Alias

Season 1 Episode 12

The Box (1)

7
Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Jan 20, 2002 on ABC
9.2
out of 10
User Rating
283 votes
11

EPISODE REVIEWS
By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

EDIT
When armed intruders take over SD-6, led by McKenas Cole, a man bent on exacting revenge on ex-boss Sloane, Sydney and Jack must work together to save their colleagues. Meanwhile, Will fears that his investigation of SD-6 and its link to the murder of Eloise Kurtz is placing his life in jeopardy.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

Friday
No results found.
Saturday
No results found.
Sunday
No results found.
SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Attacking SD-6

    8.5
    Some people try to take over SD-6 to get their hands on a information they need. Luckily just when the attack happens, Sydney and her father are on the elevator and from that on it is a two people solo against bad guys and it is very enjoyable - all how to get into the box before the others will do.. and then the way Sydney starts to take big risks and her father can only watch..



    But some interesting developments on other sides too.. First Will - his story has been running in circles for while - he doesn't want to make article, noone talks, the same thing.. but now there is a person.. and it looks promising.



    And Vaughn is getting in trouble too.moreless
  • Part 1 gets the chit-chat out of the way to make way for a thrilling second half!

    7.0
    It's always difficult judging the first part of a two-part episode, but I gotta say, Team Alias pull it off! While it may be a more talkier dose of the series than we're normally accustomed to, there' some cracking character moments injected into the episode and the stage is prepped for the second part to wow us. Alias thus far has been an already exceptional programme, but the Box, as a whole, kick starts the series into overdrive. Deconstructed, however, the first part falters from a few overly written scenes, especially where Cole is concerned (it appears Tarantino's love for excessive dialogue bled into the script); he's verbose, pompous and while his scenes do generate suspense, he too often falls into Mr. Exposition mode, and it's a lot to take. To be fair, Quinton manages quite well under the circumstances and makes for a compelling reoccurring villain. Overall, it's a satisfactory first half with several intense moments, but the fireworks don't happen until the superb second half. Bring it on!moreless
  • Infiltrando SD-6

    9.0
    First of all: thanks Quentin. Que sorpresa de p*** madre. Sidney decide dejar SD-6 sin tener en cuenta (por supuesto) las consecuencias que tamaña decisión llevarían a su vida y a la gente alrededor suyo. Su padre trata de convencerla que no lo haga justo cuando un grupo comando bien entrenado se infiltra en SD-6. Quentin y sus hombres necesitan algo que Sloane guarda bajo siete llaves y están dispuestos a lo que sea con tal de conseguirlo. Sidney se adentra en los (¿existen en el mundo real?) conductos de ventilación y salva a la ciudad de una colisión con la ignota verdad de sus oscuros secretos.

    The Box, Part 1: 8,9.moreless
  • Pretty good episode, but leaves a great cliffhanger for the next episode to be amazing. Here's what happened.... (contains spoilers)

