Improbable? Index: Intelligence Season 1 Episode 2 – Red X

Intelligence (Photo: CBS)
Intelligence (Photo: CBS)

A terrorist with very specific grudges has enlisted accomplices to ingest bombs to blow up targets on this week’s Intelligence. That’s the most probable thing to happen in this episode.

Never mind all of that stuff that happened on last week’s episode of Intelligence: none of it comes into play this week. Instead, we get a story about suicide bombers who ingest C4-level plastic explosives wrapped around a signal triggering device so a terrorist can get revenge on those who wronged him. You know that Eddie Izzard bit about the jihad against a grocer who shortchanged the man? Yeah, it’s that level of goofy. Complicating things is the fact that Gabriel’s wife may not have died in Mumbai as she is spotted in surveillance footage with the suspects. Gabriel believes his wife is in deep cover right now, but Riley and Lillian know that probably isn’t the case. After following a tip from a kid at a muslim community center, Gabriel and Riley track figure out the next bombing target is a hospital. Gabriel finds the bomb, who turns out to be Amelia (surprise?). He wants to use an AED to try to de-fuse the device, but Riley pushes him out a window before Mrs. Intelligence goes kaboom.

Sound improbable? Ay yi yi, where to begin?

Is that possible?

Not one person who works at the CIA is a person of color. I guess that’s handy in the sense that every bad guy or irresponsible lout has brown skin, is Chinese, and/or is not a native English speaker, so it’s easier for the audience to follow along. For shame, CBS.

That seems unlikely…

Although the audience is able to see the manifestations of what Gabriel is processing, I don’t think the other characters can. This makes me wonder if Gabriel is capable of multitasking with his chip, if he has buffering issues now and then, and if he is his own WiFi hotspot.

Are you kidding me with this?

As the team tries to thwart the second bombing of the episode, the plan is to take all cell towers offline so a phone can’t be used as a trigger. Never mind the fact that a car radio, a remote starter, or a walkie-talkie (the trigger of choice) would also be viable options. Also, Mr. Googlepants might be a trigger, depending on how that chip in his skull connects to the grid.

The final bombing of the story made zero sense. The team figured out a hospital was the next target, so they evacuated everybody. Since we later find out there’s water on one side of the building, that would mean there are fewer paths of escape, which means a terrorist would probably target the evacuation rather than an empty hospital.


The entire story was contrived far more than one would expect. The targets picked by the bomber only made sense because the characters told us so. Also, the CIA should have been able to track down this information via normal search methods rather than through a guy with a souped up brain. The only purpose Gabriel served in this episode was for dramatic effect when it was revealed his wife became enmeshed in the plot. However, her involvement also seemed coincidental since the big bad’s targets were personal rather than political.

Next week on Intelligence, the Chinese woman who got the microchip implant at the end of last week’s episode is able to interact with Gabriel’s astral projections.

    A Brief Word From Our Sponsors:

    About Mike McComb 669 Articles
    Mike has been writing about TV online since 2008, when he started the blog WTF Little House on the Prairie? The blog was a project to practice writing about television analytically prior to getting an MA in Television-Radio-Film from Syracuse University, or as he likes to call it "TV Camp." After a lengthy stint at TVLatest, Mike wanted to launch a site that brought in classic TV, diamonds in the rough, and the shows everybody watches. E-mail: