The Morse Code heard over the title is: WHO RAN RED BELL. Project Red Bell is the project that Hawkins was working on.
The episode suggests that it was Hawkins' actions that saved New York City.
During Hawkins' initial meeting at Higgins Satellite, at least two computer screens indicate cities that were presumably targeted for attack.
In a humorous scene, displaying her ignorance of farm life, the first time Mimi talks to the chicken she is about to kill, she claims that the creature lays the fewest eggs, so it must be the first to go. The bird she is talking to is a rooster. One hopes Stanley has more than one male on the farm.
Hawkins tells Jake that Jericho was chosen as the post-nuclear attack meeting place due to its location away from any fall out from an attack on the largest US cities. This is actually true according to FEMA's fallout maps of the USA.
The man Hawkins has identified as "Boss", and possible head of the bomb plot, is Thomas Valente whom Hawkins first met during his time working under deep cover trying to stop the bombing. Valente works for the "Domestic Nuclear Detection Office" within the "Department of Homeland Security" as seen on Hawkins laptop at the end of the episode.
The name Higgins (Higgins Satellite - the CIA front company where Hawkins went) is a possible reference to the 1975 movie Three Days of the Condor about a conspiracy within the CIA. Robert Redford plays CIA researcher Joseph Turner, who bears a similarity to Hawkins - both appear to have been ordinary analysts before being drawn into a high level conspiracy. In the movie Turner goes to meet Higgins (a top level agent). On Jericho Hawkins is told to ask to meet with a Mr. Higgins (once inside a top level agent briefs him on a terrorist conspiracy).
"Red Bell" was the name of the CIA project to gather, by any means necessary, nuclear weapons sold on the black market by former Soviet republics after the fall of the Soviet Union and transport them to the US for disposal - one of the shipments was stolen and converted into the 25 city bombs; and that's where Hawkins team came in - they were to clean up the mess by penetrating the terrorist cells and recovering the bombs. Unfortunately, 21 of the bombs exploded.
(Harry finds Johnston in the woods hunting)
Harry: Johnston, you really are here looking for deer? Thought they're all gone.
Johnston: What do you want, Harry?
Harry: You think you could come to the City Hall today? Gray's still out. It would be nice to have somebody around who knows what they're doing.
Johnston: Not my job anymore. Now get lost, I'm trying to shoot some deer.
Harry: Just be for a day or two.
Johnston: (takes the gun) You're starting to look an awful lot like a deer, Harry.
Mimi (to the chicken that lays the fewest eggs): Here's my concern. I've heard stories about how you're going to react to this and if I see half of you running around, well I just know that I'm going to freak out. So if you could do your best to minimize that part of it, well I'd just really appreciate it.
Emily (about restarting school): It's time we start trying to get things back to normal.
Jake: Gotta be honest with you, if I'm a kid, going to school isn't exactly high on my list of priorities these days.
Emily (to class): Five months ago this was a map of our country. Now it's an antique. It's a picture of the way things used to be.
Mimi (to chicken): So it's come to this. I want you to know that this is nothing to do with you personally. I'm sure you're wonderful. But, let's be honest here. You're the one that lays the fewest eggs and I distinctly told all of you that this was going to happen. I believe I made myself perfectly clear in that regard.
Hawkins: Those are Defense Department projections. They've been doing them since the 50's. They're fallout scenarios in the event of a nuclear attack on 20 US cities. Do you see Jericho? It's outside the fallout zones, Jake, it's got a salt mine, plenty of farmland, and access to an untainted water table.
Jake: So you weren't here to monitor phone calls?
Hawkins: Jericho was a rally point in case we failed in our mission.
Jake: Failed or succeeded?
Jimmy: The terrorists had FBI badges. Robert Hawkins has an FBI badge. You think that's just coincidence?
Jake: Maybe he's FBI. Please, tell me you thought of that.
Jimmy: I did. And I asked his family. And they all say he's FBI. All right? But, when they said it, they all had this look on their face, like, there was something they weren't saying.
Jake: Sorta like the look I have on my face right now.
Mimi: What are you doing? You let him stay the night?
Mimi: Well that doesn't seem like something that Stanley would approve of, does it?
Bonnie: Stanley's not here.
