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The Telling

Episode Summary

Irina sends the CIA information about the double's DNA; after Will is caught, tests prove that he isn't the double. As Syd skates at an ice rink, Irina shows up, telling Syd the location of Sloane's Rambaldi artifacts. Investigating the name that was include with the DNA data, Will discovers that the double was one of twenty children involved in Project Christmas. When the warehouse that Irina spoke about is revealed to contain fakes, the CIA realizes that it's a set up. Unfortunately, part of the set up involved an attack on Jack and his party as they transported the Di Regno heart. Jack wakes up in a dimly lit room where Sloane joins him. Sloane announces that a Rambaldi device called The Telling is almost complete, and he speaks about a coming change. Irina calls Syd swearing she didn't know that the artifacts had been moved; she tells Syd where to find Sark, who will know where Sloane is. Syd and Vaughn go after Sark; captured, he reveals that Jack and Sloane are in Mexico City. The CIA raids the location per Sark's instructions. Irina shows up during the raid and announces that it's Sydney, not Irina, who is the one Rambaldi spoke of, and that only she can stop Sloane. Irina wishes Syd luck before making a daring escape. Meanwhile at Sydney's apartment, Will finds evidence that Francie is the double. He calls Sydney, leaving a desperate, whispered message until a noise interrupts him. He's attacked by the impostor, and they fight briefly until she stabs him. Later Syd comes home to find fake Francie sitting calmly on the sofa. Unaware that anything is wrong, Syd begins to eat ice cream as she checks her messages. She listens to Will's message without reacting; she hangs up and offers Francie a bite. When she accepts, Syd knows she's a fake, because the real Francie hated coffee ice cream. Francie realizes her mistake and follows Sydney, who went to retrieve her gun. They battle for several minutes before Sydney shoots the double. Syd passes out. She wakes up - wearing different clothes - in an alley in Hong Kong. She makes her way to one of the safehouses, where Vaughn joins her. He tells her that Will is okay, then pauses, not knowing where to begin. Sydney notices Vaughn's left hand and asks why he's wearing a ring. He tells her that she's been missing for almost two years.


Quotes

Sydney: We received a file, a DNA string, of the person who was doubled.
Will: And?
Sydney: Your DNA didn't match and there was no Provacillium in your blood. You've been cleared.

Will: That file, the DNA string, was there a name attached to it?
Sydney: There was but we don't have any leads yet.
Will: What was the name?
Sydney: A.G. Doren.

Irina: You received my intel. Your friend was cleared. I told you I'd want a favor. This is it. 266 Kroner Strasse in Zurich. I've just given you the address of Sloane's warehouse where he's hiding the Rambaldi artifacts.
Sydney: That's not why you're here.
Irina: Yes. It's the only reason.

Sydney: Suddenly you want us to have Sloane's artifacts?
Irina: Sydney, I know our relationship is complicated but I'm your mother. I have to believe that would be the case under any circumstance. Go to Zurich.

Sark: Allison... we can't reverse the process. Markovic's lab was destroyed. But we're doing everything we can to retreive the lost data. And I'm hopeful that we will find a way to reverse the process.
Fake Francie: I may have to stay this way?
Sark: No, no. We'll get you back.

Weiss Mr. Tippin, I'm Agent Weiss. We're all through here, I'm supposed to take you to where you'll be staying.
Will: Is there a computer I can use here? The name on this DNA file, A.G. Doren, I know that from somewhere. I just want to check it out.

Sloane: He had so many brilliant creations. Rambaldi. But there was one in particular, a machine. He called it "il dire" - the telling. The construction consists of forty-seven pieces. Classic Rambaldi. As you know, it took me a long time, longer than I thought, but I've acquired them all, including the Di Regno heart with your help. They're in the next room, Jack. I have a team assembling "il dire" right now. They said it shouldn't be more than a day.
Jack: And then what?
Sloane: I've seen things recently. I've seen what's possible. There's a change coming, Jack. Something even I couldn't imagine.

Sydney: Get off the ledge now!
Irina: Sloane believes he's been chosen to realize the word of Rambaldi. But you, too, have been chosen.
Sydney: If you think I'm bluffing...
Irina: It's you in the prophecy, Sydney, not me. Only you can stop him. Good luck, sweetheart.

Will: (whispering, leaving a message for Syd) Sydney, it's me. Listen, this is going to sound insane but I just found Provacillium in the bathroom and I think that... I think that... uh, okay, just think about it. I think that the double is Franc-

Vaughn: We thought you were dead. They asked me to come back to . . . to explain.
Sydney: Come back from what? What are you talking about? (noticing his hand) Vaughn... why are you wearing that ring?
Vaughn: Syd... since that night... you were missing. You've been missing for almost two years.


Review

I'll be brutally honest here: the first time I watched this episode, I hated the ending. Very much. (Perhaps it's poor form for me to begin the review by talking about the end of the show, but let's face it: after that, the rest of the episode seemed unimportant.) I felt as confused as Sydney and I felt robbed. The scene was probably filmed to have that effect - to make the viewers sympathize with Sydney. Speaking for myself, it worked almost too well. I didn't plan to stop watching the show, but I did lose most of my interest in it for a little while.

For the sole purpose of writing my reviews, I watched the two final episodes again later, and to my relief, I liked them much better. (I hope that viewers who don't have websites will return to the show, too, if they were initially put off by the finale.) Even after seeing it the first time, I admitted that from the standpoint of the plot, the ending was brilliant in that it left the writers with an amazing number of options for next season.

Several people have written me, asking what actually happened in that final scene: I truly have no idea. I don't think it was a dream, because no self-respecting writer would do that after the disappointing Bobby situation on 'Dallas' all those years ago. I think it really happened, although I'm sure we'll discover that some of what we saw is not like we thought.

Backtracking a bit: both BC and JG did an awesome job in the scenes where each discovers that Francie is a fake. Will was really freaked out - as anyone else would've been. Syd on the other hand, did an excellent job of keeping her poker face. (She's had more practice at doing that.) You know she just wanted to scream or cry out in agony knowing that the real Francie was probably dead. She admitted before that she wasn't ready for Will to be dead; certainly that was true of Francie as well.

I wonder if the death of the fake Francie somehow factors in to the current situation; perhaps that was part of Sloane's Phase Two. If Sloane just needed information about the CIA, he could have simply hired someone to spy for him. Since Francie was the one part of Syd's life that was untouched by the spy world, perhaps knowing that she was gone gave Syd some extreme mental trauma that contributed to those missing two years.

I'm not sure, but I think this episode set a record for the most questions left unanswered by a season finale. (That's quite ironic too, that an episode called The Telling told us nothing.) We still don't have a clue what Sloane's Rambaldi device did. Was the change that he spoke of some sort of freaky time shift? Who knows where Irina's true loyalties lie? How can Sydney be the Prophecy Girl: didn't she meet Rambaldi's criterion for not being it? To all of these and so many more, my response is a firm, "I dunno." All we can do is hope that the next season will provide some answers - and that the summer passes quickly.


Comments

* Does the CIA only have one cell?

* Why didn't Fake Francie put Will's body in her room? If Syd had gone into the restroom, FF's cover would have been blown even if she hadn't eaten the coffee ice cream.

* Also, did Syd need more proof after hearing Will's message that he thought Francie was the double? Will's a clever guy, and he wouldn't have said that if he didn't believe it was so.

* Sark must've had strong feelings for Allison, since he waited to tell her in person that the lab had been destroyed.

* Likewise, Allison must've had feelings for Will since she didn't kill him. Unless the Will that Vaughn spoke of is another double . . .


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