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October 1, 2014

'Nikita' Season 2, Episode 4 Recap

by Laura Prudom, posted Oct 15th 2011 12:20PM
Kelly and Alex['Nikita' - 'Partners']

I love it when a plan comes together, and this season of 'Nikita' seems to be laying out its puzzle pieces so confidently that it's a pleasure to watch the bigger picture falling into place with such precision.

As if Owen working for Gogol wasn't enough of a bombshell in 2.02, this week's installment deftly painted Ari Tasarov and his company into a much larger canvas, one involving Kelly, Nikita, Alex and even Zetrov itself.

Perhaps wiser minds than mine predicted that Ari and Sergei Semak were in cahoots, or that Ari was behind Kelly's escape, but few could've foreseen how intimately intertwined the storylines would become, or how satisfying it was to see such big moves being made so early in the season.

Lesser shows might have dragged out Semak's realization that the Division spy who assassinated Kochenko was the long-lost Alexandra Udinov, teasing the audience for weeks before a payoff, but the producers clearly have a game-plan all mapped out. Just as Kelly had to reverse her mission to catch Alex while the young agent was already pursuing her, the lines between hunted and hunter will blur further as Alex and Semak target each other. But will Division really be able to protect Alex from the long arm of Gogol, and moreover, does Amanda really want to?

The episode offered Nikita many opportunities for self-examination, with Kelly giving her some (semi) constructive criticism in regards to the way she tends to treat her partners. "Amanda said you need people but you don't trust them," she pointed out. "You make their choices for them so they can't disappoint you." The observation obviously hit close to home for Nikita, and although many of the secrets she kept from Alex in season one were arguably justifiable, it was refreshing to see her apologize for not treating Alex as more of an equal when they worked together.

In truth, though, I would argue that Nikita's trust issues stem more from her undeniable martyr complex than from seeing her partners as incapable (since none of them are); she's far more willing to risk herself than to risk losing those she loves, as Michael so knowingly observed during their adorable fireside massage scene. The reason they work so well as partners is because of their mutual love and respect for each other, so it's fitting that Michael knows her best and sees her for who she really is, instead of all the insecurities she feels.

And even though Alex chose to put her faith in Division's protective capabilities over Nikita and Michael's -- or perhaps wanted to avoid making them more of a target? -- it was heartening to see her cover for the couple, and to see that she's no longer bearing a grudge for all the tough love Nikita bestowed in the season premiere. I'm enjoying Alex's growing maturity (even though she's obviously still in way over her head with Division and Oversight) and seeing her put her knowledge of Nikita to good use in tracking her down was a satisfying writing choice.

Though any 'Bones' fans watching were probably glad to see Kathryn Winnick's character meet an untimely demise, it's a pity we won't get to see more of Kelly, since it would've been interesting to have another one of Nikita's former partners using their knowledge of her habits against her. I suppose she could always reappear in flashbacks.

Overall, the episode was smartly written, well executed, and offered a tantalizing hint at some very promising storylines to come. I can't wait to see how Gogol and Zetrov come after Alex, and how Division might retaliate.

'Nikita' airs Fridays at 8PM ET on The CW.

What did you think of the episode and the revelation that Gogol is part of Zetrov? How do you feel about the preview for next week's episode introducing Michael's ex, Cassandra? Share your thoughts below!

Follow Laura on Twitter: @LauinLA.

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