I have to start out with an apology; this episode includes so many aspects that I couldn’t break it down as much as I wanted. So I am sorry that this post is so long, but I love this episode!
The opening sequence has changed, since I was watching Alias in a week long marathon, this was actually my first clue that something was different, although I was more preoccupied with what happened with Vaughn, I didn’t realize that a new season was starting. I know I would’ve gone completely crazy if I had to wait through a summer to see this episode. But like I mentioned the opening sequence has changed and Sydney is no longer introducing the show. Weiss is telling us all about Sydney now, as well as more detail on the other major players.
When the episode begins we re-watch the final scene from the last episode, although things do look a little different, and her mom’s voice is different. We finally get to see Irina Derevko; the mother who walked out on Sydney and Jack, and who killed Vaughn’s father. Right from the start you can tell she will have a major impact on the relationship at hand. The relationships with your significant other’s parental units are always hard, and we know that it is not easy to please Jack, but having to deal with your father’s murderer is a tough hurdle to break over.
So Sydney is with her mother for the first time in her adulthood, is there a special bonding moment? No, Irina asks her who she is working for; I love Sydney’s response, basically asking if she will be grounded if she doesn’t answer. Granted, after that comment her mother did shoot her in the shoulder, so not a great start to rebuilding the relationship.
This episode does bounce around quite a bit, Sydney is with Dr. Barnett and telling her about the whole Taipei experience, so I will also be bouncing around a bit as well. But Sydney is asked about being shot by her mother and the fact that she’s okay with it. Sydney responds with telling her that she’s fine with it, that’s a problem that she knows how to handle. What she isn’t fine with, is having to sit in a CIA shrinks office telling Houdini stories about her dead mother and her escape while she should be out looking for Vaughn is ridiculous. They shouldn’t be worried about her. Vaughn is missing and that is what the priority should be. She finds this experience pointless; everyone should be looking for him. Dr. Barnett tells her that she understands that she’s frustrated that she’s not on the search team, but they are looking for him, but she has been ordered to come and talk with her. Sydney relents and goes on to tell her how she escaped. Personally I think that Sydney feels incredibly guilty for Vaughn going missing, because it was an unauthorized mission that they were on to save her friend. She saved Will, but now has to deal with losing Vaughn. It can’t be easy for her. Plus she has realized her feeling for him and it makes it even worse. She needs Vaughn back.
She explained how she was able to escape from the room where she was being held, breaking free from the chair, and then breaking down the door. Dr. Barnett wonders how she was able to do all of this after being shot, Sydney explains that one thing she has learned while being a spy, is that there is no drug like adrenaline. But we do see Sydney Bristow at her best ass kicking moments here. She is set on finding Vaughn when she is escaping from the warehouse. She knocks out a few guards and even shoots some of them. Once outside of the warehouse she contacts her father and asks if Vaughn is with him, he tells her that he isn’t but she needs to get to the plane immediately. She tells him that she can’t leave without Vaughn. Jack argues with her, but she is persistent, she tells him that she is going to go find him, and disconnects. The next line is one of my favorites, simply because even with how beat up Will is, and he knows that Sydney just rescued him, but he is jealous, his simple words of; “Who’s Vaughn?” Makes me giggle every time. I feel bad for him, because he is so in love with Sydney, but he has been placed firmly in the friend zone.
Next Dr. Barnett asks Sydney to tell her about Vaughn, Sydney tries to get away with the simple answer, “He’s my CIA handler.” Dr. Barnett, just looks at her like give me a break, I need a real answer. So Sydney goes on. “For a long time, he was the only person I could trust, I think that still may be the case.” And tells her how Vaughn offered to help her and her father rescue her friend Will. Barnett then asks how Vaughn went missing, so Sydney tells her that the last time she saw Vaughn was the night she was captured by her mother. She explained what their mission was, going thru the club, splitting up, her finding the larger than expected Mueller device. She goes on to explain that when she destroyed the lab, she flooded the building. We don’t hear her describe the scene but we watch how Vaughn stands watching the flood of water approaching and not running and how he got stuck behind the door, and the guards capturing her. Sydney continues with telling her that after she escaped, she went back to the last place she had seen him. She stole a hazmat suit and went into the building to search the area, but she only found Vaughn’s coat. Also that when she finally made it back to the plane Vaughn still hadn’t shown up.
