Previously on Scorpion: QUINTIS is alive and kicking! For those that don’t know what this is, that word is the abbreviation for the relationship between Happy Quinn and Toby Curtis. Also, Walter O’Brien has been dipping his toes in the dating pool while having insane problems coping with others having success at having romantic relationships. Cabe Gallo, our beloved Robert Patrick, has been coming to terms with getting older and having old friendships tested. And Silvester, well he’s just trying his best to honor his long lost love: Megan O’Brien. Everyone has been pretty busy, and so we bring you the latest Scorpion Recap & Review.
Check out also this great interview we held with Robert Patrick on his experience on his latest hit, just renewed for a third season!
If you missed the previous episodes, here's our Scorpion's Season Two Winter Review. Click after the jump for the recap and review of Scorpion’s “Djibouti Call”
We land on a cold opening with Tim Armstrong (Scott Porter) - a soldier in combat - wounded and being tended to at a makeshift hospital. He’s going fast as the military doctors around him work quickly to treat his injuries. His vision fades and refocuses on a better version of reality: Tim is now Armani clad and nursing a coffee outside of Homeland HQ. Cabe Gallo arrives; Armstrong is his new trainee, and he’s looking to score points right away with the boss, bringing him a “dark and sweet” coffee, just like he likes it. Funny enough, dark and sweet could totally apply to Robert Patrick, but I digress. Curb your fangirl.
Tim is excited to work with Scorpion, curious about them, and Cabe puts it mildly… “They’re unique”, and boy… are they. Cut to Toby, dancing barefoot on top of a table and wearing a coconut bra. Ralph and Sly look on the sad image, it really is something. They dared him to do it, and he gets a rush out of it now that he’s given up gambling for the sake of his relationship with Happy.
As you might remember, Walter met shady lawyer Heywood Morris (Horatio Sanz) in the last episode and recommended him to Sly to help him fight the discrimination he’s being subject to by various TV Game shows. They’re going over the paperwork and already Sly is having second thoughts about Heywood’s ability to fight his case. The truth is that the contracts he’d signed for the shows’ auditions have a clause that reserves the right to reject him for any reason, just like casinos reject card counters for figuring out the games. Sly is taken aback by their small print but this isn’t the first nor the last time the geniuses would be discriminated against, as Toby points out. Morris thinks they have a case because Sly is being denied over what would be considered a disability, and sets to prep and introduce the case for him. The guy is disgusting but pretty fearless.
Walter advises the group to get ready for Cabe’s trainee, but the team is already dreading his presence. They think he’s the typical guy that would pick on them in High School, based on what they’ve found out about him. They all give examples of how his type would bully them but Toby refutes Happy’s scenario, coddling her much to her disgust. I love when Mom and Dad bicker.
But not everyone is against him, Walter is taking it in stride, willing to give the guy a chance since he’d probably move on sooner or later. Cue the door and both Cabe and Tim arrive at the garage. Right away, Paige is a bit eager to greet him, so much she doesn’t notice that she has milk foam on her lips until Tim points it out… obviously drawing the attention and Walter’s jealousy.
Walter goes to introduce the whole team, and the newcomer takes the time to praise Happy’s abilities, since he’s read about their cases. She thanks him, a little weirded out by it, and Toby jumps in, marking his territory.
The week’s case is in Camp Hasley, the only U.S. base in Africa. Specifically in Djibouti. Its location provides for uninterrupted sound wave travel and they have to go there to install a new surveillance system that would pick up on terrorist chatter from neighboring territories. Walter questions why they would need Scorpion to install something so simple. Cabe explains that the feds have a rush on these plans and they’re willing to pay for a good service, so who’s going to look at a horse’s mouth?
They agree to go to Africa, but Toby brings up that he’d like to know why there is a chunk of history missing from Tim’s profile. It turns out that he was a NAVY Seal, and during that time he was required to commit to exclusive anonymity and secrecy. He was wounded and discharged and he’s been appealing the decision ever since. If he doesn’t win, working in Homeland would be another way to serve the country and he was really interested in the Scorpion detail since he’s read about all of them. He’s even slightly intimidated by their talents.
Cabe sets to show him around their offices, and Walter keeps face until they’re far enough away. His appreciation has changed, of course. He thinks he’s fake, even though Toby confirms that he couldn’t detect any lies on the man. He thinks that he’s doing it on purpose so that Paige doesn’t take a liking of the new hunk. But Walter denies it… and then it clicks on Toby. He’s actually jealous of this guy possibly taking his share of Gallo’s attention.
