Things are noticeably different with Ens. Lisa Davis as she distances herself from Bravo outside work. Though she claims that it’s merely because she’s now an officer, Clay begs to differ, noting that Blackburn has an O in his pay grade as well.
Meanwhile, a mission is in the works… an ebola outbreak in Liberia led to foreign aid workers entering the country to try and stave off a potential pandemic. A local militia decided to interrupt the party to steal the vaccine supply and murder a few aid workers.
The team’s getting spun up to deal with the situation, and once again with Ray serving as Bravo 1 and Clay as his 2IC, because Jason couldn’t get cleared in time for the mission.
Back in Virginia, Jason finds himself neck deep in a story line of his own. Now seeing a therapist and confessing his inner demons to the bespectacled shrink, he lets on that he’s seeing a lot of progress in his life getting out of the house, hanging out with buddies, and even going as far as to ask a woman out.
The fact still remains that Jason would rather be operating, however.
In Liberia, Bravo gets set up to escort a disease specialist — one Dr. Alice Lizer — around town, while donning MOPP gear to keep themselves protected from catching a nasty case of ebola.
Surprise surprise, militia decides to crash the shindig yet again, and they’re promptly dispatched by Bravo.
Over in a small diner Stateside, Davis meants up with her semi-estranged sister and they have an awkward reunion. Her sister catches on that there’s something deeper affecting Davis, but the meeting ends without any real emotional healing for Lisa.
The situation in Liberia’s about to turn critical — as it so happens, the warlord in charge of the militia wound up stealing a weapons-grade sample of ebola during the earlier theft of the vaccines, but he doesn’t seem to realize what he’s now in possession of… at least not yet.
Back at the team’s J-Alert C-17, Bravo gets briefed on their new mission and Clay isn’t having any of it, especially considering that intel and the higher ups at the Pentagon seemingly dropped the ball on warning the team about the dangers of the mission.
After running his mouth repeatedly, Blackburn steps in with a rare threat and gets the young SEAL to back down and get himself squared away.
Oddly (or maybe not so oddly) enough, the team’s newest member, Vic Lopez, catches onto Clay’s attitude right away and gently clues Sonny in on his thoughts, namely that Clay wanted to make a bigger impact than he thought he could with Bravo, and Sonny was overextending himself serving as the glue that held Bravo together.
Sonny gruffly disagrees with the new Tier 1 trigger puller, but inwardly knows that Vic isn’t actually wrong.
Eventually, Bravo makes its way to the militia’s hidey hole and starts kicking down doors. During the gunfight, Clay gets blood on his MOPP suit, apparently from an exploding eyeball of one of the militiamen — the militia is infected with ebola too.
Making their way deeper into the nest, they recover the weapons grade strain of ebola in addition to the vaccines.
Things aren’t going so well for Davis and she’s sliding deeper into a pit of misery. While rebuffing two creeps at a bar, she inadvertently attacks a plainclothes cop coming to her aid and gets booked into the lockup.
Jason, however, is flying high, finally getting cleared to operate again. After being pestered repeatedly by his shrink (who notes that, while their sessions are technically over, Jason still needs more therapy on his path to recovery), the veteran SEAL finally summons up the courage to tell the team’s physiologist, Natalie, that he’s very much into her… and she reciprocates.
A return to tactical awesomeness once more. Thanks goodness (my faith in ‘SEAL Team’ is restored!)...
I’d say this was a very creative mission set for Bravo Team — a CBRN containment and security operation that shows the depth of ST6 mission sets.
There’s literature out there that confirms one of the key missions for the Army’s Delta Force is nuclear weapons security, including interdiction and defusing. It’s not a stretch to imagine Dev having the same training and the bleed over into chemical and biological agents and weapons.
Too bad there wasn’t a cameo for the Marine Corps’ CBIRF team...oh well.
Another cool thing about the mission was the gear. It looks like the production team went deep into the racks of the prop shop for the latest spec ops chemical gear. Not sure we saw the new Gore Tex Chempak uniforms, but they looked pretty far from the old-school MOP suits of the 2003 Iraq invasion.
Another thing that I was gratified about was that finally...FINALLY!...Bravo operated at night. I realize it’s harder to shoot night video for the show, but that attention to tactical detail restored my faith in the “SEAL Team” production staff.
And a quick OMG moment: What in the hell was that badass optic Clay used to scope out the bad guys during the first (daylight) part of the mission? Was I watching “Star Wars?” Holy crap that thing was awesome and had a ton of info.
If anyone has any idea what that was, let us know in the comments and we’ll do a story on it!
I loved Clay’s tricky shooting to neutralize that “squirter.” Distraction, flank, dead. Well done.
There was certainly a good amount of team drama in the episode, so I’ll let Ingrid hit that. I’ll say that I’m sort of glad that the missions are taking the place of filler and kind of moving the story along — or maybe even a sort of “framing” of the show — since it’s the drama that will keep the show alive in the long run.
Maybe we’ll have a Season 4? I hope so.
My take on Episode 9 centers around what I’m going to call “The Looks” …and there were plenty of them. Facial expressions defining feelings and attitudes of key players (Jason, Lisa, Sonny, Clay and Mandy) throughout the show. Below I identify 12 different “Looks.” This Episode was definitely more about relationships than missions. Let me explain.
Jason and Natalie
To set things up, we first see Jason three weeks out of surgery, feeling strong and healthy physically, but still needing help of his therapist, the one that appeared – at least his voice did - in the last scene of Episode 8.
To put it in its most rudimentary context, the therapist identifies two sides to Jason. Side 1 is Bravo 1. The Seal Team warrior…tough, brave, competent. The “calm in the chaos,” focused on taking care of his Team. Side Two is Jason Hayes, the regular person, anxiously looking for something in life that he can’t seem to identify.
