Season 5 Episode 3

The Shed

Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Oct 13, 2005 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (12)

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out of 10
332 votes
  • The story structure is fine. The ethics and politics however, are a joke.

    The story structure is fine. The ethics and politics however, are a joke.

    So Rachel discovers she was working for "bad guys pretending to be good Now, like Sydney before her, she joins the CIA.

    All better, right? Hardly. She's still working for "bad guys pretending to be good guys!"

    The only difference, as Edward Snowden helped us realize, is that it's a different group of "bad guys pretending to be good.

    The real awakening for both Sydney and Rachel will be when they realize they've merely traded one group of bad guys for another.
  • Good

    Despite the fact that the storyline of this episode was mostly recycled, it was still enjoyable and delivered some shocks.

    I thought it was a bad choice by the writers to show Peyton right in the beginning, because as we discover her working with Rachel posing as a "good guy", it just doesn't really deliver a shock.

    Apart from that, most things were good, although nothing stood out.

    The similiarity between Sydney and Rachel is quickly established... they both have been working for organizations they thought were part of the CIA, blah blah. So Rachel has to take down hers[The Shed](as Syd took down SD6) within only 1 episode.

    And surprisingly, it worked. It was belivable, it was definitely suspensful, although most of the twists and turns were basically the same as in the first 2 seasons.

    I liked Thomas' character in this one, he's a low tech operative obviously, which is great. The relationship between him and Rachel is also established in this episode.

    Rachel's character is good too. Nowhere near developed though, so it can change. But I like the fact that she's only desk trained, unlike Sydney who's field rated.

    Sloane and Dixon go to Russia to receive something against the virus attacked Nadia... without success. Nothing major happened here, it was just a filler, although it was comical how easily Dixon agreed to let Sloane be alone with his russian friend.

    Overall a pretty good episode, but it lacked the punches that'd bump it's score higher.
  • Review

    I dont know why everyone is classifying this as "They did this one all ready". Just because the new agent happens to have the same story as Sydney Bristow doesnt make it old and boring, I actually thought it made it more exciting, personally. I like the new character of Rachel, though things tended to move a bit fast in this episode.

    But first lets start with the beginning of the episode. The beginning of the episode started off very slow, with a couple of filler scenes that likely werent needed to the overall storyline. Thomas and Sydney are briefed on a mission and Sydney explains her dislike of this because she would rather have Dixon go with her.

    After the episode got past the rough beginning, it got a little bit better. I liked the on-screen conneciton between Rachel and Sydney during Jennifer GArdners monolouge that she has been working for the people that she thought she was fighting...I didnt find that boring. I was a little stunned that the "Double Agent" status of Rachel ended so quickly, but with the APO room looking a little empty nowadays I dont blame them for making the quick change.

    Arvin / Dixons part of the episode was clearly meant to be a filler role, but Arvin plays the part of his character too well for it to simply be filler. Alexander comes to kill him and Arvin talks him out of it. What Arvin Sloane does from here is anyones guess - with no cure for his daughter I have a feeling he will be on the run again. I like Peyton / Dean as the bad guys this season, they seem to work well together.

    Overall I liked the episode, other then the slow start. Season 5 is coming together nicely, hopefully they can keep it up.
  • topsy turvy

    Seems that SD-6 was not alone in the world of shadows and somewhat less ruly decision making. To see the shed is revealing in a few different ways. Sydney get's to see the foot in the other shoe. Now she sees how another woman goes through the thing that she already lived through. Evil has many faces and looking towards the effects of it all is an odd thing. we see, we judge and we also see that Gordon Dean is not much of a player. He is like a dull blunt mallet in comparison to the symphonies we saw performed at the hands of Arvin Sloan, still, in the end a Hammer can be just as effective in blugeoning skulls.
    So the race is on, but who will be the victor in this war? Seems that the main character will always win, still, you know wht happened last episode, so nothing is set in stone.
  • Sydney teams up with Renée - a fugitive on the CIA's most wanted list -- to track down the murderer of a close friend before the killer can strike again.