Cut to Camp Hasley. The team arrives and Sly is already dreading the monkeys that he fears might be too close to the base. The private receiving them tries to appease his fears, even though you could totally tell this woman is throwing some serious Skeptic!Brow™ at the guy. Tim asks Gallo if they’re always like this, and he says: “No, sometimes they’re weird…” Slow clap, Cabe Gallo. Slow clap.
They get to their staging area; Walter distributes tasks, making sure that all their equipment is unpacked and everyone has something to do, even Toby who’s currently on yet another dare, this time with Cabe, who’s challenged him to eat a dozen packets of saltines so he would shut up.
Everything is moving along swiftly until Sly goes to unpack the last of the boxes and Cabe stops him, claiming the crate doesn’t belong to their project. Walter picks up on this but moves on, setting up a sound test. Tim objects that they require authorization to listen in on other countries, but Walter actually sets it up to listen to Toby as he installs the antennas on the roof, flaunting to the newbie that this is actually a scientific activity that he should appreciate. Only that Toby, as usual, is goofing around and making lewd word games about Paige’s butt.
Cabe informs them that Tim and he have some business to take care of with the base’s general. He predicts that they’d be back in an hour, only Walter notices that when they exit the room, Tim jiggles the broken doorknob just right, knowing the exact way to open it. He tells Happy and Sly the minute that the men are out the door; he theorizes that Tim has been on this base before.
Happy tells him to chill; they’re just there to set up the system and leave, but Walter continues to be suspicious if that’s really their mission. He hooks to the base’s internet and even though Sly is against snooping into military records, Walter claims that they were brought down there to do precisely that… snoop. Sly jumps onto the paranoia bandwagon, noting the unopened box again, so Walter thinks they should look into its contents.
While they set up to open the box, Cabe and Tim leave the base. The younger agent asks if he’s ready and Cabe says they have no option. Just what are they really up to? The guys unscrew the lid of the crate, and discovers a state-of-the-art 3D printer. Toby and Paige join them, by now Walter is convinced that Tim is not who he’s pretending to be.
Cabe and Tim get to a lonely prairie in the tundra. They ditch their Humvee and walk towards a set of disheveled houses. They surveil the place; bodyguards secure it. They detect a hole in the patrol and move towards the building. They break in through the subfloor and sneak into a storage area that holds all sorts of tribal antiques. They’re looking for a particular case that holds a piece of pottery. Cabe finds it right away, but they hear voices approaching. Tim takes out a very sophisticated wand and scans the proportions of the bowl. They have to rush back to the base and have the team produce a copy to replace this one before they smugglers can sell the original.
Tim squeezes out first of the shed and Cabe delays, covering their tracks. That’s when one of the bodyguards spots them and shoots at him. He runs toward the Humvee while Tim covers and they make it to the car and speed off, but the fuel tank was hit during the shootout and they’re going to have to get a plan B.
Cabe orders him to go back to base by foot, while he deals with their tail, but Tim refuses to “lose another man over this detail.” Gallo won’t have it and throws him out of the car with the scanner, driving the smugglers out of Tim’s way and luring them away. The car runs out of gas, and Cabe puts up a front that he works for a buyer and was only trying to see if they were legit. The bodyguard won’t have it, though, and tells him to save his story for his boss once he wakes up… and proceeds to knock him out by punching him with his pistol.
Back at the base, Walter continues to dig for info in their archives while Paige is convinced that this is just a witch hunt based on preconceived opinions. They can’t find anything too suspicious on his profile but a PDF file that’s classified. Walter would commit a crime if he were to open it, which of course he does. It describes the encounter with an IED that wounded Armstrong and killed Jennings, his partner. Just then Tim arrives at the office; he confirms that the accident was what got him discharged and that was the result of their first operation trying to infiltrate Shane Copley’s smuggling cartel. He’s the man that has taken Cabe, and Walter is not taking well this piece of news.
