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So the young, good-looking agents are back. Last season, Alex and her FBI friends found the terrorist and stopped them before they could destroy New York but this season started off differently.Different characters were in different places with Alex still being the main focus. This season shifted multiple times, almost making it feel like different shows with varying results. We went from a hostage crisis in New York taking up the first half of the season with a more compelling battle with a secret conspiracy taking up the last half.
It was unclear at first where the season was ultimately going with the first half of the season jumping between past and present timelines just like the previous season did. The connection between these timelines was never the clearest and became a chore to watch. It did, however, have its fair share of action and drama as it introduced the season’s new characters. The more prominent ones were MI6 agent Harry Doyle (Russell Tovey) and Owen Hall (Blair Underwood).
In the past timeline, Alex and Ryan were tasked to investigating a rogue faction within the CIA by working on the inside as new recruits hoping to be recruited by this faction. It was kind of fun to watch them go through the ropes and they met other recruits along the way but they were pretty inconsequential in the grand scheme of things. As they were investigating this faction in the past, Alex, who just happened to be in the area, was trying to stop a hostage crisis with the help of Shelby and Miranda at a G20 summit in New York.
It was implied that the rogue faction from the past timeline may have had something to do with the hostage crisis but there was more going on with it than just that. One side of that argument was that it could have been interesting to see how the present came to be although it just got way more complicated than it needed to be with the time jumps and along with the fact that it took way too long for things to get going in both timelines made it easy to lose interest. The most compelling part of the first half of the season was Hall’s redemption story, going from a washed-up CIA instructor to the great agent he used to be.
The first half of the season seemed like an overlong prologue for the second half of the season. The rogue faction was in indeed responsible for the hostage crisis and they may not have been as bad as they were made out to be. We learned that their intention was to trap the real rogue faction in order to identify them while the real faction wanted to steal drives with intelligence from each of the G20 countries present at the summit. While they were able to save most of them, of course the U.S. one got taken and threatened to use it to undermine the presidency of now President Claire Haas.
After that conflict was resolved and a few months had passed, a new story took up the second half of the season with a task force made up of characters past and present was put together by Haas investigate the people responsible for the rogue faction and the theft of this drive and to take down this secret conspiracy whom they called the collaborators. To them, it appeared to be an insurmountable back and forth battle with a conspiracy with all the money and all the resources in their corner. This allowed them to have a substantial advantage over the task force.
A few episodes were dedicated to identifying them and to help, they introduced another character in Haas’s son Clay (Hunter Parrish). With the time jump, characters weren’t exactly in the same place so there were growing pains they had to deal with, however, they were eventually able to overcome these and identified the collaborators and the parts of society they represented.
They did not make it easy for them and there was plenty of suspense to be had as uncovering this conspiracy was much more compelling than the first. This was mainly because we did not know anything about them or how entrenched they really were. They looked down and out perhaps a few more times than necessary, losing more than winning which made it off-putting after a while, but the result was inevitable with the team eventually defeating the collaborators and their de facto leader U.S. Speaker of the House Henry Roarke (Dennis Boutsikaris).
With any 22-episode network season, there were ups and downs and this season was no different. The pacing could have been better for sure. As mentioned, the story of the first half ran too long and took away time for the second half story but neither story could sustain an entire season. Despite the inconsistent nature of the season, the good acting and chemistry between the cast, the new additions included, made it all bearable. Priyanka Chopra was still very compelling to watch as Alex as she carried the season. The other performance worth mentioning was Blair Underwood as Owen Hall. He brought charisma, screen presence, and was very likable as his character’s evolution was engaging.
Because the ratings this season declined from the first, the shows’ future was uncertain but it ultimately managed to get renewed for a 12-episode third season sometime early next year. This will hopefully help with the pacing problems from this season and the writers could come up with a more streamlined season. Based on how this season ended with Alex and Ryan seemingly fleeing the country after exposing Roarke, Season 3 looks to be radically different once again.
Overall, this was a good season full of action, drama, and intrigue. While it started off excitingly enough, the first half of the season meandered a little too long and paved the way for a more compelling second half. Just like the first half, the second half story lagged at times but was partially saved by the good acting and the chemistry between the cast. The end result was satisfying and the end sets up a different yet promising third season.
Categories: TV Reviews