JAG

Season 1 Episode 15

Hemlock

1
Aired Friday 9:00 PM Mar 27, 1996 on CBS
8.8
out of 10
User Rating
60 votes
2

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Episode Summary

EDIT

Due to an exchange of digits Lt. Austin receives a fax with the itinerary for a person with the codename 'Shepherd'. Later on, a Commander from the Royal Navy shows up demanding that paper. After receiving it he shoots at Meg, seriously wounding her. Trying to find out who this 'Shepherd' is and why this document is that important they end up chasing an assassin named 'Hemlock' apparently working for Russian hardliners and trying to kill the man behind 'Shepherd' - Boris Yeltsin who is due in the US for a secret treaty signing. Locations: Washington, D.C.; Bethesda; Leesburg, Va.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • When Lt. Austin receives a mysterious fax and is shot by an assassin and left in a coma, it's up to Harm and Commander Krennick to track him down and uncover his deadly agenda, which has something to do with the fax, and someone codenamed 'Shepard'.moreless

    9.5
    The sender of the fax is an assassin known only as 'Hemlock', long believed to be a 'CIA myth'. His use of clever disguises and his ability to mimic foreign accents and mannerisms of numerous types of professions allows him access to areas necessary to carry out his deadly assignments. In this particular instance, 'Hemlock' has insinuated himself into a custodial position at the Pentagon. He accesses the wing of the British Navy one evening, and enters the private office of a certain Commander Nelson. On Nelson's computer, he finds the itinerary of his next target: Boris Yeltsin, whose codename is 'Shepard'. In his haste to get this information, he transposes the last two digits of the intended fax number, sending it to another number - a number that turns out to be Meg's.



    Lt. Cmdr. Rabb spots the fax in her basket the next morning and questions Meg about it. Since she knows not who sent it or what it is for, they lock it in the office safe. With a Pentagon prefix, it certainly makes sense that the information could be delicate.



    Over the lunch hour, Harm dines with an old friend, Bruce, from Naval Intelligence. When he picks his brains about this 'Shepard', Bruce gets nervous and clams up. He tells Harm it's classified, and that the fax should be shredded - no explanation given.



    Back in their office, Meg's covering for Harm when a man claiming to be Cmdr. Nelson of the Royal British Navy knocks on the door. He explains his presence by saying his secretary has made an embarassing mistake. He tells her about the errant fax, and 'Cmdr. Nelson' acts relieved that Meg has it. She retrieves it from the safe and mentions that while she thought 'Shepard' might have been from the Balkans, and that Harm thought it was a Russian dignitary, neither guessed it was a British dignitary. As Meg is about to hand it to 'Cmdr. Nelson', Cmdr. Krennick walks in, looking for Harm. Meg makes a lame excuse for him, and Krennick, visibly angry that he's skipped out, instructs Meg to have him report to her office as soon as he returns. She leaves in a huff, and Meg gives 'Cmdr. Nelson' the fax. She walks to her desk as he jokes that Harm's in for some "rough seas" when he returns, and Meg says that he's a survivor. "We'll see," is all 'Cmdr. Nelson' says in response as he pulls out a silenced pistol and shoots Meg where she stands. Krennick picks that moment to walk back into the office, with an additional message for Meg to deliver to Harm. Her unexpected return keeps the would-be killer from finishing off Meg as she lies on the floor, bleeding from a wound to the back of her head. Krennick sprints off immediately yelling for security, and narrowly misses being shot, herself. 'Cmdr Nelson' quietly slips into an elevator and out of sight.



    Krennick rides with a severely-injured Meg in the air ambulance to Bethesda where she learns the best Neurosurgeon is en route by helicopter, and not likely to make it in time to perform life-saving surgery. The back-up, an inexperienced Dr. Klein, decides to go ahead and remove the slug that's embedded between Meg's skull and brain, causing massive hemmorhaging and swelling from the pressure build-up. While waiting for a prognosis, Krennick intercepts a concerned Harm who is anxious for any news about what happened to Meg. Krennick relays what transpired in Meg's office, and how she narrowly missed being shot by 'Cmdr. Nelson', too. Convinced the shooter is not Nelson, Harm remembers the fax, and that his friend from lunch, Bruce, had muttered something about the 'damn Brits screwing up'.



    Dr. Klein comes out with news that Meg was extremely lucky, and that if she ever comes out of the coma she's slipped into, it is likely she'll have little or no brain damage. Since she's being taken to the ICU, only family members would be able to see her, so Harm and Krennick instead focus on trying to find the man responsible for Meg's condition.



    Back at the office, Harm discovers the fax is gone. Krennick had called in a favor from a friend in the British Embassy, and discovered that the real Cmdr Nelson didn't report for work that day. He's later found dead in his apartment of an apparent gunshot wound to the back of the head. They realise that the itinerary must be extremely important to want to kill for; but they still have no idea who 'Shepard' is.



