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'Quantico' postmortem: What that reveal means for Alex

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ABC/Phillippe Bosse

Warning: This story contains major spoilers from Sunday’s episode of Quantico.

In the present timeline, the NATs are almost at the finish line — and so is Team Alex in the future. But unlike the trainees, future Alex and Shelby deal with an actual terrorist: Drew! Yup, the former NFL star and FBI trainee reveals himself to be (one of?) the masterminds of the Voice, manipulating the women into helping him upload damning files onto Ryan’s laptop and getting Alex to drive the nuke to an unknown location. (And yes, Drew was faking his imminent death in the hospital — he’ll be sticking around, at least for now.)

Still, how exactly did Drew pull all this off? Is the nuke on the truck the nuke they’d been looking for? And what about the events in the Quantico timeline — what exactly happened between Nimah and the agent she shadowed? EW spoke with showrunner Josh Safran for answers.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: We find out Drew is behind the Voice — or at least, one of the terrorists behind the Voice. When did you make that call, and why Drew?

JOSH SAFRAN: We always knew it would be people involved in the Quantico side of the world, and we loved the idea that Drew, Iris, and Will were all in the class that vetted our class, and once we knew that, we knew that it was someone before Alex had gotten there that would be involved. And from that point forward, we started realizing that Drew had the most to lose and the most animosity toward the FBI — although, as you can see, we made Will, Iris, and Drew all have issues. Iris didn’t get her security clearance, Will went down a road with Caleb that ended up getting him out of the FBI, and then you have Drew, who’s lost so much in his life. He’s like, “I’ll do good where my good actually comes to something,” and then he was thrown out. It came together more and more as we moved forward.

What exactly are Drew’s motivations for terrorizing Alex and the city? Is it out of hatred for the FBI or an obsession with Alex?

It’s the FBI for failing him for something that was beyond his control, and something that isn’t necessarily even true. [The shaking] could simply have been nerves or anxiety… it was beyond his control, and he lost so much. That was the motivation, not so much what he has against Alex.

Will we find out exactly what caused the shaking?

No, you will not. There’s no way of ever knowing.

If Drew had been an NFL star, how did he get listed as a John Doe at a hospital?

You will find out next week. That is a good question you’ve picked up on. The reality is, he’s put himself there, he’s leading them to him, so it’s all part of the master plan. This is someone who’s been able to change things. Keep in mind what the Voice has done. They have their fingers in everything.

As for the nuke in the truck, that’s the only nuke, right? The one Will helped build?

That is the only nuke, the nuke. That is the end game.

Are we going to find out what Alex uploaded onto Ryan’s computer?

Yes. [One of the first scenes] in the next episode is people looking at Ryan’s computer and seeing what’s on it.

And what about Simon? Will we find out what happened to him? And is he in bad shape?

You will find out in the very next episode… I’m not going to say [if he’s okay], but you will definitely know the answer.

On the Quantico side, we saw the cast getting to pull off some close combat scenes. What was it like putting all that together?

Yeah, we knew we wanted to do close combat fighting at some point this season, and we felt that when our characters have their backs against the wall, that would be the time to do it… It was a great way to show how present-day Quantico training pays off in the future. Alex tries Ryan’s move in the future, but she knows he’s waiting for it, so she tries something different and bests him.

Did the cast get competitive shooting those fights? Any injuries?

No, not at all, we have great stunt people. Yasmine [who plays the twins] was just like, “Yes! I get to fight.” Priyanka has made a ton of movies where she’s done action, so for her, it’s an old hat. It’s really fun. The most fun was the actual video of Priyanka rehearsing the fight with Ryan in the future because initially she was supposed to tell Ryan everything at the beginning of the scene and then they fight, but in rehearsing, Priyanka really felt like these people know each other and still care about each other and don’t want to just kill each other. So, she wanted Alex to, during every break, like boxers going into the corner, to have Alex be like, “Please hear me. I don’t want to do this.” She would try to take him out of it as the fight was going on.

Does Shelby actually leave Quantico? She wanted to go to Europe, but now that she knows the truth about her parents…

She does not [leave]. The fire is back in a big way.

Finally, after her date with the Richmond agent, Nimah returns looking ill. Does this reaction imply that she did something she regrets, that maybe she slept with that agent to save her and Raina from failing the test?

It’s implying that the line she felt she had to cross was a line too far… We always wanted to talk about the fact that in the future, in episode 7, the distinction between the twins was Nimah slept with [the leader of the cell], because she felt like she had to do that, and she never told Raina. Nimah is able, in the future, to compartmentalize her feelings and be a mercenary, and Raina was not, and this is the beginning of that story. This was very difficult for her, but she was able to do it.

Quantico airs Sundays at 10 p.m. ET on ABC.

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