Next we hear about the plane ride home, Jack is working on mending Sydney’s bullet wound, and asking about who shot her. He tells him that it was her mother and that Irina doesn’t work for Khasinau, but Khasinau works for Irina. Will, comes up and asks, did you just say that your mom shot you. Sydney gets a phone call from Francie asking about Will. Francie tells her about Will’s story on SD-6 and how it wasn’t going to get printed unless he was missing and he’s missing. Sydney acts dumb to Francie, but then Jack and Sydney ask Will what he wrote about SD-6. He tells him that he only wrote the name that he doesn’t know anything about it, then he asks them if they know about it, and what it is. Sydney tells Barnett that Will was asking all the questions that she would’ve been asking herself. And that without going into details, they told Will the truth. About Jack and Sydney working as double agents, Will thought it was preposterous.
Barnett moves Sydney into the next part of the story that needs to be told, and that is what happened at SD-6 when she got back. Barnett asked if Will’s story made things harder there for her. But Sydney explains that those problems came from a different source. Dixon had reported her to Sloane, saying that he believes Sydney to be a double agent. Jack had predicted this, so he said that he would take of it. Back in the plane, she asks Jack what will happen to Will. Jack just looks at Will and tells him; “You’re gonna have a hard time”. Sydney was immediately taken into custody at SD-6. Jack makes up a story that clears Sydney’s name and the call sign of Freelancer. As well as setting up a way for Will to live. Dixon comes in and tells Sydney that questioning Sydney’s loyalty was lost time for him, and that he’s sorry.
Sydney goes to the storage unit to meet with Weiss. He tells her that there is a team searching the warehouse in Taipei, Sydney gets irritated because she told him that she had already searched there. They argue over the means that the CIA is using to search for Vaughn. But Weiss finally calms her down when he tells her that he knows she’s upset, he’s worried as well, Vaughn is his friend too. But they have a job to do. She tells Weiss about her mission to France, and he tells her what she’ll need to do as a counter mission for it. As Weiss is leaving, he takes a deep breath and tells her; “About Vaughn, I’m praying too.” He touches her on the shoulder, trying to encourage her and leaves.
Sydney is back in Barnett’s office and she is venting to her about how now she is about to leave for France instead of going back to Taipei to search for Vaughn. Barnett stops her and says, one more thing, you haven’t said anything about your mother. Sydney just stares at her bewildered, and then asks; what am I supposed to say, something insightful? She continues saying that the first time she sees her mother in over 20 years, she is shot and almost killed which would’ve made her the 13th CIA agent that she has killed, she was KGB, she’s betrayed her, her father, their country, all anyone needs to know about her mother is that she’s a bad guy. Sydney then leaves the office.
At the opening of the next scene we see Khasinau cutting open the forehead of a man who is still alive, Khasinau stops to take a phone call and we see another body being wheeled into the room. The body is lined up with other men, all of them shirtless. And then we see that the body is Vaughn, he is semi-conscious, but not really. But I personally do not mind seeing him shirtless. Although I’m not too comfortable with where he might be; considering that he did just go past Khasinau.
