Nikita, Season 3, Episode 15: “Inevitability”
Written by Kristen Reidel
Directed by Mark C. Baldwin
Airs Fridays at 8pm (ET) on the CW
Despite the pursuit for Amanda consuming Division’s attention over the past few episodes, first with Ari coming in from the cold, then Alex getting kidnapped, the concern over being handed four assassination assignments by the US government continues to be a concern, and one that would have to be dealt with once Amanda retreated back into the shadows, or was eliminated. With the loss of any assistance from the CIA, the missions became the sole responsibility of Division, which fed into the concern that the organisation that promised not to kill any more would find themselves right back where they started before long if they were to begin these assignments. It’s the moral quandary over this issue that Nikita tackles this week, in another thrilling episode that opens up a few secrets and puts Division in a position of power once again.
It was fascinating to see the looming threat of Division’s extermination come within inches of being executed this week. Oftentimes, a major threat on a show ends up becoming just that, a threat, as eventually it stalls to the point that it becomes a stale aspect of the show. Nikita has smartly been able to avoid that by having the threat level grow and recede throughout the season, from getting the cryptograph to manipulating the death of rogue agents into a win to getting the kill contracts to having the extermination team assemble this episode, ensuring that the danger never becomes an empty threat. With Division turning the tables on Danforth this episode, it will be interesting to see how the government conflict affects Division’s success, and whether anyone in a similar position of power rises to take a firm opposition view to Danforth’s defence of the place. How Amanda fits into the grand scheme as well, since she displays an awareness of the plan against Danforth before Division makes a move, is also something to look out for.
It was also good to see the characters this week openly acknowledge the gradual but steady decline of Division into an organisation that could viably be seen as evil. With the use of the Black Box to twist the arm of a high-ranking government agent, Division worryingly takes another page out of the Percy playbook, a concern that is exacerbated by the fact that Ryan is now using it as a storage unit himself. While it’s good to see the Black Box once again come back into play, making Ari’s sacrifice worth something, the only major step left for Division to take to become another version of their former self is to accept contract hits. This isn’t an impossibility in light of the organisation’s financial concerns, and with a growing awareness among its members that Division is sliding backwards, how the core team, as well as the other members, deal with the disturbing similarities to a Percy-run Division, and how they turn away from, or avoid, these pitfalls going forward, could prove to be compelling.
Overall, this was another fast-paced episode, cutting through a few of the season’s plots while opening up new avenues for the show to go down. Seeing Birkhoff in the field was hilarious, particularly Alex’s reaction to Birkhoff’s fall, and Nikita barking out orders without realising he’s absent. Hopefully Birkhoff ventures out into the field more often, as he has shown competence before, which carries over in this episode as well. Watching Ryan push Nikita and Alex towards a reconciliation this episode also helped in pointing out one major difference between Percy and Ryan; the latter’s empathy, and genuine concern over the issues of others. As long as Ryan doesn’t display signs of losing that, Division can continue to avoid the pitfall of their old fate. How the President reacts to the knowledge that Danforth has been manipulating Division behind her back, or that Division now has control of Danforth, as well as how Amanda and the remaining members of the Dirty Thirty factor into Division’s attempts to shut down, are worth tuning in to see next week.
– Deepayan Sengupta