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Alias: Reprisal/All The Time In The World (series finale)

by Bob Sassone, posted May 22nd 2006 11:50PM
Alias - Rambaldi page 47(S05E16/S05E17) TV finales can be so tricky. You want to please longtime fans, you want to bring some closure, but you still have to tell a good story. Some finales are great (Newhart, The Fugitive, Cheers), while others are downright horrible (Seinfeld, The X-Files). I'm happy to report that this episode ranked in the former category.  Was it perfect? No, not at all. But it certainly tired up all loose ends and provided a very entertaining last two hours. What else could you ask for?


The opening scene sets up the finale really well, with Syd giving a narration over a map of what Prophet 5 is. And I also like the little montage of the APO gang going around the world and taking pics of the 12 so they knew what they were dealing with. Seemed like a little wink and nod toward Mission:  Impossible 3.

Sloane kidnaps Marshall and Rachel so they can work their tech genius and tap into satellites that will give him the location of Rambaldi's grave. But he gave a clue to Syd over the phone, something to tell his wife so she can tap into what they're doing. This was a really cool feature of the ep: Marshall's wife is a CIA geek just like he is, and Momma Flinkman helps APO find out where Sloane is going. (I also loved her reaction to seeing Vaughn alive: no words, just a hand gesture towards him and a look towards Syd that said "um, what the hell?" Funny.)

So the bad guys place a giant bomb in the L.A. subway system. Why, I'm not sure, except to say "yeah, we have bombs and we can do this." The citizens are evacuated while Thomas uses freeze spray to slow down the timer. But it can't last forever, and Tom stops what he's doing and sits down. He feels so guilty about his wife that he decides not to run and just kill himself with the bomb. He's nice enough to call Rachel and let her know that, "hey, I like you, but I'm gonna kill myself right now." Whatever.

Everyone runs around the world (the globetrotting in this episode is particularlyl ridiculous, but you just accept it and go along for the ride), and Syd and Vaughn trace Sloane to the Mountain in Italy, where he's in a cave with the amulet. Not really sure what he's doing with it all alone in there though. He says that Syd can't see what he's  going to do, so he shoots out the snow around her and she falls through the snow. Vaughn saves her, but she gets one of the nastiest looking gashes on her neck that I've ever seen on TV. Vaughn sews her up for the next part of the adventure.

I knew that Sloane was up to no good, and that he and Sark and Peyton were going to get together and screw over Prophet 5. Peyton kills them all while Sloane and Sark go off to Mongolia to find the Rambaldi grave (Sark: "Does it have to be so dusty? If Rambaldi can prophecize the future, you'd think he could advise not to wear $500 shoes.").

It all comes down to two confrontations: Syd vs. Sloane and Syd vs. Irina. Sloane, in a very Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade moment, turns and shoots Jack when he realizes that Syd is not going to give him back the Horizon. Syd doesn't screw around after this. She shoots him several times, including in the head, and he falls back into the water, dead. Vaughn and Syd help Jack out of the tomb while a helicopter races to help him.

Jack tells Syd to leave him there and go stop Irina from launching the missles. He knows he's dying. But back in the tomb, Sloane's body heals and he rises! There was a lot of Rambaldi juice in that water that he fell into. His wounds heal and now he's going to live forever! But Jack has other plans. He's come into the tomb and says, "you might have beaten death, but you haven't beaten me." He sets off a bomb. The tomb collapses. Jack dies, but Sloane is trapped underneath a giant statue of Rambaldi. Nadia's vision taunts him. Sure, he can't be killed, but it's going to suck when you're stuck in a tomb under the earth forever.

Syd reaches Irina. They have a badass fight that falls onto the roof. Irina lands on a glass skylight, with the Horizon a few feet from her. But as she reaches for it, she falls through the glass and dies below.

Now let's get to the part I didn't really like. OK, so this Rambaldi juice can make you live forever. Great, fine, I even guessed that a couple of years ago. I can understand why Sloane and Irina would want it, why Sloane would even spend 30 years trying to get it, but why do they have to try to take over the world and kill millions like some James Bond villain? Why did Irina have to go from bad (years ago) to good (the last couple of seasons) to downright evil this season? Didn't she change? Didn't she just help the gang take down her other nutty sister last season in Russia, with the giant red ball and zombies? So she's as much of powermad villain as her sister and Sloane? Whatever. They shouldn't have made her this evil. There was enough evil to go around, with Sloane and Peyton and the 12 members of Prophet 5.

