Warning: Spoiler Alert
Welcome back, so soon. We were just here yesterday. Can’t complain, two Scorpion’s in a 48 hour window. Last night’s episode was incredible, so let’s see how tonight stacks up. The cold open involves a military scenario where someone or something is overriding the missile launch system and about to let military missiles fly with or without the military’s consent.
Not one minute into this episode and there are a number of profane words I’d like to use to describe Drew and his continuous pursuits to separate Paige and Ralph from Scorpion. Drew walks in, and as always is met with sarcasm and indifference. He makes a b-line for Paige to give her a pamphlet for a school in Portland for gifted children.
Paige then makes the mistake of letting Walter see said pamphlet. The conversation that follows displays hurt on both sides. Walter is naturally upset at the mere suggestion that she would even consider taking herself and Ralph to a place as far away as Portland, Maine. In large part because Walter is having trouble coming to grips with the feelings he is developing for Paige. Paige is hurt at the idea that two parents are better than one. Completely missing the very obvious elephant in the room. Walter is more of a father to Ralph than Drew will ever be, as insensitive as that may be. And she too is ignoring the feelings she’s developing for Walter. Lastly, she’s trying to have a conversation with a person who has probably considered all of the factors by the time she decided to be offended.
Director Merrick just might be the most unlikable character in the television landscape today. The mission is to see who is behind the missile hack. The problem is Merrick is playing the classified card on any information that might be helpful. He insists they just start hitting some keys to see what they can find. So Walter did just that, and thus removed the redacted portions preventing them from knowing the pertinent information. Merrick didn’t like that so much.
The screen shot suggests that the missile locations correspond to a number which corresponds to a state. 1-50. Problem is, this location is 61. Suggesting that US Government keeps nuclear missiles on foreign lands. We venture a little further down the proverbial rabbit hole. Sixteen years ago there was an assassination attempt on President Clinton during the Kosovo conflict. In that attempt, the secret service agent responsible for the ‘football’ was hit. In the emergency room, the ‘football’ was separated from the man’s wrist. The ‘football’ has been missing ever since and is thought to be the only way someone could hack our missile launch systems. The ‘football’ is a briefcase that is never far from the sitting President. In the briefcase is a relative missile launch system so that if need be, the President could launch nukes from anywhere.
They travel to the hospital where the secret service agent in question resides. His brain capacity is all but shot. He still thinks he’s on Clinton’s detail. When Toby fails to jar his memory loose, Walter gets an idea. Based on the research he’s done on his sister’s behalf, he believes they can jump-start his mind and clearly access his memories. But someone else has to go first. Cabe. After they run their little experiment, Cabe is under the impression it didn’t work.
Cabe: Well Bruce, the good news is I’m still alive. The bad news is it didn’t work.
(Walter stands in front of Cabe a good 10 feet away and throws an unopened soda can from each hand at Cabe)
Walter: Cabe! Think fast.
(Cabe catches them both without even thinking about it)
Walter: Welcome to us.
Bruce, the secret service agent hooked up to the car battery, is able to remember one detail before his brain starts throwing out random unrelated visions. The football was taken by a man with a blue finger.
Happy and Paige are supposed to keep an eye on Bruce while the rest of the team follow a lead for a secret service agent with a heart condition he covered up. Bruce asks for something to eat, both ladies tend to that task. When Paige goes to deliver a sandwich, Bruce is gone.
Toby submerges his hand in a bucket of ice water while they drive to intercept the agent in question. Once out, Toby shakes the agent’s hand and won’t let go. Once he does it reveals a blue finger. A reaction to lower the internal temperature in the man’s hand. He makes a move to slug Cabe and runs. Cabe, still feeling the effects of the car battery treatment is firing on all cylinders and takes the man down like he was 25-year-old Cabe.
Walter has an idea that involves Bruce and getting this other agent to crack. He calls Happy to meet them, Happy neglects to mention that they don’t have Bruce. They find him shortly thereafter attempting to locate a woman from his past. Back at the hospital, they hook Bruce up to a machine that will read his neuron activity specifically around the memory centers of the brain. Then by presenting the secret service agent and asking some questions, Bruce’s memory is triggered little bits at a time.
He heard this man say, “It’s done” and the tones that came with dialing a cellphone 16 years ago. By placing Bruce in as close to the surroundings he was in during his emergency room episode, and playing tones that correspond to certain numbers, they should be able to get a phone number then connect that back to the person on the other end of that phone call.
Cabe barges in with new news. The terrorists are already at the Icelandic missile location. T minus 30 minutes until the missile launches. The phone number and last known address point to a location 19 minutes away. Here’s the rub, the missile is pointed at St. Petersburg, Russia. The logic being that terrorists have only been ‘so’ successful attacking the United States directly. However, if a U.S. missile was to hit a Russian city, it would be the cold war threat all over again. Except in this case, someone fired first. Thus introducing the nuclear winter scenario.
Once they arrive at the ‘boat house’, shots are fired and a man flees the scene. Carrying? You guessed it, a metal brief case. They give chase, shots are fired. Happy noticing movement pursues a different angle with Cabe’s SUV. Eventually the team corners this man. He puts his gun down but does not comply with putting down the case. He instead, tosses the case over the fence. A fence that has electric current running through it. And an inbound train. If the train runs over the case the button will depress, and game over.
Happy runs over to operate a crane with a massive magnet. By laying the magnet on the tracks, it triggers a fail-safe that stops the train to prevent a larger accident. The train stops predictably, less than an inch from the case.
With the world safe for the immediate future, Cabe explains that his orders are to destroy the case. He hands Bruce a sledgehammer offering him to do the honors. Bruce then turns and hands it to Sylvester. A gesture of apology for giving him a hard time, saying Sylvester looked like his aunt.
They drive Bruce back to the hospital. He gives a lovely little speech about making as many good memories as possible. To the seasoned Scorpion viewer, you have to know something else pleasant is coming. Bruce turns to walk back towards the hospital and stops dead in his tracks. There is a woman of comparable age waiting for him. Its Lorraine. The woman he tried to find when his brain wasn’t firing on all cylinders.
Back as Scorpion HQ, Walter approaches Paige with the intention of giving her more facts on Portland (good and bad) to aid in her decision. However, they both know that Walter’s reaction to the pamphlet had nothing to do with research facilities and average rainfall. This has always been about Ralph and Paige and what that means to Walter.
Walter: You’re right. I never had a real relationship with my father, and I know I’m not Ralph’s. But, I must serve a purpose in his life, because he is such an important one in mine. And if you left then…I, I know I said being human was not something I wanted. But since I met your son, I know that’s not entirely true. These last few months have been less me, and that’s made me a better person. So no, I don’t want him to leave. I um…care about him. And you. Those are the last facts I have to say, so, yep…
Paige (in a soft voice): Walter…
Paige: I’d miss you too.
(and Drew comes in to ruin the moment)
Ralph has won the science fair with the rocket engine he and Walter built. Ralph was even invited to a birthday party by a friend from school. This signifies a dramatic improvement of Ralph’s ability to connect with ‘normal’ people An improvement that brings joy to Paige. Walter asks if Ralph would like to fire the rocket again. Before they run off, Walter steps back a bit and asks, “as long as you’re not in a hurry to leave”. Paige looks at him and says, quite simply, “no I don’t want to leave”. Which Drew seems to read loud and clear. Hopefully.