Warning: Spoiler Alert
The highly anticipated premiere of Scorpion season 2 did not disappoint out of the gate. 20 seconds in and we already have a car chase and Gene Simmons. As it turns out, Gene Simmons is shooting a movie and Cabe Gallo is the ‘tech adviser’. Gene Simmons takes some exception to being instructed to, just then Cabe’s phone rings.
Voice on the phone: Mr. Gallo, I’m calling from Homeland Security. The Director wants you and Team Scorpion to assemble in the garage in 45 minutes.
Cabe: Hold on…We got a case? I got my job back?
Voice on the phone: The answer to both questions is yes.
Cabe (hands a headset to Gene and walks past): Hold this for me Gene. WARDROBE. I need a suit.
Walter struggles with rehab from injuries sustained in last season’s finale. Another patient with a prosthetic hand attempts to play chopsticks on the piano. Then quickly switches to something considerably more difficult. It takes a moment or two, but the physical therapist turns to look at Walter trying and failing to hold in his smirk. “We talked about you re-wiring the prosthetics”. Clearly Walter is not a fan of the beginners song, Chopsticks.
Cabe enters the room and informs Walter that he’s been reinstated and they have a case. Walter goes to tell the therapist who is not as enthused. When asked about his last dizzy spell Walter lies and says he can’t even remember the last one. I do, it was about 45 seconds earlier in this episode.
At the garage, we find Paige daydreaming of the horrors of her previous job as a waitress, Sylvester has a new toy/collector’s item (Mr. Fun Guy statuette), Happy has tweaked the mechanics on a paintball gun and Toby applied his behavioral skills to the animal kingdom all since the last case. Paige also managed to hook up an intercom system. There is a tangible awkwardness in the air between Walter and Paige. Paige looks to have a new-found attraction to Walter, while Walter tries to avoid the awkwardness at any cost.
Paige tries and almost succeeds at conveying her desire to ‘share information’ with Walter that he almost doesn’t see it coming. With one hand in a metal rehab contraption and the other hold a large stack of papers, Walter seems prepared for this interaction. Then Paige mentions that while he was under, she kind of, well, kissed him. Walter is not longer holding the stack of papers. With him in a rare frozen moment, Paige charges in chattering like a squirrel. She tries to throw it all out at once, stumbling over her own words in the process. Walter, once he’s collected himself, follows suit. Stumbling wise at least. Paige leaves an opening for Walter to ‘share’ when the intercom clicks on.
Toby: The intercom works great by the way…
Adriana Molina, the new Director of Homeland Security should look familiar, especially to our readers. She is none other than Alana De La Garza of the recently and prematurely cancelled show, Forever where she played “Jo Martinez”. Director Molina is as she puts it, very much not Director Merrick. Thank the TV Gods. She pulls the stern but effective, he wanted you to fail while I want you to succeed.
There is a satellite that is about to fall out of orbit and plummet to the earth. Normally this would not be noteworthy. But this particular satellite is nuclear powered. Thus, it falling to the earth makes it a very fast falling atomic bomb. The Director needs Scorpion to somehow hack the satellite and adjust its trajectory so that it crashes into the ocean and not into downtown Los Angeles.
Due to Walter’s hand injury and Paige’s ability to type 100+ words per minute, Walter’s hack job will look slightly different. Walter tries to dictate to Paige. The expressions on both of their faces say that this ‘keeping it professional’ will be harder than it seems. Only a few minutes in and Walter already has an issue. He can’t access the satellite. He stands up and insinuates that the Director has not given them all of the pertinent information.
Paige jumps into action removing Walter from the situation. Walter experiences one of his dizzy spells and Paige sees it up close. This is no headache. Walter opens up to her and assess himself honestly. With both parties having too much on the line, they agree to support each other for the betterment of the team.
A new approach has to be taken because they are running out of time and can’t exactly hack the satellite. Toby and Happy depart to try to gain access into the Russian Consulate. Toby tries to pull a charade where he is the doctor and Happy is the Japanese cliché who doesn’t speak English. When the Russian woman at the security desk speaks Japanese to her, the jig is up. That is until Happy begins speaking fluent Japanese back. Toby knocks over some pens, goes to pick them up as a distraction to allow him to plug-in Happy’s latest contraption into a nearby electrical outlet. This device will allow Scorpion to read every key stroke from within the building.
The not so warm Russian Security Guard immediately began typing the moment Toby and Happy left. The password was almost gift wrapped. Quickly, Sylvester calculates the satellite’s trajectory and any variables that could alter it. Director Molina quickly calls it in. Walter gets a bad feeling and predictably (at the 22 minute mark)the missile intercept misses. Instead of blaming Scorpion for any failures, Molina easily accepts that there is something missing. Walter questioned her about getting all of the information and now she is believing that something has been left out too. She gets on the phone and speaks to the President of the United States in the direct and unapologetic way that nobody does. While Toby is concerned about the IRS auditing his unreported gambling winnings, the rest of the room is in awe of their new boss.
