Episode: Human Target 2.09 – “Imbroglio”
Original Air Date: January 12, 2011
Ilsa is still haunted by Lopez as Chance must protect her sister-in-law and a bunch of opera patrons.
Ilsa’s sister-in-law Connie arrives to check on the new business on behalf of her and Ilsa’s foundation. Just as they enter the office, Connie gets a first-hand view of the team’s unusual tactics as Chance and Guerrero decide to test some new body armor right then and there. We then find out that Ilsa and Connie are planning to attend the opera that night. Chance briefly questions Ilsa, who believes that someone has been following her home at night, and also questions Connie’s security guard, who is aware of a brief lapse in the fire alarm at the opera house.
Later, at the opera, Ilsa is shocked to find Chance and Guerrero there, as well as Winston out in the surveillance van. Seems the lapse in the alarm triggered Chance’s spider-sense, so the guys decided to go in case something happens, which of course it does. Almost immediately, armed men wearing cloaks and Venetian carnival masks take everyone in the opera hostage. We then hear the voice of the man who’s behind it all, who of course warns everyone not to try any heroics. When Connie’s bodyguard does try something, the terrorists put at gun to his head, but it harmlessly clicks as the leader says to think of that as a dress rehearsal.
Once the terrorists begin to move the hostages into the auditorium, Chance goes to work, forcing himself to vomit in order to be taken aside by a terrorist. Alone, Chance quickly subdues the other man and takes his gun and costume, coming back onto the stage to take out another terrorist and free the hostages.
Meanwhile, outside the opera house, the FBI has shown up and made Winston leave the van. Winston poses as a Homeland Security agent and gains the cooperation of the FBI agent in charge as he attempts to find out what the terrorists are really after. Chance assists by following the terrorists down to the basement where they appear to be doing some heavy drilling in the sewers. Winston then discovers that the building they’re drilling into is a CIA safe house for dangerous criminals. However, by the time he finds out, the terrorists have managed to kill the agents and rescue their imprisoned comrade, Victor Rosco, whose brother Eli is the one behind the whole plot.
Things then begin to fall apart for the team. Ilsa finds out that Connie is there because the foundation board thinks Ilsa has lost sight of her late husband’s mission, Winton’s ruse is discovered and the FBI arrests him, several terrorists arrive and subdue Guerrero, and Chance is thrown into a storm drain by Eli, who locks the drain and turns on the water to drown Chance.
Ilsa manages to get away from the terrorist and find Chance. As a terrorist finds her, Chance manages to pull the guy down and knock him out. Then Ilsa is forced to shoot the lock off of the drain, an action that’s difficult for her given last week’s shooting of Lopez. With urging from Chance, she musters up the courage and frees him. They then go back to the opera house where the terrorists are preparing to release the hostages. In fact, this is all a clever trick taken straight out of The Dark Knight, as Victor, Eli, and the other terrorists have blended into the hostages while disguising Guerrero and several hostages as terrorists.
What happens next is a flurry of events as Chance starts fighting the disguised terrorists, Guerrero signals to Winston which lets the FBI know what’s really happening, and then Victor and Eli take Connie and Ilsa hostage. Chance follows them, and in one of his typically crazy movies, shoots the rope holding up the chandelier and rides it as he shoots Victor and Eli.
With everyone saved, the grateful FBI agent lets Winston go, Connie agrees to stand up for Ilsa with the board, and all is well with the world for another week. Ilsa then reveals to Chance that she figured out it was him following her home every night, clearly concerned for her welfare after Lopez. She tells him that he didn’t fail her and that she’s fine, to which Chance responds that taking a life never leaves you, but allows her to leave without following.
Aside from the obvious plot device taken from a Batman film, the episode was good and chock full of action. It’s rare that you really get to see Jackie Earle Haley in a brawl on the show, but this time he fights about three different guys. Mark Valley also gets his share as the disguised terrorists come out of the crowd one-by-one to take him on, a clear sign that they didn’t learn to attack en masse as they did when they subdued Guerrero. However, despite a slight lack of originality, the episode pulled off its plot well.
Rating: 4 / 5 Stars