Persons Unknown

Episode 1.07 : Smoke and Steel

  • Persons Unknown
    • Episode Premiere : July 24, 2010
    • Distributor : NBC
    • Genre : Drama
    • Seasons : 1
    • Show Period : 2010 - 2010
    • Production Company: Fox Television Studios
    • Official Site :

Cast and Crew

The Story

Joe's hard at work, showing Janet the skillfully hidden cameras in her room and blacking them out with spray paint. Tom watches from his Inner Sanctum, none too happy. Janet's not happy either. How could Joe let "them" keep spying on her? Joe claims it would have put her in danger, but Janet's not buying it. Still, she wants Joe to get her out of the town. Now that he's no longer one of them, Joe can't - he's just another one of thousands that have been kidnapped. When he claims he was only trying to do good, Janet can't listen anymore and leaves.

Janet proceeds to the lobby to tell the others what Joe said - that he was kidnapped same as everyone else, and the kidnappings have been going on for over 50 years. Joe heads downstairs to explain. The organization operates like a foundation or a think tank devoted to peace and progress. They analyze vast amounts of information about the way the world is going, and make intelligent bets on people they feel may grow to have great influence. They believe they're doing good.

This explanation doesn't sit well with Joe's fellow captives, and it's not long before Bill punches Joe to the ground, then kicks him while he's down. Erika smiles. Charlie and McNair pull Bill off Joe, who claims he's only telling the truth. Bill insists he has the real truth: Joe and all his buddies are scum for kidnapping them and holding them prisoner.

Joe enters the Inner Sanctum, but Tom won't even look at him, claiming he only let Joe in to say goodbye. When Joe appeals to their friendship, Tom scoffs. Joe may be forcing them to zero out the entire town, taking eight lives, including Tom's. Even worse, Joe's wrecked everything over his ridiculous love of Janet, who's only going to dump him. And what's Tom supposed to do if Joe is red carded? Joe advises Tom to disobey, but Tom refuses. Tom may be the only person that Joe trusts, but it's no longer mutual.

Everyone else gathers round the bar in the lobby, where Bill pours and announces his plan to take Joe hostage. Janet protests - they tried that already. McNair tries to keep everyone focused on the enemy they can see. When Janet insists Joe's not the enemy, Erika accuses her of being in love with him, and insists none of them are safe until he's dealt with. Whose side is Janet on anyway?

It's night when Charlie summons Joe to the Shanghai Palace for a meeting. Charlie admits he doesn't need to get back for his wife - she's already dead. Actually, being abducted seemed like a trade up after his wife's death, when he was ready to die. But now Charlie knows he's got a whole lotta life left. He's worth roughly $80 million, and he's willing to give Joe anything he wants in exchange for getting him out of town. The camera zooms in as Charlie sticks out his hand to seal the deal. Joe leaves without shaking it.

Meanwhile, it's midday in Rome, where Kat and Renbe sit at a café sipping espresso nervously. Renbe's life has been threatened repeatedly, but he's never been almost blown up before. Kat's never felt more alive or motivated to get to the bottom of their mystery. They proceed to Stefano's warehouse to share the photo of Janet, Joe and Tori in front of the Shanghai Palace. Stefano's amazed Renbe managed to break into the Ambassador's office, and allows himself to hope Tori's still alive.

Kat, Renbe and Stefano get to work with Kat's list of people that disappeared the same day as Janet and Tori, hoping to identify Joe. Suddenly, Stefano's security guard points at a monitor. The cops have followed Kat and Renbe right to them. Stefano snaps into action, escorting Kat and Renbe out the back way into the alley. He hands them a wad of cash and tells them it's time to split up - they have to leave Rome, without using cell phones or credit cards. Stefano and his bodyguard rush off in the other direction, running right into the cops.

Back in the town, it's a dark and eerie night. A thunderstorm brews, causing the lights in the hotel to flicker. Curious, Janet puts on her coat and goes outside to investigate. Hearing screams, she runs to the edge of town, only to find Bill and Erika using pool cues to shove a half-naked and bound Joe into the Pain Wall. When Janet tries to intervene, Bill threatens her with his cue, so Erika threatens to kill him. The others run up, demanding that Joe shut down the Pain Wall. Joe insists he can't and offers to prove it.

Joe raises his arms over his head and throws himself against the Pain Wall as the camera zooms in. Of course, nothing happens beyond the scorching of his own flesh - it doesn't shut off. Finally Janet knocks him to the ground, then turns to yell at the others. Does Joe have to die before they believe he's who he says he is?! Joe begs for a chance, which Erika and Bill grudgingly allow. Still, they're going to keep him on a short leash. McNair and Charlie pick Joe up and help him back to the hotel.

Later, Janet finds Joe washing up in his room and asks - what are they going to do? Janet takes the washcloth from Joe's hands and begins sponging off the burns on his back. Everyone wants him dead. Joe admits they would have gotten their wish if Janet hadn't intervened. Janet isn't sure she knows who Joe is anymore. Can she trust him? Joe insists she can. Isn't that why she saved him? Janet confesses she doesn't know why she saved Joe and leaves.