Robert: You do not want to know what I know.
Jake: I think I can handle it.
Robert: Really? I can barely handle it and I was trained for this.
Jake: You can tell me or you can tell the whole town.
Emily: Well, I guess school is out early today. You don't have to stay if you don't want.
Allison: I don't think I should be hanging around home right now. So I guess I'm stuck here.
Jake: Did you wipe out 23 American cities?
Robert: Get out of my house!
Jake: Answer the question!
Robert: Why would you even think that?
Jake: You've got a working generator and a food supply. It's like you knew the attacks were coming!
Hawkins: I'm an FBI agent, Jake.
Jake: Yeah, that's what I heard. Problem is the radio's reporting that the terrorists used forged FBI badges to get their bombs into position. (points behind Hawkins) What is that room? How are you involved in all of this? I need to know.
Jake: At the FBI, what were you working on?
Hawkins: I was sent here to monitor phone calls made in the area to a suspected terrorist cell.
Jake: And what'd you find out?
Hawkins: Nothing. Trail went dead. We about done here?
Jake: Not even close. Tell me about her: Sarah Mason. (while Jake's distracted, Hawkins reaches behind his back and pulls a gun from a drawer)
Hawkins: She's gone. (realizing gun's empty, chuckles) You're pretty thorough.
Jake: I also took care of the one in the cabinet and the one behind the water heater. There's only one loaded gun in this house, and it's mine. Sit down.
Hawkins: You know, you are making a serious mistake. I am a federal officer.
Jake: Really? Really? Sure you're not... (Opens drawer full of IDs) Robert Wheeler, State Department? Or how bout Robert Snider, Columbus PD? Commander Robert Richmond, Naval Intelligence? None of those are real, and neither is that badge. Now who the hell are you? And who do you work for?
Jake: What is that??
Hawkins: It's the end of the rabbit hole, Jake. Give me a hand with this.
Jake (under his breath): God, it's heavy!
Hawkins: So...You believe me now?!
Victor: We need you back.
Hawkins: Why me?
Victor: Because you're the best at what you do.
Hawkins: Which is what?
Victor: Your family will be there when you get back. The team is meeting tomorrow. Come listen to to what this is about. If you want to walk away after that, walk away. 2:00 tomorrow. Tell the desk jockey you have an appointment with Mr. Higgins. If they ask you about the weather, tell them it's gonna rain.
Jake: Did you bust this lock open?
Jimmy (resignedly): Uh, yeah.
Jake: All right, yeah. This is kind of weird. But if he is FBI, isn't this what his basement would look like?
Jimmy: Well, that's what I said. Until I saw this... (opens desk drawer containing several ID's and a wad of cash)
Jake: I never went to law school, but I'm gonna go ahead and guess -- this is breaking and entering?
Jimmy: It's called probable cause.
Jake: It's called paranoid abuse of authority. C'mon, let's go before he comes home and catches you prying up his floorboards.
Jimmy: You remember last week in the radio broadcast they said the terrorists used fake FBI badges to move through security?
Jimmy: I seen one of those badges.
- Denmark: January 2, 2008 on SBS Net
- Australia: July 17, 2008 on TEN HD
- The Netherlands: July 21, 2008 on Veronica
"Mechanical" by Diefenbach
Daniel Benzali plays Valente, the head of Hawkins' CIA operation. In CBS' The Agency, he played CIA director Robert Quinn.
Hawkings: It's the end of the rabbit hole, Jake.
This is an allusion to Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, where Alice follows a mysterious white rabbit into a rabbit hole to enter the fantastic 'Wonderland'.
Hawkins: We keep it safe, we keep it secret.
This is very similar to one of the most famous lines in The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring where Gandalf intently says to Frodo, "Keep it secret, keep it safe."
When the deputy asks Jake for help Emily suggests he should have his own Bat Signal. The Bat Signal is from DC comics' "Batman" and is a light shined in the sky with Batman's logo on that Commisioner Gordon uses to call Batman for help. Ashley Scott (Emily) played Batman's daughter in Birds of Prey.
In the scene where Hawkins goes to "Higgins Satellite" (CIA front company) for his appointment the receptionist enters code 0911 to buzz Hawkins in. This alludes to the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon.