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Treadstone - The Cicada Protocol Recap and Review

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First episode of the new Bourne Universe TV Show, Treadstone starts by throwing us right into the thick of it. Opening scene takes us to East Berlin, 1973 in a room with a man bouncing a ball off the ground and looking slightly insane. On the other side of a one-way window, a man and woman are discussing, in German, our mystery man. The man is revealed to be John Randolph Bentley (played by Jeremy Irvine) a soldier who's been captured and tortured by the Germans. The two argue over if John is ready before the woman decides to have a chat with John and sing Frère Jacque, sending him into a trance. Suddenly John finds himself in war zone where he fires on three enemies, immediately coming out of a trance he finds he has shot three prisoners instead. John's face turns to sadness and the woman nods at the window.

Setting now changes to a hospital room with John and the German man. John's told by the man that he was sent to kill him and is now his most promising subject, a cicada. As the man goes to leave, John kills the man and escapes, killing/knocking unconscious soldiers along the way, to a morgue where he hides as one of the dead bodies and throwing another one out the window to distract the bad guys. The German woman isn't fooled, and a fight ensues between them, leaving her with one less finger and a missing American soldier who has escaped.

The episode flashes forward to present day, Langley Virginia CIA Headquarters. Introducing Ellen Becker (played by Michelle Forbes) and Dan Levine (played by Michael Gaston). Ellen and her team have received information about a North Korean General Kwon is asking to meet with a former Journalist now Cabbie, Tara Coleman. Jump to London and CIA operative Matt Edwards, who conveniently hops into Tara's cab. They chat for a bit, then Matt brings up the reason she was fired, an Article on a Nuke on the black market called Stiletto Six. He manages to persuade Tara to wear a wire for when talking to the General.

The General, who is hiding in the bathroom, tells Tara that the CIA can't be trusted and that the cicadas (sound familiar?) are being woken up. That Treadstone is being started again. After Intentionally destroying the bug Tara is wearing, Kwon tells her a Russian group is buying the codes for Stiletto Six and the only way to stop it is for her to get the launch codes first. To do this Tara must go to his daughters boarding school in France and bring her to the Ecuadorian Embassy in Paris (Don't ask me how this makes sense!). Tara is finally able to get out her question of why me? to which he says that she was chosen because she didn't back down on her instincts on Stiletto Six and the fact, she has lost family member tragically.

Jumping between Langley and London, Ellen and Dan plus Tara and Matt argue over what was mentioned about Treadstone, leaving Ellen doubting if Treadstone was shut down and Tara walking away from Matt. The episode then shifts to Pyongyang, North Korea, introducing SoYun (played by Hyo Joo Han) a piano teacher and family woman. After giving a lesson and walking home with her son, the boy hands her a gaming device which is illegal. She hides it from the husband and starts cooking for the guests the husband has brought round.

The episode once again shifts to the Beaufort Sea, Alaska where another main character, Doug McKenna (Played by Brian J. Smith) an American Oil Rig Worker who has just been laid off by management. While packing up, one of his buddies tempts him to go out for a drink. The episode jumps back to SoYun, who's busy making dinner. She decides to take a closer look at the device and turns it on, the device suddenly starts playing Frère Jacque causing SoYun to temporarily zone out and then run into the bedroom. Trying to turn it off, she breaks it finding a note with the address 3200 Pongwha Street on it. Once more the episode jumps, to Doug at the bar. While sitting at the bar meet a nice woman from supply and start a bar fight with the Russians who've just flew in. The Russians get a few punches in, knocking Doug to the floor, before something is unleashed in him leading to an awesome fight scene wear her swiftly takes all the Russians out. Freaking everyone and himself out, Doug runs out of the bar.

The woman from supply catches up to him and stitches him up in her office. There is a weird psychiatric conversation about dreams Doug has been having. Supply lady grabs a bottle of French wine and starts singing Frère Jacque. She then adds new lines "Are you sleeping, are you sleeping. Brother John, Brother John. Morning bells are ringing, Morning bells are ringing" putting Doug into a trance state. The episode shifts to Kursk, Russia where an elderly couple receive a delivery. The man’s hearing aids. He's elated by the fact he can hear, his wife on the other hand seems very put out by his demeanour but begrudgingly dances with him when he puts on music. The mans' hearing aid picks up a noticeable beeping noise coming from the stable, but the wife doesn't believe him and takes his hearing aid off him.

Jumping back to SoYun, she travels to work which happens to be just next to the mystery address. Leaving her student to work on timing with a metronome, she skilfully jumps over a few rooftops and breaks into the address. In the bathroom she finds General Kwon, who doesn't freak out (like I would) but simply says "I figured they would send you". They speak in English, much to SoYun surprise, and Korean with the General briefly questioning her. During their fight, it appears that both are highly trained and highly dangerous which is unusual for a piano teacher. After a couple of close calls, SoYun manages to strangle the General, shocked by what she's done SoYun runs out and back to her student.

Back to Doug, who wakes up in the middle of nowhere in Alaska, with a photo of a woman circled in red and bag with what looks like C4. He runs off with the photo and one bit of C4 in his pocket. Jumping to Kursk, the husband puts the hearing aid back on and follows the noise to a trap door in the stable leading to a bunker with a flashing panel and something big. Hearing a noise behind him, he finds his wife who walks up to him to slices him with a sickle, "I tried to warn you". She turns the lights on to reveal the Nuke Stiletto Six and her missing finger!! Final scene of the episode shows John broadcasting an SOS message to his American comrades saying, "I'm coming home" and then driving away.

This episode threw a lot at audiences in the 60 minutes it used. I found it a little bit hard to follow along, but I have a feeling this will get sorted soon when the main characters story lines start to merge. I would also say, the episode didn't set up much in the way of getting to know the characters/ helping us relate to the characters. However, since this is the pilot, it's not too big of an issue for me. I loved the fight scenes though; I would definitely say that they were the best parts of the episode. I'm cautiously looking forward to watching more soon.

What did you guys think? Did you see the twist coming with the Wife in Kursk? Which character are you looking forward to seeing more of? Please let me know in the comments, even if it's to say you don't like my writing style.

-Sarah R

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