Season 4 Episode 11

The Road Home

Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Mar 16, 2005 on ABC
out of 10
User Rating
227 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Sydney must protect the life of a civilian, whom she unintentionally put in danger. Meanwhile, Jack plans a visit with an old friend, and Vaughn uncovers more disturbing secrets about his father.

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  • A mixed bag

    A mixed bag.

    The "super weapon" was ridiculous. An rc helicopter that can't hit its target at point blank range?

    The human relationship with the innocent civilian Sydney put in danger then had to save was touchingly human. That was the redeeming aspect of the episode.
  • Alias jumped the shark, but it still continues to sink.

    I've never written a review on here before, but I felt compelled to impart my feelings on this particular episode.

    Usually, if there's the odd discrepancy or non sequitur moment in a show, I'm prepared to let it go, but every now and again I'll see an episode of something that's so full of holes and lazy writing that I feel compelled to pull it apart.

    Most of my gripes with this episode are covered in the Trivia section, but here's a run down of some particular lowlights:

    1) Korjev apparently holds such a tight rein over his men, that one would rather slice his own throat than be captured. However the man Sydney questioned about the whereabouts of the weapon gave up the location without too much bother.

    2) Sydney is sent on a mission with no backup or weaponry. Was she looking for an extra challenge?

    3) Despite subduing some men with weapons, Sydney chooses not to take their guns and heads to the warehouse unarmed. She must be very particular about firearms.

    4) After arriving at the warehouse, we discover that this hugely important piece of equipment is being guarded by... two men. And they even leave it in the open so Sydney can muck around with it.

    5) These same security experts even leave their car unlocked with the keys in it.

    6) And after all that, this deadly weapon turns out to be... a toy helicopter. A toy helicopter that can't even hit a target using machine guns when it's right in front of it.

    7) To cap it all off, we have a bad guy that gets shot at three times, who turns around and decides for some reason not to immediately kill the person shooting at him. When he does choose to return fire, he only manages to wing his shoulder anyway.

    I'm only just catching up now with the final two seasons of Alias, and sadly have to conclude that season 4 onwards appears to be a steady slide downwards for the show, with this episode surely being a nadir of lazy, nonsensical writing.

    I certainly hope that they don't get any worse, at least.moreless
  • Review

    The episode had a toy helicopter that...dispite locking onto Sydney several times, missed every single shot it attemted to hit her with. Why is this weapon so dangerous if it has the ability to kill the incorrect target and STILL think that it has done its job?

    Sydney had way too much on screen time with the man from the bar. Thats the only episode he will ever appear on, I could really care less about his life and what these actions Sydney tok will do to them. Vaughn searching for his father? Its a pointless storyline and it is putting ditance between Vaughn and Sydney - did they ever speak to one another in this episode??

    Nothing exciting happeening here. Sydney messed up on a mission she went on by herself, no backup at all...which was kind of werid. She smelled out the trap and saved the day. The only reason it isnt the worst epsiode of the series is because there was no ice exploding people or vampires.moreless
  • Worst episode to date!

    What were the writers thinking when they wrote this one? This episode embodies the misconceptions ALIAS haters have about the show. It is unrealistic, one-dimensional and the action is mindless and lame.

    By having an innocent civillian put in danger by Sydney's mission than having him become awed by her, new viewers will get the wrong impression that Sydney's character is nothing more than a sexy action figure.

    The lowest point of the entire series has to be the so-called climax scene of this episode. After the audience is constantly reminded of the looming presence of a "next-gen superweapon" throughout the episode, when the weapon is actually unveiled after a villian unleashes it on Sydney, what we see isn't fearsome but instead completely laughable! Even though the episode seemed one-dimensional, it could still have been redeemed by a top-notch action scene, making the episode at least seem like a slick and cool mindless action movie. Sadly, the action sequence here not only fails to achieve this, but it is also the worst part of the entire episode!

    All in all, worst episode of the series thus far. However, as bad as it is, it makes no fatal continuity or character errors, so we can all just skip this one and be thankful that the rest of the series isn't anything like it.moreless
Greg Grunberg

Greg Grunberg

Eric Weiss

Kevin Weisman

Kevin Weisman

Marshall J. Flinkman

Jennifer Garner

Jennifer Garner

Sydney Anne Bristow

Carl Lumbly

Carl Lumbly

Marcus R. Dixon

Ron Rifkin

Ron Rifkin

Arvin Sloane

Michael Vartan

Michael Vartan

Michael C. Vaughn

Jason Segel

Jason Segel

Sam Houser

Guest Star

Victor Alfieri

Victor Alfieri


Guest Star

Sven Toorvald

Sven Toorvald

Surveillance Officer

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (7)

    • Sydney asks if Sam can drive the van, however she doesn't ask him if he can break into it and hotwire it.

      Luckily, the door was unlocked and he finds the key above the sun visor.

    • It doesn't seem like she activates the helicopter on purpose, it looks like it just happens to activate when she looks at it - she doesn't even touch it.

      I think the baddies unleash it on her after they see her trying to tamper with it. It isn't exactly a one-use weapon so they can afford to take her down with it and still have it in working condition.

    • When Sydney meets up with her contact and realizes it's a trap, she says she won't have supplies and then she and Sam run off to the Metro. Why doesn't Sydney grab what arms she can off the men she neutralized so she would at least have something? Rather than nothing.

      Why doesn't Sydney have any weapons in the first place? She seems to be strangely unequipped for this mission.

    • Salzburg does not have a subway system.

    • Even after fully understanding the conventions and potential danger of the mini-helicopter, Sydney activates it for no good reason.

    • Marshall begins giving background information on Sam Hauser to Sydney without motivation.

    • In the opening scene when Sydney gets her Martini with 4 olives, she removes the olives (and puts them beside her drink), but in a following cut of the scene the olives are back in her drink.

  • QUOTES (3)

    • (Marshall briefs Sydney for a mission)
      Marshall: ...Speaking of Salzburg, according to the memory chip, Korjev's storing the targeting system in the sub-basement of a discotheque he owns, called "Club Felice", which officially raises the question: what is it with these guys and night clubs?

    • Sam: So how do I know you're not one of the bad guys?
      Sydney: If I was one of the bad guys, you would already be dead.

    • Marshall: The good thing, slash, bad thing about living in Austria, smoking is not prohibited. Ergo you have just developed a smoking habit. (offers Sydney a Cigarette)
      Sydney: No, thanks.
      Marshall: Good answer, just checking. It is actually a mag strip encoder.

  • NOTES (2)


    • Sydney: Me and my girlfriends should be grabbing two beef on wecks.

      A Beef on Weck is a sandwich specific to the Buffalo and Western New York Area. It is roast beef (sometimes au jus) on a Kimmelweck seeded roll.