Tim explains that the antiquities that Copley moves illegally end up funding training and materials for terrorists in the area. He’s been trying to put a stop to his operation for years. Copley is indirectly responsible for thousands of lives lost in the region. He’s not necessarily a killer but he would do whatever it takes to protect his operation and he wouldn’t kill Gallo until he has the chance to interrogate him. Walter puts all the blame on Tim, for abandoning him, but he explains that Cabe actually kicked him out of the Humvee. Totally plausible, Toby thinks. They can’t ask for help, they infiltrated a neighboring country, and an enemy one at that. They would get into a huge diplomatic problem if they were to draw attention to themselves. Even though Walter continues to drill the blame into Armstrong, the fact of the matter is that Cabe accepted the mission.
But why keep it a secret? According to Tim, he wanted to protect them from the fact that they could take enemy fire and that Scorpion wasn’t about that. Happy gets on her computer and sets to record Cabe’s outgoing voice message so they can input his voice into the software they just installed on the base and track him down… if he’s still alive, Walter laments. This pisses off Tim. He carried his dead partner for four miles taking enemy fire when they were attacked. He’s not the kind of soldier that leaves his team behind.
Happy locates Cabe’s voice on their scan. He’s being tortured while he tries to argue with the smugglers that he’s not a thief. But these dudes aren’t fooling around. They’re convinced that he’s working for someone, even though Cabe continues to assure them that he’s just doing recon for a client based on information he got in the market.
The big ticket item that Tim and Cabe wanted to recover was a four thousand year old bowl valued in the black market for five million dollars, which would give a ton of funds to all their unlawful causes. They wanted to switch the bowl for a forgery to destroy Copley’s credibility and create mistrust. They were going to copy the bowl with the 3D printer, only that they hadn’t figured out how to make it work with organic materials. That’s where Scorpion comes in.
Paige wonders if mimicking the bowl is even a priority anymore, but Toby remarks that they have the opportunity to infiltrate the operation and save Cabe at the same time given that they’re both in the same place.
Sly and Happy are hesitant, but they do have the right tools and even the right clay to do it. They have to reconfigure the machine to use the African clay to model the bowl. They only have 2 hours to get it done since the intel says that the Samsoms, a couple travelling from New York, is interested in buying it. Walter proposes that Tim take care of the couple while they deal with the machine, and Tim already has an idea of how to do it- for it he needs to talk to the Ambassador’s tailor.
The team gets ready; Happy fixes, Paige mixes, and Sly supervises the machine slowly building the faux bowl. At the shack, Copley continues to torture Cabe, but he’s not letting go… and now the buyers have arrived… but it’s no one but Paige and Tim passing as the NYC couple. Copley is pleased with them and wants to get down to business right away, even when he’s being weary of strangers. Tim doesn’t let him have the upper hand, also putting his own terms on the negotiation. They go inside and that’s when we notice that Walter and Toby have strapped themselves to the bottom of the SUV to sneak in.
The problem is that the stun gun they were carrying broke and now they need to make do with some local plants around the shed so they can subdue the bodyguards. Meanwhile, Happy and Sly sneak in from another part of the prairie and head directly to the storage shed to switch the bowls. Sly is on edge because there are monkeys everywhere, and oh my god, someone shoot him with a stun gun, too.
Happy lets Paige know that they’re into the storage while she makes small talk with Copley. Tim tells him that if they do good business today, they would want a repeat. That’s when the man informs them that the price of the bowl has changed because of its high demand, with a guy trying to steal it today and another dying over it a few months ago. He’s referring to Armstrong’s partner and he’s pushing the right buttons to aggravate him. But Paige reels him back in, stating that the price would stay as quoted. Tim is struggling to keep his anger in check, while Copley walks them to the storage but Happy needs her to stall more. She instructs Sly to put the fake bowl in the case but a monkey spooks him through the window and he drops it and breaks. Happy is about to kill him and asks Paige to stall even more. So on their end, she starts commenting on pieces she sees along the way and demanding that Copley talks about them.
Happy sets up to repair the bowl using what’s available around, while Tim and Paige continue to entertain the smuggler. Tim is being cute to Paige, complimenting her and comparing her to the art that’s around them… This makes Copley curious about their back story, where did they meet, and all that. So Tim comes up with this narrative about them meeting in Paris - of course - and how she had foam on her lip while drinking a latte, just like when they actually met earlier. So those imperfections in someone so perfect made her perfection stand out even more. Watch out, Walter O’Brien… guy’s got game and Paige is digging it. Walter and Toby listen to it all and I’m dying laughing because he did this to himself.
Happy and Sly manage to get the right things to repair the bowl, while the boys sneak around the sheds and blow poisoned needles to the guard, drugging him. But the dude is big and even when they both jump him, this evolves into a ridiculous struggle to take the man down.
