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S.O.S.

Episode Summary

At sea on a cargo freighter, Sydney avoids Peyton and the Prophet Five guards long enough to find a radio and call for help. At APO, Marshall receives Syd's transmission, but as he and Jack listen, the message is suddenly deleted. Jack reports to the team that Prophet Five must have someone inside the CIA who deleted the message. The transmission is backed up on Echelon's comm archive, but it can only be accessed from inside the CIA building. The team agrees to go to Langley to retrieve the message. Marshall, Dixon, Tom and Rachel enter the building posing as visitors. Working together, Tom accesses a computer and unlocks the Echelon room for Rachel. With that done, he sneaks into the records room for Witness Protection, where he searches for information on the man suspected of killing his wife. In the server room, Rachel learns that Syd's transmission was purged. To attempt to recover the data, Jack tells her to remove the hard drive. Doing so triggers a lock down, and Rachel and Tom are trapped. Jack calls Weiss, who helps the APO team get away. On the ship, Syd holds Peyton at gunpoint and demands an explanation for the ultrasound images posted in a room with medical equipment. The pain Syd's been feeling causes her to faint, and she wakes to find herself strapped to a gurney. Syd is stunned when her doctor enters the room. The doctor takes a sample and tells her assistant to prep the room. Meanwhile at APO, information from the CIA hard drive reveals that whoever authorized the deletion of Syd's transmission had the highest level of clearance. Only seven people in the agency have that, and the guilty one can be identified if they can get close enough for Marshall to match the ID number on the cell phone that was used. Jack calls the seven men to a meeting, and Marshall finds the match: Jeffrey Davenport. Jack tortures Davenport into revealing the location of the ship carrying Syd, right before guards burst in and arrest Jack. Marshall, Sloane, and Rachel find the freighter, and Tom and Dixon board with a group of armed men. The ship is deserted except for Sydney. Back home, Tom faces Allen Korman, the man from the Witness Protection file; Allen addresses Tom as "Peter" and Tom says that he needs to get a message to The Cardinal. Jack visits Syd in a hospital room and tells her that whatever the people on the ship did to her, it saved the baby's life. A guard tells Jack that time is up.


Quotes

Goon: We've cleared the lower deck. Still nothing.
Peyton: Then why are you still standing here?

Jack: Based on our current intelligence, we already have reason to believe that Prophet Five's network has infiltrated the intelligence agencies of several foreign governments. It now appears . . . it may have infiltrated our own. Someone within the CIA did not want us to receive that message.

Tom: Wait, are you suggesting that we break into CIA headquarters?
Jack: Yes.

Jack: I appreciate your concerns, but at this point, we have no way of knowing how deep this conspiracy reaches. We can't risk tipping them off to our agendas.

Jack: I understand what I'm asking of all of you. An action of this kind could be considered treason. Given that, if anyone feels they need to take a leave of absence, you're free to do so. No questions asked. But now is the time to speak up.
[No one says anything.]

Peyton: You tracked me with the radio.
Sydney: Not really. You're just predictable.

Sydney: You're bluffing. If you really had an undercover asset within the CIA, why would you risk admitting it to me?
Peyton: Because you're not getting off this ship.

Payroll Lady: It's usually the spouse that cashes them. I suggest you check with your wife.
Tom: Look, I'm sure if you check your file again you'll see that you're mistaken.
Payroll Lady (reading): Oh. Mr. Grace, I'm sorry. I didn't realize ...

Tour Guide: This sculpture was designed in part as a monument to the codebreakers who helped crack the German enigma cipher. In fact, as you can see, the sculpture is itself a code. Apparently a very good one: to this day, no one has been able to decipher the message. Now, if we move on--
Marshall: I got it!
[Everyone looks at him.]
Marshall: Sorry, it- it just came to me . . . I- I play a lot of sudoku.

[Dixon discreetly sets off the alarm.]
Marshall: Maybe they found out I've decoded the message! We should RUN!
Dixon (whispering): Take it down a notch, Hamlet.

Rachel: If I remove the drive, it'll trigger the alarm.
Jack: Oracle, pull the hard drive.
Sloane: Langley will initiate a lockdown, Jack. We'll never get them out.
Jack: Pull the hard drive, now! I'll get you out.

