It’s always hard when Scorpion takes a week off because I feel like we need a reminder of where we’re coming from: A couple weeks ago, we almost lost Toby and Happy in a snow storm that made The Day After Tomorrow look like Snow Dogs. But they were saved, and I don’t want to get ahead of ourselves, but I think Quintis might just be an official thing. I DON’T KNOW WE’LL SEE. Meanwhile, back in the present, Cabe and Walter are on maybe their biggest mission yet: speed dating. It’s part of Walter’s personal mission of being more social. Speed dating is a step up from emulating the Kardashians, but still.
Can you even imagine running into Walter during speed dating? Nothing kills date vibes like knowing you’ll never be able to beat your partner in a Rubik’s Cube competition. Walter literally challenges his partners with riddles while Toby instructs from an earpiece. My biggest concern, though, is — and I know it’s a steady process — what exactly does this mean for the progress Walter and Paige have made so far? You’re not the only one disappointed, y’all. Happy asks Paige if she’s okay with Walter’s speed dating, and Paige nervously says she’s fine, even though she’s clearly not. Methinks we have some lies going on.
This week’s mission finally brings our buddy Sly back into this spotlight. Kenneth Dodd appears. He’s not only Sylvester’s estranged dad, but also a retired colonel. He steps in, all rugged and salt-and-peppery, and intimidates the hell out of poor Sylvester, but the colonel doesn’t have time for feelings. He’s focused on the sun gun. It’s a weapon of mass destruction that was theoretical until now. The colonel has found the weapon, owned by a dictator in Africa. Team Scorpion has been brought in to find it, destroy it, and, of course, save the world. For this week, Toby has to stay behind because he got sick during the speed dating stint. Sly will take his place to run the software — he begs Walter to stay behind, but Sylvester has to play along this week with his dad in tow.
The team rolls up to Bahari, in North Africa, and are immediately swarmed by locals. That’s what happens in a dictator’s country. As Walter says, “His people starve. He lives like a king.” For a dictator, though, he’s very charming. Inside the president’s mansion, Walter develops a plan for the team to explore the grounds, but the president has other plans. He requests that Walter join him for some one-on-one time. Toby warns Walter not to be offensive, as the president tends to get a little stabby when offended. It’s practically like the speed dating never stopped! Our president/dictator reveals that he’s a genius, too, and offers Walter a high-ranking position in his government. Walter seems uninterested, but President Dictator wants Walter to build him a rocket, and if we know anything, Walter has some background in that.
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The rest of the team breaks out looking for the sun gun. At first, the only suspicious find is the blimp that Cabe and Happy stumble upon. There doesn’t seem to be any proof that there’s any kind of weaponry. Sylvester is over the chase, particularly because his father is the lead on it. He says that if there’s any natural light, it will reflect 1,000 times over, so he makes three paper airplanes, sets them on fire, and throws them. They quickly find chemical panels that are used to make the sun gun. Sly and his dad debate on how to get the panels out of the country. It’s way more complicated than just toting them out, so they settle on using the blimp to send them out to the ocean. Unfortunately, when communicating the blimp’s measurements, Happy used the American measurement system, not the metric one, thus throwing Sylvester’s projection off. The team manages to set the blimp off anyway, even if Col. Dodd criticizes his son’s calculations.
NEXT: Don’t go breaking my weapons of mass destruction
Thinking they’re finished, the team prepares to leave, but Walter stops them. Even though the panels that Team Scorpion located are off and away over the Mediterranean, Walter tells them about the plans that President Dictator has for his rocket. That rocket can hold up to 6 tons, which is about the amount of panels needed for a full-blown sun gun. So the team has to stay behind to find the panels and save the day, and that means that Col. Dodd and Sylvester will have to continue working together. Paige asks if they could use the tracking machinery, but Happy tells her that it would only find panels ready to be used. That’s when Walter deduces that the panels are likely underground. So the team sends Walter back to President Dictator, who is pretty smitten for Walter’s brain, for more information.
Walter goes into the sauna with President Dictator, just like a couple of bros who are chilling in the desert. He plays to the president’s power and flatters him into tossing over some information about where the panels might be. The president mentions an Olympic-size pool. Walter realizes that kind of environment is where panel production would be best, so Cabe, Sylvester, and his dad go down to the pool. Col. Dodd is way harsh and continues to insult Sylvester, but it’s Sylvester’s genius that helps them break into the panel-production area. Cabe steps up against Col. Dodd and lets him know how helpful Sly is and that maybe he’s communicating with his son the wrong way. Cabe leaves to help Happy, and as Sly and his dad work to destroy the panel-making materials, Col. Dodd knocks over a backpack.
One of those panels (the ones that should be on their way over the Mediterranean) catches the lights and sends a beam up, welding the entry to the pool shut. Sylvester and his dad argue about what happened and why he has the panel, but it’s simply because the colonel didn’t trust his son. Regardless, Sly and his dad are trapped underground. As the situation escalates, Sylvester tells his dad that he knows that he’s not the son that he wanted, but there’s a bigger problem. The mortar they were working with has set, locking Col. Dodd and Sylvester in place.
Upstairs, there’s a full-blown party being hosted by President Dictator. The team’s main job is to make sure that the President doesn’t interact with his guards, so Paige jumps in and tells the president that Walter has prepared a surprise for him. Paige cues the band up with Elton John’s “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart,” and is it… YES IT IS. PAIGE AND WALTER ARE DOING A DUET. As anyone who has seen season 3 of American Idol knows, Katharine McPhee knows her way around a rendition of “Over the Rainbow,” but it’s Elyes Gabel who really turns out. And the irony that he vaguely sounds like Taylor Hicks is NOT. LOST. ON. ME. Paige threatens Walter if he doesn’t pull through, and from my Paula Abdul super-emotional perspective, the performance was just everything yes. In the meantime, the team needs to steal the president’s watch, which will allow them to escape off the ground. The plan works, and the team bolts. After the performance, President Dictator realizes that his watch is gone and loses his mind on Team Scorpion.
Underground, locked in mortar, Col. Dodd and Sylvester have all the time they need to catch up and be a better father and son because they’re literally stuck. The colonel admits that he didn’t do everything he could have as a father, but in his defense, he didn’t know how to raise a genius. They share a super tense hug: not because of emotions but because they’re literally locked in mortar. But Sylvester comes up with a plan using the stolen panel. And they do that using math! The panel shoots a beam that rebreaks the seal and then another one that breaks the mortar. Somehow, Team Scorpion time their departures perfectly, and everyone makes it out of North Africa in one piece: The panel-making plan is ruined, everyone is alive, and the bar for Scorpion duets is raised incredibly high.
Back at the warehouse, Col. Dodd apologizes to Sylvester for not being the right family for him. Sylvester even goes along with the idea that he should go and visit his mom. As the episode rounds out, Walter asks Paige if the words between that guy and girl in that song (“Don’t Go Breaking My Heart”) are honest. And then Paige says, “I don’t know; you’d have to ask Elton John.” Walter offers Paige a compliment, and Paige asks him if it’s a real compliment or a “bendy compliment,” which is what happens when you take the truth and change it around a little bit. Oh, Walter.
Paige’s Feel Board: