Another energetic episode that managed to give nearly everyone something to do, even if the writing for the showcasing of Diane Farr's Megan could've been sharpened.
We begin with young, apparently affluent adults clubbing, with the focus hanging on Ella Pierce (Ari Graynor), who at first suggests a Paris Hilton-style tabloid magnet...the Patty Hearst and Symbionese Liberation Army resonances come later. She is apparently abducted by a small group which includes a woman she'd been dancing with (Stephanie Bast), who leave with much gunfire into the air and other theatrics, but no injury to the witnesses. Our FBI unit is called in, even if Don (Rob Morrow) doesn't choose to waken Liz (Aya Sumika), sleeping in bed next to him. Charlie (David Krumholtz) joins them at the scene, immediately suggesting models he could use to track the kidnappers flight, as does private kidnapping consultant Jeff Upchurch (Sean Patrick Flanery), temporarily an employee of Pierce's father, textiles and clothing multimillionaire Warren Pierce (William Atherton). The FBI agents, save a somewhat skeptical Megan, accept Upchurch's advice more readily than Warren does, as he seemingly tries to play cagy with the kidnappers' ransom demands, then refuses to pay anything after Ella is apparently forced to perform a bank robbery with the kidnappers, who comprise a somewhat vaguely liberationist group particularly incensed by Pierce's corporate treatment of workers in Third World countries. The kidnappers communicate via satellite telephone and a website (whose web-host never seems to come into the investigation), while Megan particularly finds Warren Pierce unhelpful and annoying in the attempt to recover his daughter...she is unprofessionally short with him, in a way that we see is meant to suggest issues she has with her own father, as she discusses them with Larry (Peter MacNicol), in the course of the two of them getting more comfortable with each other again. Amita (Navi Rawat) suggests that she has a means of tracking the embedded signals in the kidnappers' video, and builds a improvised electronic decoder for the purpose, much to Charlie's delight. Meanwhile, when they can both spare a moment during the case, Liz asks Don to take some time to discuss their relation; Don consistently half-heartedly agrees. The kidnappers and Ella rob the family estate of one of her friends (Vanessa Britting), and Ella demonstrates that she is working with her apparent captors by being the first to open fire, though Megan still wonders if she's suffering from Stockholm Syndrome, simply identifying with those controlling her. The friend, however, spills the beans: the liberationist cell is led by one their high school classmates (David Rogers), one whom Ella had recently grown close to. Increasingly, it becomes clear to all that Ella has orchestrated all of this, to get back at her father and perhaps even to have him killed to inherit his wealth (and gain control of the money left her by her late mother). Between Amita's code-cracking and a tip from the cell-leader's alienated brother (John Forest), the agents learn of the cell's headquarters, an abandoned house in which they've been squatting, and where they've taken Warren after kidnapping him. As they settle in around the perimeter for the negotiation or assault on the squat, Upchurch and Sinclair (Alimi Ballard) continue their slightly on-edge conversation about the later lives of Special Forces veterans like themselves, even as they wait to see if their sniper rifles will be needed. Eventually Don orders tear gas to be thrown into the house; all the cell members surrender, with the cell-leader freeing Warren, only to be shot dead by Ella, his girlfriend. Warren still seems to think he can buy their way out of the mess they're in, warning his daughter not to say anything till he has her lawyers in place; the foiled patricide responds sardonically, "I love you, too, Daddy." The case closed, Liz and Don finally have a chance to talk, and they end their affair.
Really, quite a good episode, with the usual number of loose ends for
Numb3rs (the great episodes tie those off), and, again, the biggest problem with the episode being Megan's unlikely inability to control her temper any better than she does toward the middle of the hour. But her interplay with Larry, as he contructs a small fountain and aftward, and briefly with Liz (about the men in their lives), are much better-conceived. The contrast between Megan and Larry's reigniting relation, Amita and Charlie's flourishing one, and Liz and Don's dying affair is presented well, particularly as all look calm and not unreasonably passionate when compared to our villainess's all-consuming selfishness and hatred. Though perhaps a focus on the fountains gurgling and spurting as Megan and Larry become more intimate was a little too easy a joke.
Another energetic episode that managed to give nearly everyone something to do even if the writing for the showcasing of Diane Farrs Megan couldve been sharpenedWe begin with young apparently affluent adults clubbing with the focus hanging on Ella Pierce Ari Graynor who at first suggests a Paris Hilton-style tabloid magnetthe Patty Hearst and Symbionese Liberation Army resonances come later She is apparently abducted by a small group which includes a woman shed been dancing with Stephanie Bast who leave with much gunfire into the air and other theatrics but no injury to the witnesses Our FBI unit is called in even if Don Rob Morrow doesnt choose to waken Liz Aya Sumika sleeping in bed next to him Charlie David Krumholtz joins them at the scene immediately suggesting models he could use to track the kidnappers flight as does private kidnapping consultant Jeff Upchurch Sean Patrick Flanery temporarily an employee of Pierces father textiles and clo