Warning: Spoiler Alert
Tonight we find the team gambling on Sylvester’s ability to mimic a large sequence while Walter is trying map a mouse’s brain activity and Paige gets a phone call. From Drew. Ralph’s father. And the geniuses naturally jump in. At the same time, Cabe shows up with a job. A few convicts escaped from a prison and no one knows how or where to find them.
In the prison, our guys (uncomfortably) deduce that it was actually kind of easy. Involving using toothpaste as drywall spackle. A mini drone to drop in a cell phone. And what essentially looked like to escapes and a kidnapping.
Walter and the team get caught up on new details surrounding their prison break while Toby digs into this Drew person. Hacking records was only the beginning. He’s parked outside Drew’s motel room. When Drew exits, Toby makes up some sort of BS about losing his dog just to read his body language and tells.
At the crime scene of a carjacking where our escaped convicts needed a new ride, nothing seems noteworthy. Until Happy notices the computer genius (the kidnapped) seems to be squirming in an odd way. They look into it and he was able to leave a message using a motor oil display.
Toby returns to debrief Walter and Sylvester on his Drew findings. All of it is bad in some way. Displayed hostile tendencies and even unearthed a battery charge that predates his involvement with Paige. And then, Drew shows up a Scorpion HQ. And if you thought Walter’s uneasiness with Paige dancing with a mark last episode, you should see Walter burning a hole through Drew with this stare.
Paige and Drew’s conversation is interrupted with a location on the escaped convicts. Walter gets this great idea that they could use Sylvester’s wooden remote control bird thing similarly to that of a drone to spy on the safe house. But tragically, Toby and Sylvester fight over who gets to fly the bird and the bird goes right through a window. The convicts run out of the house recklessly shooting in arbitrary directions. Before they speed off in their stolen car.
Walter: Well…this is going to be a tough one to explain.
The bird was able to get a last second image of Percy’s (the kidnapped almost genius that the Russians are using to write code or hack) computer. This image tips off how he is doing what he’s doing but not exactly what he’s doing. Then new plan is to hack Percy’s laptop’s webcam to at least see what is happening from the inside.
At Scorpion HQ, Paige tries to soften the blow to Ralph of his father’s return by asking what he remembers of his father. Ralph mentions that he left to go see a movie and that after doing all of the pertinent math, concludes that “maybe he just wanted to watch more movies”. And yes, Walter is still very much not alright with this.
Walter steps outside to hopefully give a supportive two cents on the concerns he has regarding Drew’s involvement in Ralph’s life. Due to the unavoidable fact that Walter is a genius, this not only comes off cold but he tips his hand that ‘they’ looked into Drew’s past. Paige bursts back inside and gives a quick tongue lashing about how this situation is emotional and they are ill-equipped to analyze it.
Sylvester is able to hack Percy’s IM handle. From there they devise a plan using software and an empty potato chip bag to measure vibrations that mirror that which they see on Percy’s webcam feed. This in my opinion, is at the very least the best new show on television if not the best show on television period, all factors considered. But sometimes these guys are talking faster and smarter than I can keep up with. Suffice it to say, they are using a potato chip bag to create the audio they aren’t getting from Percy’s webcam.
While the Russians aren’t looking, they trigger the webcam light and Percy almost on cue begins tapping Morse Code on his forehead giving the location. Just before they file out to rescue him, Cabe gets a text showing that the overseas account is only in Percy’s name. Percy wasn’t the victim, he was the perpetrator. The Russians weren’t using him, he was using the Russians. Then we see another Walter flashback. Walter sees this as Percy did what normals do to geniuses. And Walter wants to take him down.
Toby monitors Percy’s activity from the back of Cabe’s SUV. They have gone silent, no coms. Once Cabe and his tact team depart, Toby realizes that he mistakenly translated the Morse Code for building S when it should have been building H. With no way to intercept Cabe, Walter and the team head out on foot. On the proper side of the compound, Walter figures out how they can flush them out of the building by using the bird’s remote control and a jar full of gas. The only catch is that Sylvester has to throw it.
It lands exactly where it needs to and catches fire. The three convicts exit. Happy has created a red laser with a DVD and Toby’s laptop. The sniper laser thing works until the laptop battery dies. Happy and Toby surrender. Then the bad guys hears Sylvester step on something. Walter tells Sylvester to take Paige and get away. Paige rejects the idea, but Sylvester doesn’t.
