When recycled plots attack!! Tonight on ABC!
Previously on ALIAS, Nadia was infected with a virus that made her a psychopath; Sloane was incarcerated for some reason by the CIA; Vaughn was supposedly killed; some blonde chick good with computers admitted to being a genius; and someone whose mama named him Balthazar joined the show as the new hot guy; Sloane and Dixon killed each others’ wives. Oh, and Weiss got promoted and moved to Washington D.C. to pursue other acting opportunities.
The episode opens in Instanbul (not Constantinople), where a Death Eater in a privacy cloak steals some really awful stuff and locks the scientists working on the awful stuff in a sealed room with it right after breaking a vial of it. The scientists don’t make it out, but the mice are just fine. Way to go mice!
Next scene, Martyr#1 (Sydney), in a very homely top, receives one of Vaughn’s hockey magazines in the mail and cancels the subscription, pretending to be sad he’s off the show. Whatever.
At APO, Marshall shows Sydney, Balthazar, and Jack the video of the evil woman killing the scientists and tells them that the stuff she stole is called Substance 33, and he thinks she works for Gordon Dean, who ordered people to kill Sydney’s baby’s daddy. Balthazar is there and does not have time for Marshall’s chit-chat. He and Jack are gonna get along really well. Sydney gives Balthazar dirty looks; apparently, she doesn’t like him because he’s not Ben Affleck. Sounds familiar.
Marshall has found that there’s a hacker that works for Dean, and the hacker is within a 5-mile radius in Prague. If Marshall can go there, he can find the hacker and therefore find Dean. Sparks fly when Jack tells Sydney and Balthazar that they’re going to Prague.
SYDNEY: What? This guy? But I want Ben Affleck to come with me!
JACK: Sydney, I’m in charge here, and I said that you and Balthazar– [Jack breaks off and starts laughing] — wow, your mama named you that? Anyway, Sydney, you and Balthazar will take Marshall to Prague and find Dean.
SYDNEY: YOU’RE NOT THE BOSS OF ME!
JACK: YES I AM!
SYDNEY: Oh yeah. Forgot. Well, I’m just gonna not be nice to him on the mission.
BALTHAZAR: Hey! I’m in the room, and I have a name!
Jack doubles over with laughter, and SarahK, Guardian Butterfly Ambassador of Hot-Guy Protection, saunters in wearing her purple spandex suit and sequined flip-flops.
SARAHK: Hey, Hot Guy, I’m your Ambassador of Protection. Lucky you, huh?
BALTHAZAR: You’re my what?
SARAHK: Anyway, what’s your name?
JACK [between fits of the giggles]: His… name… is…. ahahahahaha… Balthazar!
SARAHK: Oh dear. Well, at least it’s not something like Julian.
MR. SARK [running into the room]: Did I hear my name?
JACK: Sark! I’ll get you now!
SARAHK: Don’t be silly, Jack. Sark is a hot guy, so you’re out of luck while I’m around. So, Sarky baby, where ya been?
MR. SARK: Actually sharing a CIA cell with Anna Espinosa. But don’t tell anyone, they don’t know I’m there. We’re staging an elaborate break out attempt to spring Anna. Gotta go!
Sark Disapparates, and Balthazar goes to get ready for his mission.
JACK: Hey beautiful, nice to see you.
SARAHK: You too. See ya later.
JACK: Not if I see you first, love.
Sydney acts all martyry and goes to argue her point with Jack.
SYDNEY: But he’s hot, and what if I flake out again and leave Benny Boo for him? I do that a lot! You have to keep me away from him!
JACK: Shoo fly! Don’t bother me!
JACK: Oh fine. Here’s why Dixon can’t go. He’s going with Sloane to see about a cure for Nadia.
SYDNEY: Then I’d rather go with Marshall by myself. It’s easy, especially with my big boobs and my big belly, I can do all that spy fighting stuff easy!
JACK: What’s the big deal anyway?
SYDNEY: I read his file. He’s a loner, I don’t want him on our team.
JACK: I’m glad he’s a loner! That means you won’t start to care for him, so no one can kill him and take him away from you! BECAUSE YOU’VE GOT ENOUGH MARTYRING TO BE GETTING ON WITH! AND IT’S GETTING OLD!
SARAHK [flitting in]: YEAH! High-five, Jack!
Marshall and Balthazar show up to say they’re ready to go, and Balthazar gives Sydney a “whether you like it or not” look.
Dixon goes to visit Sloane in CIA prison, and Dixon tells Sloane that Dixon’s in charge, and if Sloane tries to take charge, Dixon’s gonna punch him in the face. “Aight, fine.”
In Prague, Sydney, Marshall, and Balthazar are in an SUV outside a coffee shop.