Sydney parachutes into the party that she is breaking into in France to get on to the property, She chats with Dixon over basic mission stuff, she plants the bug as well the second device for the CIA. While coming down the stairs, she recognizes a man at the party from being in a hazmat suit in Taipei. So she follows him through another door that leads to the lab that Khasinau is in and all the bodies, including Vaughn’s that he is experimenting on. Sydney is looking around and one of the bodies sits up and scares her. Khasinau is about to cut into Vaughn’s chest with a saw when he stops to check out the noise. Khasinau and Sydney fight. Sydney goes down and Khasinau goes to get help. Once he is gone Sydney gets up and finds Vaughn. She gets rid of the restraints and tries to get him going, but he is too out of it to respond to her. She hits his face around a little but he barely responds,(personally I think she should have tried kissing him, I think that would’ve helped at least a little,) she goes over to a medical cabinet, and while he is over there, he says “Syd?” and smiles a little, then goes back to sleep. Sydney comes back with a huge needle and tells him that she’s sorry, but she is going to shoot him with adrenaline, that they have got to hurry up. He sees the needle and sleepily tells her no, don’t do that. She stabs the needled right into his heart and he screams and sit right up. She helps him off of the table, and then they run down a hallway hand in hand. Somewhere along the way he finds a shirt and is putting it on when we see them come outside. They come to a stop and he is grinning from ear to ear. He tells her, “That hurt…” she tells him that she is sorry, but he tells her not to be. Still grinning at her he asks where they are, she tells him that they are in France, he is amazed. She tells him that she has to get back to Dixon and asks if he can get back to LA, he tells her yes. She looks at him, and he is gazing into her eyes with that dazzling smile of his and she asks him what’s up. He tells her, you saved my life. They smile at each other for a moment and then she tells him that she’ll see him back in LA. They continue to smile and look at each other in silence for a few more moments. Then she walks away. He turns and watches her walk away, amazed at her.
Personally, it was this scene right here that sealed the deal for me as far as their relationship went. When I first talked about why I love them as a couple I talked about the sexual tension that they have between the two of them. It is after this scene that I inevitably want to pounce on my own husband. But when I first watched the series, I knew that they would end up together, they had to. But I didn’t know that it would be so hard to get them together. During this last scene I was literally screaming at the screen for them to kiss. I had never wanted a couple to kiss so badly before. The funny part was that not 4 days earlier I saw a tweet come through from a writer on Psych asking what the term shipping meant and why people were telling him he was good at it. I am also semi old and don’t follow the urban dictionary, so I had to look it up myself. When I found out what it was, wanting two fictional characters to come together, I thought it was dumb. That is until I watched this scene and realized that I was officially a shipper myself. And I will admit that in all of the TV that I sadly watch, this has to be one of the best sexual tension moments that TV has ever had. – I will now step down from the soap box.
Sydney is back in Barnett’s office and Barnett assumes that the operation in France must have gone well since Sydney’s sprits are lifted. Sydney smiles and tells her that the doctors say that Vaughn’s going to be alright. Dr. Barnett stays silent and so Sydney feel like she has to speak. “Okay. I see what you're thinking and the answer is 'no'. There's no line being crossed. He's my handler. Vaughn and I have a professional relationship. That's it.” So Sydney is a little taken aback when she is actually asked about Will. Sydney then tells what has happened with Will. How in Taipei, he was tortured, but she thinks it’s actually gotten worse for him here. The only way that SD-6 would let him live is if he destroys the life he has now. He had do destroy his reputation and can’t write again. Jack had to give him some heroin, place him in a drug house where a drug raid would take place, and told Will that he would have to go public with the story that he has been addicted to heroin and that he made up the story about SD-6.
Will and Sydney share a nice moment back at her house though, she asks him how he’s doing and he tells her that he’s alive because of her and that it could be worse. He wonders if anyone can hear them and she tells him that she keeps a bug killer in her lamp. She asks him about his teeth, she doesn’t tell him here, but she knows exactly how being tortured like that feels like and can somewhat feel his pain. Then she gets a phone call and as she looks at the caller ID, he tells her good guys or bad guys and I’ll understand. It’s the good guys, based off of her smile when she says hello, I would venture a guess that it is Vaughn.
