Without a Trace

Season 5 Episode 1


Aired Thursday 10:00 PM Sep 24, 2006 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
97 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Bryan Parker is questioned by the FBI after being found alone on the road by a police officer, his hand bandaged. He tells them about a young boy his father had abducted, and soon the team is searching for Todd. The search initially goes nowhere, and Sam continues to question Bryan, but they get a lead when Bryan identifies a snapshot of the boy that reveals his identity to be that of missing boy Daniel Ellison. It isn't long before the squad realises that Daniel isn't the first boy that Parker grabbed, and follow his past to find him and the missing boy.moreless

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  • this was such a good episode.

    this wait, and yess i mean this long wait, and finally we are back. this is such a sad episode. a kid helps find another kid. but the thing is the kids father is the kidnapper. sounds confusing, but it worked very well. but the kid actually wasnt his son. wow. he had to try and remember past events, it was sadd. the ending of this episode was phenomilnal. well, they found the little boy. so a plus there. he was reunited with his parents. and the boy who was helping got to go to his mother. it was so cute when sam walked him back. great moment. without a trace keeps getting better and better. glad to see an episode with a lot of sam in it.moreless
  • All the time waiting for the FBI missing persons team really, really worth it.

    I was a tearjeeker, sad episode. A little kid tries to help another kid from his father, a child molester and killer. The team start to search the missing child, who was reported by his parents.

    It turned out this man was a kidnapper, even his so called kid wasn't really his son. It was very sad watching the poor boy trying to remember things to help the current kidnapped kid.

    At the end he was very close to Sam and he was going to be reunited with his mom.

    I would like to see more interaction between the team, and (at least i didn't see) any comment about last season finale.moreless
  • Nice season opener

    Yay! It's back! Great episode that was somewhat Sam-centric. We see a bit more of her character revealed, though she is still one big jumbled mystery.

    I would have liked to find out more about the Parker/Pratt man and his backstory as to why he was taking the small boys. It just seemed he was lonely, but no idea if there was anymore to the story. It was also a little anticlimactic to not see Max's reunion with his mother. Nice touch with Sam taking his hand though. The other WAT characters seemed more in the background this episode, as it appeared to focus on Sam and her interaction with the boy. We also saw her get a little snitty to Jack, after he forces her to talk to the boy in areas she feels unqualified to do so. A great, great season opener -- I look forward to the rest of the season!moreless
  • This episode was a great way to start out the fifth season.

    This episode had a very good story line and I was pleased to see Sam so involved in the case. I thought it was cool at the end when she walked brian/max up to the house to see his mom. The only thing that wasn't believable was that brian/max's mom was omly gone for like twenty seconds and he somehow was taken without her noticing. Overall very good episode.
  • A well written episode, and a fine example of how a case could, & should, turn out...

    There was a real life case some 20 years ago, I think (it was turned into a lifetime movie, if I'm not mistaken)... that was similar to this story line... except that in that case, the first boy was a little older when kidnapped (2-3 years, I think)... and around 15 or 16 when returned to his parents...

    I'm not sure why I was reminded of that case, but I was... maybe this episode was somewhat based on that real life case? At any rate, this episode was a good season opener... and I look forward to the rest of the season.moreless
Brian Kerwin

Brian Kerwin

Randall Parker

Guest Star

Theresa Arrison

Theresa Arrison

Leigh Ellison

Guest Star

Pun Bandhu

Pun Bandhu

Evidence Tech

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

    • Goof: When Max escapes from Robert Pratt's apartment, he isn't carrying anything. But when Max and Samantha approach his mother's house, he is carrying a book bag.

    • Goof: It's unlikely the FBI would've been able to determine whether or not the man and the boy were father and son without the father's DNA.

  • QUOTES (0)

  • NOTES (4)

    • The trailer where Pratt was hiding out and subsequently was killed by FBI in has been used by at least two other CBS shows. The same trailer and set was used in the NCIS Season 2 episode "Chained" and later in The Unit Season 4 premiere "Sacrifice."

    • This is the first episode to air in the show's new timeslot Sundays at 10 p.m.

    • Original International Air Dates:
      Norway: July 1, 2009 on NRK1
      Slovakia: October 6, 2010 on Markiza

    • This episode featured a missing person's alert for Trenton John Duckett. The two-year-old was reported missing from his home in Leesburg, Florida, on August 27, 2006. He has brown hair and brown eyes, and weighs between 35 and 40 pounds.


    • This episode is ripped from the headlines of the case of Steven Stayner, who was kidnapped by Kenneth Parnell at the age of seven. Several years later, he helped Timmy White, a five-year-old victim of Parnell's, escape captivity.