Without a Trace

Season 1 Episode 21

Are You Now Or Have You Ever Been?

Aired Thursday 10:00 PM May 01, 2003 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
84 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Jack's methods in the investigation of child molester could result in the case being kicked out of court. Then, on top of that, the Office of Professional Responsibility decides to investigate the team, but their real target is Jack.

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  • Conclusion to first year..

    Somehow this episode feels like it is a big conclusion of first season before the two final episodes what promise to be huge.

    The case from the quite beginning returns and oh.. it is in court and looks bad.. And turning the episode we just see how it all falls apart and man we all knew did it, walks away free. Stunning, isn't it..

    But there is another storyline too. A investigation on their action turning that middle-east doctor.. and in reality they are just after Jack and trying to get it down. And they do manage it as he resigns.. Very promising storylines, with irony how people try to do their best and they lose it all..moreless
  • Out of character, but not in a bad way. No missing people for the team to find here. However, there is still an investigation.

    I liked this episode because it is a break from the usual whipping out of the gun or chasing criminals. Also, me being a Jam (Jack and Sam) fan, it was interesting to see what exactly is going on between the two. If you haven't seen this episode, you may want to run down to your local video-rental store and pick up that season one DVD, or you can pick it up for cheap somewhere to purchase, because it is pretty important in understanding the complicated relationships in the Bureau. However, if you're only watching this show for the missing people, you can probably skip over this, except it does touch on the consiquences of some controversial decisions Jack made on cases previous to this episode. I'm not exactly sure all of the resons that i liked this episode, but i liked it, so maybe you will too. :)moreless
  • How much do you trust your audience?

    This was the first time I'd seen a TV show so thoroughly trust its audience enough to devote a show entirely to old cases -- most of which had happened pretty early in the series' run. Using the Andy Deaver case as a backdrop for the investigation into Jack's running of the department (which allowed them to bring up prior "bad acts" from Little Big Man, In Extremis, Between the Cracks and of course, Suspect) was just incredibly well-done.

    Farrell chipping away at Jack professionally and personally (especially in his interview with Samantha) came to a head at the end -- with him choosing honesty over justice by telling the truth about Spaulding not requesting a lawyer, and what was necessary over what he wanted, by forgiving Samantha for lying about their affair.

    Not only was this episode a great character study of Jack, but it lent new insights to the team dynamic -- each one reacting to the OPR investigation a little differently -- and "outed" the Jack/Samantha affair. All of this, and Spaulding walks because of Jack's integrity. An instant classic!!moreless
Thomas Vincent Kelly

Thomas Vincent Kelly


Guest Star

Harris Laskawy

Harris Laskawy

Judge H. Adderly

Guest Star

Jared Hillman

Jared Hillman

Andy Deaver

Guest Star

Lynn Whitfield

Lynn Whitfield

Paula Van Doren

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

    • This is the first episode where the main storyline does not involve a missing person (it's the back story in this scenario), because the team is being investigated for their handling of previous cases.

    • Goof: In the original airing of "Suspect", Jack had short hair, but in the newly created flashbacks he has the current longer hair.

  • QUOTES (3)

    • (Danny accuses Martin of having 'ratted him out' to Farrell.)
      Danny: How did he find out that I roughed up Radio, huh?
      Martin: I didn't say a word about that.
      Danny: Right.
      Martin: Oh, come on, Danny, you only bragged to half the office about it. How the hell do you think he heard?

    • (To Vivian in regards to the interrogations they are receiving.)
      Danny: Are you forgetting that Martin was the leader of the 'Anwar Zamir is a terrorist' parade?

    • (To Malone, after his confession is ruled inadmissible.)
      Graham: I guess my fifteen minutes aren't up after all.

  • NOTES (1)

    • The original broadcast of this episode was delayed by approximately thirty minutes in the United States due to a speech given by President George W. Bush.


    • Title: "Are You Now Or Have You Ever Been?"

      The title of this episode is a reference to the infamous opening question asked in the Communist inquisitions of the 1940s and 1950s: "Are you now or have you ever been a member of the Communist party?"