A pair of arms dealers get their hands on tracking software that will allow a bullet to maneuver over distances to reach its target. Meanwhile, Kennex has the usual anger issues to contend with and Dorian keeps getting shot.
A man runs frantically through the crowded city. He tries desperately to hide in a locked building, but can’t get in. He enters the subway without paying and tries to catch the departing train, but misses it. As the transit police close in and try to apprehend him, the man yells that someone’s trying to kill him. Just then, he is shot in the chest and dies.
Kennex attends an anger management session but avoids participating. He just keeps saying he feels fine and antagonizes some of the other participants. Dorian meets him outside the session to go to work with him. They go to the scene of the subway shooting where they find out that the victim’s name is Anton Cross, who worked for a company called Trope Software.
He was killed with a single bullet wound and only one bullet is recovered, but apparently there were three shots fired. Detective Paul’s MX suggests that one bullet ricocheted twice to cause the appearance of three shots. Kennex isn’t buying it and asks Dorian, who finds that there may be some kind of technology in the bullet that might have guided the single bullet to penetrate the three areas without ricocheting. The MX won’t shut up and starts to talk about how Dorian is obsolete and should be re-decommissioned. Kennex shoots the MX in the face.
Maldonado is livid at Kennex for firing his weapon in a public place. Paul is mad that Kennex shot his MX and asks how he would feel if he shot Dorian in the face. Kennex grabs Paul by the throat and tells him not even to look at Dorian. Paul leaves to get another MX. Maldonado tries to talk with Kennex about his anger issues but he brushes her off. Meanwhile, Dorian discovers that Anton’s girlfriend worked with him at the same company. They go to pay her a visit. On the way, Dorian thinks that Kennex shooting the MX means that he likes him. Kennex denies it. Rudy calls to let them know that the technology in the bullet can control the movement of the bullet.
At Trope Software Dorian and Kennex break the news to Kira Larsen, Anton’s girlfriend. They ask if Anton was involved in anything sketchy but Kara tells them that Anton was a gamer, a quiet guy who worked all the time. He left her a message the previous night, seemed distracted, and was interrupted by a knock on his door. The only thing different in his life is that he’d been meeting with a headhunter named Natalie. Meanwhile, Dorian gets access to Anton’s work files and discovers that Trope Software specializes in real time tracking software for personalized advertising that Anton designed. Dorian thinks that this is connected to how Anton was killed. Kennex thinks that Anton sold his software to gunrunners who then killed him with the updated bullets.
Elsewhere, a man watches a video of Anton being tracked and killed. A Slovak accented blonde woman says the bullet was fired miles away and that the weapon is worth the money. The man wants to see it work in action. The woman checks with her partner, who gives the okay. They decide that their demonstration subjects will be Kira, saying that they have to kill her anyway.
Stahl checks into Anton’s financials to see if she can find out who he sold his software to. Kennex has Dorian check the headhunting agency for Natalie, but there’s no one by that name employed at the agency. Just as they start out to see Kira to ask her some more questions, Kennex notices Maldonado talking to Reinhart, the Syndicate guy who stormed the precinct to get something out of the evidence locker. Maldonado is prepared to give him a deal if he tells her what he was looking for. Reinhart wants a full walk in exchange for the information, plus he’ll throw in the location of Kennex’s girlfriend.
Kennex comes along to check out what’s happening and says that they’ll find out both things anyway, without his help. Reinhart agrees, but only if they have enough time. He tells them that there are others who will come for what he came for and that it’s only a matter of time. Maldonado has him taken back to his cell. Kennex wonders what could be so bad hidden in the evidence locker that Maldonado would make a deal with a murder. Maldonado is afraid that there’s something worse hiding in evidence.