Kat and Renbe have been hurrying through Rome for hours, but he won't let them rest. While in a park, they see three armed men in suits following them and break into a run. Finally, Renbe bumps into a guy in a wheelchair, who springs up, takes a gun out of his pants, and orders them to follow him. Meanwhile, Joe spray paints over the cameras in his hotel room, while begging Tom not to freeze him out. As soon as Joe leaves his room, Erika takes note, then waves to Janet. The coast is clear.

Despite the fact that Janet has stolen Joe's key, she doesn't feel right when Erika starts tossing his room. Besides, she already searched and came up empty. Janet flips open Joe's Bible to find a hand-drawn portrait of herself. When Erika makes an ironic comment, Janet insists she doesn't have to explain anything to anyone. Back in Rome, the man who was in a wheelchair lets Kat and Renbe out of a gelato truck, telling them to walk without looking back and they should be fine.

Wearing sunglasses, Ambassador Fairchild falls into step behind Kat and Renbe and instructs them to listen carefully. Janet and Tori were taken by a very powerful organization that he's been part of for 31 years. He was a nobody when they found him, and their incredible generosity has bought his allegiance - until they killed Tori. Only one person has ever gotten out alive. Dr. Angela Barragan is at the San Nicasio National Hospital in South America. Warning Kat and Renbe to leave Rome today, the Ambassador steps into a waiting limo, promising they'll never see him again.

While replacing the Bible in Joe's nightstand, Janet notices a metal ring. Pulling on it releases a hidden file drawer, which contains files on all the abductees. Janet is shocked to find that her file contains photos of Megan, dental records, even private notes made by her therapist. Erika hurls her file at the wall in a fit of rage. It's not long before Janet rallies the others to escort Joe to the police station, lock him in a cell, and turn off the lights, leaving him alone in the dark. She's no longer interested in his side of the story.

Janet brings McNair and Bill back to Joe's room to read their files, and finds Erika snooping. When Janet and McNair go to find Charlie and Moira, Erika locks her psychic claws into Bill, having obviously read his file. It seems that Bill used to run a halfway house for male parolees, whom he blackmailed into kicking their salaries back to him. Erika promises she won't tell anyone, as long as Bill does a favor for her in return.

Moira settles in to read her file, as Bill runs off. Dejected, Moira comments that her life looks like one failure after another. Erika offers condolences - it can't be as bad as McNair's file. When Moira asks what it says, Erika whispers into her ear, stopping when McNair returns with Janet. Moira runs out, and McNair finds her crying in the hallway. She admits Erika told her about his file, which said he killed people for money. Did he? When McNair claims it's not that simple, Moira runs to her room.

Joe is lying in his jail cell in the dark when Charlie appears to offer a cherry soda and a question: has Joe been keeping files on them? Joe explains that Tom planted the files, and Charlie believes him. He offers to unlock the cell in exchange for Joe's help leaving the town. When Joe agrees, Tom snaps into action, grabbing his pistol to meet Joe on the street. Joe sends Charlie away, and appeals to Tom. When Joe first joined the program he admired Tom and wanted to be like him - and now Tom's going to kill him. Is this the person Tom hoped to become?

Tom admits they were friends, but Joe threw it all away. Joe insists Janet's the best thing that ever happened to him, and she'll figure out Tom's deception with the files. Tom pushes Joe into the Shanghai Palace, unaware that Charlie's on his tail. When Charlie throws a bottle, hitting Tom in the head, Tom whirls and shoots, hitting Charlie in the leg. Despite Tom's threats, Joe rushes to Charlie's side to staunch the bleeding, and keep him from going into shock. Joe tells Tom that his mother, Deborah Allen Tucker, lives in Portland, Maine. She deserves a letter saying he died accidentally, not by Tom's hand.

While all this is going on, Janet sneaks into the kitchen, grabs a pan of hot oil, and throws it into Tom's face at the critical moment. Tom falls into the stove, catches on fire, and burns to death. Back in Rome, Kat and Renbe are just purchasing their plane tickets to South America when they're detained by heavily armed caribinieri. Lucky for them, Stefano shows up after they're strip-searched; he has a plan and two coach tickets for the nine-hour flight. Little do Kat and Renbe know, Stefano's on the same flight, albeit in first class.

After Charlie and Tom are tended to, McNair approaches Moira with an explanation. Within a month of his arrival in Baghdad, three of his best friends died in his arms, all due to the same bomber. One night, he was approached by a contractor who claimed to know the bomber's identity and location, and offered $100,000 to take him out. McNair did the job, learning only afterwards that his target wasn't the bomber but an accountant with three kids who was going to testify against the contractor. After that, he snapped, then woke up in the town.

After learning from Charlie that Tom planted the files and Joe threw over the program because of her, Janet visits Joe in his room, surprised to find the secret file drawer is gone. When Joe hunches over in pain, Janet suggests a bath, then talks as he runs the water in the bathroom. She hates the people who kidnapped them, and she should hate Joe for being one of them, but she doesn't. Joe admits Tom's death left some holes. They might be able to escape. Janet should consider the tremendous risk, but they need to act now. Janet has a vision of Megan, which seems to crystallize her decision, but when she turns to speak to Joe, he's vanished.






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