BALTHAZAR: That’s an unlikely place for a mission. Are you sure our hacker is in there?
SYDNEY [glaring]: Well you’re an unlikely choice for MY mission.
BALTHAZAR: Glare all you want, I’m still going to be hot. You’re just going to have to learn to control yourself.
MARSHALL: Our signal’s coming from in there, it’s a Wi-Fi hotspot. Here’s a can of mints with tracking devices in them. Offer one to our hacker. He’ll get sick.
SYDNEY: With Bird Flu?
MARSHALL: Yes, I have such a ready supply on hand. No, stupid. From lead poisoning. Anyway, there’s a computer relay thingy on the bottom of the mint can, so I can access his computer if you get within 5 feet of the guy.
Both Sydney and Balthazar try to take the mint can from Marshall.
SYDNEY: speaking in tongues.
BALTHAZAR: What’s that, some sort of code for “I can’t resist you anymore, please kiss me, you beautiful man, you”?
SYDNEY [glaring with satisfaction on her face]: That was Czech.
BALTHAZAR: Well, I’ll fake it. It’s Germanish, right?
SYDNEY [still glaring]: …
BALTHAZAR: You know what your problem is? You think you’re the only agent on the planet.
SYDNEY [looking genuinely surprised]: You mean I’m not?
Balthazar hands over the mints, and Sydney glares at Marshall, as if it’s his fault that Balthazar’s not ugly. She strolls into the coffee shop, homelier than ever (really, do you not fix your hair before you go to work anymore? And haven’t you ever heard of those cute maternity stores like Motherhood and Mimi, etc.? You don’t have to dress like you’ve never heard of color just because your baby’s daddy is “dead”.
Anyway, in the coffee shop…
SYDNEY [still speaking in tongues]: You’re American?
COLLEGE KID WITH LAPTOP: No.
SYDNEY: Oh. I saw your Red Sox baseball cap. By the way, have I told you about Benny Boo? He and I are such huge Red Sox fans, isn’t that cute? He wants to be a senator.
COLLEGE KID: Oh. You’re pregnant?
COLLEGE KID: No? You’re just fat then?
SYDNEY: A joke, silly… Say, you’re kinda hot. You wanna be my new baby’s daddy?
SARAHK: Flake. Excuse me, kid. Did you just ask a woman if she’s pregnant? Did you know that can go dreadfully wrong?
COLLEGE KID: Oh.
SYDNEY: Want a mint?
COLLEGE KID: Why? Does my breath stink?
COLLEGE KID: Why would I want a mint, then?
SYDNEY: A joke again, silly! You have horrible breath! Take the mint! [flashes dimples]
The kid takes the mint just as Marshall tells Sydney in her earpiece that someone else was using the signal and probably has a cell phone. Sydney spots Martyr#2, the girl from the season premier who knows she’s a genius, leaving the coffee shop. Balthazar tells Marshall to buckle up and chases her down (she’s driving too). She relents when he sticks a gun in her face. I’m sure Sydney is glaring at someone, because Balthazar totally left her at the coffee shop.
Sydney wants Martyr#2 to give up Substance 33 “while there’s still time”, whatever that means. Marshall rigs a voice stress analyzer, and Sydney glares at Balthazar before stomping out of the room.
Sloane and Dixon go to Omsk, Russia to get the cure for Nadia. The guy they’re meeting with calls and says that Sloane has to ditch Dixon, or he won’t meet Sloane. Dixon says fine, but if you escape, I’ll kill your daughter, and Sloane says I’ll kill yours back. Remember last time?
Sydney tells Martyr#2 that she’s a terrorist, so she better tell Syd where Substance 33 is. Rachel says I don’t know what you’re talking about, but I want to contact the American Embassy. Sydney tells her that terrorists don’t get rights, and SarahK vehemently agrees. Balthazar breaks in and tells Sydney that Martyr#2 is one Rachel Gibson who is here on a student visa for the past two weeks. Balthazar asks what she’s studying, and Rachel says she’s studying architecture. They debate over which is better, Gothic or Romanesque, and Rachel tries to shake her watch.
Balthazar grabs Rachel’s watch and says, “That’s way too stainless steel all over to be a real watch!” Marshall takes the watch to check it out, Rachel looks scared, and Sydney tells her she should be, glaring at Rachel instead of Balthazar this time. Rachel tells Sydney that U.S. agents are going to swarm the place in a minute, and Marshall tells them that the signal didn’t go out. Rachel says she’s a CIA agent, and Sydney says, “Nuh-uhhhh, we are.” Rachel says, “Um, maybe we both are?”