But, hey, it was a happy ending. As happy an ending that you could expect anyway, given that Syd lost both of her parents on the same day. Vaughn is back, Dixon and Marshall and Rachel are alive and well, and she has two kids with Vaughn, living a nice live of semi-retirement on a hidden beach somewhere. Cute touch having Isabelle being able to solve the tricky Jenga-ish puzzle. One of my favorite moments? Finding out that Vaughn let Sark go and he was still causing trouble. That was funny.

So, all and all, I'm happy with this finale. It really did feel like a finale. It had action and globehopping and deaths and a little sci-fi and all the Alias stuff like gadgets and torture (I love when Marshall was getting his fingernails pulled out and said to Sloane, "I've always hated you.") It had flashbacks that explained her childhood and everything that had happened to her (nice cameo from Merrin Dungey and mention of Danny). All that was missing was Syd in a tight dress and red wig, but you can't have everything. And while it's too bad a cool show like this has to end, it really was time to end, and they sure did a good job of sending the show off.

The final screen showed the words "Thank you for five incredible years." And I'd have to agree with that.

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Judy Roher

I missed the next to the last episode called NO HARD FEELINGS. Does anyone know when TNT (or anybody else) will have a rerun of it? Thank you.

July 02 2006 at 7:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
kate

I love how Sark is still alive. Let's hope they're setting up a spin-off...who wouldn't love to watch a whole show devoted to Sark? He's so evil, yet he obviously has a softer side...plus he has some great comedic moments...it could work!

May 28 2006 at 6:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
some guy

Tom didn't give up because he felt guilty, he didn't have enough time after he got the word that the subway had been cleared. The timer showed something like 17 seconds left - no point in running.

May 27 2006 at 1:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Dwayne

I've seen every episode and own the DVDs for seasons 1 through 4, but I'm stumped about one issue. Can anyone answer my questions and direct me to the episodes that provide the answers?

I thought the collapse of SD-6 and the Alliance of 12 occurred in season 2. Didn't Sloane make sure that the Alliance and all SD branches were also destroyed around that time?

When was it revealed in season 5 that Prophet 5 was actually the Alliance of 12? Unless I missed the explanation, this was a glaring error by equating Prophet 5 to the Alliance.

Further, it was no surprise that Rambaldi's ultimate mystery was mortality. What else would have motivated Sloane?

Otherwise, the finale was everything you could have hoped it would be.

May 26 2006 at 3:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jacks

"The sky at Mt. Sabatio" was metaphorical. Remember when Sloane held the amulet up in the cave and it reflected some sort of map? He said "I'm sorry, it's not my choice, you cannot see this". THAT was the "sky" that the Prophesy could not see at the mountain; it was the map that led him to Rambaldi's tomb. That part of the prophesy did come true, but not literally.

May 26 2006 at 9:41 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sugarlylily

I think the final show and throughout the five years, alot of the mysteries and predictions were never meant to be taken so literally. Such as the fight to the death between Sydney and Nadia, and the prophecythat Syd would be the chosen one to bring forth destruction and Rambaldi's works. Syd was the chosen one because she was exceptionally smart, gifted as an agent, and linked to the passenger, Irina, and Sloane. Also, through her years of trying to take down Sd-6, The Alliance, and Prophet Five, she did discover and find many of Rambaldi's artifacts. Only most of them ended up being stolen back by Sloane and Sark. I think in that way she did fulfill Rambaldi's prophecy, because without her, most of those artifacts probably would not have been found, and Sloane would have not been so close to his ultimate endgame without Sydney.

May 25 2006 at 2:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mike

The Amulet was held up so the sun could shine through it and Sloan saw Rambaldi's sky, which was a star chart with the location of his tomb. Sloan shot Sydney through the ice because as he told her, she "couldn't see this" exactly as stated in rambaldi's prophecy, "without ever having seen "my" sky". Maybe a few people should watch the episode again, i think you missed a few things.

