Scorpion: Controlling Emotions And A Runaway Train

Courtesy of CBS
Courtesy of CBS

Warning: Spoiler Alert

The team begins this week working on something that feels important and even dangerous. It turns out they needed to get a large boom box to play Toby’s entrance music as he and the team make their way to the boxing ring where Toby will have his first fight. Ray is very excited to be Toby’s ‘cut man’ and the ref is not excited about reading his carefully worded introduction. It just dawned on me that Happy is not present.

Toby decides to use his talent as a psychological profiler to get in his opponent’s head. It works for a moment, but only for a moment. The opponent collects himself and cleans Toby’s clock. Afterwards, Walter thinks its best that Toby put this boxing phase behind him. Toby tries to guilt Happy when she arrives the next day, but predictably it doesn’t work.

Ray invites Walter into his trailer to convince him to go to the beach. Walter resists but does find a picture of Ray as a firefighter with another firefighter and a medal for bravery. Ray insists the medal is not his. It seems there is an intriguing back story to Ray.

Paige and Ralph sit with another mother and son. The son, by the way, not a nice kid. As their subway stop approaches, the train does not slow. Ralph measures the speed of the train by staring at the wall outside. The train is moving too fast for the track. Paige calls Walter in the middle of speeding to what feels like a catastrophe. The team frantically begins working to control the situation. Part of which includes Walter hacking the SoCal DOT server.

Mr. Taggert: What the hell?
Walter: Relax Mr. Taggert, that’s just me. I’ve hacked your system and I’m giving it the command for the train to slow down, but nothing is responding.
Mr. Taggert: Question one, you the hell are you? And question two, how did you get into the DOT server?
Walter: Answer one my name is Walter O’Brien, answer two your security sucks. It atrocious.

There is a glitch in the software preventing Walter from controlling the train. The next big issue is that very soon, the train will hit a curve in the track forcing the train to derail at their current speed. Walter tells Paige to get all the passengers to the right side of the train before he races out with Happy to beat them to the next spot. A request that not all of the passengers are quick to follow. A man on the train that Ralph profiles as a construction worker bluntly explains the situation in construction terms he can understand. A jerk of the train later, and the construction worker is completely onboard. Ralph also rigged Paige’s phone to tap into the PA system so she can instruct the entire train.

Walter siphoned cooking lard from a local fast food restaurant. He and Happy run through the station to get it to the tracks before the train does. They pour the contents onto the track rails and Walter was a fraction of a second from being train food. As the train races past with Walter down on the platform, he reaches out to Paige as he watches her fly by. Happy talks directly to Paige and aims to walk her through how to change the trains controls from automatic to manual.

Ralph quickly asks the construction worker for a 9v batter from his stud finder. Using the battery’s current, Ralph will send a signal to the train’s computer since remote access isn’t helping. You could probably put money on the idea that the other kid will have a new respect for Ralph when this is over. The manual plan doesn’t work and Paige needs a solution fast.

Back at that garage, Toby works on a theory that this is not a terrorist plot, which would be the only reason to involve Homeland. Sly notices the other trains retreating back to their start points. With a little brainstorming, the deduce that if the subway tunnels are cleared, someone to access LAX minus the security measures by accessing those empty tunnels.

The remaining team minus Sly venture to a holding room above the tunnel. Airport police claim no one has been in or out. Once inside, they find that someone has most certainly been in and out. The dead giveaway is a massive hole in the concrete floor. Moments later, they hear a noise and Happy doesn’t hesitate before jumping in the hole. A perp is getting away on foot down the track. They won’t catch him on foot so Happy drops a wrench on the left rail sending an electric current down the rail a de-cleating the perp. They find the stolen gold coins boosted from the holding room above. Walter asks Sylvester where the train is, because he plans to get on-board somehow.

Cabe: Wait. How in the hell are you going to get on a train going 90 miles an hour?
Walter: I presume with great caution.

Ralph sees him first. Walter is running as fast as he can down the platform. In vintage John McClane fashion Walter jumps and catches an external rail on the train. He is now dangling from the side of the train moving at or near 90 miles per hour. With a junction box ahead, Walter has less than 25 seconds to get inside the train or get smashed to death. Using Ralph’s telescope case, Paige breaks a window next to the emergency door that won’t open. Allowing Walter to get in and avoid death by the ski n of his pants.

Walter tries to create a firewall preventing any outside wireless signals from controlling the train while Cabe ‘interrogates’ their perp. The next hurdle ahead is a fork in the track. Turn left and they plunge violently into an unfinished platform. Turn right, smooth sailing for several miles. Paige begins constructing a long device using a cane and a crutch from passengers to manually trip the switch as they race by. This is not a plan Walter is happy about.

