Nikita: Clawback

"They have their claws so deep into you, you don't know what to believe."

This could have been a superb hour of Nikita. Unfortunately, it has a few glaring flaws that prevent it from reaching any impressive heights.

The episode's biggest misstep is the horrible Alex subplot with her childhood friend who has now become a Gogol assassin. Her interrogation of him was painful to watch; the cheesy Russian music and the overacting really dragged the episode down. Even Lyndsy Fonseca wasn't very good, which is a rare occurrence. I guess she wasn't feeling the material either (and rightfully so).

Moreover, Sean's storyline with his mother (a prominent Oversight member) felt especially forced and contrived. I know not every show can pull off parent-children spy hijinks effectively like Alias, but that doesn't mean they have to rely on this uninspired plot device.

The ending, as always, was fantastic, though. First we got Nikki visiting Ryan's mom and hugging her in a very touching and tender scene, only for the episode to be completely flipped over its head as we reveal Ryan alive in Amanda's dungeon. It's an amazing twist made even better with Amanda's vow to take down Oversight -- with Ryan's help, of course. In fact, this was just a stunning hour for the Amanda character. She hasn't been very intimidating this season, relegated to barking off orders from the command center, but here she's back in full, defensive force and it's just beautiful.

Bits & Bullets:

- The treadmill murder in the opening was just horrifying.

- Cool little moment with the creepy post-lady with the fat cat turning out to be a Division agent. Loving Nikki shooting her with the shotgun.

- The look on Amanda's face as she overheard Senator Pierce badmouthing her through Sean's phone was priceless.

- Nikita and Michael playing a cop and her prisoner was pretty funny.

- Pretty cool scene as Nikki shoots the glass as Roan "kills" Ryan.

- Nikki drugging a wounded Michael was a nice little touch.

- I'm glad that Michael isn't having a soap-opera reaction to Nikki keeping the Max secret from him. His response is realistic and far from forced.

- Loved the entire sequence of Nikki's assault on Gaines's apartment. Everything from her high-tech gadgetry, to Sean shooting Gaines as he reveals his mother's identity, to Michael and the sniper rifle, and of course Nikita's epic jump and shoot out of the window. Brilliant.

- I think the funniest moment Nikita has ever done is the one in which Roan asks Amanda how he should proceed, and she checks her nails (instead of checking with Oversight) before ordering him to kill Nikita and Gaines. It's dark and beyond hysterical. I adore it.

- Creepy speech by Amanda to Alex about the Division being the safest place for her. Melinda Clarke sells it in a such a haunting manner.

- I did like Sean vowing to his mother that he would kill Nikita.

Nikki Notables:

Sean: How did she corrupt him? Money?
Amanda: Sex.

Roan: (On the phone) Nikita's taken Gaines hostage and she's using him as a body shield. How should we proceed?
Amanda: I have to check with Oversight. Hold... (checks her nails) Kill them both.

- While it could have been amazing, a few missteps render this a solid hour but not much more.

3 out of 5 creepy post-ladies.

Previously posted at Nad's Reviews.

5 comments:

Mikey said...

It's funny you should say that. I found Alex's interrogation one of, if not my most, favorite Lyndsey Fonseca scenes. When she chokes out, "Everybody lies," it breaks my heart.

Nadim said...

Okay I'll admit I DID like the delivery of that line. But the rest just didn't do it for me! Still my crush on Lyndsey grows stronger every day!

Anonymous said...

A thing very obvious, Nadim ;)

I was so surprised and happy when they brought in Sean´s mother. Not because of the story but because it was Madeline from LFN. I like the little LFN references the Nikita producers put into the series.

ChrisB said...

I wasn't all that keen on this episode, but I loved the whole James Bourne climb up the building and the jump out the window. This girl is seriously badass!

I also liked the conversation where Michael gets so mad at her for not including him. That felt real to me. Here's a girl who is not used to consulting anyone and certainly used to having her own way. It felt like a real relationship moment to me.

Anonymous said...

I liked this episode much more than you, I guess. I felt both plots worked out great and the interrogation scene with Alex was powerful and not over the top. We also had an amazing Amanda and like ChrisB, I liked the small scene of Michael telling Nikita that if she ever tried that stunt again, they would be over and throughout the whole episode, I felt a lot of tension between them and weird body language because of the Max revelation, it was realistic to me.