The therapist focuses in on Natalie and Jason’s feelings for her. Look #1 was on Bravo 1’s face when the therapist asked him if he wanted to have sex with her. He maybe had secretly thought about it, but looked visibly stunned when asked so directly, so he just responded in a guy sort of way, more as a joke. Very key though.
The therapist accuses him of not being serious about getting help…that it was Jason Hayes, not Bravo 1, that needed to identify his feelings for Natalie.
The therapist more or less threw up his hands, told Jason he wasn’t going to heal until he could straighten his two sides out and then walked out of his own office telling Bravo 1 to see himself out. Look #2 was the light bulb then going off on Jason’s face…like he finally got it. That he has two sides and he needs to deal with both in order to move forward. This scene was key to the rest of the episode.
Onto the exercise room with Jason on the bike and Natalie trying to be serious. It was a fun scene, very different than how they had interacted in the past. Tongue in cheek, Jason (not Bravo 1) says she’s violating his space being so close to the bike and “accuses” her of looking at his ass. Look #3 was the knowing look between them.
She wants him to try a vegan restaurant and he asks her to go with him. At lunch she told him that after she blew her knee out and couldn’t play sports anymore, she got her masters and fell in love again…in love with getting people that need help physically or mentally back to doing what they love. He responded that it sucks to loose something you love. Another knowing Look #4 passed between them.
Fast forward to the last scene of the episode. Jason comes to find her at the beach where she had told him she’d be running. He shares the news that he’s cleared hot to go back to Bravo, thanked her for helping him and oh, by the way, he also told he told her that he liked her. This was Jason talking, not Bravo 1. He finally got the difference. Right before she kisses him was a very cool Look #5 between them. He returns the affection and then pulls back and says they have to go on a run. Playful, fun. They don’t immediately jump in the sack. See Doc – it’s not just sex. They go running into the sunset.
This was a great scene – Jason, not Bravo 1. They are not one in the same, which is how it should be.
In one of the first scenes, Sonny and Lisa are in a bar talking. Obviously after she called him a jackass in the last episode for putting his life in more danger than necessary, they must have had a heart to heart agreeing they would be friends but nothing more as long as they were both involved with Bravo. However, Lisa suggested they spend a day together but he said no, that they had to keep their relationship at a friend level and nothing more. He turned around to join the Team. She smiles to his face but darkness comes over her as he walks away. Look # 6. She is angry – she has taken over the show’s anger from Jason. She is lonely and desperately wants something she can’t quite identify. She doesn’t feel like she can hang with the boys as she used to, but she has no one else to turn to.
We next see her on a train going to visit her sister, looking very pensive. As I recall from last season, she and her sister were estranged – something to do with a fire killing a third sister many years ago for which she was partially blamed. Apparently though, Lisa had recently been reaching out to her sister. Their conversation was painfully strained, especially when her sister asks Lisa if she’s happy. Lisa doesn’t respond yes or no but we see Look #7…very defensive, pissed off, not willing to ask for help. I think she is questioning her decision to become an officer because it is obviously a barrier between her and Sonny.
She ends up in a bar where a couple of guys are hassling her. Let’s face it – she is too smart to put herself alone on a stool between two guys in a bar. Nevertheless, good for her when she punches one out after he becomes overly aggressive. Not so good to turn around and accidentally punch out a policeman. Look #8 is when she sees his police badge. Next scene she’s looking despondent in a jail cell…probably thinking that her career as an officer is over.
Victor and Sonny
Here’s a funny one. Fast forward to Liberia where Bravo Team is on a mission. Victor is still trying to figure the Team out and is analyzing Sonny, identifying the fact that Sonny does not like change. Jason sidelined. Ray getting his feet wet with a new position. Clay spending more time with his new girlfriend than his buddies…oh, and BTW, Clay comes in all the time smelling like lavender body lotion.
Look #9 - Sonny’s face when Victor tells him about Clay and the lotion…priceless. Look #10 on Clay’s face when Sonny leans over, smells his shirt and tells him it smells like lavender lotion…even more priceless. Look #11 on Clay’s face when Sonny walks away and he then smells his own shirt. This scene made me laugh!
Clay and Mandy
I thought Clay was more “subdued” last episode but he got back to being a jerk. Not what he said so much as the very sarcastic way he said it…asking what the CIA and the Team were really doing in Liberia. No blame for questioning…these guys have a right to know what’s going on when they’re risking their lives but really…come on Clay. Get off your pedestal. Clay and Mandy are at each other’s throats. I think he’s repeating what the deceased ambassador told him about bureaucracy running foreign affairs. Whatever. We saw Look #12 on the faces of Sonny, Blackburn and Mandy as Clay smirked and walked off. Clay – until you’re the boss, you better remember the hierarchy.
OK – I’m covering more of the relationships side of the show, but I just have a couple of mission observations:
-In Liberia, when the bad guys are rumbling down the road towards the team, Ray can see that they’re all armed and coming in for a fight, but he just stood in the middle of the road, out in the open, trying to beckon them to stop. What’s with that?
-Congrats to the camera crew for the last scene in the mission when they found the vials of Ebola virus. I loved the lighting and the music - great great great camera work.
Final Episode #10
Based on the very short preview, it looks like Sonny might get injured or killed. Hopefully not killed but maybe injured to the point that he can’t be part of Bravo. That, combined with Lisa’s altercation with the police might mean they can get together as an official couple.
And hopefully Jason (not Bravo 1) and Natalie will continue to blossom. We’ll see.