Intelligence: “The Grey Hat”

(Episode 1.11)

TV Reviews
Intelligence: “The Grey Hat”

Last week CBS renewed 18 of its prime time shows. I know this going to come as a shock to you, but Intelligence was not one of those shows. Sure the possibility still exists that CBS will renew the show in the same way the possibility still exists that I could make a career out of being a runway model. Not bloody likely.

So the good news is there’s only two more episodes of Intelligence left. We are so close to freeing Josh Holloway, people! (As a side note, over the weekend Holloway was present as the PaleyFest to celebrate the tenth anniversary of Lost. The final season of Sawyer and Miles as cops in the sideways world was discussed. That is a show I would watch. Can someone make that spin-off happen?)

This week a hacker known as Cortez has unknowingly given his cyberworm to Russian activists who have shut down the California power grid and are ready to attack a nuclear power plant. Turns out Cortez is just a kid named Troy Ricksen who hacked his way out of the foster care system and has used his hacking skills to create a pretty sweet life for himself. Gabriel sees him as a lonely kid who felt abandoned by his older brother when his parents died. He’s a hacker with a heart of gold.

The episode was pretty much by-the-numbers, Intelligence style. Lillian is once again stuck back at CyberCommand spouting exposition. The woman is basically the Cliff Notes for the show. Jameson has nothing to do but report to Lillian how bad things are. Dr. Cassidy speaks of the grave danger everyone is in while his son Nelson geeks out. No one even tries to hide Gabriel’s secret. And, once again Gabriel and Riley, show a surprising lack of judgment.

This time Gabriel puts Troy in a locked car, which the kid quickly hacks and is able to escape. Obviously. Later, when Gabriel and Riley are negotiating with the Russian terrorists, Gabriel turns over the prisoner they want before getting hold of the computer he needs. I mean, isn’t it negotiating 101 that they should trade at the exact same time? The show far too often relies on these nonsensical plot developments.

By the end of the hour, Gabriel is reuniting Troy with his brother (of course) and promising him a job when he turns 18. Because, sure, a brilliant hacker who has committed many crimes should work for the U.S. government. Why not?

Amy Amatangelo is a Boston-based freelance writer and a regular contributor to Paste. You can follow her on Twitter or her blog.

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