At the top of “Everybody Hates Kathy” — we’ll get to Kathy in a minute — a room full of people seem to be having a grand old time at an office party. The company is EVC, and they do all sorts of high-tech stuff with robotics in space. Then, a bunch of security officers storm into the room. They demand that everyone unlock their devices and hand them over. Evan Myers, a Senior VP who was just about to leave with his son and wife, tries to ask what’s happening, but only gets a gun pointed at him.
Over at the FBI headquarters, the data breach inside EVC sets off a ping for a tattoo case. Some files were stolen, and those files contain numbers that correspond with one of Jane’s tattoos, which then correspond with a classified project EVC was working on. While Weller and Jane are in Philadelphia to see Weller’s mother after the whole Shepherd business, the rest of the team digs into the files to see what was stolen. It turns out, there’s some bad stuff in there. Namely, EVC, alongside the DOD, developed a satellite armed with missiles that is currently in space and fully operational. Oh, and the files contained launch codes. That means we’re on to our second nuclear threat in as many weeks!
The episode spins off into a number of different stories, and that works against it. There’s no real sustained momentum here as the episode jumps around. Each storyline is interesting in its own right, which is why it’s a shame they don’t have more room to breathe. For instance, we get some good insight into Weller’s relationship with his mother, Linda. He says she’s an addict who made a lot of bad choices and abandoned her kids, leaving them with their monster of a father. He hasn’t made contact with her in years, so it’s fascinating to see their dynamic play out when they finally connect again. After a run-in with some local thugs, Linda says she got addicted to Oxycontin after a fall and owes this guy some money, but all Weller can do is treat her like criminal.
That’s all very interesting! And it tells us a lot about Weller! But then the episode has to transition immediately to the story of Kathy. Remember her? She was the hacker that exposed some corruption and white collar crimes along with Rich and Patterson — together known as the Three Blind Mice — when they were unsure about their standing with the FBI. She’s been released from prison on good behavior, and that means Rich and Patterson are worried. Again, this is a perfectly fine story, but the jokey tone feels out of place in the episode. Rich and Patterson follow the clues on a bank hack she executes on her first day out, and that leads them to her apartment where Kathy then takes them through their “bridal party fitting” for her wedding. It’s so strange, and so not of a piece with the rest of the episode’s talk of nuclear disaster and child kidnapping.
Anyway, when it comes to the EVC breach, Evan becomes the main suspect because his kid’s insulin pump is super high-tech, which means it stores data, which means Evan used it to steal the launch codes. Now, Evan and his son Thomas are on the run. Weller questions Evan’s wife Scarlett, and she just wants her boy back. That gets to Weller, who’s grappling with maternal issues throughout the episode, and not doing so in a very professional and measured way, I might add.
When Evan gets shot at a gas station by a Russian agent named Nikolai, who’s of course very interested in nuclear launch codes, the team’s case takes a turn. Looking into Nikolai, they find he met with Scarlett many times, and that Evan had hired a P.I. to look into her activity. So, she’s the one looking to sell the codes, and risking her son’s life while she’s at it. You might guess that Weller doesn’t handle that revelation too well.
While Patterson and Rich bribe Kathy into not doing crimes again — did they seriously think that would work? — Weller and Zapata head to the hospital and rush Evan’s recovery from surgery with injections of Ridalin. He tells them where Thomas is, and the team rolls out. Holed up in the beach house is Scarlett, Thomas, and a few Russians. The Russians are disposable, and the FBI deals with them all in a shootout. Then it’s up to Weller to talk Scarlett down, to get her to turn herself in so that Thomas can be safe. She does, and it’s a moment that allows Jane to underline that sometimes these things are complicated, and that even bad mothers love their children.
Thus, in some small way, Weller forgives his mother. He still seems incredibly angry, but he also pays down her criminal debt and then gets her a room in rehab. Everything’s looking rosy at the end of the episode, with Reade and Zapata even flirting like two love-struck high school kids.
Of course, everything isn’t rosy. Helios is still supposed to happen, and Dominic has found a new partner to help make sure it all goes off without a hitch: Kathy. That’s right, he’s the lucky man about to marry her, or at least use her for a time to get what he wants and complete Madeline’s terrorist attack. This is why everybody hates Kathy.
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