‘Quantico’ Recap: Season 1, Episode 17, “Care”

QUANTICO – “Care” (Photo Credit: ABC / Phillipe Bosse)
QUANTICO – “Care” (Photo Credit: ABC / Phillipe Bosse)

By Guest Contributor: Lakshmi Gandhi (@LakshmiGandhi)

Lakshmi’s recaps for “Quantico” episodes 1-7 can be found here and for episode 8 onward here, including her recap of the show’s most recent episode. Her recaps appear on Reappropriate every Monday morning! As with reading any recaps, please be wary of spoilers.

Readers, we’ve long shaken our heads at Alex Parrish’s inability to trust people. Throughout the show to date, she’s repeatedly held people at arm’s length and has only confided in others when there was either no other option or she was in extreme emotional distress. All of this made the first moments of Sunday’s episode, titled “Care”, extremely difficult to watch.

“Alex would kill me if I were here,” Simon quietly tells Ryan as they sit inside a quiet, nondescript New York City bar.

“The bureau would kill me if they knew I was here,” Ryan replies. (They talk a bit more, but the most important thing to note here is that is that Ryan slips a tracking device into Simon’s pocket during their farewell bro hug.)

Here’s what stuck out to us during this week’s episode:

Where do you belong? Belonging and home were two of the big themes of this week’s episode. “Choosing a field office is more than about picking a job. It’s about finding a home,” Liam tells the NATs. “For those of you who end up in places like Little Rock, you’ll never get out.”

Shelby’s family is reunited: As soon as we saw that Kelly Rutherford was guest starring in Sunday’s episode, we knew that it meant only one thing: Shelby was going to meet her parents. Because this week’s training exercise would take our NATs to Montreal, Caleb realizes that Shelby’s parents could get to Canada relatively easily and meet Shelby there.

Shelby is initially reluctant about this little family reunion, to say the least. Weirdly, Alex and Caleb don’t seem to understand this.

“When I lost my father, there was so much that was left unsaid,” Alex tells Shelby. “You have that chance.”

We have to wonder who actually wants to solve the mystery of Shelby’s parents here. Watching a clearly reluctant Shelby be pushed into this meeting, it’s clear that both Alex and Caleb are using her situation to project a lot of their own issues onto her. If the two of them had taken a step back, it would have been a lot more beneficial.

We also couldn’t help but wonder what Kelly Rutherford was thinking while filming these scenes. Being reunited with her long lost children is something she’s been fighting her ex for years about.

Random note: While Quantico’s writers are really good about getting government and cultural terms right in their scripts, we did notice a little slip. Shelby’s father makes a reference to the Afghani government when talking to his daughter about his post-Sept. 11 life. He meant the Afghan government. An Afghani refers to the currency of Afghanistan.

Nimah and Raina will be (undercover) together forever. Trust Liam to try to make major changes the second he gets a tiny bit of power. One of his first official decisions was informing the twins that they no longer need to go undercover. Liam informs them that it’s no longer necessary and that the bureau has other plans for them.

“Out in the field, there’s no rooms for mistakes,” he tells them rather sanctimoniously.

Naturally, the twins aren’t happy about this, and set about proving him wrong. Happily, they succeed by doing their twin thing and managing to bypass customs and immigration by pretending to be one another.

Ryan returns to Quantico. With Miranda on leave, Quantico has been severely understaffed in terms of senior leadership. Knowing he can’t run things completely by himself, Liam offered Ryan a chance to come back last week. Ryan is reluctant at first, but agrees and on Sunday we saw his grand return to campus. “For those who don’t know him already, staff counselor Ryan Booth,” Liam announces to the class. Alex is (quite naturally) the most surprised of all.

The Ryan-Drew intro was perfect: Ryan immediately notices the dynamic between Alex and Drew, but says nothing to her about it. We did get to experience this great moment between the two men though.

Drew (introducing himself): “Drew Parales, I’ve heard a lot about you.”

Ryan: “Ryan Booth. I’ve heard nothing about you.” Ouch.

Will Olsen is Rain Man. We’ve long known that Will had a nearly perfect memory and that one of his coping mechanisms he uses to make up for his off-beat social skills is to memorize long lists of things and the personality traits of his peers. We also know that he has been doing a lot of strange things recently.

At the same time, Simon and Alex are on the hunt for a CIA asset (i.e. captive) that The Voice insists they retrieve for them. They somehow sneak into the CIA’s safe house to retrieve the asset disguised as Ryan and Nimah (this was really confusing.) Once inside, the discover the asset is… their Quantico pal, Will. He tells them he’s being held because he cracked some important NSA codes and has stored the information in his head. (Okay.)

Will has been inside the CIA cell for what he estimates to be at least seven months. (He said he judged that by his sleep patterns and was also able to tell them the day of the week and the time of day based on the same.)

They manage to get Will out and lead the CIA on a crazy car chase. (Anyone else think it was a bit weird that Alex let Will drive after he’d barely seen sunlight for seven months?) For some reason, they bring Will back to Alex’s apartment and The Voice (of course) has demands for them.

The Voice tells Alex to bring Will to a remote location under a bridge (of course!). Worried, Alex tells Will to run. He refuses. “Just think of me as your personal Trojan horse,” Will tells her. Worst of all, The Voice tells Alex to also send Simon. Naturally, she starts freaking out, but Simon is eerily calm. “I’ve come back from the dead before, right?”

Then, against all odds, The Voice tells Alex that she’s done. It won’t bother her anymore. The one last thing she has to do is hand The Voice’s phone (which never seems to run out of battery, by the way) to the driver of the black car before her.

Shelby?!?! When the window rolled down, we know that we’d probably see a familiar face, but we really weren’t expecting Shelby to be the next recipient of the mysterious phone. Is one of her parents behind The Voice? Is she being manipulated by Caleb? Once again, we have lots of questions.

Lakshmi Gandhi
Lakshmi Gandhi

Lakshmi Gandhi is a journalist and pop culture writer based in New York. Her work has appeared in Metro New York, NBC Asian America and NPR’s Code Switch blog, among other sites. She likes it when readers tweet her @LakshmiGandhi with their thoughts on Asian American issues and romance novels.

Learn more about Reappropriate’s guest contributor program and submit your own writing here.

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