    9.3
    The episode starts after it is revealed that Sydney's mother was the KGB agent who killed all the CIA agents. She leaves the meeting in a hurry and Jack follows her out. They argue about how hard it was to discover the truth about her mother. Sydney goes back to her apartment and looks at the pictures and memories of her mother's. In the basement, she tells Vaughn about what it was like to find that out about her mother. She apologizes to him for her mother killing his father. They hug. Cut to Credit Dauphine, where a van with mysterious people pulls into the parking garage of the bank. They cut the camera wire to the garage and start breaking into the building. An SD-6 security guy goes to see what the problem is, but it hit over the head. Now, Sydney is in the basement. She tells Vaughn that she wants out because she wants something in her life that is real. Syd asks Vaughn is he likes hockey and asks him to go to a game with her, but he says she can't do this. Will is at work and is wondering if he annoys people. He tells Jenny that all he wanted to do was bring people back, but since he can't and is just hurting people, he doesn't want to do it anymore. Back at SD-6, the intruders run into the building, narrowly escaping the security measures. One man pulls off his clothes and uncovers a suit and grabs a coffee. "How do I look?" he asks. Sydney drives into the basement of SD-6, a little late after her meeting with Vaughn. Sloane is in his office, on the phone with his wife's doctor, when he sees an unknown face in the security monitor. Syd gets out of her car and a guy in the van talks at her. Then when her back is turned, he trains a gun on her. But, Jack pulls in and stops the guy's efforts by talking to Sydney. The security monitor registers the face; it's a man named McKenas Cole. In the elevator up to SD-6, Jack and Syd are talking when the elevator stops. Inside SD-6, a gas is released and everyone falls to the ground. Syd and Jack realize that this isn't just a blackout because it wouldn't stop security as well as the elevator. At the newspaper office, Will is in the bathroom when he gets a call that tells him to go to his desk, where there is a letter. The phone rings again and the voice says that inside the envelope is something to make McNeal talk. Inside SD-6, McKenas and his team start their infiltration among the passed out agents. At the office of the CIA, Vaughn is talking to Weiss when another agent walks in and tells him that he has to go see the CIA shrink, Dr. Barnett. In SD-6, Jack and Sydney narrowly escape the infiltrators and tap into the security camera of SD-6. They see the infiltrators, armed heavily, holding everyone hostage. McKenas Cole walks into the room of hostages and starts talking to Sloane about when he was left for dead and his fellow agents were tortured when Sloane left them there. Cole informs Sloane that he got a "kick-a$$" new job for someone called "The Man." The Man wants something that is in the SD-6 vault. When Sloane won't help him, Cole says they are going to the "conversation room" aka the torture room. At the newspaper office, Will has given up the story on SD-6. Now cut to Vaughn in his meeting with Dr. Barnett. He says he is not affected by the fact that Syd's mother killed his father. She asks about his relationship with Sydney, but it ends up with her saying that she has gotten information about a non-plutonic relationship between the two. He asks her who complained, but she won't tell her, so she says she'll just have to guess. Cut to Syd and Jack watching everyone. They see two people trying to get into the safe, and Jack informs Syd that there is C4 all over the building foundation that will explode if the safe is breached. Syd says they have to somehow get the scrambler Marshall made. Cut to the "conversation room," where Cole is about to interrogate Sloane. Sydney heads into the ducts to try and get the scrambler of Marshall's office. In the "conversation room" Cole tells Sloane that "he does not want him to open this box" and that he will if Sloane does not give him the codes to the safe. Cut to Will in a restaurant, where a girl approaches him and introduces herself as McNeal's daughter. She says Will called him, but he did not. She wants to talk to Will and help her father. Vaughn confronts the agent who told him he had to do to Barnett's, since he was the one who told Barnett about Vaughn getting Syd a Christmas present. At SD-6, Syd is in the ducts above Marshall's office. She takes the magnetic fish and tries to "fish" for the scrambler that's on his desk, she misses the first time and is about to get it a second time when two men explode something, knocking the scrambler to the floor and making impossible to retrieve by fishing for it. In the "conversation room" Cole's agent comes in and tells him that they are into the safe room. When Sloane won't tell him the codes to the vault, he opens the box and introduces the "needles of fire." Up in the main part of SD-6, Syd emerges from the duct and signals to her father, who begins doing something with the camera wires. A guy hears Syd and heads off to see what it is, but at the same time something catches Marshall's eye. Jack is doing Morse code through the light on the camera light, and Marshall brings it to Dixon's attention. Dixon fakes a seizure, then Marshall distracts the guards (and gets hit as a result), allowing Syd to escape. In the "conversation room," Sloane is about to get tortured with the needles of fire, but he stops him, saying Cole needs a pen. Cut to the newspaper office, where McNeal's office reappears, saying that she wants to stop the people who killed her mother and frame her father. Her godfather, who is her guardian, knows people who will send her away to safety and she will go away immediately if her father agrees to help Will bring down SD-6. Will opens the mystery envelope: it's a key. In the torture room, Sloane gives a fake code and the torture begins. Sydney begins breaking into the vault, followed closely by McKenas Cole and his people, but hides away in a vent when they try to break the codes. She has done something to the codes, and access is denied. However, Cole hears Syd and starts to shoot at her, then sends his men after her. The episode ends with her waiting to be found in the ducts.moreless
  • Interesting!

    10
    After Sydney has learned about her mother's involvement in KGB, she decides that she wants to quit SD-6. McKenas Cole, a man who wants revenge on Sloane, breaks into SD-6 and takes everyone, except Jack and Sydeny, hostage. He wants to open a safe that Sloane won't give the combination to. Sydney and Jack work to save SD-6 when Jack says that there are C4s in the safe that will explode. Will wants to quit his investigation on SD-6, but the daughter of the guy he met with drags him back in. A fellow CIA agent makes Vaughn see a woman because he fears that Vaughn is too emotionally attached to Sydney. McKenas Cole and his gang find out that someone - Sydney - is in the vent and go after her.



    This episode was great! I liked the intensity and the suspense. I'd hate to be tortured. This episode gets a 10 out of 10!moreless
Kevin Weisman

Kevin Weisman

Marshall J. Flinkman

Jennifer Garner

Jennifer Garner

Sydney Anne Bristow

Merrin Dungey

Merrin Dungey

Francine 'Francie' Calfo

Carl Lumbly

Carl Lumbly

Marcus R. Dixon

Ron Rifkin

Ron Rifkin

Arvin Sloane

Michael Vartan

Michael Vartan

Michael C. Vaughn

Agnes Bruckner

Agnes Bruckner

Kelly McNeil

Guest Star

Jennifer Tung

Jennifer Tung

Toni

Guest Star

Ben Bray

Ben Bray

Tchen

Guest Star

Joey Slotnick

Joey Slotnick

Steven Haladki

Recurring Role

Sarah Shahi

Sarah Shahi

Jenny

Recurring Role

Patricia Wettig

Patricia Wettig

Dr. Judy Barnett

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (3)

    • Cole tortures Sloane by injecting a super-concentrated derivative of hot sauce. Capsaicin, the active chemical ingredient in spicy foods like hot sauce, has a paradoxical effect at sufficiently high doses: instead of causing pain, it relieves it. It's a common ingredient in topical pain relieving ointments.