Sydney wants verification from Langley, Rachel says hey, we’re black ops, so they won’t say who I am. Sydney says, that’s convenient, where have I heard that before? Marshall says, but Sydney, she’s not lying, she believes she’s a CIA agent! Marshall calls Jack, and Jack says that Rachel has hypnotized herself, but SarahK doesn’t think she looks googly-eyed. Sydney says, well, if she believes what she’s saying, then I’d better talk to her, because maybe just maybe we can recycle the plot from the pilot of the show so we don’t have to come up with a new one!
Sydney gives Rachel a narrative about Rachel’s life, but really she’s telling the story of Sydney Bristow. I wonder if Rachel’s momma killed Balthazar’s dad for naming him Balthazar? And maybe Gordon Dean will come back later and say, no, I’m really a good guy, and to prove it, this is my daughter. See? Doesn’t that make me a good guy? And maybe Rachel will confront her dad, who works for both the CIA and Gordon Dean, and she’ll tell him he’s been a bad father.
After Sydney tells Rachel what she thinks, Rachel suspects that Sydney read her file, and Sydney says, “No. I saw Season 1.” Sydney gets super-sincere and tells Rachel the truth about what happened to her. She tells Rachel she’s working for a criminal organization and thinks she can prove it. She asks about the stainless steel watch. Rachel says that the signal gets received at Langley, that she designed it herself so she’s quite sure of it. Sydney says they can trace the signal and see where it goes.
Marshall takes over and sends out a test signal. Sydney looks furtively at Rachel, Balthazar looks furtively at Sydney, and Rachel looks smug when the signal goes to Langley. Then the signal pings off of Langley and goes to Prague on Vlasska Street, and Rachel says, oh pooh! That’s where our office is! Only temporarily, of course, so Dean can oversee the transfer of that awful Substance 33, and Sydney looks all surprised and says, what? Dean’s in Prague? He killed my baby’s daddy! Sydney looks at Balthazar without glaring, then remembers herself and glares at her own lap.
Rachel stands on the roof, all sad and martyry. Balthazar talks to Jack and tells him that Dean’s got the info about the transfer of Substance 33 on his own server and that Rachel doesn’t know where it’s supposed to happen. Dean’s operation is called The Shed, and Rachel’s willing to give them everything. Marshall says if he could get inside Dean’s operation, he could download Dean’s whole harddrive.
JACK: It’s too dangerous to send you in, Marshall. Let’s send in the girl!
BALTHAZAR: She’s not a field agent, and she’s sad, and she’s a girl! Obviously, she can’t do it.
So Sydney goes to the martyr roof to talk to Rachel and tells her they need help. Marshall tells Rachel what to do, and Rachel is impressed with the credit card Marshall gives her. “Hey, don’t use that to buy coffee, it’s maxed out, because I have a wife. But it will also hold 240GB, so you can put the decryption key on it.” He also tells her that he can download the server really fast because he can hop RAM. She tells him he’s clever, and he says yeah you too, and they have an awkward moment, and Marshall promises he’s not creepy, and he’s totally impressed by her being a genius, though she’s been doing evil stuff. But hey, I did the same once too.
Sloane meets his friend to give him $300,000 for Nadia’s cure. Mr. Friend takes the money and then pulls a gun on Sloane. “Oh and by the way, I don’t have a cure, Nadia’s the only one still alive. All I have with me is a body bag and this gun. Here, let me cock the hammer on this semi-auto so you’ll know it’s a gun for sure.” He tells Arvin he wants to kill him. “Oh, really? Because the way you’ve got that gun pointed at me, I thought you wanted to kiss me!”
After the break, Mr. Friend tells Arvin that the Rambaldi device killed his daughter, and since Sloane killed his daughter by being Rambaldi, he’s going to kill Sloane in return. Sloane says some flowery words about legacies, blah blah blah, and the man drives off without killing Sloane. So the whole point of it was to get Sloane to Russia so Sloane can hide out with Irina, because we all know he’s not going back to CIA prison with Dixon.
In a van outside Rachel’s office building, Sydney gives Rachel an earpiece and says that if Rachel senses she’s in danger, they’ll pull her out. Sydney tells her she has to pretend at the office that she doesn’t know anything and that she has to look Dean in the eye and pretend to heart him. Syd wants to brush-pass in the lobby when Rachel has the encryption key. She looks scared and asks Sydney how many of her co-workers know that they’re working for an evil organization. Sydney says it’s probably not many, and Rachel looks unsure. Sydney hands her a picture of Vaughn.
SYDNEY: Look at my baby’s daddy! He was a good man!
RACHEL: Dean said he was a CIA agent who turned, but I guess he lied.
SYDNEY: My baby’s daddy. You’re our best chance. I believe in you.
RACHEL: I hope you believe in me as much as you believe in giving up the free milk.
SYDNEY: My baby’s daddy! Dean must pay! He used you to murder U.S. agents, including my baby’s daddy!
