Truth Takes Time
Due to his knowledge of Irina, Jack is given control of the efforts to find her; he reveals that he injected her with a timed transmitter that will reveal her location in twelve hours. The signal appears and exposes Irina's location to be Stuttgart, where she is attempting to access a database that contains genetic information. After seeing the CIA, Sark realizes that Irina must be tagged. He joins her inside and deactivates the tracker by giving her an electric shock. After the CIA enters the building, Sark runs into Vaughn in a stairwell. They fight, but Sark gains the upper hand and shoots Vaughn, who was wearing a bulletproof vest. Sark is about to shoot again, but Syd fires a shot at him and he flees. Vaughn and Syd follow, but Irina calls out to them; they chase her, exiting the building just as the bomb that Sark planted explodes. In Italy, Emily learns that Sloane has retained some of his old ways. Tired of the deception, she turns herself in and offers to reveal Sloane's location if the CIA will promise that he will not receive the death penalty. Sloane returns to the villa with Irina. He tells Emily that everything has changed; racked with guilt, Emily reveals that she's wearing a wire and that the CIA is there. She agrees to leave with him; they exit through a secret tunnel as the CIA moves in. Syd pursues Irina, catching up with her as Irina climbs a ladder to escape. Syd orders her to stop, but she doesn't. Syd shoots her in the arm. Dixon takes aim at Sloane who is running across a field with Emily. Unfortunately, Dixon misfires and shoots Emily. Irina manages to get Sloane who is crying over Emily's lifeless body to the helicopter. Sydney runs to Emily, devastated. Back at Syd's apartment, Vaughn and Syd are in bed when they recognize the sound of Morse code. The sound is coming from Irina's earrings, which Syd found in her mother's cell. They decrypt the message, which is "TRUTH TAKES TIME." In other developments, Vaughn's security clearance is downgraded and he is officially under investigation, and at a dinner with Will, Vaughn, and Sydney, fake Francie presents Vaughn with a tie, a move that the others find unusual.
Jack: Your mother betrayed us. Betrayed the CIA. Her meeting with Sloane was staged to secure her escape.
Sydney: You don't know that. Sloane could've set up the meet to abduct her.
Jack: Before the operation, she swapped the Rambaldi manuscript. She left us with a fake. She and Sloane are now in possession of the original. Sydney, they planned this.
Sydney: My mother's earrings. They found a note she left. She wanted me to have them. Just now, when my dad was telling me, the first thought I had was that she was dead, that she'd been killed. I had this whole thing in my head that she died proving herself a hero.
Dixon: No one can be blamed for trusting their own mother.
Sydney: I wish she had been killed.
Irina: I see through you. You must know that.
Sloane: This is who I am.
Irina: You may need to think of yourself as an honorable husband, a father figure. But I don't. I will never see that man in you, which frankly is why we have this agreement.
Sloane: You need to get some rest.
Irina: Never talk to me about your love for Sydney again.
Sydney: You were right to investigate her.
Vaughn: Sydney . . .
Sydney: No, it's okay. It's the truth. I'm not blaming you, it's me. I was so naive about her.
Vaughn: I don't think you should be a part of this task force. Look, you know how I feel about Irina Derevko but no one should have to hunt down their own mother, no matter what the circumstances are.
Marshall: Uh, excuse me, one thing. Did you say that before the explosion, your mother called out your name?
Marshall: Well, why'd she do that? Does that seem weird to anyone or is that just me? It's cool if it is just me. It is just me, isn't it?
Jack: Irina may have wanted to save Sydney's life.
Sydney: I doubt that's the case.
Sloane: What I'm pursuing, this truth . . .
Emily: Truth. Good. Well. That explains it all. I guess you and I are looking for the same thing.
Sloane: Emily, what I'm looking for - among other things - will let you live cancer free.
Emily: I am cancer free.
Sydney: You bought Vaughn a present?
Francie: Why not?
Will: Because it's the weirdest thing of all time?
(watching Emily on security camera footage)
Sydney: She's alive?
Jack: She walked through the front door, told the duty guard she is the wife of Arvin Sloane, that she wants to cooperate with the CIA and that she will only talk to you.
Except for the misleading opening segment, this episode ranks as one of my favorites. It's good to know that Jack hasn't lost his mind: Irina didn't fool him. Marshall's innocent question of how Jack planted the transmitter without Irina's knowledge was a good one - especially considering where the transmitter was located. Jack's blank response was priceless.
Kendall's anger at Jack's deception was partly justified, but it also seemed a little suspicious. I've wondered before if Kendall might be secretly working with Irina or Sloane. Is it just coincidence that the plan that caught Irina by surprise - the hidden transmitter - was also information that was hidden from Kendall? Then Kendall urged Jack to order the others to move in on Sark and Irina, although the plan was to wait for Sloane too.
Another great scene was the fight between Vaughn and Sark. It's like the battle of good and evil personified - in the forms of two extremely hot guys. (Woo hoo!) Syd's concern for Vaughn and the little kiss on his forehead were very sweet.
RR and AI did a fantastic job. Watching Sloane with Emily, we could almost forget what a cold-blooded, manipulative guy he is. (After he touched her face, I thought he might kill her if she didn't agree to go with him.) I wonder if he would really have given up everything for her.
Apparently plot development also takes time; I've been waiting for Irina's cryptic tagline to resurface since she first uttered it in the season two premiere. The season two finale is rapidly approaching; I hope the writers clear up at least a little of the mystery about Irina before then.
* Syd claimed that she wished Irina had been killed yet she kept her mother's earrings right beside her bed.
* Sloane sounded drunk when he was on the phone with Irina, offering to sell her all of his assets.
* I can't wait to see the real purpose of fake Francie's gift to Vaughn.
* Why wasn't Syd wearing a bulletproof vest? And why was she so dressed up - her hair looked great! - to go on a stakeout?
* Why didn't Syd just shoot Sark after he shot Vaughn? Oh, yeah. He's a cast regular.