Season 1 Episode 4

Secrets of the Secret Service

Aired Monday 10:00 PM Jan 27, 2014 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
79 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Secrets of the Secret Service

Gabriel and Riley go on a covert mission posing as additional security for a diplomatic convoy in order to extract two American journalists in Syria. During the mission, Gabriel makes some choices that will affect Clockwork's future.

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  • As a Syrian I must say this episode sucks

    I tend to disagree with those who praised the effort in this episode. Maybe just because I'm Syrian, or maybe because I have an ego that I can't keep for myself. All I know is this:

    1) Why make 'fun' of Damascus when termed "The oldest urban city in the World"? The 'Former President' mentioned this upon arrival at the Nevada desert where the scenes were shot. Is there anything wrong with this statement? Should Syrians be ashamed for living in the "oldest" city?

    2) Oldest does not usually mean all buildings are old. Neither the writer, nor the producer, nor any member of the crew ever visited Damascus. Even the eldest locations in Damascus are built using concrete. It's not a place in the desert for God's sake!!!

    3) Whoever gave the crew an impression that the military wears red hats and neatly-ironed clothes is fundamentally wrong. The poor military personnel in Syria wear clothes that belongs to the third or forth preceding generation. From the personal strength, though, the series made it look as if it were a walk in the park. At least show some resistance.

    4) Again someone gave the crew the impression that military automobiles in Syria are old. Indicating once again that they have never been to Syria.

    5) Thanks to whoever it is behind the trouble in Syria, one of the 'best' episodes of a TV Series shines in the eyes of the viewers. Kinda reminds me of The A-Team, Starsky and Hutch and Knight Rider's struggles with the then called: "Soviet Union".

    6) I loved the Asian (looked Pakistani or Indian to me) headmaster's Arabic. He sounded just like they do in the Gulf. You've found a few Syrians claiming the role of solders and their Arabic was good and Syrian dialect acceptably close to reality. Why chose this person for the role of Headmaster?

    My list can go further. For all these and many other reasons, including my interest in the series, I'd say they could've done much better. They left a lot to be desired. Maybe only from the perspective of an extrovert Syrian? You judge.moreless
  • Old style TV

    Good to see Lance Reddick making an appearance, but that's about it for highlights of this episode. It's like watching a show from back in the 80's. I kept expecting BA Baracus to leap out of that limo.
  • Intense!

    This was a truly flawless episode and the first episode that we have had which is a case that stands on its own as it is not tied to the main overarching storyline.

    It was truly interesting and there were so many intense scenes as the rteam worked to rescue a seriesof people in Syria, but there was a little surprise towards the end as well, which completed the storyline nicely!

    Overall, I am really enjoying this entire show, and this is probably the best or 2nd best episode so far!moreless
  • A better episode, yes, but...

    Lets not get our hopes up too quickly. This episode was written by Matthew Lau (Chuck, Covert Affairs) who has written only one more. There are a couple of other good writers who have also written 1 or 2 episodes which they will probably slip in when the rating goes down. Other than that, most of the series is written by the creator Michael Seitzman and others. None of which has written any major thing before.

    The ending left us with the impression that they will push Strand (Marg Helgenberger) in the background in favor of the CIA director (Lance Reddick) which would be a good move. But there's been so many inconsistencies so far that whe never know if they will follow which ever new story line they introduce (like the toxic spill in Seatle). Strand might have been a good leader of the development project but she seems totally overwhelmed and confused by the situations of covert ops. I feel pity every time I see her and Gabriel doesn't even respect her "authority"...

    And there is the dear Dr. Cassidy who's story is a constant curse on the show for me (and maybe others, and they probably hope that we will forget with time). The guy retires after implanting the chip, his major project, like, he doesn't want to stick around to see how it goes. Nonetheless, while in retirement, he not only designs but builds a second chip. What kind of equipment does he have in his garage? You don't weld those by hand. Did he have access to the facility? Unsupervised? Because nobody knew about the chip. And why did he retire if he wanted to make another chip? And, mostly, why is he back at the facility? All of this within a 6 or 8 months period. It makes absolutely NO sense... It is stuff like this which has killed promising series and will also hurt a lot or kill this show.

    The next episode was written by Barry O'Brien another good writer (CSI:Miami, Hannah Montana, among other writing credits) so it should be good also.

  • Keep it up...

    I have been hesitant so far in watching this series because i don't want to be emotionally invested in it and it gets cancelled... but with a strong episode like this i feel that this show might just get its much deserve chance to prove itself... it is still no where close to POI but this episode is a step in the right direction...
Josh Holloway

Josh Holloway

Gabriel Vaughn

Marg Helgenberger

Marg Helgenberger

Director Lillian Strand

Meghan Ory

Meghan Ory

Riley Neal

Michael Rady

Michael Rady

Chris Jameson

John Billingsley

John Billingsley

Dr. Shenendoah Cassidy

PJ Byrne

PJ Byrne

Nelson Cassidy

Lance Reddick

Lance Reddick

Jeffrey Tetazoo

Guest Star

Bill Smitrovich

Bill Smitrovich

President Finnigan

Guest Star

Michael Trucco

Michael Trucco

Agent Griffin

Guest Star

Tomas Arana

Tomas Arana

Adam Weatherly

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (5)

    • Lillian: Gabriel, the parameters of this operation have been satisfied. Turn that car around and go back to the plane. Are we clear?
      Gabriel: Don't let some inter-agency rivalry get in the way of doing the right thing, Lillian.
      Lillian: That's not what this is about, and you know it.
      Gabriel: Back in Delta we had one rule, everybody goes home. (Lillian pauses) I knew it! There's a heart in there after all.

    • Lillian: What the hell were you thinking?
      Director Tetazoo: I know you're upset, but I'd be careful if I were you. I'm still the director of the CIA.
      Lillian: We've known each other for a long time, Jeff. We both know where the bodies are buried and who put them there. You sure you want to threaten me?

    • Riley: Sir, do you mind if I ask you a question?
      President Finnegan: Please.
      Riley: Why did you allow us to accompany you on a diplomatic mission when you knew it was a covert op?
      President Finnegan: There have been 25 men in history who have wielded the awesome power of the American military during wartime. If you asked any one of them what their greatest regret was, it would be that they didn't have the power to avoid war.

    • Agent Griffin: Look, to be clear, my assignment is tangent. That's Finnegan. Secret Service protocol is 90% to the client, 10% to the problem. While I want you to succeed, obviously, if you get yourself into trouble, neither I nor my men will be able to help you. Is that clear?
      Gabriel: Unless we only need 10%.
      Agent Griffin: This guy's good, Riley. Keep him.

    • Barbara: Riley Neal?
      Gabriel: What do you know? The loner has friends.
      Barbara: You're alive?
      Riley: You thought I was dead?
      Barbara: Or on a desk.
      Jameson: Is there a difference?

  • NOTES (1)