    A nerve agent called Substance 33 is stolen from a test facility in Istanbul. Marshall receives video footage of the theft from a friend and, given the computer hacking involved, he theorizes that the thief works for Gordon Dean. He traces the hacker to Prague, and Sydney, Marshall and new APO agent, Thomas Grace are tasked to go find him. In Prague, the hacker is revealed: it's the blond agent who works with Dean. After a brief car chase, Grace catches her. He learns that her name is Rachel Gibson and that she's in the country on a student visa, studying architecture. As they question her, she declares that she works with a black ops division of the CIA. Marshall's lie detector reveals that she is telling the truth; Syd realizes that Rachel has been lied to the same way she was. To prove it to Rachel, they activate the tracking signal she was given and instead of going to CIA headquarters - as Rachel believed it would - it is rerouted back to Dean's temporary office in Prague. Rachel is devastated at having been deceived, but she agrees to help them access Dean's server. She enters the office and her friend Peyton - the same person who stole the nerve agent in Istanbul - asks if she's okay. When Rachel steps out for coffee, Peyton goes with her, but Sydney and Grace are able to receive the encryption key in a brush pass. Back inside, Rachel returns to work. Marshall starts to download Dean's files and finds the location of the Substance 33. Peyton shares her suspicions with Dean, who sees that Rachel has compromised the system. Peyton offers to kill Rachel, but Dean tells her to activate Plan B. Peyton sets the timer on a bomb, and she and Dean hurry to the exit. Seeing cars speed out of the parking garage, Grace is alarmed. The power shuts down and they are unable to reach Rachel on comms. Grace hurries into the building and activates the fire alarm; Rachel, already concerned at losing contact with the others, rushes into the stairwell as the bomb blows. Grace finds Rachel dusty but alive. Meanwhile, Sloane is granted a 72-hour release from his cell to meet with Dolzhenko, an old friend who says that he has an experimental cure for Nadia's illness. Dixon accompanies Sloane, but Dolzhenko wants to meet alone. Dixon agrees, but at the meeting, Dolzhenko pulls a gun on Sloane. He lied about there being a cure; he wants revenge because his daughter died from what Sloane caused in Sovogda. Ultimately, Dolzhenko is unable to pull the trigger, so he drives away.

  • A good way to spend a thursday night.

    So Rachael did not know she was working for the bad guys. This makes her phone call to Dean in the last episode make more sense; she did not seem like the bad type. Even though this episode’s storyline was a repeating one I still enjoyed it. I also am happy though that it was resolved in one episode. A season long arc about Rachael trying to take down a terrorist cell posing as the C.I.A. would have been a little bit too repetitive. If you have no idea what I mean you need to go to Blockbuster Video and rent the first episode of 'Alias'. Now.

    The explosion at the end of the episode was pretty shocking. I am still not into Dean as a bad guy but I do like Peyton. Every scene she was in was an interesting scene and I do look forward to seeing more of her. Another new character that I am beginning to like is Tom Grace. I liked the smoking scene between him, Rachael and Peyton. The writers are easing him into the show and I like that. No use rushing in a new character

    Even though Rachael and Sydney share a similarity now (the whole fake C.I.A thing,) they really are not that alike. When Sydney found out SD-6 had betrayed her she was shocked but she took charge and eventually got herself together. Rachael got freaked out at making a simple brush-pass, and the fact that she did not know how to do one also shows a lot about her abilities as a field agent. I am guessing Sydney will become a tutor for Rachael and show her the ropes as an agent. This probably is the writers way of showing us what Sydney was like before she got that 7 years of training when we first saw her in the pilot episode. Frankly I can't imagine Sydney not being able to kick ass but I'm sure there was a time when she couldn't.

    I did enjoy the Rachael storyline but the Sloane one this week just seemed like a filer and was a waste of time. Also I can't believe Dixon would honestly leave Sloane alone on a mission. Sloane hardly had to put up an argument. This is the man that lied to Dixon, made him kill innocent people, and the man that killed his wife. Now is that somebody you would leave alone? I know it's been 3 years but I just would think that those memories would always stay put in his mind. But maybe I'm wrong.

    Finale Ratings: 2 out of 4 Stars

    - Tim Bronx
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  • Bra avsnitt!

    Bra avsnitt!

    Jublade högt när Amy dök upp och var alldeles fenomenalt badass i första scenen. Sen så fick Rachel Nichols visa upp en varmare och charmigare sida än vad hon fick möjlighet till i The Inside och då började jag gilla hennes karaktär också. Sedan må Balthazar Getty vara en Vaughn-klon, men än så länge känns han åtminstone inte lika torr.

    Gillar verkligen ensemble-känslan de börjar få till nu. Och hur de kopplade allt tillbaka till första säsongen (när jag ju verkligen tyckte om serien). Bra scen med Rachel och Marshall också.

