When all else fails, Team Scorpion will bust the windows out your smart building.
I had a smart TV in a hotel room once. I picked up the remote and pressed a button, and soon after, I gave up. A common Paige move if there ever were one. But that’s what makes Scorpion work — some people are meant to figure out the logistics behind a computer worm that is doing major malware damage to a smart building’s system, causing the unit to attack itself through a planted chip inside human flesh, and some people are good at getting dog lovers to abandon their post. I know how confusing all of that is — let’s talk about it:
Walter begins this week by playing the least (most?) careful game of Frogger in history. He methodically walks out in front of cars to go and fetch back Ray’s hat, all while on the phone with a handsome, casual billionaire. It’s the perfect definition of Walter: a guy whose logic sometimes manipulates his common sense.
On the other end of the phone is Mr. Elia, who owns a smart building, which is like a smart TV, but like… way more intense. At first, the mission of the episode isn’t clear, outside of figuring out “WWRD?” That’s “What Would Ray Do?” and it comes into effect at a tech conference Walter is attending.
Walter meets a second-rate Paige named Stella who is flirting with him from across the bar. He tries to woo her with math, because of course he does, and it works. She orders him a Long Island iced tea, or as I like to call it, “every mistake you made in college.” And that’s all we get for now — assumptions.
Back at the warehouse, #TeamScorpion is looking particularly handsome for the reveal of the smart building. The only problem is, Walter is missing. Cabe and Paige roll up to his hotel room to make sure he’s okay, but all that Paige finds is Walter passed out on the ground, a tinge of perfume on his pillow, and she is over it.
Mr. Elia, developer of the smart building, introduces his creation with all of its absurd technology and the absurd team that helped him lead the effort: Walter O’Brien and Scorpion. With all the excitement, though, the smart building is already having a couple of glitches, so the team springs into action. The glitch that Walter can’t account for, though, is how Paige reacts to his possibly sleeping with second-rate Paige. Oh, and they didn’t foresee that the smart building has a virus and is attacking itself, leaving Toby trapped in an elevator, Happy trapped in a mechanical room, and Sylvester trapped with owner Wilson Adler’s kids on the seventeenth floor.
Also, in a twist, Walter placed the virus into the system — the virus that came from Stella, that harlot who ruined EVERYTHING. Guys, we have a lot to cover in 90 minutes.
Turns out, when a tech devil like Stella puts a virus on your computer, she goes full on. The virus locks all of the building’s patrons inside. Happy and Walter work to knock out the fire while Cabe and Paige try to track down Stella. Walter remembers that his old clothes are in Cabe’s SUV and might give a clue to Stella’s identity. That’s when Paige grabs his clothes and says, “His clothes smell like the cheap perfume in his room. Maybe we can give it to a scent-tracking dog that specializes in tracking down sluts.” SHADE.
Somehow, Walter and Happy engineer a speaker to put out a fire because, again, science, but in pursuit of putting out the flames, Walter catches his shirt of fire. Happy and Walter get back to the control room to find a whole new kind of glitch — Mr. Elia and Adler believe that Walter is the one who has sabotaged the building.
In the midst of their accusations, Walter suddenly remembers the man who led him to Stella. His name is Jon Vrakas, and he sends Happy off to let Cabe and Paige know. They find him at a restaurant, having a post-bender Bloody Mary. He recounts Walter getting drunk (?), telling jokes (??), and hooking up with Stella (?!?). Paige is having a difficult time processing all of her emotions, which is a new struggle for her.
They go back to review the tape, and the story is true, but upon a second look, Paige notices that Stella goes to the same gym as Gwyneth Paltrow (ugh, GOOP) and they’ll have her picture on file. Paige and Cabe find Stella and press her for information, even though she says that she knows nothing about the situation. No one buys her story because it’s nearly impossible to trust a girl who unashamedly wears dark wash Daisy Dukes.
Even with the new lead and the fire out in the mechanical room, the fire has spread to the rest of the building, trapping who knows how many people. The most important of them are the children, who seem to be taking this smoke inhalation thing really poorly. Coughing and complaining about their eyes itching — sounds like a bunch of Millennials who can’t handle a little adversity. Anyway, Sly comes up with a plan to make a filtration system for the air in hopes of saving the kids and buying more time.
