CSI: Vegas Season 2 Episode 5 Review: In Harm's WayDale McGarrigle at .
Things aren't always what they seem.
Something that appeared to be a mass-casualty event ended up being more straightforward and much more personal on CSI: Vegas Season 2 Episode 5.
It came down to a matter of perspective.
The paranoia that we all live in today contributes to the early misperception.
With the rampant fear of biochemical weapons, it was little wonder that everyone's minds went there when the guests fell ill at a local university's science department fundraiser.
I mean, who knows what they were working on for which shadowy government or corporate entity and who might be opposed to such research?
So, Maxine mandating hazard suits to protect against the unknown made perfect sense.
But something was going on with Max. She was skittish and was taking it out on everyone around her, especially the well-meaning Beau, who is still feeling his way along in his new role as a CSI.
Allie, the most sensitive soul of the bunch, noted Max's behavior but knew better than to push it amid a complicated investigation. It was a mystery for another day.
It was an odd trio that wound up dead after the event: A lawyer and an administrator from the university and the COO from a defense contractor. The criminologists were correct to seek some connection among the three victims, although it was later proven not to exist.
The hints were there from the beginning, with the grad students lamenting how badly the university treated them and Morrow. Morrow's leaving the party early also was suspicious.
There was more foreshadowing when the living victims were being interviewed, as Dr. Parish claimed to Max that hospital officials were covering up something already.
That something doubtlessly led to the FBI's obstructive visit later, for all the good that their involvement did.
Two of the newer characters came to the forefront, starting with Beau. Despite his apparent genius in his chemistry field, Beau is still finding his place with his new team.
With Beau wrestling with the consequences of his conclusion, Folsom offered up some time-honored wisdom to him, essentially another spin on Grissom's proclamation of "Follow the evidence."
Beau offering up the rat corpse indirectly led to solving the case. Sonya's necropsy resulted in Allie's incorrect conclusion of hydrogen-peroxide poisoning. But if they hadn't returned to the crime scene, they never would have found the directed-energy weapon.
It also was revealed that Beau has a past, including creating a jet fuel that was coopted by the war industry. That's likely another thing that led to his change of career path.
More of Sonya got revealed as well. Like Hugo before her, she doesn't suffer fools gladly, which made Folsom the target of her barbs.
Maybe that's just the way it goes. Medical examiners want to complete their research before offering opinions, whereas investigators (CSIs, cops) want more immediate answers. That's why this conflict has become a procedural trope.
Sonya still appears more prickly than likable. But let's see more of her interactions, especially with her assistant and brother Jack, before we form an opinion of this new character.
Once the CSIs had established the murder weapon, they just needed to pinpoint which university engineers would target any of the murder victims.
Morrow, who had made evident his disdain for the lawyer Woodall, was the obvious choice. But Max's discerning eye found another suspect within Morrow's group, the grad student Luther.
Luther had an admirable reason for doing what he did. But he executed his plan poorly, causing unexpected death and additional pain for all those party guests. So being well-intentioned won't get him off.
It was hilarious when Max essentially approved Beau's palming of the power pack necessary to make the directed-energy weapon work.
Hopefully, Allie's talk with Max will help the lab boss to get back on track after her traumatic injury.
Not surprisingly, after an episode or two off, Catherine was back on the trail of finding out who made Grace disappear.
She attempted to recruit a close friend of Grace, her former roommate Monica, an exotic dancer.
Monica balked at first since having someone who was a cop adjacent coming to her club wouldn't be helpful for her.
But, having learned that Grace's disappearance was involuntary, Monica came around, bringing the watch given to Grace to Catherine and telling her about their side hustle at a private poker game.
Monica even agreed to help with the investigation, stealing items with the DNA of the players during her next shift.
Watching the reactions as she prepared to slip out of her dress for Folsom was funny. He didn't seem that put out, did he?
It was promising that Monica survived the episode, which could mean she'll return in a future episode. The evidence she gathered allowed Catherine to isolate Grace's likely killer.
A very reluctant Jodi returned, although her role seemed to urge Catherine to back off now that Koslov had left the country. Not Catherine. Instead, she hopped a plane to Belarus with no backup. No good can come of that. The question is whether her adventures there will be shown or happen offscreen.
To follow Catherine's search for Grace, watch CSI: Vegas online.
What did you think of the developments of Beau and Sonya?
Who had directed-energy weapon on their Bingo card?
Were you glad to see Catherine back on her private investigation?
Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.