Walter: Take Paige. Go.
Paige: We are not leaving you.
Sylvester: Walter’s the boss, OK?
Walter: You were right. Ralph needs you to look after him, not a bunch of geniuses. Now go.
The Russians intend to march everyone back into the burning building and let the fire engulf the dead bodies. Just before they get there, you hear Cabe’s voice, “Federal Agents, put down your weapons”. Then Walter turns and slugs the smaller Russian. The situation is handled, but Cabe senses something else. In typical Walter O’Brien fashion he opens up to Cabe with what is in his head quickly and efficiently about how he felt when Cabe betrayed him. Associating that to Ralph’s father coming back into the picture. All steps in the right direction, but Walter has to cut it there and leave the situation before it becomes more real.
Back at HQ, Happy finally steps forward to give her two cents on the Ralph/Drew situation. Which is not a welcomed conversation from Paige’s perspective. However, Happy is quick. No matter what Paige thinks and no matter what Walter thinks, if letting Ralph see Drew ends what Ralph is going through, Paige needs to do that. Then Happy walks away.
Before Paige leaves, Walter approaches. Paige wants Drew to see what Ralph is. If there is to be a relationship between father and son, father needs to know that going in. Walter’s reaction to this is not what I would have expected. Even though Walter cannot quantify it, he loves Ralph as if he is his own son. He also has legitimate feelings for Paige that he has not as of yet dealt with. But for once, Walter says exactly the right thing.
Walter: Moving forward, no more interfering. But if Ralph does need me, I will be close by.
All episode long, Happy has rejected the idea that she has any desire whatsoever to be reunited with her father. At the end, I will give my two cents on this theme. The scene following Walter’s well said words has Happy walking into a mechanics garage with a man of appropriate age working on a car and Happy’s expression says all it needs to. She inquires about a job to the man. She’s able to get out that ‘wrenching’ relaxes her. As it does for this man. She’s about to leave, looks at the picture she shredded early to see if it’s the same guy. Then turns back and gives him a tip on an easier way to do what he’s doing. Then she shows him how. He stands behind her as a father would do teaching his child something new.
Paige takes Ralph to meet Drew. As predicted, Walter is not far away. Then Cabe drives up behind Walter. Walter never breaks eye contact with Ralph and Drew. He asks why Cabe is here. Cabe responds with, “you watch after the kid, I’ll watch after you. That’s how this is going to work.” Then they both take a bite out of the cookies (that are a recurring gag in this episode, but not exactly important to the recap) as if they were father and son themselves. Which is after all, the dynamic that Walter has lived with for most of this life. Cabe is closer to a father figure to Walter than Walter’s own father actually was. Even if he hated said father figure for half of his life.
Editorial Take: This episode was very personal for me. Full disclosure, not the first episode that has affected me emotionally due to themes or story lines. I won’t go into great detail. I am the product of a single mother. The details of my story are not important here and my professionalism prevents me from sharing those details. Suffice it to say, this episode is very real for me. I may be in my thirties, but I do remember how the child in this situation feels and how such a reunion rarely ends well. A child tends to blame him or herself for their plight and regardless of whether that is true or not, the child will manifest an image or perception of what he or she believes that missing parent to be. And reality rarely lives up to the myth.
Whether we are looking at this from Ralph’s perspective or Happy’s there is a real concern for whether or not the meeting of child to absent parent will render a positive result. In Happy’s case, hopefully she can just reel in the anger long enough to hear the other side of the story and maybe reconcile. In Ralph’s case, it may be too early. He is definitely not emotionally adjusted enough to really soak it all in and appropriately react. Even if Ralph were ‘normal’, he is not at an age or maturity to handle what is about to ensue. In every plausible way, Walter is more capable and ready to be the father figure to Ralph. However there is a conflict with replacing the actual father with one more capable for the specific situation.
The father deserves a chance. However, the father also needs to understand that his return has not earned him anything. This will be a difficult proposition. One that is not easily adapted to. And also the single most important detail as to why reality rarely lives up to the myth. Like the characters on this show, I do hope that Ralph is not hurt by this new introduction. However, the mere fact that he is a genius most certainly will do him no favors as he deals with this new development.