The truth of the matter is that the satellite wasn’t just nuclear powered. It had enough plutonium to make it functional as a weapon. So, the U.S. Government sent another non-nuclear satellite to intercept it and knock it off course. Now the satellite is too close to blow up, nuclear winter and all. Walter directs Paige to a new task on his laptop. She inadvertently hits the wrong keys and Walter cannot intercept the task fast enough. Walter has hacked the hospital’s security camera footage from last season so on some level he might get to experience ‘the kiss’ he was unconscious for. This video is now shown on the large (NASA large) monitor for everyone in the room to see.
Paige: You hacked the hospital’s security footage?
Toby: Guess that satellite can’t get here fast enough for ya, huh pal?
Moments after Director Molina decides it’s about time to jump ship and chopper the team out of the blast radius, Walter gets an idea. They are too far away. Molina will stay back with Sylvester while the rest of the team take the chopper to a military base using their computers to get closer to the satellite. The theory was sound, but Walter’s hacking of hospital footage apparently contracted a virus. Don’t worry, Toby makes the comment about the irony of catching a virus from a hospital. The latest intercept plan misses due to technical difficulties. Attempting to reel Walter in, Paige repeats that no one is dying today.
New idea. If they could build an EMP whose own blast radius was precise enough, they could in fact alter the satellite’s trajectory without destroying the satellite. This issue of how to get it up there comes back to a meteorology division on the base. They’ll use a weather balloon. Now all Happy needs are a few microwave ovens.
Molina (looking at Sylvester): Microwave ovens?!
Sylvester: Well how would you build an EMP?
The team and their respective pieces to the puzzle convene on a runway. Happy tries to test her EMP and gets flung 10 feet away. She managed to hit her eye and it is filling with fluid. She no longer can go up in the weather balloon. Paige volunteers as the closest thing to Happy’s weight. Walter resists at first, but she reminds him of their little pact to support each other.
In the balloon as it ascends, Walter apologizes for the hospital hack. In the sense of open communication, Walter admits his feelings for Paige. Professing his undying love for her is still WAY outside Walter’s comfort zone, still. However, it would be way too soon for the show runners to let this happen now. They both agree to let their feelings lie for the betterment of Team Scorpion.
When they find themselves in range of the satellite, Walter heads out to the top of the balloon to set the EMP. He loses his grip on the EMP and falls, getting snagged at the bottom of the balloon’s rig. He climbs out to retrieve it with his close hand being the one in a metal rehab rig. The parachute pack is restricting his range of motion so he decides to lose the parachute with nothing securing him to the balloon. Regardless of the MASSIVE drop from what looks like above the stratosphere, he pushes on. He passes the EMP to Paige and drops the parachute pack. It lands feet away from the rest of the team on the ground. That’s about the moment when Walter suffers another dizzy spell. He’s trapped on the outer edge of the balloon.
Paige gets the device in position, but the thinness of the air at that elevation is making her loopy. Walter from his compromised position is able to get her focused. At the precise moment that Sylvester needs to take advantage of the satellite’s computers going into safe mode, the Department of Defense breaks in to break up the fun. They are there because of an unauthorized missile launch. Director Molina is very much not pleased with their intrusion over such a comparatively small infraction.
Molina (pulls out her badge) Adriana Molina, Director of Homeland Security. Who the hell are you?
DOD Agent: DOD. Norad said there was an unauthorized missile launch from this site.
Molina: It was authorized by me! You keep away from this man or I will see to it that you are tried for treason. Sylvester, start typing.
This still leaves the relatively important detail of getting Paige and Walter down from the weather balloon. Also why two parachutes were sent up. Against his wishes, Paige scales down the side of the balloon carriage attempting to strap both of them to the same parachute. As if that were the only last issue. Sylvester was able to successfully changes the satellite’s trajectory. The problem with that is the satellite’s new trajectory places Walter and Paige directly in the line of fire, so to speak.
Paige is able to take the carabiner and rabbit’s foot she jacked from a locker on base and attached it to Walter’s metal hand rig and they both release at the last possible second. Walter pulls the ripcord shortly thereafter. Allowing for the romantic but not practical slow descent to earth.
Molina coordinates damage control and Toby makes his way back to Happy. She pushes back in her typical violent way. Toby doesn’t retreat. Happy admits that she’s scared. To which Toby replies, “there is a better chance of a nuclear apocalypse than there is of me hurting you.” I couldn’t help but to think, well today there was a pretty good chance of a nuclear apocalypse…
Toby offers to take the team out afterwards to some place I’ve never heard, but based on their reaction I assume it’s a decent spot. Naturally, Walter and Paige decline. Walter starts in with theories and how they are only theories until they can be tested. Changing the subject but not really, redirects back to the two of them not engaging in anything unprofessional. Paige stands up and suggests that they never really ‘tested’ their own theory about their attraction.
They both lean in equally and a very awkward but passionate kiss ensues. The kind of kiss where the anticipation and buildup far outweighs either person’s desire to keep the actions measured. A moment before the kiss becomes a second kiss, Walter jumps backwards. They both play it off as if their ‘test’ of their ‘hypothesis’ was just proven wrong. They both fumble over their own words. Paige leaves out the front door and Walter sits at Paige’s desk. Both of them dramatically affected by what just took place.