    • Goof:
      In the corridor with all those red lasers you don't see a single hole or mirror in the walls where the light could come from or where it would be reflected.

    • The failed mission that Cole was on was in 1996. Cole said that the KGB contacted the CIA through various channels to confirm whether or not he was a CIA operative, but the KGB was disbanded in 1991.

  • QUOTES (13)

    • McKenas Cole: (interrogating Sloane) You still got that room downstairs right? The "Conversation Room"? That's what you used to call it right? The torture room, like you're ever going to admit what ever it is you did down there right? So Arvin lets go to the Conversation Room.

    • (After Irina's past surfaces)
      Vaughn: It's a weird thing you know when, learning how your father died. I mean it's always been this intellectual idea I had... knowing he died, just not having any details.
      Weiss: You really want some space, or are you and I going to get drunk? Because there's this bar, you won't even remember it tomorrow.

    • (Sydney wants out of SD-6)
      Jack: This is suicide.
      Sydney: I don't think it is.
      Jack: What exactly is your strategy here? Politely asking Sloane to let you out of SD-6?

    • Jenny: (to Will) I found out that SD-6 is an ingredient in artificial sweeteners... but that's probably not the SD-6 you're talking about.

    • McKenas Cole: You're going to give me the combination to the SD-6 vault and if you don't, I'm going to open this box. And Arvin, trust me when I tell you, you do not want me to open this box.

    • Jack: Sloane must have activated the emergency failsafe. There are five hundred pounds of C-4 strategically placed within the substructure of this building. Opening the vault will trigger that C-4. All underground levels will collapse, burying any evidence that the Los Angeles cell of SD-6 ever existed.

    • Sydney: How could K-Directorate overpower fifty trained agents?
      Jack: If K-Directorate attacks SD-6, they know SD-6 will return the favor. This team that's invaded SD-6, isn't working with any organization we know. My guess is they're working for a group, clearly unpredictable and dangerous.

    • Sydney: Look where we are. I mean, this isn't real. This isn't what we should be doing. I want out.
      Vaughn: Out? (Sydney nods.) You want to enter the protection program.
      Sydney: No. I'm not going into hiding.
      Vaughn: If you don't, Sloane will kill you.
      Sydney: I don't think he will.

    • Jack: I know how this feels.
      Sydney: Not exactly. You've had a lot longer to make sense of this than I have.
      Jack: There was a time when this was news to me, too. Your mother was sent to the United States to steal secrets from a ranking officer of the C.I.A. How she and I happened to meet, how she supposedly fell in love, I thought it was all true. But it was just a set-up.

    • Sydney: There's something that happens when you discover the truth about someone. I know a little about this. The truth changes everything. There is this woman, a personality, like a collage put together from the photographs, the few memories I have, the scraps of stories I've heard. The clothes of hers I've got, her books. None of it's real. She wasn't that woman at all. She was… she was a horrible person, who killed your father. Vaughn, I just wanted to say, that I'm so sorry…

    • Sydney: I can't believe, of all things, we're saving SD-6.

    • McKenas Cole: You give us the codes, I won't have to open the box which will be really excellent for you.
      Sloane: I can't be the first person to have difficulty taking you seriously, can I?

    • McKenas Cole: (holding one 'needles of fire') Each one is like you took a bag of red jalapeños, threw them in a blender, and used them for an enema. And Arvin, you're about to get to know them.

  • NOTES (7)

    • Quentin Tarantino is billed as a Special Guest Star.

    • Music from this episode includes:
      "How Can I Keep From Singing" by Enya
      "Dragula (Si Non Oscillas, Noli Tintinnare Mix)" by Rob Zombie

    • Sydney suggests she and Vaughn should go see the L.A Kings who "are in town next week" are playing the New York Islanders. This episode was aired January 20th 2002 and the Kings actually played the Islanders one night before this episode aired.

    • Merrin Dungey does not appear in this episode.

    • First appearance of Patricia Wettig, actress and wife of Ken Olin (executive producer, developer, and director on Alias).

    • Quentin Tarantino is reportedly a hardcore fan of Alias. Rumors have it that he wanted to pay just to be on the show.

    • Originally, "The Box" was to be a single episode, but it was realized that it was going to be too long for one episode so extra material was added to fill out two episodes. Interestingly, something similar would later happen with Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill.

  • ALLUSIONS (1)

    • Visual: "McTiernan Air Conditioning" van
      The fake name on the van Cole and his men use is "McTiernan Air Conditioning", which is an in-joke reference to director John McTiernan, whose movie Die Hard shares a number of plot elements with this episode.

More
Less