    Och återigen, Amy. Vilken fantastisk skurk hon är, just för att hon jämt verkar så söt och charmig och ofarlig. Marvellous!

    Tror dock att Rachel Nichols bara kommer stanna med oss säsongen ut (förutsatt att det blir en S6). Alias har ju nästan satt det här i mönster nu, att låta en till stor kvinnlig karaktär komma in och bara stanna en säsong (Lena Olin i S2, Melissa George i S3, Mia Maestro i S4).

    Min största önskan nu är att de hittar ett bra sätt för Sloane att fungera (vilket de har haft problem med ända sedan S2), då Ron Rifkin fortfarande är seriens bästa skådis och varje gång han är i bild så önskar jag att han fick fylla en större och bättre roll. Dock är jag tacksam över att han fortfarande är med då han hade varit så lätt att plocka bort så många gånger. Gravitas!

    Så här är Alias när det är bra. Viss känsla och tid för karaktärerna, men framförallt tempofylld spionaction som inte alltför mycket låter sig dras ner till dåligt underbyggd såpopera. Fortsätt arca!
  • Meet the new agent...same as the old agent.

    Or so the song goes...

    So basically we get the beginnings of a series reboot with Rachel playing Sydney, Grace playing the part of Vaughn and Gordon Dean playing the part of Sloane. We've seen this all before, except it's just not as compelling the second time around.

    I get the sense that Rachel isn't used to the butt-kicking spy biz like Sydney is, which I think is a good contrast. But Thomas Grace leaves me flat and additionally Rachel's knowledge of computers sort of steps on Marshalls toes.

    Two of my favorite characters, Jack and Sloane, seem to be relegated to minor characters.

    I'm not really interested in the direction of the plot (i.e. the tracking down of Dean) and it appears Rambaldi will go the way of the Lost Ark (being stuffed in an undisclosed where house for the rest of time), which is too bad, as I was interested in seeing how it would rap up.

    I will continue to watch, but my interest is fading fairly rapidly.
  • Really, nothing happened. Had a lot of déjà vu though. And questions... lotsa question!

    So... Sydney and Vaughn are being replaced, was that the whole idea of this episode? Are they setting things up so that there will be no Syd in season 6? And are they trying to use the same story as Syd's to introduce the possibly new lead of the show? Or is this all just temporary till Jennifer Garner has had her daughter?

    At least the "good" SD-6 people survived and got to work for the CIA.. selfish Rachel... as soon as she got wind of the bomb, she hightailed her cowardly but well shaped ass to the elevator. Poor people at the fake Gordo department all got blown to bits, except for our blonde IT-girl.

    What the hell was up with the Sloane part? Did they want to emphasise the fact that Sloane cares for Nadia? That Dixon is not so unforgiving that he allows the murderer of his wife to meet the contact alone? Stuff, we, of course, already knew! C'mon... if they couldn't think of a good plot for Sloane and Dixon, then just let them walk around aimlessly at their offices/cells.

    A 6/10 on account of Marshall, who strangely enough always becomes my favourite part of the episode and also of Amy Acker, whom I've sorely missed since Angel. Nice seeing her in an assassin kinda role.
  • Overall, this episode is an incremental improvement over the first two episodes of the season, even if the writers are using an overly familiar plot structure to make the new characters relevant.

    Giving the audience a reason to care about a new character, especially one about to serve as a replacement for the lead character, is a tricky business. Quite often, the new character is seen as an intrusion, an interloper. Witness the hue and cry within the “X-Files”, “SG-1”, and even “West Wing” fandoms: when the old guard moves on, in whole or in part, the new guard is less popular than the plague.

    Two characters are in the spotlight in this episode, each one effectively stepping into the vacuum created by the changes dropped in the producers’ lap by apparent outside contingencies. Thomas Grace steps into Vaughn’s role, and it’s practically impossible for him to live up to the expectations. For one thing, Balthazar Getty plays the role with a low energy stoicism that seems rather wooden in contrast to Vaughn, and his chemistry with Garner is questionable at best.

    However, he’s not supposed to be Vaughn, and that’s what the audience will need to recognize. Clearly, Grace is a character that needs definition, and Getty is trying to portray the character with that vision in mind. It’s just not an easy character to embrace at the moment, because he’s still a cipher. He has a checkered past, apparently, but what that means is still unclear. And it’s his connection to Rachel that’s important, not his chemistry with Jennifer.