    One of the more poignant episodes, we're treated to some of the only moments in the entire series where information about Meg's family is revealed. While in a coma, Meg sees herself as a little girl, encountering her deceased father on horseback. It was stated in other episodes that Dan Austin died in Vietnam, and Meg-as-a-girl asks him why he didn't come back. He replies that he wanted to, but couldn't until she really needed him.



    Monitoring Meg's condition outside the ICU is 'Ollie', or Oliver North, who we last saw helping Meg in 'Desert Son'. He tells them he fears that 'Shepard' is Boris Yeltsin, and the person responsible for the theft of the fax and Meg's attempted murder is a killer known only as 'Hemlock'. Yeltsin will be secretly arriving in the US to sign a non-proliferation nuclear arms treaty, so an assassination attempt is clearly underway.



    A power struggle between Harm and his 'friend' Bruce ensues, with Harm accusing Bruce of stonewalling him even though he knew how dangerous it was to have the fax. Bruce obviously wants a feather in his cap for being the one to apprehend Hemlock, and Harm is seething because Bruce's silence has almost cost Meg her life.



    This episode also contains some interesting interaction between Harm and Krennick, dubbed 'the dragon lady' by Harm and Meg. Krennick has made it no secret that she is attracted to Harm, and tries her utmost to seduce him, to the point of behaviour that could be construed as sexual harassment. But they are both equally concerned about Meg, and driven to nail Hemlock. At the conclusion of the episode, the good guys have saved the day, and Meg has woken from her coma with no ill effects, other than momentarily thinking Ollie was her Dad. All-in-all, this was a very well-written episode that had me shocked the first time I saw it when Meg was shot. It was unusual to see a lead character incapacitated in such a brutal and abrupt manner on television at the time, and I was honestly afraid she'd been killed. We get to see the lengths Harm would go for his partner, and we get a little metaphysical with Meg's near-death experience. Almost-perfect stuff -except in real life Meg would probably have never survived a bullet to the back of the head.moreless
  • Meg gets shot, and Harm does not rest until he finds the person.

    10
    Meg receives a fax that was not ment her. When the person comes looking for it Meg hands it over not thinking anything of it. Once she hands it over the guy shoots her in back of her head nearly killing her. When Harm learns what happened to Meg, he sets out to stop the guy. Harm chases this guy all over trying to stop him from killing "Shepred". In the end Harm kills the guy, and Meg pulls through and will be okay.

    This, for some weird reason, is one of my favorite episodes. I know it's not a good thing that Meg got shot, but I love how Harm won't even sleep until Meg wakes up. Love the fact that Harm was going to do anything to stop this guy from killing anybody else, and pay for what he did to Meg. This was a great episode of JAG.moreless
Jack Conley

Jack Conley

Hemlock

Guest Star

James Denton

James Denton

Lt. Cmdr. Bruce Carmichael

Guest Star

Scott Burkholder

Scott Burkholder

Computer Hacker

Guest Star

John M. Jackson

John M. Jackson

Adm. A.J. Chegwidden

Recurring Role

Andrea Thompson

Andrea Thompson

Cmdr. Allison Krennick

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Lt Cmdr Carmichael: Ah, false modesty! Tell-tale sign of ambition. Well, let's see: Naval hero, lawyer... Commander, all you need is a wife, you can run for Congress.
      Harm: Hah, I'm not that masochistic!

    • (talking about Krennick)
      Meg: I hope you had a good weekend.
      Harm: Where is the dragon lady anyway?

    • (talking about Krennick)
      Meg: She might have a soft side.
      Harm: Yeah, like Atilla the Hun.

    • Krennick: We have a chance to find him with this sketch.
      Adm. Chegwidden: Which the other agencies don't have?
      Krennick: No sir.
      Adm. Chegwidden: Screw 'em. Steal their thunder.
      Harm: Sir?
      Adm. Chegwidden: Steal their thunder. SOB comes in here and shoots one of my officers, I want him stuffed and put in my trophy room. And I want us to do it.
      Harm: Yes sir.

    • Lt Cmdr Carmichael: Harm, I understand that you're upset. But you have got to let the people that know what they're doing handle this.
      Krennick: Would that be you, Lieutenant Commander?
      Lt Cmdr Carmichael: Oh, yes, Ma'am. It would.
      Krennick: You don't seem to be doing a very good job of it.

    • Lt Cmdr Carmichael: Harm, what the hell are you doing here?
      Harm: Someone calling himelf 'Commander Nelson' shot my partner this afternoon.
      Lt Cmdr Carmichael: I know. I'm sorry.
      Harm: He got that fax.
      Lt Cmdr Carmichael: And I told you to shred it.
      Harm: Who the hell is 'Shepherd'?
      Lt Cmdr Carmichael: I told you: that's fied.
      Harm: I think a bullet in my partner's head earned that clearance!

    • Cmdr. Krennick: Harm, you haven't slept in two days.
      Harm: I'll sleep when Meg's awake.

  • NOTES (0)

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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