Rachel goes to the office and looks people in the eye but looks really really tired. The evil lady who killed the scientists at the beginning of the show starts talking to Rachel like they’re best friends, and Rachel has to pretend she had a bad weekend when Peyton asks if Rachel’s ok. Peyton acts like a normal human, and Rachel sits down at her terminal and begins copying the decryption key onto Marshall’s maxed-out credit card. Even though the port Rachel sticks into the machine looks more like a USB connection, the computer screen says that it has detected a Firewire device. Whatever.
Back in the command center van, Sydney gets annoyed with the genuinely concerned Balthazar, who wants to know how long Rachel’s been gone. Sydney glares at Balthazar when Marshall says that Rachel’s probably fine. Note to Sydney: Balthazar (or Thomas Grace, which is his show name) is former military (I think they said that in the 2nd ep.), so you should get used to him being protective of his team. Stupid.
Rachel has to talk to Dean, and he tells her that he feels sympathetic to a serial killer in a book she recommended. She finishes copying and heads for the elevator with the credit card. Right as she gets in the elevator, Peyton jumps in with her, asking if she’s going for coffee. “Yes, but I’m not going to use Marshall’s credit card to pay for it, because his wife maxed it out.” Peyton says she’s dying for a smoke, and Rachel says, “Smoking will kill you, so either way, you’re dying.” Sydney says in Rachel’s ear that she’s going to brush-pass her in front of the building right under Peyton’s dying nose.
Balthazar puts his jacket on and says he’s going with Sydney. Sydney glares at him, and he asks how to say “You’re welcome” in Czech.
Outside, Rachel tells Peyton that she thought Peyton quit smoking, and Peyton says, “Yes, I don’t smoke in the U.S. But here in Prague, where we’ve been for two weeks, it’s a social necessity. Everybody’s doing it, you probably should too.”Sydney walks toward Rachel in a hideously homely jacket, and someone really should fire these costume designers. While Balthazar lights up Peyton’s ciggy, Sydney brushes behind Rachel and takes the credit card. Marshall says, “Whew! I was really afraid she was going to buy coffee with it!” Balthazar tells Peyton “You’re welcome” for lighting up her smoke, and Peyton keeps rattling on.
PEYTON: See? Social necessity. I’m justifying my smoking by saying that this cute guy never would have approached me if I hadn’t smoked. He was hot.
RACHEL [looking at Sydney, who has already told her not to do so]: Yep, it’s good you’re smoking.
PEYTON: He’s not you’re type, though.
RACHEL: Ew, no. He’s not yours either, he’s not evil.
In the van, Balthazar wants to ask Rachel what is meant by not-her-type. Sydney’s glaring at Balthazar while Marshall is asking what idiots don’t double-encrypt their firewalls. He gets in and Sydney tells Rachel to continue with the plan. She’s distracted, and Peyton starts to suspect her. While Rachel resumes her betrayal of the traitors, Peyton goes into Dean’s office and tells him Rachel’s acting funny. He realizes she’s hopping ram and downloading all the files on his server. Peyton offers to eliminate Rachel, and Dean says, no, activate plan B instead. Meanwhile, Marshall has found the info he needed about Substance 33, which will be in container… dun-dun-dunnnnn… 1147.
She activates plan B, and it turns out that plan B is blowing up the whole office after she and Dean flee.
After the bomb timer starts up, Marshall notices that the server’s gone fuzzy, and they’re unable to get a response from Rachel, who has noticed that the power just went off in the office. Balthazar sees black government-looking cars speeding out of the garage, and Marshall tells the team that they EMP’d the electronics in the building, but the digital electronic countdown clock is amazingly still working. Rachel sees it counting down and heads for the elevator, because that is always where you want to be if your building is about to explode.
Balthazar runs for the building, because he’s good and is going to rescue her, and ok, I’ve fallen for his character. He pulls the fire alarm to get people out, and Rachel finally goes for the stairs. Balthazar gets knocked down in the stairwell when the bomb goes off. Sydney sees the top floors of the building explode. Balthazar climbs up and pulls Rachel out from under some rubble. Sydney and her pregnant bare belly and homely shirt run up the stairs, exposing her unborn child to asbestos and stuff, and Balthazar, holding Rachel, says she’s going to be ok, as Rachel opens her eyes and coughs.
Will Sydney get jealous and try to kill Rachel? Will I be able to continue watching this trainwreck with the weight of two martyrs depressing me? Isn’t that why I stopped watching ER? Too many sad people? Will Sydney ever stop glaring at Balthazar? Will Carrie kick Marshall’s pinkytoe for giving away her credit card? Will Sydney get to avenge her baby’s daddy’s “death”? Will Sloane escape? find out tonight, on ABC.