May 24 2006 at 9:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
rani

Excellent finale, if it had to end. I will miss this show so much... and am very sad about Jack dying, but it was at least done very well. I agree with the comments about Irina, too--she wasn't even conflictedly evil anymore, just pure evil. It didn't make sense that she would bomb Washington and London for the hell of it. I think they had to drum up something to rope her back into the storyline and tie up that big loose end. Sloane's death/resurrection/final fate was awesome. I loved the way they tried to tie everything together, and had him at Mt. Subasio (the 'cave' in the review above), where the prophecy said Syd wouldn't see the sun rise. I love how he still believed that part of the prophecy and shot the ice out under her. The bomb in the LA subway system wasn't random in the least--APO headquarters are located within the LA subway system, as we found out in the first episode of season 4, and that's why the bomb was placed--to eliminate APO, as was clearly stated by Sloane as he was crazy-man-talking with Syd at Mt. Subasio. The only thing I thought really didn't make sense was the need to have Irina try to nuke the US. She could have done so much worse before then. Let me put it another way--I prefer Irina as evil, but I thought last season really didn't fit in. It's almost like they thought they'd be cancelled last year. This season was far better than season 4. Bringing Vaughn back, not killing him off, and letting him and Syd live happily ever after was what really needed to happen, and for that, I can't complain about the little stuff. Oh yeah--and leaving Sark alive? Bonus. (:

May 24 2006 at 6:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Hilda

The only thing I can think of that would turn Irina evil again is that she was always evil! She had her rambaldi intentions all along,it just so happened that her Sister Elena foiled it for Irina and Sloane! And Hell no were they going to let someone else get the Rambaldi Juice!
Irina and Sloane were also huge wafflers..they both obviously loved they're children!
It's obvious that irina still had feelings for Jack.And Sloane had a semi-loyalty thing to Jack and Syd. But what it all came down to was Rambaldi and his crazy prophecy!
Sloane and Irina would do whatever it took for Rambaldi and his Juice,including killing those that they loved!

It was a great episode.It did make me sad that Tom died,I like Balty Getty!
And Marshall was just wonderful! You can't get any better than Marshall!

Loved seeing Merrin again!
Would have been great to see Weiss too!

And I am so happy that Syd FINALLY got a happy ending! Her and Vaughn are married,(yes,I looked for the rings)and Isabelle is a little girl and they have Baby Jack,which even Spygranddaddy would get a kick out of!
I am happy that they keep close to the former CIA members,Uncle Dixon,Rachel and MArshall.
I am even more pleased they didn't make Dixon evil,I know they were going that route!

But the most painful,heartwrenching part for me...Jacks death!
I loved no character more than I did Jack! What are they ALL going to do without Jacks connections,his super smarts,his stash of lets fake your death drugs!
I only hope he passed all this down to Syd,you know left her a heartfelt letter with a key to his super cool rent-a-storage that has everything you'll ever need to torture,kill,save a life!LOL!
Even a huge stash of cash!
But I like to think that in this letter jack tells Syd everything he still hadn't told her,all the sappy stuff I longed to hear all these 5 yrs..."Sydney,you make me so proud.You were my reason for existance,I love you more then you'll ever know.BTW here is everything you'll ever need to keep your children safe!" Love dad.

Really,though...I was all about Jack and Syd from episode one.They had the most complex father/daughter relationship ever,it was intriguing because you never knew where it was going to go,up or down!
and from season to season we were rewarded with some very sweet sentimental father/daughter moments from these two.And for me they were always a hilight!
But the final scene with Jack and Syd was the saddest!

Some have complained that Jack was too stoic,that he lacked emotion.Well...jack was never really one of warm and fuzzy emotion. His emotions were more based on anger,coldness,distance.

Jen Garner and Victor Garber were amazing in that last scene,you know Syd was torn between staying with him and going to stop her mom,and I was screaming I'll stay with him!LOL!
Well,I think that in the end Jack had his own agenda,I think he didn't really believe the whole rambaldi stuff,but I think he couldn't die there without knowing that Sloane would never be able to hurt Syd or someone she loved ever again!
It was a hunch and he went with it and was right!
It was a classic jack moment,but I just wish he could have left the explosives and gotten out of there and saved himself too!
But like Jack has always done,it was his last final act to protect Syd!

But I don't think I have ever cried my eyes out more,for me It was like losing my own dad!
So Jack Bristow will always be the coolest dad/Spy in tv history!
R.I.P. Spydaddy!

I will miss this show like mad and it was 5 of the best television yrs of my life!
Nothing will ever compare.

Can't wait for the season 5 dvds!
It was a very nice move too on the part of the ALIAS Team to thank the fans,cause I do think we were a devoted group of people to this show and characters!

May 24 2006 at 2:41 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Christopher J. Arndt

"He's come into the tomb and says, you might have beaten Rambaldi, but you haven't beaten me."

umm. no. The TVsquad gets it wrong again.

Jack said "You may have beaten death, but you won't beat me."

May 23 2006 at 10:23 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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