The bowl turns out great and Happy sends Sly out of the storage with the real bowl. He’s worried; she might get caught while trying to set the fake bowl back.
Outside, Toby and Walter continue to try to bring the guard down, they break through the door of the shed and land on the concrete, knocking the guy unconscious. But of course, there’s more people, and Cabe jokes about how relieved he is that the “cavalry” has arrived. Total face!palm going on.
Sly slithers out of the storage shed and starts to sneak out of the area when the monkey jumps on him and starts to lick his face… he’s paralyzed and I’m dying laughing, ‘cause this monkey is a such a… yeah. He screams and that distracts the guard that’s about to pounce on the guys, allowing Cabe to kick him and knock him down. Even tied down, Cabe Gallo just kicks ass.
At the main house, Copley urges Paige and Tim to move along and check out the bowl. Paige does one last attempt to distract him and this allows Happy to finish and leave the room. Copley hands them the fake bowl, confessing that it’s museum quality because they stole it from one. He can’t tell that this is a fake. Walter warns them that they’re almost done freeing Cabe; they have to figure out how to get out of the storage and leave before Copley realizes they don’t have money in the duffle bag they’re carrying. Sly is still freaked out by the amount of monkeys.
Paige examines the bowl, throwing some random compliments, but it is Tim who follows Walter’s lead. He starts citing how the product is not what he expected, despite of Copley’s valid arguments. This evolves into a bicker where he accuses them of trying to haggle but Tim is resolute to leave. The thing is that then the remaining bodyguard comes in announcing that there’s another couple, identifying themselves as the Samsoms. Paige acts surprised but Copley then theorizes that they’re either Cabe’s friends or thieves. He asks for the bag, and the bodyguard ruffles through it: it’s filled with Saltines boxes.
Happy crawls under them, still under the storage shed. Copley threatens them, and orders his guy to shoot them in the desert. Tim tries to pull another one at the last minute, claiming that he was trying to rob them but that Paige knew nothing about it. Happy moves around and positions herself just so that she’s close to a shelf full of trinkets. She tells Paige to move closer to Tim and just in the right time, Happy pushes on the floor boards and tips the shelf over the two smugglers. They run out of the storage and Happy advises to meet on the access road.
As Paige and Tim make their exit, she gets stuck to one of the shelves, delaying their escape and giving Copley and his goon a chance at getting them. They rush to the car, with the baddies at their tail shooting at them. Cabe jumps out of the SUV and shoots back; it’s kind of kick ass, guys. Tim takes off his jacket and puts it on Paige; bullets come and go and one hits her on the upper back. Walter screams, they dive into the car and Cabe takes off, still shooting at Copley. I need all the shootout scenes that Robert Patrick can ever give me.
They rush down the access road. They need to get back to base real quick because Paige is in shock, but another group of smugglers is coming at them from the opposite end. Walter suggests to go back to the compound gas tank they’d just passed. Exploding it would eliminate the threat if they explode it at the right time. Cabe puts the car in reverse, the new group of shooters train and fire their automatic weapons at them. Tim corrects Walter; a simple bullet won’t ignite the gas, so that’s why Walter would also use the flare gun they have in the back. Sly worries that Paige is in bad shape but they reach the gas tank, Walter shoots it and Tim sends the flare, igniting the thing at just the right time to engulf the other car in flames.
Copley shoots from the other end, Toby freaks out but they get going again, pick up Happy by the side of the road and take off.
Back at the base, Paige is looking better but has a huge bruise where she was hit by the bullet. The jacket that tim was wearing was a bulletproof design thanks to the Ambassador’s tailor. It just wasn’t thick enough to prevent this.
Walter wonders if their ploy worked and Happy confirms: the real Samsoms bought the fake bowl from Copley, even at an inflated price because of the whole shootout. Once they try to authenticate the relic, they’ll figure out it was a fake and Copley’s reputation would sink, arrested and tried. Tim is very grateful of the team and how the operation turned out.
When they return to L.A., Toby bickers with Cabe that he can’t take the dare as failed if they had to use the saltines for the mission, but Gallo will buy him more. This isn’t over. Happy calls him aside. She wants him to stop the whole “Truth or Dare” biz, but he needs it to wean himself out of the rush the gambling provided. He needs the endorphins, she just doesn’t know how that feels. So she proceeds to hit him with a kiss that has him having to brace himself to the piano behind him and fully stunned. Bet that would make things better. No more dares for Toby.
