Without a Trace

Season 4 Episode 2


Aired Thursday 10:00 PM Oct 06, 2005 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
118 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

The team searches for a missing teenager who was obsessed with the safety of his school after losing a parent and watching the towers on 9/11 fall. Martin and Vivian both return from medical leave. Jack seems to be feeling protective of his staff and loses his temper when Danny puts himself in the way of unnecessary harm.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

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  • The episode is basically about a boy who witnessed the 911 attacks and from since then he has been obsessed with secruity and saftey controls.

    This episode made no sense whatsoever. Instead of having a kid blow up the school because of hatred or the usual reason of being bullied all his life, the writer thought it would be interesting to flip it and have him blow the school up to show flaws in the security system.

    Orgianally, the missing boy Ryan thought up his plan of bombing the school with his best friend, who through the years grew away from Ryan and started hanging out with the cool kids. After being pushed to far by his former best friend and the cool kids Ryan decides to implement his plan.

    During all this time, the team is frantically searching for Ryan and grows very concern when they learn that he has built a bomb. The cool kids torture him into telling them where he has hid it, but he did not give them an exact location.

    When the team eventaully find Ryan in the school with the bomb, Danny approaches him, and it is evident to the viewers that Danny is not following FBI's protocal, by the look on Jack's face. Danny manages to wrestle the detonator out of Ryan's hand and Jack yells and collars him by the throat for puting himself and the team in danger.

    But, the funny thing about this episode is it's lack of material, plotline and just plain sense. The writer should be shot and fired for this piece of rubbish.moreless
  • My fave episode of Without a Trace, Terrific acting.

    Well what can i say, this episode was Brilliant!!! Basically this episode is about a young boy who was deeply affected by 9/11 and in order to prove that his school isn't safe builds a bomb and plans to blow it up.

    Shane Haboucha stole the show with his performance as Ryan and really showed what a terrific young actor he is. And made me ask the question, Where is he now? Despite the fact he built a bomb i couldn't help but feel sorry for him, humiliated by the school bullies (one of which used to be his best friend) and left alone in his school. I'll be your friend Shane!!! Overall a great episode with a sad ending, one of the best episodes this great show has produced! A Must See!!moreless
  • the ultimate best

    i love this show.. it was like.. awesome.. the boy in it was super hott. and it the show was just very like suspensful.. so i loved it.. if i would watch any show of without a trace.. that would be my first pick.. hopefully they will play it again..
  • A sad reminder of the frailty of children.

    Talk about betrayal. A couple of guys have been friends for ages. One has a growth spurt and a new set of friends; the other is left alone to endure the ridicule of classmates without an ally. When Ryan (wonderfully played by a very talented teen, Shane Haboucha) is bullied and his old friend just lets it happen he is shattered.

    This episode is a vivid reminder of just how cruel school is for some. If a child can't feel safe in school is there any possibility a healthy regard for life can be gained?

    What if your dad died when you were nine? What if you were witness to 9/11? Worse still, what if you are a latch key kid, with no one to help you escape loneliness?

    This is the tale of a true American tragedy. Just how common this situation might be is the blackest mark against the maddening materialism so rampant in US society today.

    Boys actually torturing each other are unspeakable crimes against nature.moreless
  • Heartwrenching!

    I am not a guy that is generally thought of as being a softie. That being said, this episode pulled at my heartstings as much or more than any episode of ANY show I have ever seen on TV.

    As a person that works with young people, (and I am not exactly old myself!) I am very aware of the torture chamber that high school can be for ceirtain kids; only the strongest, or "coolest" can survive, at least happily. "Safe" brings that to light, along with many other issues that face our children, and our country in general.

    Ryan Wallace has had a tough enough life as it is; his dad died when he was 9, he witnessed the horrifying (and scarring) 9/11 disaster. To make matters worse, his mom works for an airline, With his sister working two jobs, he is left to fend for himself, save for his best friend, Charlie, who also protects him.

    The episode is both captivating and horribly saddening, as you see the life of a young boy, already far from happy, totally unravel. The damage to the boy is made obvious throughout. When his best friend, who always protected him, suddenly turns on him and beats him up, the look of sadness, hurt and disbelief is unforgetable. The story about the bomb almost takes the back seat to the story about Ryan. It is a story full of parallels, and an episode I will not soon forget.moreless
Shane Haboucha

Shane Haboucha

Ryan Wallace

Guest Star

Kenneth Schmidt

Kenneth Schmidt

Charlie Lane

Guest Star

Michael Welch

Michael Welch

Lance Carson

Guest Star

Joshua Gomez

Joshua Gomez

James Mackeroy

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

  • QUOTES (2)

    • Martin Fitzgerald: Any luck with the hard drive?
      Vivian Johnson: Just homework papers so far.
      James Mackeroy: Up to our asses in Marie Antoinette letting everybody eat cake.
      Vivian Johnson: Martin Fitzgerald, meet James Mackeroy.
      James Mackeroy: Oh hey, you can uh … you can call me Mack.

    • Jack Malone: What are you doing? What's the matter with you? What is up with you? What? Do you think you're invincible? Is that it?
      Danny Taylor: Look, the kid opened up to me. I took an opportunity. That's it.
      Jack Malone: We had a chance to talk that kid down. Now he has to live for the rest of his life that he pushed that button and so do you. You keep screwing up; you're going to be doing break time in two seconds flat. (Jabs Danny in the chest.) Do not mess with me!

  • NOTES (2)