorts is marked Thursday night, with Jennifer Garner’s secret-agent character Sydney Bristow becoming the small screen’s first pregnant superheroine on ABC’s Alias.
In an episode that has the expectant Sydney nearly being sucked out of an airplane, the CIA operative proves that she’s a far cry from the ditsy and pregnant Lucy Ricardo on I Love Lucy (series TV’s first expectant mother), or even Lisa Kudrow’s pregnant Phoebe Buffay on Friends, The New York Times reports.
Jeff Pinkner, an executive producer of Alias, tells the paper that once they heard news of Garner’s baby, the show’s creators decided to play their star’s pregnancy for all it was worth.
“Sydney has always used her sexuality as a tool to take down the bad guys,” Pinkner tells The Times, adding: “I find pregnant women very sexy, and I don’t mean that in an icky way.”
Not that the show is all about sex. Sydney still has some intelligence gathering to do. “When you’re pregnant, you’re not as anonymous,” Alias supervising producer Alison Schapker tells The Times. “For Syd, it will be a sharp contrast with how she usually moves in the world (when all of a sudden) strangers ask when she’s due and want to touch the baby.”
As for the notoriously private Garner – who last week blurted out on the Tonight Show that her and husband Ben Affleck’s upcoming child will be a girl – she declined to speak to The Times. But the paper does say that Sydney will be shown in a climactic birth episode, after which Alias will go on hiatus – before picking up again with a new storyline about a single-mother C.I.A. operative.
Meanwhile, the pregnant Sydney will also never be put in harm’s way, the show’s creators said – almost being sucked out of airplanes notwithstanding.