Quantico fans, we’ve arrived at the first filler episode of the season. A lot of nothing happens in order for some table-setting to take place and for us to arrive at our first clue (hence why the episode is titled “Clue”). Although, I’m a bit confused about the piece of wire Alex found in her apartment. Was that not a clue? Like Alex in her blind following of the phone calls, maybe we shouldn’t question it too much.
Back in the academy timeline, there’s not too much going on post-shooting. Liam has to go before an emergency review board and talk about how each of the NATs are doing. As a whole, they’re not doing so well.
So in order to help them cope with the trauma of the on-campus shooting, Liam decides the Lesson of the Week should be crisis management; he tells them that any situation can go from routine to crisis in an instant. First they have to pair up and arrest a perp while running through a shipping yard. They all pass with flying colors (although I’m not sure how Shelby does it while she’s inexplicably bleeding and seemingly on uppers), so Liam takes it up a notch. One of the shipping containers opens and reveals an even more extreme situation: They have to work in pairs to take down a hijacker while at 30,000 feet…or at least in an airplane model. Alex goes first but fails because her bullet ricocheted in the plane and killed someone else. Next they find there’s another shooter; then they find out there’s an air marshal whom they’ve failed to identified themselves to; and then they find out that Nicholas Cage is on board and he foils their plans, as well. With every attempt, the hijacker situation escalates.
The NAT class is ready to give up on the exercise, but Shelby won’t have that. She says that just because they’re stumped doesn’t mean they can’t figure it out. Alex agrees to go back in and try with her; she has a stroke of genius this go-around: She takes Shelby’s gun and is able to get a drop on the two terrorists by dual wielding. She and Shelby read the hijackers their Miranda rights, but Liam comes out and says there is a third terrorist.
But Shelby still won’t be defeated. She starts pleading with the third terrorist; she asks the woman to think of the children who will be losing mothers. “Everyone can live this time,” she pleads. And then the third hijacker shoots her.
Alex is ready to go again, but Shelby’s finally been defeated. Liam says this is the point of the exercise: There isn’t always a way out. “Sometimes the plane just has to go down,” he says. Alex confronts him privately about making Shelby live that over and over (I agree that was pretty terrible), but he says there’s a week that triggers something for everyone at Quantico and Alex had hers then, too.
But Alex realizes something deeper is going on with Shelby, and Caleb tells her about her parents. And even though Shelby kept telling Caleb she was fine about the discovery, when Alex tries to talk to her about it, she finally breaks down. She said much of her life — the speeches she gave about 9/11, the other survivors she’s hugged — has all been a lie. But even worse, she doesn’t understand why her parents would fake their deaths and leave her behind. Shelby points out that her own mother lied to her for years, that sometimes there’s more to the story; she says they should find out more.
At the end of last week’s episode, Caleb explained to Will that his plan for infiltrating the “Sistemics” is so he can take them down from the inside — he’s offered them lots of money to help him rise in the levels faster. Now, Will is gathering all the info he can on the church, which sounds an awful lot like Scientology. He even learns more than Caleb: He informs him that, as of a month ago, Daniel Berlin is the new head of the church. This throws a wrench in Caleb’s plan because Danny knows him.
When Will presses Caleb on why this is so important, Caleb says it’s actually a rescue mission. When his father got him out of the church, his friend was left behind and hasn’t been heard from since. Will offers to help him — he shows Caleb his sock drawer, how he studies people and mimics them. Caleb tells him how dangerous Sistemics are, but Will doesn’t care. This is personal for him because his sister died from a car wreck when their dad, who is Christian Scientist, refused to let her get a blood transfusion. Caleb calls his dad and tells him there’s a snag in the plan, but he’s found a solution in Will. Hmmm, AD Haas was in on this plan? Could the whole church of Sistemics be behind the attacks!?
NEXT: Aren’t twins supposed to get along?