Paige is dreading how bad her bruise looks, but Tim comes by with a homemade remedy of honey, butter and salt that they use on the field to alleviate these things, and proceeds to rub her with it. Oh, Walter… where are you with your sciencey remedy for her? Why aren’t you doing this? She’s so thankful of Tim’s efforts and he’s also grateful of Paige’s good read on the situation in the field, reining him in and preventing the failure of the mission. She claims she’s just doing her job, but he’s praising her regardless. Oh… boy.
Heywood comes back to the garage, he explains how he laid out all of their demands to game show producers and clarified what they wanted, but they would have none of that and threw him out. He now has a court date for disturbing the peace. The truth is that he doubts that he would be any good for Sly’s case, and he should hire a real lawyer but the fact is that no one would take it. Heywood just apologizes for letting him down and walks away but Silvester won’t let him. He explains that everyone in Scorpion was given a second chance when no one would. So he’s offering to keep him as his lawyer with the deal that together they would figure out how to win his first case.
Cabe comes to Walter who’s sitting aside watching the whole team go about on their own. Gallo wants to know how he feels about the new member, but Walter reminds him that he’s in probation for Homeland, not for Scorpion. Cabe defends Tim; according to him, the man is competent and handled himself well under pressure. Walter turns it around to him, Cabe says that he would be impressed too by Tim if Walter hadn’t set the bar so high. Catching the gimmick, he gets it out of Cabe that Toby spilled the beans about him being jealous of the attention he was giving the new guy. The thing is that Walter still denies it, claiming that a genius cannot be jealous when he’s so unique, but Gallo doesn’t buy it, and jokes that that reasoning is good to know, since Tim could be around for a bit. You know, rubbing stuff on Paige and stuff.
You’re in trouble, Walter O’Brien.
And so, we’re marching into new territory. With the introduction of Tim Armstrong, the situation is getting interesting for Waige.
While we had been walking on a similar scenario when Drew was around to monopolize Paige’s attention, in that case she was almost forced to entertain it, since he’s Ralph’s father. But Tim isn’t being forced on her. She has the choice to allow his charms or not, and even though it doesn’t seem like she’s making it all too easy… she definitely isn’t strongly resisting.
And Walter… for a genius, he isn’t being all that smart about this. But this is what he needs, someone to show him how things could be uncomplicated, and how he can’t do math when it comes to this.
Tim Armstrong as a character is well constructed and I enjoy the guy. He’s likeable, easy on the eyes, and it’s definitely nice to receive a friendly face from Homeland, instead of the usual resistance. And honestly, I can totally rationalize that Walter would get jealous of him. He seems to be the middle ground that Cabe would admire, even when the other one is a genius.
I’m enjoying the dynamic between Ari Stidham and Horatio Sanz. Previously, we had just the one level of his quirkiness and now we learn that the lawyer not only has a heart but also traumas of his own. I hope that we get to know a bit more of him as we go.
I know this is not news to anyone but let me tell you once again how much I enjoyed Robert Patrick’s action scenes, even the ones where he was being tortured. I was there the day of the interrogation scene, and while I was cringing every time he was fake punched, the dude is a pro at making these scenes great even take after take.
As for Quintis, I enjoyed how this was another week of discovery and understanding… Though, logically, I’m getting ready for some kind of very painful event coming up… because drama works that way.
I have to applaud that the writers are managing such a numerous cast quite greatly. The ensemble works well and even with the introduction of two new characters, I didn’t feel like they were using them inappropriately. They’ve gotten quite good at this. I think after all this time watching this show, I feel like I’ve finally understood the tone and the path they want to walk. Scorpion has really become a breath of fresh air when it comes to a full slate of programs out there that keep getting more convoluted. It’s not the perfect show… but it delivers what it promises. And that’s what matters.
I also wanted to give a nod to the people that so graciously received us on the day of the set visit. They really make you feel at home with just how down to earth everyone is. There’s great talent and excitement in everything they do and it shows. Hope you keep kicking it in the ass.
With a third season already secured, things are looking good for this quirky, nerdy group. I’m ready for some more. If you haven’t checked it out yet, enjoy our interview with Robert Patrick about his experience with the show and the people behind it. Don’t forget to tune in on Mondays at 9PM on CBS.