Season 1 Episode 10
"The War at Home"
With new political threats at home, Nick puts his future on the line...[button color="black" size="small" link="http://www.nbc.com/state-of-affairs" target="blank" ]Official Site[/button]
The president is awake at sunrise as media reports on the Ar Rissalah attack that killed Senator Green fill the airwaves. After careful preparation, she delivers an emotional speech to the nation from an American Legion Hall. The nation is at war, and while the United States will tolerate no form of profiling, members of Ar Rissalah will meet with swift justice. When protestors rise from the crowd calling for Payton's impeachment, the Secret Service hustles her to her limo. On the road, DP warns negative sentiment is spilling into her administration; her critics think she's using the CIA as a personal royal guard. DP fears that fallout from the attack that killed Senator Green could seriously compromise the presidency. He wants Payton to assign an independent entity with unfettered access to investigate the CIA. If they're clean, all's well, but if not, Payton should let them burn. Knowing she needs to control such an investigation, the president recalls she owes Senator Burke a big favor...
Charlie and FBI Agent Hernandez visit the seven Ar Rissalah terrorists at an FBI holding facility. Hernandez informs prisoner Kenneth that he will be charged with treason and conspiracy to commit a terrorist act, which will result in life imprisonment or death. So where are the rest of the bombs? In response, Kenneth and his fellow prisoners start chanting Ar Rissalah propaganda. This news frustrates the president during her daily briefing. The only good news? Nick is still next to Fatah, and the CIA will strike as soon as he lays eyes on Sheikh Hakam. Payton warns Charlie that Fatah will not walk away from the operation, and Nick needs to know this. Back at the CIA, the team combs interview footage of the seven Ar Rissalah captives, but no leads are emerging. Charlie urges them to reset: how were the seven recruited? How did they meet - and how did they communicate with Al Moosari?
Across the world in the Philippines' Mindanao Jungle, Nick, Fatah and their Abu Sayef escorts are ambushed by Philippine Marines. After an intense firefight and chase, Fatah, Nick and their one remaining escort are captured. It's looking like curtains, when an unseen sniper takes out the Marines. The Abu Sayef guy, Pepito, is quick to accuse Nick of bringing on the Marines, but Fatah suspects the CIA is following them. Nick explains that even if the CIA were following them, they wouldn't kill the marines, so Fatah defends him, insisting that they need to return to Abu Sayef's camp to rendezvous with Sheikh Hakam. But for the sake of security, Pepito demands that Nick kill whoever's following them to prove his innocence.
Back in D.C., Payton tells Senator Burke about her intention to appoint a commission to investigate the CIA. She acts surprised when Burke volunteers to run the commission, even though he's from the opposing party. He suggests setting up a seven-member congressional investigation with subpoena power - and he won't vote. In the end, the president's brinksmanship has Burke on her team with his nonpartisan declaration of their mutual goal to end Ar Rissalah's domestic terrorist threat.
At the CIA, Dash finds a link to the Ar Rissalah seven: they must have been recruited on a private message board on extremetruth.net. But since the site has been shut down, there's no accessing the archive, especially since its administrator is Professor Ahmadi, who's come up clean. Since the FBI is officially holding the prisoners, Charlie volunteers to speak with Ahmadi, appealing to him for help. She apologizes for his past rough treatment at the hands of the CIA, though his words did inspire terrorism. Ahmadi protests - this is not the democracy he emigrated for - but Charlie wins the day and access to the archive. She returns to HQ to find Senator Burke waiting to tell her about the congressional investigation. Knowing Burke isn't cleared to enter CIA HQ, Charlie bristles, referring him to her boss Navarro, whom they both know is languishing in a hospital bed. The conversation is just turning to threats when hard man and Acting Director DD Banks busts in to put a stop to it. Finally, someone seems to have Charlie's back! Burke is just out the door when Nick calls to report Operation Bellerophon is in trouble. Charlie confirms the CIA has no one following him, and he reports that he has to do something she shouldn't know about. After hanging up, Nick trails the sniper and his spotter through the jungle. Nick shoots, and the sniper runs away, but the spotter isn't dead. After some fierce hand-to-hand combat, Nick kills the spotter, an American with a Special Forces tattoo. Just then, the sniper gets a chokehold on Nick, saying, "You were told to stay away," then runs off into the night. When he takes off his headgear, we recognize the sniper as Charlie's secret source, Syd Vaslo.
