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Scorpion - Going South - Review

Scorpion, “Going South,” was written by the team of Nick Santora and Nicholas Wootton and was directed by David Grossman, whose many credits include Buffy the Vampire Slayer, CSI, and 12 Monkeys. This was another solid episode focusing on a case that takes the team to Mexico. The team is struggling with what it means to be a team. I have to admit given the writing team for this episode, I was expecting a more significant development, but it was still an enjoyable, action packed episode.

The episode begins with a look into Sylvester’s (Ari Stidham) relationship with Megan (Camille Guaty). Her condition is worsening and she’s concerned that Sylvester hasn’t yet told Walter (Elyes Gabel) about their relationship. It’s hilarious – and painful – to watch him try to work up the courage to broach the subject. Naturally, he picks the worst possible moment to tell Walter. Sylvester then obsesses that Walter is angry about it. Paige (Katharine McPhee) asks Walter if he really is mad at Sylvester over his dating Megan, and Walter admits he’s not pleased.

The rest of the team is pissed off at Walter for doing what they see as an “info-mercial” in a local news spot about the team without consulting any of them, and especially without making sure the information about them was correct. Toby (Eddie Kaye Thomas), in particular, is angry with Walter for his narcissistic behavior. Walter only sees the greater good for the team.
The team is hired by “billionaire tech mogul” Richard Elia (Andy Buckley) to rescue his kidnapped daughter in Mexico. I really liked how in the midst of briefing him, Walter explains that they will likely kill his daughter, Zoe (Mia Serafino) within a week, and Paige interrupts to reassure Elia that that isn’t for sure. There’s a nice little non-verbal communication between the two and Walter agrees with Paige. He’s starting to rely on her people skills more and more.

Walter is clearly determined to impress Elia and get a large fee from him. Toby is convinced that Walter is in it for the glory, but it seems more likely he’s still focused on the big pay off as a means to helping Megan. However, when Toby objects to Walter’s plan being too dangerous – going into drug cartel territory – it becomes clear that Walter is not running a democracy. He tells Toby that his plans work and if Toby doesn’t want to participate that’s Toby’s choice.

Walter’s plan, of course, goes to hell pretty quickly after their Mexican escort abandons them and they lost the money. Paige has to keep them on task when they want to fight about credit over finding Zoe. I loved that Toby and Sylvester both knew about the wood duck. Walter continues not to rely on his team – he dismisses Happy’s (Jadyn Wong) plan to hit the streets and talk to the locals. Walter also wants to dismiss using Paco (Aramis Knight), but Toby has a plan.

Toby continuously criticizes Walter’s grandstanding. He also points out that the news story damages any ability they have at anonymity. The kidnappers will know that they are mercenaries for instance. Cabe (Robert Patrick) finally has enough of their bickering and tells them, “What about a young girl’s life isn’t registering with you? You all had ideas on the plan, it came together, now you need to be a team. We better get our heads on right or we’re not coming out of that building alive.”

Happy continuously and hilariously calls Sylvester on his continuous kissing up to Walter to curry favor and then mocks his clock. Wong is particularly good in this episode in her interactions with Paco. Toby points out that Happy identifies with him because of her “Oliver-Twist-upbringing.” She is clearly disappointed when he bolts. But in the end, she’s right about him, and he saves her life by risking his own. I loved Happy insisting on stopping when they see Paco in the road and telling Cabe to give him his watch. Cabe protests it’s a $5000 watch from the Paraguay ambassador, but as soon as Happy says that Paco saved her life, he immediately hands it over.

It’s interesting that it’s Walter that tells the team to give Elia and Zoe a moment in private. He then tells the team, “Along the same lines of reconciliation, I wanted to apologize for the whole interview thing. I should have made sure you were all included. I just wasn’t thinking.” Everyone agrees they should always look out for each other and they all apologize. Paige tells Walter, “That was evolved of you,” but she then presses him to reach out to Sylvester.
Sylvester actually stands up to Walter, which is a good indication of how much he cares for Megan. He asks Walter why he isn’t good enough for his sister – Stidham is excellent in this scene, once again proving that he is equally adept at drama as well as comedy.
        Gabel is also terrific in the scene as he tells Sylvester, “you are kind and generous and a better human being than I will ever be, but I have spent a long time preparing myself for the fact that Megan will very likely die.” Walter is worried that Sylvester won’t be able to process the fallout from Megan’s death, but Sylvester insists that she calms him and makes him feel good about himself. Sylvester says she’s worth the risk. And Walter admits he’s glad she’s found such a good guy. My concern is that Guaty has been cast as a regular in a Pilot for Mix. Are her days numbered?

The final scene between Sylvester and Megan is also very sweet as he tell her he’ll support her. The scene is nicely tied back to Walter through the music. While Sylvester is supporting Megan emotionally, Walter is doing it financially – or trying to by working on the rocket. Elia shows up and offers Walter a job at his think tank. Walter thinks about it, but tells him he’s happy where he is as the camera pans on the team dancing.

Lots of cool tech-hacks in this episode – like GPSing the holographic strips in the money. I liked the remote control machine guns – and Walter’s orange solution to save Paige. And it’s adorable when Paige lands on top of Walter! I loved Walter using Sylvester’s souvenir clock to “see through the walls.” It was a nice twist for them to use the remote control guns on the kidnappers. Also kudos to the stunt team on Happy’s rescue of Zoe – and a lot of those shots sure looked like Wong!

It was interesting for the episode to focus on the team struggling to act like a team when that’s always my favorite part of the episode. Walter is happy because they are more than a team, they’re a family, and families fight, but they also forgive each other. Each member brings something unique. It’s the interactions between the team that really set this show apart from other case-based procedural fare. What did you think of the episode? Were you hoping for more romance between Happy and Toby? Walter and Paige? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

About the Author - Lisa Macklem
I do interviews and write articles for the site in addition to reviewing a number of shows, including Supernatural, Arrow, Agents of Shield, The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, Forever, Defiance, Bitten, Glee, and a few others! Highlights of this past year include covering San Diego Comic Con as press and a set visit to Bitten. When I'm not writing about television shows, I'm often writing about entertainment and media law in my capacity as a legal scholar. I also work in theatre when the opportunity arises. I'm an avid runner and rider, currently training in dressage.