Last Friday, Nikita, Amanda and Percy were double crossing each other all over the place. That theme remained in "Arising," as the story moved to the battlefield in Russia involving Alex, Ari and Cassandra.
Ari has proved to be as manipulative as both Amanda and Percy. With his plot to take over Zetrov with Amanda and Percy's unrelenting desire for power, they have become the evil triumvirate. On the other side is Nikita, Michael, and Birkhoff with their many assets. And, Alex, well, her partnership with Amanda and Ari came to an abrupt end when they overplayed their hand for Zetrov.
Ari feigned ignorance regarding what happened to Alex's mother when he knew that she was under the "protection" of Division agents. Alex believed that Katya had been moved by Semak to keep them away from each other. But, that wasn't the case.
With everything that Semak did to Alex and her family, it was surprising to see a softer side of him. He truly loved Katya and showed Alex his vulnerable side. Unfortunately for Semak, his right hand man outwitted and killed him.
While Alex wanted Semak to pay for killing her father and the ambush of the family home, she didn't find satisfaction in his death. His visit showed her a different side of him, but it was probably because his death didn't provide her closure. It came at the hand of Ari, rather than from her.
Alex's reunion with her mother was mixed. In many ways, Katya is to Alex what Carla was to Nikita. Both Katya and Carla just didn't get the big picture. They were easily manipulated into believing the wrong people. Since Katya was witness to Ari and Amanda's ploy to use her as a pawn against Alex, she was able to see the light when Carla never did.
With Katya and Sean on their way into hiding, how long will it be before they are found? Ari and Amanda are not going to give up their quest for Zetrov. Alex may have denied them her shares, but they will find another way to take control.
The other main story was the return of Cassandra. When I first heard she was coming back and that she was working for Gogol, I wasn't happy. She was first introduced as the wife of the Belorussian president, then it was revealed she was an undercover MI6 agent, and now she's also a double agent for Gogol? It's not that I didn't like Cassandra, it was just too convenient to have her working for Ari. The writers at Nikita rarely make a wrong move and fortunately the Cassandra storyline was no exception.
The return of Cassandra worked because it provided closure for Michael. She may have been a double agent, but the back story about how she got involved with Gogol made her sympathetic. It helped that she also didn't realize the end game of her mission for Ari.
In this world, loyalties shift constantly. With both MI-6 and Gogol after Cassandra, it was no longer safe for her or Max. When Ari found out that Cassandra booked a private plane with her credit card, I was confused. She's not stupid. Why would she use a credit card that could be traced? I should have realized it was a ruse right away, but I was so caught up in the story that I didn't.
Though, why didn't MI6 and Ari wonder that same thing? Perhaps, they thought she was too desperate. It wasn't until the plane blew up that I realized the plan. MI6 and Ari were both easily convinced that Cassandra died in that plane.
With that, Michael had to say goodbye to his son. Their last words and hug was heartbreaking. Michael made a huge sacrifice for the good of his son. As much as I love little Max, I hope we don't see them again. Cassandra and Max are safe, which allows Michael and Nikita to fight another day.
Alex gave up her mother and Michael gave up his son. Will their decision to protect them over their desire to have them close end up being the right one? Is Katya or Cassandra and Max at a greater risk?
Odds and Ends
- Michael and Nikita love each other, but sometimes that isn't enough. Will Nikita ever be emotionally ready to settle down with Michael without being on the chase or the run?
- Alex and Sean work as a team. I'd love for them to get together. Unfortunately with Sean off protecting Katya, I don't see that happening any time soon, if at all.
- How awesome was the playground scene? Max's face when he watched Nikita kick ass was precious. No way he is going to forget that, sorry, Nikita.
- I didn't miss Birkhoff during the episode, because there was so much else going on. But, when he isn't around, the fun, lighthearted banter and humor is almost non-existent. That gives the episode, a harsher tone.