Nikita

Nikita 4×01 – Wanted

"Act first, think later - first degree martyr."

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I’m not ready to say goodbye.

I know I should be grateful that The CW is giving Nikita a final six-episode run to tie up three seasons worth of storytelling, but it’s much too little for a show this complex and layered. However, I have faith that the spy-thriller’s writers will pull out all the stops for an explosive and satisfying conclusion.

Wanted isn’t the kind of mindblowing episode the show is capable of, but it’s just what Nikita needed to get back in the groove. It set the stakes for the ensuing five hours, and put all the chess pieces in place for one heck of a thematic sendoff.

While I wasn’t the biggest fan of sending Nikita off on her own, I now realize that it was a necessary step in her overall journey. Making her “the most wanted woman in the world” not only ups the stakes for the final battle, it allows Team Nikita to defy the odds and demonstrate just how much they care about our heroine. I’m also somewhat glad that we’re not going to spend too much time with Nikita seperated from the gang, as that almost certainly would have lasted a couple of episodes had the show gotten a 22-episode season. Now we can just get to the good stuff, filler be damned.

I’m also pleased to report that Nikita’s final mission (clearing her name) won’t be as easy as we had been lead to assume. I was convinced that Dale Gordon, the suspicious reporter, would be the one to eventually clear Nikita’s name, while Director Graham – the man in charge of hunting down Nikita – would eventually see the error of his ways and help out our heroine. So imagine my surprise when this episode completely subverted my expectations (God I love it when that happens), and Graham was revealed to be a ruthless Shop agent while Dale was taken out with a nifty explosion. It was a bonafide jawdropper, and it effectively framed Nikita for yet another murder. Awesome.

Thankfully, Alex hasn’t been sidelined in her quest to fight human trafficking. In fact, that subplot was wisely linked to the Shop, which gave Miss Udinov the opportunity to kick some serious ass in her quest to clear Nikki’s name. In addition, Owen/Sam made his return in the episode’s final moments with a gun conveniently aimed at Alex’s head. Great things are coming people.

As for our favorite vileness, Amanda managed to hatch a brilliantly devious scheme: she fed Dale information that would cause him to start spreading conspiracy theories, knowing that his attempts would draw a hopeful Nikita out into the open. I love that Mandy is still on top of things and one step ahead of our crew. Let’s hope her nefarious plot with The Shop turns out to be equally compelling; we don’t know much yet, just that they’re in need of further “test subjects”. Perhaps they’re creating yet another line of Presidential doppelgangers? Because that would be wonderfully ambitious.

Bits & Bullets

– Did we always know that Nikita’s full name was Nikita Mears? It feels like the first time this has been mentioned. I could be wrong.

– Utterly chilling teaser with Nikki running through the woods and seeing the gang shot dead. Gorgeous cinematography.

– Coolest action moment: Nikki twirling and subduing the policeman who tries to cuff her, before taking off with his car.

– So Team Nikita’s base is airborne this year? That’s pretty cool.

– My favorite moment of the hour: everyone whipping out their smartphones and filming Nikita. It felt like a tremendously relevant moment in our world today.

– Standout Birkhoff moments: predicting Nikita wanting to “shoot the fan”, and using Photoshop to blackmail Graham (the picture of his wife in the scope of a sniper rifle). Hilarious.

– Alex kicking ass with the Uzi was badass. Good to see she’s still a force to be reckoned with (and she has Sonia to help her out).

– Lovely little moment with Nikki and Michael reuniting. No words necessary.

– Anyone else shocked that Graham actually shot Nikki? We’re so used to our baddies missing when our heroes drive off.

– Very realistic touch with Nikki being unable to drive after the gunshot and crashing the car. A lesser show would have had her simply shrug off the pain.

-So what’s Phase two of The Shop’s plan?

– That final shot with a wounded Nikki dragging herself through the alley in slow-motion was superb. “No one is safe while she’s out there.” Couldn’t have said it better myself.

Nikki Notables

Negotiator: What do you want?
Nikita: I’m on a rooftop you idiot, what do you think I want?

Birkhoff: (to Nikita) Move on? Yeah nobody’s moving on. You may have given up on us Nikki, but we haven’t given up on you. Mikey’s gone for weeks at a time trying to pick up on your trail, Ryan’s created a whole new wall of crazy conspiracy theories, Alex think she’s Batman -which I guess makes my girlfriend Robin…. all this to help clear your name.

Nikita: (to Birkhoff) Turn off the spinning blades of decapitation would you?

Conclusion
A solid return from one of the most gripping shows on television. Here’s hoping for a spectacular final year.

Nad Rating
B+

6 comments

  1. I agree with everything you said… as always, haha!

    I definitely think that this is a solid return. Perhaps not entirely thrilling (although keeping me entertained), but a solid foundation for the show to kick start off with.

    I'm sad that it's only 6 episodes. Although I agree season 4 should be the last, I think the production team would have reaped the benefit of 13 episodes. It was also make the show seem less desperate– you know?

    I actually watched this episode a few times; I really liked it and had missed the show so much!
    One of the brilliant things about Nikita as a show it the emotions and everything are human. They're never dragged out and ignored. They are real and the actors make it convincing every time.

    Sorry I never made GOT reviews– I never ended up watching the show. Perhaps this Winter I'll watch it but no promises. Sorry about that.

    Update your thoughts on episode 2! I'd love to hear them 🙂

    — Alex

  2. Hey Alex. Thanks so much for your comments. I'm glad to see you're still loving the show as much as I am (so many people have been hating on the show online but I still think it's fantastic).
    Spot-on what you said about the emotions. This show just has everything!
    I'm in the process of writing my episode two review so look out for that 🙂 And keep the comments coming!

  3. I loved this episode and the characters are so real that we can´t help root for them. Awesome action but the heart of the show is what makes us love Nikita.

    Can´t wait for the next one!

  4. I'm not ready to say goodbye either!! I really can't believe it all ends in 5 episodes. Sniff.

    Very solid premiere. The fact that Nikita's face is plastered all over the news worldwide is brilliant. I never thought our gang would become the main focus on a global scale so this really ups the stakes like you said.

    I also don't know ANY other show that has its villain THAT smart and always, always winning. And yet, this is still a satisfying show. Maybe it's because Amanda isn't a typical mustache-twirling (obviously) Big Bad, but even when she's one step ahead of Team Nikita, I find myself cheering. Damn, these characters are so much more layered than I ever would've imagined.

    But seriously, 5 more episodes? Nope can't accept that.

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