Nikita, Season 3, Episode 16: “Tipping Point”
Written by Oliver Grigsby
Directed by Dwight Little
Airs Fridays at 8pm (ET) on the CW
Michael losing his hand was a key moment in the series, and the effects of Nikita cutting his hand off have continued to be felt in ensuing episodes, with Michael’s struggle with his robotic prosthetic being well documented. While it seemed that his chances of getting a flesh and blood replacement were dim, the presence of Heidecker and the organisation he works for in “Brave New World” provided a ray of hope that was otherwise absent. It was this organisation, and Michael’s pursuit of it, that once again came to the forefront this week, offering Michael a chance to regain his lost limb in another quick-moving episode.
The idea of dissent among the members of Division over whether or not they will ever truly be free is a fascinating idea, and it’s great to see the show go down this route. Despite the efforts of Ryan and Nikita, Division has seen itself get increasingly sucked into reprising its old roles, and with Amanda applying pressure as well as the remaining members of the Dirty Thirty still at large, facilitating the shutdown of Division has turned out to be a much more difficult task than anticipated. It also makes perfect sense that Amanda would try to tap into this insecurity, as it’s a way to fracture Division that couldn’t really be foreseen. The unexpected injury to Ryan, who proved his ability to properly mediate tension within Division as well as tension between Division and the US administration, also effectively complicates the issue, giving Amanda an opportunity to deliver another blow.
The proof of Amanda’s mental manipulation of Alex also adds an interesting wrinkle to the proceedings. This may be the most complicated attack Amanda has launched against Division, and the insidiousness means it’ll be a while until her plot is actually unveiled. It’s also worth noting that the extent of damage that Amanda’s machine can cause is still unknown, which may mean Alex’s character is now irrevocably different, in much the same way as it has been hinted at that Owen is a fundamentally different person than before Amanda experimented with him. How the core group of Division reacts to this realisation, especially Nikita, Sean, and Owen, is worth looking out for. Sean, in particular, may find his allegiance tested in a conflict between Alex and Division, as his romantic attachment to the former and his need for the latter will need to be weighed.
The potential relationship between The Shop and Division is also a promising aspect of the episode. While they do manage to properly attached Michael’s hand, thus holding up their end of the bargain, it’s clear that there is more to the assignment they task Nikita and Michael with than meets the eye, which brings up the logical question of why The Shop chose Division to steal an item from someone they were working with, as well as what kind of relationship they had with Division under Percy’s reign. It’s clear they are not done with Division, and how they choose to exert their influence going forward, as well as how Division decides to fight back, is worth watching, as it’s clear that The Shop will present a more formidable obstacle than Danforth. Whether Amanda factors into this relationship, and how, is also something to take note of, as it’s possible that The Shop may trust her from the time she spent running Division, or through Ari.
Overall, this was a fascinating episode. It was good to see the show revisit the idea of Division’s old technology supplier, and how that plays into Nikita and Division’s plans going forward promises to be intriguing. Alex shooting Ryan was also a fantastically unexpected moment, and the fallout from the shooting is bound to reverberate through Division, particularly in how they deal with the US government in his absence, as well as who takes over the reins of the organisation. The Shop also holds promise as an adversary, as they displayed their ability to stay one step ahead of Nikita and Michael at all times this episode, and kept up their end of the bargain when it came to it. How the team reacts once they learn that it was Alex who pulled the trigger on Ryan, as well as the fact that Alex was brainwashed by Amanda, is worth tuning in for next week.
– Deepayan Sengupta