Kennex and Dorian meet up with Kira to ask her some more questions. Kira says she may not have gotten the name right, but that she met her once while she was meeting with Anton. Natalie matches the description of the Russian arms dealer. Kennex asks is Kira could identify her and Kira says yes. Elsewhere, “Natalie” and her partner prepare the equipment to kill Kira. They fire the gun, but somehow Dorian senses the bullet coming and pushes everyone out of the way and gets shot himself. Kennex asks if he’s okay and Dorian says something in Korean in response.
They take Kira and her daughter Amy to a safehouse. Kira wants to get her mind scrubbed so she’ll forget everything about Anton so maybe the assassins will leave her alone. Kennex tries to reason with her, saying it wouldn’t matter to the gun runners whether she didn’t know anything or not. Kira decides to let them try to help. Dorian goes to Rudy to get his speech control fixed and Rudy asks if there are any undercover opportunities for the case. Stahl calls to say that she found out that Anton opened an account under the name Mark Cross and that he has a safety deposit box. When Kennex and Dorian go to check it out, they find a video that proves that Anton was being blackmailed for the software, the blackmailers claiming they could kill Kira and Amy at any time if he didn’t do what they said.
Kira has second thoughts about trusting the police to protect her, so she escapes the safehouse. Kennex has an idea to use facial recognition software to search for Anton and Kira and another woman in the area around Anton’s office where Kira said she met Natalie. Maldonado calls everyone into her office to show them an infomercial for the “magic bullet” that was pulled off the Black Site. Kira’s com signal becomes visible. She’s at an underground scrubber and purposefully made herself visible to lure the assassins to her. Kennex and Dorian get there first and convince her to go with them, but the gun runners get there too and try to stop them from leaving. Dorian draws their fire and they take down the dealers just as backup arrives.
Kennex and Dorian take Kira back to the precinct and show her the blackmail video to show her that Anton was only trying to protect her. They also show her some bits of paper with numbers on them that they found in the safety deposit box. She says they’re from the first time Anton gave her his number and she tore it up. He said he’d win her over and keep the pieces as a memento. Kira thanks Kennex for saving her memories of Anton by giving him the pen she used to write notes to Anton.
Stahl says she has something for Kennex and gives him an energy chew. Kennex says he has something for Stahl and writes something on a piece of paper with Kira’s pen. Stahl reads it, laughs, says thanks and they go their separate ways. We don’t know what’s on the paper. Maldonado says thanks to Kennex for not destroying any MXs that day. Kennex says the night is young.
This has been another good week for an excellent mystery thriller plot, but with pretty thin character development. While having tight, intense scripts like these make the show seem more structured, I do miss the focus on character that the show started out with. Of course it can’t be all character relationships and backgrounds and fun little bromance moments all the time. That wouldn’t be a good show, either.
It was nice to see a bit of the Syndicate (or is it InSyndicate, because that’s what I keep hearing) plot pop up for a moment, even if it was just to say that it hasn’t been forgotten. With all these seemingly unconnected cases it makes you wonder if they have some people hidden away somewhere whose job it is to work just on the Syndicate case. As we saw in the Reinhart scene, Maldonado seems to have quite a lot of manpower still scouring the evidence locker, so it seems to be an around the clock operation, even if we don’t usually get to see it happening in between crises. Then again, this is how The X-files worked when it came out. Mulder and Scully would investigate all manner of bizarre cases, hoping that it might have something to do with the alien conspiracy plot line. Often times their cases didn’t have anything to do with it, but sometimes an episode would start off just like any other monster of the week episode and surprise you by connecting it to the overarching conspiracy mythos of the show. Then again, I think it would be fun if all these episodes ended up connecting somehow, even if it is just combining all the technology for one big Syndicate to-do. Maybe they’ve been the shadowy masterminds behind all these crimes, getting ordinary criminals to test the technology for them before they use it themselves for grander schemes.
Who knows? My point is this: It is far too early in the season to get a sense of where things are going or how this series is going to work in the long run, big picture sense. What are they building up to? Are the intervening episodes between Syndicate episodes just filler or will they somehow be connected? These are questions that can really only be answered with time and dedication. But really, what is this show all about anyway?by