It was Vaughn, and he is telling Sydney how he survived. ”When I was a kid, I was a swimmer; I could swim the hundred meters in 68 seconds. I can’t tell you how irrelevant that was that night we were in Taipei. There’d been some pretty incredible inventions over the last 2000 years, but none more incredible than the screwdriver. None! I thought I was home free, but they knocked me out, next thing I knew I was in France.” He tells her this as we see him swimming thru the Rambaldi liquid and finding a vent shaft, using his Leatherman screwdriver to unscrew the panel and swimming up it to get some air. Then he jumps down from the ceiling and starts running down a hallway, next he is backing up out of a doorway with his hands in the air and a gun pointed at him. Then we are back at the storage unit with Sydney. She tells him that when she saw him in the window, she thought that he would be dead.
Jack, Weiss and another agent come into the storage unit, and Vaughn and Sydney immediately back up from one another. They are told that they are going to Spain to retrieve a book, and that they are leaving in 30 minutes. Intel has been gathered off of the bug that Sydney planted and because of the delay transmitter that Sydney placed there as well, SD-6 didn’t get the Intel.
Over coms Sydney and Vaughn are talking to each other. You can see that Vaughn is just happy to be on a mission, and with her. He tells Sydney that there are a lot of great restaurants in Barcelona; she tells him that she knows. He asks her if she knows what he is thinking; she is grinning from ear to ear this time, and tells him that she thinks she does. He goes on to tell her that if they could actually be seen together, they could grab the book, and then grab a bite. Weiss somewhat ruins the moment though, he asks if the whole team can come, because he’s starving. We do get to see something new with Sydney here. Usually she is very guarded with her facial expressions when it comes to Vaughn. But since they are all in a separate location viewing watching for the exchange to begin, she is alone and no one can see how much she is smiling at the idea of going to dinner with Vaughn. We see Vaughn show this kind of smile all the time, it’s not hard to see when he is excited about the idea of spending more time with Sydney, but seeing it with Sydney definitely shows them moving forward.
The exchange is about to take place, they are all getting into position and very serious now. Then we see that they are not alone in watching the exchange take place. Irina is placed on top of a building with a snipers gun. Sydney, Vaughn, Weiss and the rest of the CIA team surround Khasinau and tell him to hand over the book to them. But then Irina goes to work shooting from the top of the building at the CIA. Vaughn starts yelling for Weiss to cover him while he goes for the shooter, but Weiss doesn’t respond. Weiss has been shot in the neck and it is not good. A CIA agent has made his way to the roof as shots are still being fired, but what he finds is a gun that is rigged up so that a screwdriver of all things is actually pulling the trigger every few seconds. Sydney catches up with Khasinau and points a gun at him, they end up fighting again but this time it is Khasinau who ends up on the ground. Sydney picks up her gun again, but is told to drop it; Irina is there and aims the gun at her again, but actually kills Khasinau. She instructs Sydney to get on the ground with her hands on her head. Irina takes the book and tells Sydney, “Truth takes time” then walks away.
Next we see Sydney walk into Dr. Barnett’s office and asks if she has a minute. Barnett can see that she is upset, and wonders if she is alright, Sydney asks her if she has heard the news. Barnett tells her to sit down. Sydney tells her about speaking at Emily’s funeral. She flashes back to with Will when he questions why she is speaking at the enemy’s wife’s funeral. She tells him that Emily was still a good person and that if everyone boycotted it because of who her husband was, no one would be there. Will also empathizes with her over having to lie all of the time. He tells her that he can’t imagine what it must be like for her. He’s only been lying for a couple of days and it’s killing him. She tells him that at first she was terrified that he found out part of her life, because of what happened to Danny, but selfishly she was also happy because it meant that she could finally talk to him without thinking about every word she said first. While we hear Sydney giving the eulogy at Emily’s funeral, we see Irina walk into the CIA. After the funeral jack tells Sydney that Devlin had just called and that the CIA has just had a walk in that she wanted to turn herself in. Sydney wonders who it was. Jack tells her that it was her mother. Sydney is talking to Barnett again and tells her that this is a problem that she isn’t she she knows how to handle.
- Items that I found noteworthy…
- In the storage unit when Vaughn is telling Sydney about what happened to him, the area around his eyes are very red, as if they have been infected with something.