NEXT: Tell me how I’m supposed to breathe with no air
Elsewhere in the building, the facial recognition system is literally chasing Team Scorpion down like a high-end tech version of Final Destination. Toby finally escapes the fire elevator and gets to the control room while Walter and Happy are trapped in a stairwell of boiling steam. The control room catches fire and locks Toby inside, which seems to be a recurring theme this episode. Walter suggests that they suck all the oxygen out of the room, killing the fire but also killing Toby. Happy, unable to hide her emotions anymore, fights on behalf of Toby, but it’s not enough. Walter sucks the oxygen out and Toby faints. When Walter turns the oxygen back on, it doesn’t refill, leaving Toby on the ground and running out of time.
Happy and Walter figure out that if they can just pierce the glass, the control room’s vacuum will break, allowing Toby to get oxygen. They fashion a slingshot and shoot a pin into the glass and resuscitate Toby, who is hella pissed that Walter almost killed him. You can’t blame him, ya know? Walter and the team work together to save Sly and the kids, but it’s not enough for Toby. He pulls Walter aside and calls him out for having a bruised ego, and mentions that at the end of the day, Walter still almost killed him.
In that short amount of time, the worm infected the system again, trapping Sly and the kids in a room of smoke. Walter announces that they have to figure out who’s behind it, but the lead suspect, Stella, is practically cleared. Paige even went through her cell and web activity — Stella calls her mom, does online shopping, checks out gossip sites and social media, gets on a dating site for hookers and sugar daddies called Sweet Companions… what?? Regardless, a sexy-sexy dating site means nothing when Sly and the children are trapped in a seventeenth floor inferno.
The Execution Part Deux; For the Children
The team decides that the best way to save Sly and the kids is to set fire to the double paned window, break the glass, and then have a helicopter rescue them… or as I like to call it, just another American Saturday night. Paige and Cabe make it to the headquarters of the Sweet Companions, which is conveniently opened at all hours. Paige manages to lure the secretary away and hack into her system, pulling Stella’s information.
In the meantime, Walter, Toby, and Happy go to the fifteenth floor to bust another window out with science. Walter then jumps out the window, grabs the helicopter ladder, swings back with it, and gets it to Sylvester and the kids. Sylvester and Sylvester’s mini-me, Russell, get the rest of the kids out onto the ladder, but back in the control room, Mr. Elia and Adler discover that Walter is anything but a savior. Sly gets Russell in the chopper, but the smoke gets too heavy and it has to leave without Sylvester.
Walter and the team are in limbo — and so are Cabe and Paige as they wait for Stella’s source. It turns out it was an inside job and is linked back to Elia’s company. In the building, Scorpion comes up with a plan to use light to pull out the buildings solar panels. Happy tells Sly to use them as stairs to get back down to their floor, but as the plan shakes out, it looks like a Big Brother Head of Household competition gone wrong. The panels begin to retract, leaving Sylvester just inches from a 170-foot fall.
Walter goes to Elia and Adler, who are more concerned about Walter supposedly sabotaging the building and less concerned with Sylvester’s fate. He pushes them out of the way, but Elia’s colleague holds Walter at gunpoint while Sylvester continues to hang on the edge. Walter begs for Sylvester’s life, and just in time, the light comes back, and Happy pulls one more solar panel out for Sly to fall on.
Cabe and Paige finally find Stella’s source. It’s Dan Smazely, another associate of Elia’s. The team runs after him outside and Cabe even pulls his weapon, but it’s Paige who nearly runs him over and then pins him down with her stiletto. Can you imagine doing that in real life? Cabe fries the chip in Smazely’s arm that controls the system with a stun gun and then Walter disables it, effectively ending the reign of the dumbest smart technology ever.
Elia apologizes to Walter and says that he plans on making a smart building again. Walter asks why, confused because it failed, and Elia says that he has to keep trying. Paige apologizes to Walter as well and admits that she was bothered that he might have been hitting on Stella.
Back on the street, Walter catches up Ray on the night’s events, as if it’s just a super-regular night on the town. Ray pitches the idea of going out to happy hour, and Walter seems cautious at first, but he’s a changed man — once you have one drugged Long Island Tea, it’s hard to stop. He decides to join Ray for a drink, because is there any other way to round out a hacked smart building/community service than a club soda? I think not.
At the end of the day, there was a lot to learn from this episode. Maybe Walter shouldn’t try to be social, or at minimum, maybe Walter shouldn’t drink. We also learned that no one gets in between Waige because if you do, Paige and Katharine McPhee, as two separate entities, will jam a high heel into your face. And at the end of the day, we learn that if you thought 60 minutes made for a jam packed episode of Scorpion, 90 minutes will leave you on the ground, grasping for a smart water and begging technology to calm down.