Weiss (on the phone): A lockdown? Thirty seconds ago, I got a call about an evacuation due to an anthrax attack.
[He listens briefly.]
Weiss: Well, there's a big difference. Evacuation means everyone has to leave; lockdown means everyone has to s--

Weiss: I cannot believe this. I'm going to have to cancel my Pilates again.

"You think he's here to arrest us?" Marshall, to Dixon as they watch Weiss enter the building

Tom: Any luck with Sydney's message?
Rachel: They wiped the backups. We may be able to run data recovery on this, but if they went to all the trouble of deleting the message, I don't think they'd be careless enough to leave any traces behind.

"Next time, just call." Weiss, parting ways with the others

"Something's wrong, isn't it." Peyton, noticing Sydney's pain

Marshall: Whoever wiped it used a secure deletion program, basically rewrites random junk over it hundreds of times.
Tom: Yeah, but the original data's still there, so it should be retrievable, right?
Marshall: Oh, yeah, if I had an electron microscope and two weeks ... maybe.

Marshall: Whoever authorized the deletion of Sydney's transmission had Alpha Black clearance.
[Tom and Dixon look serious.]
Rachel: What's Alpha Black clearance?
Jack: Alpha Black is the highest clearance level within the CIA. If Prophet Five has ties to the CIA's upper echelons, that would give them unlimited access to all classified operations, undercover agent rosters - our entire infrastructure.
Marshall: The good news is that whoever deleted Sydney's message had Alpha Black clearance. Well, that narrows our list of suspects down to just a handful of guys.

Devlin: How's life underground treating you?
Jack: Good. Always . . . full of surprises.

Jack: Only seven people in the entire agency have this level of clearance . . . and all of them are sitting in this room.

"One of you is working for Prophet Five and . . . we have your number." Jack, as Marshall is about to phone the guilty person

Sydney: You bitch. What did you do to me?
Doctor: My job as your doctor, Sydney. Nothing more.

Prophet Five Guy: If you value your own daughter's life, from this point on you are not to take a single action without clearing it with us first. As far as you're concerned, we own you. Is that clear enough?
Sloane: Yeah. Yes, that is perfectly clear.
Prophet Five Guy: You may consider this a victory right now, but you should understand . . . every action has consequences. We'll be in touch soon.

Allen (in German): Peter, I'm sorry. I was under orders. You have to believe me.
Tom: That's not why I'm here. I need to get a message to The Cardinal.

Jack: It seems there was a crisis with your pregnancy while you were on that ship.
[Syd is about to cry.]
Jack: Sydney, the baby's fine. It's fine. What they did to you on the boat - you were suffering from something called placental abruption - they corrected the problem. They weren't harming the baby; they were saving its life.

Sydney: Why would they do that?
Jack: We're not sure. We don't know what it means, but I promise you, we'll get to the bottom of it.

Sydney: While I was on the ship, they- they tried to extract information, but I lied to them--
Jack: Shh. Not here.


Comments

* Peyton said earlier that abducting Syd would compromise their agenda, so maybe getting her baby isn't their ultimate goal.

* But what about the nursery that Jack found? And during Syd's interrogation, Irina was very concerned that the baby not be harmed. Was this motherly love, or something else?

* Note the contrast between APO and Prophet Five. Jack told the gang up front what they were doing and he gave them the option to leave. No one left, so they were all there because they wanted to be. On the other hand, Sloane is being threatened/blackmailed into cooperating; that's a very dangerous game for Prophet Five.

* I like that they explained why APO couldn't just ask the CIA for the backups: they didn't know how deep Prophet Five's reach goes.

* No doubt the "new" CIA building was to help protect the security of the real CIA. Plus, the tour gave some of the team an easy way in. I liked how the tour guide was talking about an old spy gadget and said, "Just imagine what's in use today," as Rachel was passing the lipstick spray to Dixon.

* Like Marshall, I play a lot of sudoku.

* Wow, I miss Weiss.

* Even though Tom (Peter?) was sneaking around and lying about it, I'm holding out hope that The Cardinal isn't another bad guy.

* Peyton's mighty cocky. She "didn't see how it was possible" that Syd gave them the wrong information during her interrogation.

* Is Peyton just lucky, or is she another indestructible Francie-clone type?


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