Season 5 Episode 8

Thirty-Six Hours

Aired Friday 10:00 PM Nov 21, 2008 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
146 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

When a passenger train collides with a freight train carrying toxic chemicals, Don and his team not only must race against the clock to get the passengers out safely, they must determine whether the crash was an act of sabotage or linked to terrorism.

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  • There is a rumor that is the final season for Numb3rs, and it shows. A show running out of ideas..

    A story which is full of holes. It's seems that they are running out of material. I am not a fan of the new actor either. The show is beginning to wain for me. It almost looks like they are trying with the material, knowing it is not working. David seems to be getting too much involved in his case work. The Grainger character seems to be less interested every week. The father on the show seems to be completely filler. I hope they get back to the level they were at in Season 3. I am running out of time with Numb3rs.moreless
  • this eprsold is 1 of the best eprsolds all them all

    who dose david think he is telling charlie what to do, his bro is the head of the FBI lol i mean charlie was just trying to help wiv his robots and he had no sleep what so ever and david just shouts at him and he is supose to be the boss and he nearly kills him self buy going in to the train but alls well that end well he gets the boy out alive. but it is a shame about charlies robotes i love thos littel guys, i woder how much they cost coz i wold love 5 lol

    till nsxt time c yamoreless
  • the teams tries to beat the cloct to save lives after two trains collide and prevent an enviromental disaster. was it terrorism or a freak accident?

    one of the best episodes this season. kept me on the edge of my seat and was very emotional. i loved the focus on david and colby. david makes a promise to a frantic mother that he will bring her son to safety and almost dies in the attempt. we can feel the heartbreak when colby realizes that his partner and best friend may be on a suicide mission. of course, that causes colby to go after david and they pretty much save the day. to me the rescue mission overshadowed the investigation, but since the rescue focused on colby and david that's what made it so good. colby is my favorite character and i love the partnership between him and david, they have real chemistry.moreless
  • I loved this episode. So unlike the other Numb3rs episodes of this series. The action is all set over 36 hours and you are watching the drama unfold instead of seeing it in flash backs and re telling by the villains.moreless

    I think the writers are really trying something different this series. Some of the episodes like this one there is not a lot of 'action' but there is a lot of tension. I was great to see Colby and David work so well together, a great double act.

    I was also good to see Charlie under pressure. Don also looks more world weary. He looks like he could almost cry at the end (Just needs a hug!) Charlie I think at the end is looking at the important things that matter to him. Its nice to see that although the ending was happy (the little boy and the conductor saved) there was still a note of sadness. Don having a go at himself for slamming the guy into the car and the look on Charlie's face at the end.

    Its nice that the writers throw in these episodes to bring a sense of humanity to the characters.moreless
  • Great episode!

    Great episode but a little over the top with the emotions. Colby was the cool head in this episode who knew when to rest. David was showing his lack of experience during this type of event. He didn't know when to rest and as a result was acting out of sheer emotion. Colby had to save his rear which made for some nice moments between them.

    Charlie was good but again, too emotional for my tastes. He really needs to man up a bit :-)

    I loved the ending with Charlie, Don, and Amita sleeping in the living room looking exhausted. Very nice episode.moreless
Larry Clarke

Larry Clarke

James Malin

Guest Star

Johnny Chavez

Johnny Chavez

Ralph Ramirez

Guest Star

Philip Pinto

Philip Pinto

William Ramirez

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

    • Opening Numb3rs:
      1.5 MILES TO STOP

    • Diesel engines slow and stop by reversing the polarity of generators that turn the wheels. Doing this causes the wheels to slow because they are being affected by a very strong magnet that is now providing resistance instead of driving power. Even with this "dynamic braking," trains need 1/4 to 1 mile to slow to a stop given the speeds depicted in this episode, which were only about 20 MPH.

  • QUOTES (3)

    • David: I don't know how to get out of here.
      Colby: Don't worry, I left us breadcrumbs.

    • (David and Colby are discussing what to do in their free time)
      Nikki: Got a train crash.
      Colby: Call NTSB?
      Nikki: They called us. Possible hazardous materials, high-threat urban area.
      David: By hazardous materials, do you mean old computer batteries?
      Colby: No rest for the weary.

    • Charlie: You killed my bots, man.
      Colby: Well they all deserve purple hearts. Put badges on the next ones.

  • NOTES (3)

    • International Air Dates:

      Norway: March 12, 2009 on TV2

      The Netherlands: March 22, 2009 on Veronica

      Czech Republic: June 3, 2010 on TV Nova

      Finland: April 10, 2012 on Sub

    • This episode was originally scheduled to be the fourth episode of the season, but it was pushed back to the eighth slot because of its content.

      On September 18, 2008, a commuter train collided with a freight train in the San Fernando Valley in California. Over two dozen people were killed, and many more injured. This episode had already been written and filmed before the tragedy.

      When "Thirty-Six Hours" finally did air, David Krumholtz (Charlie Eppes) came on screen before the episode and warned that though these scenes had been filmed weeks before, they might prove to be traumatic to those affected by the real accident. He expressed condolences from the entire Numb3rs cast and crew to the victims and families affected by the tragedy.

    • Music used in this episode was "Dead Man's Handle" by Richard Thompson (opening scene) and "Passenger Song" by Great Lake Swimmers (closing scene).