Quantico – RAINBOW
By: Emily Cross
It’s been about a week since Henry Roarke (Dennis Boutsikaris) became president and he’s signing executive orders left and right. In an interview with political correspondent Cecilia Clark (Kirsten Scott), he throws his strength behind the Muslim registry, which he is preparing and implies he will call for a Constitutional Convention. Our team watches this interview in dismay and defeat. Raina (Yasmine Al Massri) isn’t getting any more help from Felix. Ryan (Jake McLaughlin) calls Miranda (Aunjanue Ellis) to ask for help in getting out of the Farm, but the FBI is conducting random sweeps so he can’t risk getting caught. Shelby (Johanna Braddy) texts Clay, to no response. Owen (Blair Underwood) discovers that the cache has been taken offline and attempts to get the team together to investigate. Raina and Ryan aren’t interested in helping due to their perceived betrayals, but Shelby is concerned. Owen thinks that the collaborators took it offline because they got what they needed, and that must mean their ultimate plan is imminent.
After Roarke finishes his interview, Alex (Priyanka Chopra) is right there waiting. Roarke wants to let her know she will be rewarded for all her hard work. He’s planning on reshaping America’s intelligence agencies, and since Alex has done time in both, he values her input. Alex, ever the direct one, asks what Roarke wants her to do. He doesn’t tell her exactly what is happening or how, but does advise her not to leave town.
Of course, what does Alex do next? Leave town to meet Owen and Shelby at The Farm. The three of them are up against the weight of the United States government. Not great odds so Alex suggests they call some old friends. Enter Miranda Shaw, Matthew Keyes (Henry Czerny) and Will Olsen (Jay Armstrong Johnson). Miranda immediately takes charge, telling Will to find out who took the Cache down and the rest of the team to analyze Roarke’s executive orders.
While the team works in the bunker, Ryan and Raina sulk from a nearby room. Ryan sulks about Alex once again leading the charge down the wrong path and Raina calls him out. At least she has a valid reason to be mad.
Will’s becomes obsessed with the past of the task force, but it leads somewhere. He digs into the plane crash from earlier in the season and finds that the avionics technology on the plane was the key. The day after the crash, the government signed a contract with the company who made the technology ENGIN Industries, which prompted two commercial airlines to follow suit and implement the technology in all their domestic planes. The team theorizes that the collaborators could use the system to take control of the planes it is on. Hearing this, Ryan and Raina rejoin the team.
The team works to figure out how the collaborators intend to use the avionics technology. They figure out that an app that Peter Theo designed called FundFriend has a line of code hidden in it that matches up with a line of code in the avionics coding, allowing the device to take control of the plane remotely without the user even knowing.
Shelby calls Clay (Hunter Parrish) to ask him to help, to no avail. It turns out that Clay has gone full Haas on this: holed up in a hotel, smoking weed and playing video games. Like brother like brother, right? He does give Shelby a lead though: Roarke’s Muslim registry. He theorizes that Roarke could be planning on framing Muslim Americans for the plane hijackings to further encourage support for the registry.
Shelby takes this to the team and it helps narrow down the possible list of targets. But they still need to know which Muslims Roarke is targeting and which flights they will be on. Alex volunteers to go to Alice Winter to try to find the names, even though she might blow her cover. Miranda, Will and Owen will go to the FAA Command Center in Herndon to be ready to ground the planes once they have the right intel. But there’s a hiccup there too: FAA personnel require an emergency call-and-response code. Shelby plans to head to the hotel Clay is staying at to try to get him to use his connections to get the code. One problem: the FBI will apprehend Shelby as soon as they see her. So, Raina decides to turn herself in (a pattern with the Amin sisters!) so that Shelby can sneak out.
Keyes and Ryan run the operation from the bunker and everyone else is in position. While they wait, Keyes teaches Ryan a valuable lesson about trusting the people closest to you. Keyes knows because his wife is an operative who isn’t home for more than four months at a time. Keyes knows that when you find the right person, you don’t worry that their success takes away from you. He also tells Ryan that his job is to challenge Alex and to make her better, and he will be a better man for it.
Alex meets with Alice Winter (Elisabeth Waterston) who shows Alex the plans, but not the names involved. Alex, seeing no other way to get the names, attacks Alice and manages to take a picture of her computer screen. She then sends the intel to Keyes and Ryan.
Shelby visits Clay at his hotel and after a lot of arm twisting (and an almost kiss), gets the call-and-response code, which she sends to Keyes and Ryan. She also finds out that Maxine left Clay after Claire’s resignation. An opening for a Shelby/Clay relationship? As much as I love her and Caleb together, I’m starting to think that Clay might be the only Haas to measure up to Shelby’s sense of right and wrong.
After Miranda, Owen and Will get the flight numbers the FAA attempts to radio them, but Will figures out that the collaborators are intercepting the transmission. After getting the call-and-response code, they take down the interceptors and manage to safely get the flights grounded and the offending phones destroyed.
Back at the bunker, the team briefly celebrates their win before focusing on the fact that Roarke is still president and the world is none the wiser to the collaborators’ plans. It’s going to be hard, but they can do it together.
Meanwhile, Clay is cleaned up a bit and Shelby thanks him for helping the team. She asks him to come back, but the conversation quickly devolves into shameless flirting. When Clay leans in for a kiss, Shelby tells him to not come any closer, marking their second almost kiss of the episode. Then, they are interrupted by a knock at the door. It’s the FBI.
Back at The Farm, Owen and Miranda enjoy a drink together and discuss how similar they both are. Miranda promises to stop trying to make up for her past and swears to do the right thing moving forward. She advises Owen to do the same regarding Lydia.
Ryan and Alex also have a heart-to-heart. Ryan apologizes for not believing in Alex and promises that he’s behind her. He knows that she can always see the big picture and while he’s a good soldier, he gets lost in what he’s experiencing. Ryan wishes he could change how that affected their relationship, but Alex assures him that they are where they are and they can’t change that. They’re in a good place now, which can only mean bad things are coming. Before they talk more, Owen and Miranda burst in saying that they’ve been found. The FBI comes in, but surprisingly doesn’t arrest them. The president wants to see them.
The team arrives at the White House and finds themselves pulled into a press briefing with President Roarke. Roarke praises them for stopping the terrorist attack (which he, of course, had nothing to do with…). This power move does two things: it aligns Roarke with the team and it burns the operatives for future covert operations. A crushing blow disguised as a victory parade. Roarke also frames the G20 crisis as an internal battle between America’s intelligence agencies. He uses this as a way to justify the Constitutional Convention, which he suggests should combine and restructure the agencies (to give himself ultimate power). During the photo op, Roarke speaks to Alex, and tells her that he owns them, if they want to stay employed and alive. He also implies that he had Alice killed, but doesn’t say it outright.
Back at the bunker, Shelby tries to reassure Clay that the good guys will win in the end. In a moment of intimacy, after Shelby suggests they take a moment to relax, Clay asks her if she wants to grab a burger (although it’s clearly something more). Before Shelby can answer, the team has found something that they need to see. The political correspondent from earlier, Cecilia, is reporting that there is more support than ever for a Constitutional Convention. An unprecedented display of national unity, thanks to Roarke. The collaborators were the perfect machine. Everything led to this: the reworking of the entire foundation of the country. The team has to play the long game, like the collaborators have the entire time. It looks like they are going to have to wait until the convention in one hundred days.