    This episode is basically a huge introduction for Rachel and why she fits into the “Alias” mold. The writers take the easy way out, in a sense, by having Rachel play the part that Sydney was playing at the beginning of the series. One couldn’t send out a more obvious message: if the series is to continue, Rachel’s character is at the center of the reboot.

    It’s almost certain that Rachel Nichols will be lambasted for not immediately communicating the depth and presence that Jennifer presented in the series pilot. That’s not entirely fair, because Rachel as a character doesn’t have the luxury of standing on her own. The audience already saw how the series began with Sydney, and Rachel is her successor. She’ll never be seen as Sydney’s equal, and in a way, the writers made sure that it’s part of the character’s make-up.

    Rachel represents Sydney as she might have been, had the truth about SD-6 been revealed much earlier in her career. Rachel is going to have to deal with a learning curve that would get most people killed, and with Sydney rapidly losing her ability to work in the field, Rachel is perfectly positioned to step up to the plate. Tying Rachel to Dean was a smart plot device, because it gives Rachel as much reason to hunt down Dean as Sydney has, making it logical for Sydney to train and develop Rachel as an agent.

    The writers also provide Grace with a tenuous reason for taking care of Rachel as a new potential partner by having him feel responsible for putting her in danger. One can see the dynamic already: Sydney wanting to push Rachel so she can get answers about Vaughn, Grace trying to keep Sydney from going too far, Rachel finding the strength to make up her own mind. If the fans give it a chance, it might actually work well, since Rachel Nichols ought to look damn good in Sydney’s old wardrobe, and she’s a capable actress.

    As far as the Sloane plot is concerned, it’s about as good as it can be without any references to Rambaldi, the events at the end of the fourth season, or actually seeing Nadia and her condition. This subplot felt more forced than the rest of the episode, largely because it feels like the writers don’t know what to do with Sloane without the Rambaldi context. Sloane needs something to do, and it will probably come around once the new characters are more established.

    So the season seems to be coming together as such: Dean’s organization, the one devoted to the whole Prophet Five/Vaughn situation, is like the new SD-6, right down to the pseudo-Rambaldi obsession. Sydney and Grace are like the new Weiss and Vaughn, with Rachel stepping into Sydney role. Sloane will no doubt eventually join Dean’s crusade, ostensibly because the genetic information in the Prophet Five document might help Nadia. In other words, things are falling into a very familiar pattern.

    Amy Acker gets to play the bad girl, ala Sark, with full knowledge of the true purpose of Dean’s organization. Peyton is bad to the bone, right down to the cliché smoking habit, but Acker manages to play the role well. Her accent is more suited to the someone dorky Fred on “Angel”, but as her turn as Illyria on the same show demonstrated, she can do sexy and evil with the best of them.

    One interesting question: are the producers trying to give Rachel some edge by suggesting that she’s not into men? Peyton seems to hint at that, saying that they don’t have the same taste. Sure, it’s just speculation, but it would be a quick and easy way to eliminate the cliché of the two new agents being interested in one another. It’s also a somewhat obvious ploy.

    The question is whether or not the producers intend to continue the series past this season, should the network decide that the low ratings are still acceptable. If so, then the writers need to give Rachel a background with the depth and intrigue that came along with Sydney in the pilot. If they don’t do that, then the series won’t be able to survive Sydney’s absence, since the majority of the character conflict center on Sydney. Right now, the writers have time to do that, but the question is whether or not the network will make it worth the effort.
  • Not bad, but below par on Alias standards.

    Overall, this episode was pretty entertaining, but below par as Alias episodes go. I wish they had gotten a little more into Agent Grace and his background- although I'm sure they'll be getting to that later. We do see Syd struggling with having to work with the "replacement Vaughn", and it does come off as genuine and sincere.

    The best scene in this episode: when Agent Grace races to The Shed in an attempt to save Rachel, and the compassion and emotion showed by him, and more importantly Sydney's warming to him after viewing his acts.

    The worst scene- the whole scene between Sloane and Dolzhenko is very poorly done, and just way too contrived. Granted, the viewer needs to suspend reality to buy into anything on this show, but Dolzhenko's actions here are just ridiculous.
  • Just like the pilot episode!

    I think after 5 years, and a very pregnant star, the writers have officially run out of material. This episode was just like the pilot- a young girl finds out she is working for criminals instead of the CIA and trys to stop them. But instead of one person dying they all died.
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