Kurt is bored with his new job at The Krieg Group; clearly what he really wants to do is call Mo to check on Navarro. That's when Victor Gantry appears at his door, seeming to have read his mind. Life is tough enough, and this is D.C. Sliding a black credit card across the desk, Gantry tells Kurt it's time to buy a more appropriate car. Meanwhile, Payton ushers DD Banks into her office to discuss Burke's visit. DD gets right to the point: gunning for Navarro, Burke has subpoenaed the CIA up the wazoo. With no political agenda besides hard work and service to country, all DD cares about is shielding his people. So when the president requests that DD give Burke what he wants - within reason, of course - DD knows just what she means. Back at the CIA, Charlie tells her team about Burke's investigation. Mo fears they'll go hard after Kurt... who's at that moment applying his TKG discount on a bulletproof $140,000 Mercedes-Benz.
A parade of limos makes its way up the drive of Senator Green's Alexandria ranch, where her daughter Trisha welcomes POTUS. Putting political differences aside, Payton reminds Trisha that long ago, she and her mother started out as friends. Trisha remarks that Marshall said the same thing at last night's viewing, which is news to the president. That night, Payton confronts her husband. Why didn't he tell her he was going to Kyle's viewing? And why was Marshall accepting classified photos from the woman he had an affair with? When Marshall says 10 years is too long to carry the burden of his affair, Payton reminds him it's a burden they'll both carry for life. Insisting that Kyle only gave him information that his wife refused, Marshall stalks off.
Nick tells Fatah and Pepito that he killed one man and the other got away. Fatah comments on Nick's honesty, then says, "Even trust has its limits," as the men head off to the Abu Sayef camp. Back in the States, Nick drives his new Benz very fast down a country road. Suddenly he pulls over, then starts searching for what he knows he'll find: a GPS tracker. Meanwhile, Dash has come up with an address the Ar Rissalah seven chatted about in common - maybe that's where the rest of the bombs are hidden? It's not long before Charlie and Agent Hernandez are on the scene, watching a bomb squad robot as it locates seven backpacks. When the robot proves too clumsy, a tech named Riggs moves in. Riggs defuses the first bomb handily, but the second one blows the building to smithereens. It's not long before Charlie's debriefing the president, crediting Ahmadi with giving them the intel that allowed the CIA to find the bombs. After spending a moment appreciating Ahmadi's sacrifice, a tired Payton wishes the whole thing was over, telling Charlie to remand the Ar Rissalah seven to regular custody with access to lawyers and doctors. The ladies chuckle over scotch and how hard DD went after Burke, full well knowing Burke is gunning for them both. But while he's digging their dirt, the president intends to erase Sheikh Hakam from the face of the planet. Charlie and Constance clink glasses - cheers to that - as aides wheel hundreds of boxes full of heavily redacted files into Burke's office.
The next day, an angry Kurt finds Victor at his desk, crushing pills with his tumbler of scotch. After returning Victor's black credit card, Kurt asks if TKG thinks he's an idiot. Why bother recruiting him - what does Victor really want? Victor wants everything Kurt knows on Fatah and Bellerophon...
At the CIA, Mo finds Charlie watching news footage of last night's explosion, ruing the loss of Riggs. Mo has bigger news: the Philippines desk has found the body of an American in the jungle, but they're treading lightly. It's not Nick, but could he have killed an American during an unsanctioned op? Charlie knows Nick will likely burn either way. In his office, Ahmadi opens a letter, a note of thanks on the presidential letterhead. President Payton is in his debt... With a terse smile, Ahmadi accesses a hidden door in his closet to reveal a rack of suicide vests hanging in a secret room.