Babes, bad­dies, bul­lets: but wait, there’s more

Alias 10.30pm, Seven

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Tv -

THIS you- beaut, bash- and- crash, kil­land- be- killed, stop- start, love- and­die, end- of- sto­ry­line- type episode kicks off the fifth and fi­nal sea­son of Alias with the sort of en­ergy that prom­ises great things to come.

It starts out as re­laxed and com­fort­able as the Howard prime min­is­ter­ship, with Syd­ney Bris­tow ( Jen­nifer Gar­ner) and Michael Vaughan ( Michael Var­tan) in love, in their car and on the way to a well- de­served hol­i­day af­ter years of gru­elling in­trigue.

The sto­ry­line ar­rives in a shower of glass and an ex­plo­sion of metal as the cou­ple’s car is T- boned, then there’s a gun fight in a corn­field and Vaughan is ab­ducted in a black he­li­copter, which is a bit of a worry for Syd­ney as he had just de­cided to re­veal his true iden­tity when the other car ar­rived. What was he go­ing to say next?

Syd­ney’s dad Jack ( Vic­tor Gar­ber) reck­ons he saw it all be­fore when his wife and her mother did a bunk and left him in jail un­der sus­pi­cion of be­ing a spy, and now it’s hap­pen­ing to his daugh­ter.

Noth­ing in Alias is what it seems, and the tri­umph of this episode is that it man­ages to go a long way down the Syd­ney- Michael love story arc with­out in­trud­ing on the shoot­ing, fight­ing and spy­ing. At one stage the ac­tion cou­ple in­fil­trates a gar­den party to steal some doc­u­ments, trip the alarm, run for their lives and then pause on a cliff edge while the bad­dies get their act to­gether.

Syd­ney has some­thing to tell Michael. While they’ve been run­ning for their lives she’s had a call from work telling her where the pickup point will be and, adding some de­light­ful news, she’s preg­nant!

They kiss and hug as the guns are drawn and leap over the cliff only as the first bul­lets fly. It is some re­lief when they pull para­chute and float to­wards the wa­ter on their way to a long and happy life. Well, not quite. There’s a big twist in this twist- and­turner but I’m not go­ing to give it up ex­cept to say that what you think couldn’t hap­pen does hap­pen, and it comes as quite an up­set.

Any­way, you may think the above carry- on is all a bit silly, but there is some­thing in a good episode of Alias that sus­pends your dis­be­lief, and this is a good one.

The core of the plot is Michael’s dis­cov­ery of the truth about his fa­ther’s life’s work and a meet­ing with a man who can let him con­tinue it. Or at least that’s what it looks like at first.

Peter Lalor

Fam­ily ties: Syd­ney ( Jen­nifer Gar­ner) and Jack Bris­tow ( Vic­tor Gar­ber) in Alias

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