Walter: What is that?
Paige: Magic wand. It’s going to let me change the direction of the track without leaving the train.
Walter: W-w-well I’ll do it.
Paige: No you need to keep building the firewall. Efficiency dictates that each person try to solve this problem, doubling our chances at success. And since I can’t code, I get to hang from a speeding train.
Walter: I don’t like this.
Paige: What? Me taking a risk or me using logic against you?
Walter: Both.

Cabe and Toby take the information they gained from interrogating their perp and find the guy controlling the train. Cabe knocks him out with the butt of his sidearm. Toby won’t be able to reboot the system and slow the train in time. If that isn’t bad news enough, Paige drops the magic wand when the train hits another bump. Happy knew that Paige’s plan was risky so she began working on a back up plan. As they approach the switch, Happy can be seen running towards the train. Just in the nick of time, she dives manually hitting the level on the switch moving the tracks a preventing a premature death.

Toby gets the controls back in Walter’s hands. As per Happy’s instructions, he starts to apply the brake gradually, but the train begins overheating. The lard has made its way to the brake pads. Walter has an idea, move the passengers to the next car and potentially sacrifice the first car to save the rest. Walter tells Ralph to pull on a coupling lever in the next car. The cars will separate and Walter will have 10 seconds to get on the second car. We realize before Paige or Ralph, that Walter had no intention of getting on the second car. When Paige figures it out, she looks up to see Walter staring back at her with no urgency in his demeanor. Then we have the second show channeling a Star Trek reference in one calendar week. Paige violently bangs on the glass pleading for him not to do this.

Sylvester begins barking in Walter’s coms that the math and physics of this scenario will toss that single car around like a pinball and the result of which is mathematical certain death. Walter replies with, “and guaranteed life for Paige and Ralph”. With Paige’s hand firmly pressed against the glass, Walter separates the cars and drifts forward.

Walter finds the grey cord that connects to the emergency brake and plans to use it to dismount the train through the roof. Cinematography note. The carnage of the train bouncing around leading to Walter’s death was dramatically exaggerated based on the video of the train coming straight then falling to the left. Cabe, Toby and Happy look inside the mangled train to see if Walter survived. He asks for help some 50 feet away. Walter used the emergency brake cord to catch part of the lighting rig hanging from the tunnel ceiling.

As anyone must’ve predicted, when Paige finds Walter alive and safe, she slaps the taste out of his mouth for what he just put her through.

With the train situation handled, the team return to the garage. Walter goes back to working on his rocket when Ray comes out for some ironically, sagely advice. Walter claims he no longer has feelings for Paige. Yeah, because people who don’t have feelings for someone else aim to sacrifice themselves for their survival. Also, if he has no feelings for Paige, he wouldn’t feel the need to distance himself from her. Ray also comments that distancing himself from people he cares about never ends well. Flashback to the firefighter medal and this might actually come from experience.

The medal belonged to Danny Tuggle. Ray hesitates but reluctantly tells a story about Danny Tuggle. During a fire, Ray struggled to get Danny’s regulator on, but before he can Ray passes out. Both Ray and Danny end up in the hospital. Ray woke up but Danny didn’t. Ray gets very emotional and Walter tries to say what’s appropriate. Ray could not bring himself to give the medal to Danny’s wife. He never saw them again. Ray believes Walter is making the same mistake with Paige.

Toby decides to go to the same club that Happy and Chet plan on attending in the hopes of embracing the fifth stage of grief. Acceptance.

Walter ventures up to Paige. Walter shrugs off the slap like Paige didn’t mean, but oh, she did. She hit him because he scared her. Walter is always thinking of the greater good. But if Walter sacrifices himself to save others, there is a real negative impact on those around him. She plays the ‘how much you mean to Ralph’ card before she turns the focus back to her. With tears in her eyes, she says, “How much you mean to me”. They begin to lean in when Cabe interrupts soliciting help from Walter to stop Toby from going to the club and potentially crashing Happy’s date.

The club is a comedy club. Chet is hosting an open mic. Happy is the subject of said open mic. Chet is not her boyfriend, he’s her comedy coach. Her set is dominated by child level joke setups but with genius related content. It’s actually kind of funny in a clever word play sort of way. Sylvester acts like it is the funniest thing he’s ever heard. That whole, funny because it’s true angle. More importantly, Toby has chosen to pump the brakes (pun intended) on the pursuit of Happy. He believes they both did the same thing. Put themselves in situations neither should be in to compensate for what they lost. In related but not similar news, Walter will take Ray’s advice and narrow the distance between he and Paige moving forward.

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