Taken Season 1 Episode 2 Review: Ready

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For someone who has spent years in the military, Bryan Mills still has a lot to learn about being a team player.

That's one clear takeaway from his first missions as a member of Christina's super-secret, covert-ops team on Taken Season 1 Episode 2.

Careful Tracking - Taken Season 1 Episode 2

It's pretty obvious from the beginning that Bryan was still haunted by his sister Cali's death, and that's going to get in the way of effectively doing his job.

Hell, he would have beaten a man to death during a training mission if others hadn't stepped in.

Dave: He's not a real terrorist. He's Delta Force playing a terrorist.
Bryan: I got the hostage. Easy. I got this.
Delta Force Guy: There's something wrong with you, in the head.
Christina: Let's just say he's still a work in progress.

Christina rightfully sidelined him for that stunt.

Christina: It's a wound, and like all wounds, it's going to take time to heal.
Bryan: So, in the meantime, you're going to make me ride a desk.

Still, he found a way to contribute, warning the Ukraine team about a grenade.

Even though he doesn't yet play well with others, Bryan has some skills.

Now he just has to get out of his own head.

Bryan showed off what he could do during the unscheduled mission with Christina to Kentucky.

He managed to get a photo of the sniper while under fire. He was the one who noticed that Christina had been shot. His teammates followed his orders even though he was the new guy.

He's slowly earning the grudging respect of his colleagues.

Riley: How the hell did he do that?
Scott: Ride and shoot at the same time?
Riley: No. How did [Bryan] get the picture?
Scott: Oh, that.
Bryan: Luck.
Rem: And a healthy dose of good old American nuts.
Riley: If by nuts, you mean ...
Scott: Crazy. He means crazy.
John: Good job.

After all, he's the one to save the day: capturing the sniper, wiping out the gunmen.

Yeah, it's more than a little improbable that Bryan seems to be a one-man wrecking crew. But that's certainly in the spirit of the movies from which the series is drawn.

Dazed Survivor - Taken Season 1 Episode 2

The case itself was involving. A senator and a CIA agent, Christina's old friend, were killed to protect a defense contractor's human trafficking of refugees. 

Granted, the solution seemed to come together pretty quickly. One Italian word led to a secret operation, which led to the officials that were profiting from it. All it took was capturing and sweating a couple of gunmen.

Another reason that Bryan was out in front: Other than Christina, the rest of the team remained rather anonymous.

I tend to think of them as "that guy from Friday Night Lights" or "that guy from The Unit" or "the brainy girl with the fetching eye roll."

Fortunately, Christina seems to have a back story, which is coming out a little at a time. It will soon be time to spotlight the other team members as well so that they become more well-rounded characters rather than cardboard stereotypes.

That's going to be a little difficult for a series that's probably 75 percent action, but I think it's essential as well.

Otherwise, the car chases and explosions and fighting are going to get old fast. It's one thing to chase the young, male viewer. It's another thing to forget every other type of viewer.

At least, Bryan is opening up to his teammates, which can't hurt.

Bryan: Hold on a second. You guys need to know something. I'm still a little messed up by my sister's murder.
Scott: A little? Really? We hadn't noticed.
John: Man, we all got ghosts. But I appreciate you telling us.

We also discovered more about Asha, Cali's friend (played by Brooklyn Sudano, Donna Summer's daughter). 

A Quiet Moment - Taken Season 1 Episode 2

She's a lawyer, which is bound to come in handy for Bryan, who acts first and thinks later. So her current role is as his confidant or co-conspirator. Later, who knows?

Now the challenge: to make the series more than a pale imitation of the movies. That will mean less action and more character development. But that needn't be Taken's death knell. Appealing to more types of viewers can only attract better ratings.

To follow Bryan's development, watch Taken online.

Is Bryan fitting in well with the team? Other than Christina, can you name three team members? Will Bryan's relationship with Asha become important? Comment below.

Ready Review

Editor Rating: 3.5 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (23 Votes)

Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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Taken Season 1 Episode 2 Quotes

Christina: It's a wound, and like all wounds, it's going to take time to heal.
Bryan: So, in the meantime, you're going to make me ride a desk.

Dave: He's not a real terrorist. He's Delta Force playing a terrorist.
Bryan: I got the hostage. Easy. I got this.
Delta Force Guy: There's something wrong with you, in the head.
Christina: Let's just say he's still a work in progress.