Episode Reviews (7)
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Math solutions take too long
You have a good basic premise here. A mixture of Diehard and Speed. Kidnappers abduct a bus load of tourists on the streets of LA and demand a big payoff. A cop on vacation in plain clothes is aboard and sneaks a live streaming video off via his smartphone. LAPD and FBI follow the bus and try to figure out the bad guys' game plan. Charlie must hack the bus' auto-drive computer system then create a heat signature identification program to give the police snipers a bird's eye view of their targets.
Sounds great, right? The software hacking works just fine, but that sniper ID bit just bombs. Charlie ends up spending valuable time just postulating what he might do to save the hostages' lives without actually doing anything. We don't need a Charlie-vision explanation while there are guns to people's heads and a clock running out. But instead the writers stumble through their formula to give that unnecessary exposition of (A) Charlie postulates a theory, (B) proposes a consultant angle for the solution, and (C) waits for authorization to do anything.
Then in the midst of writing his program (which he does at CalSci instead of FBI offices... WTF?!) Amita pops in for a "you gotta do something about your dad and Larry" talk. Excuse me? There are people's lives at stake here. In a real crisis those sterile academic issues are put on hold. Not doing so makes the characters look cold and unlikable.moreless
Don and the team are in a battle against time as they try to save a group of tourists taken hostage on a bus.
This episode is entertaining and very compelling. I can understand why so many reviews for this episode are so positive. David Krumholtz and Rob Morrow are terrific (as usual) so there are many positive things to say about this episode. However as I watched it, I kept being reminded of the classic 1974 action film "The Taking of Pelham One Two Three." So many devices from that excellent film are recycled here. The ransom has to be delivered in one hour, old bills with random serial numbers and one hostage will be killed for every minute over the deadline. Average.moreless
I watched this episode last night on Tv and i was very pleased with it, this episode had a great and simple plot which i really enjoyed, it was good to more brilliant work by Charlie and Swat getting involved, what i really liked was how the criminals tricked the FBI, also the "cop and his wife" being in on it the whole time. But what i didn't get is why have blanks in a gun? i also liked the decoy effect with the buses and how Don was willing to not comprimise all this made the episode very good.moreless
An absolutely superb episode with a compelling story and great acting from the regulars and guest stars.
If you haven't seen "Jacked" yet, I recommend you stop reading my review right now…
Okay, all set? This episode is beyond any doubt way up the chart as one of the best "NUMB3RS" has to offer. It has all the ingredients to make it memorable. First there's the crime itself: a bus hijacking without a clear motive that keeps the viewer interested and guessing. What could this small group possibly want? It has to be more than the money right? Then you have the lead hijacker, played so well by Fisher Stevens. He had a wild temper, sometimes bordering on rage, which had me wondering when he would eventually fly off the handle and begin shooting his hostages. The crime and the lead hijacker were a perfect combination, adding great intrigue to the episode.
There is also a "Chalie Vision" in this episode that had me laughing pretty hard. He explains a mathematical principle by likening it to a poker game. In the vision, Charlie is dressed in appropriate card dealer attire, while Don and the lead hijacker are seated at a card table, dressed to the nines, smoking fat cigars. Seeing the story's antagonist and protagonist out of context from the plot as opposing stoic card sharks was a brilliant moment of humor. It might even have been a way to foreshadow that the crime was not as threatening as we'd been led to believe.
Finally, there was a moment in this episode where I said out loud, "Oh no," while feeling the same dread and despair that was clear on everyone's faces after they found out the bus they'd been pursuing was empty save for the driver. That was one heck of a twist, and the emotional reactions from the actors following it were perfect. Some of the cinematography after the empty bus reveal also expertly contributed to the moment's despair.
It's episodes like this one that keep me watching every week and make me so relieved that "NUMB3RS" continues to defy the curse of the Friday 10pm time slot.moreless
Amazing episode. Not perfect, but definitely great.
Good stuff first, not so great stuff later.
The casting for the bad guy was absolutely spot on. I felt that he would definitely go through with his plans (this was before the bus was discovered to be empty). Everyone was great in this episode, no one was too vital or sitting in a corner doing nothing while the rest of the people solved the case.
Unfortunately, I can't give this episode a ten. I really wish I could give it a 9.8, because that would be much closer to what I feel about it. The bus being empty was, for some reason or another, predictable, and I wasn't all that surprised when they ran on and found just the driver. That's not the only reason it wasn't perfect, but it was one of the bigger ones. But, still, great episode. Completely recommended.moreless
I was all over this from the beginning. You have what appears to be a situation right out of the movies but as the scenario plays out it's not everything it appears. We start with a group taking an LA tour bus hostage and seemingly driving around the city while waiting for their randsom demands to be met. However, as SWAT takes down the bus, they find out that they have been duped. This sends everyone scrambling to find the bus with the hostages and determine who they are dealing with. They think they are working with an cop on the bus who's been feeding them information via his video phone and to the team's shock when he's discovered he is shot and killed. As the team delves deeper into it's investigation they learn that the cop is alive and part of the gang they are trying to capture. I loved the script and twists within the episode.moreless
WOW! Definitely the best episode of this season, possibly of all Numb3rs!
What a gripping, edge-of-your-seat episode! It was definitely my favorite of this season, every piece was perfect, perfect! The drama of the crime was high and took so many surprise turns I couldn't believe it. Each character was at their finest. Don made hard decisions with strength of character, he seemed much more at peace than the last episode. Colby, David, and Liz each played their parts with excellence, no one seemed underused or ignored. Charlie's input was really interesting, and there were times I was sure he wouldn't be able to figure it out in time. The bad-guy was amazing, such a creepy nasty character that seemed so believable you could believe he'd do what he said. You felt for the hostages, afraid that the mother was going to be killed. The rather comical side was between Alan and Larry, but it wasn't over-played to be annoying. The ending between Don and David was short but sweet, leaving you with a good feeling after a great episode! If you want a prime example of how amazing Numb3rs is, watch this episode!moreless