With Jack Bauer now in the White House, the first scene this week removes any doubt that Agent Q is his rightful heir: yes, she might have been rendered unconscious in the car accident we saw at the end of the last episode, but that’s certainly not going to prevent her from fighting off a mystery assailant. And nor is the unpleasant bleeding laceration in her side, which obliges her to drop in on a startled Chuck, then pass out on his bed. Fortunately Chuck’s got some medical game; or, at least, access to YouTube. “Did you glue my wound?” she demands on coming round, which in some circumstances I might be prepared to regard as the first sighting of a ship on the horizon, but not this time. (I could get behind #Channah, writers. I really could. Just saying.)
Unfortunately, the file which Agent Q was transporting at the time of the crash has been stolen. And, as she’s not leaving Chuck’s apartment for now, correctly inferring that she’s in danger, this all leaves Kimble Hookstraten twisting in the wind: she can’t delay MacLeish’s confirmation hearing for ever, so it has to go ahead. Interestingly, POTUS clearly thinks that there’s something rum about Q’s disappearance at the very moment when she was about to produce evidence of impropriety. But without that evidence there’s nothing anyone can do about it, so MacLeish is approved, and plans go ahead for him to be sworn in.
Chuck and Q set to work trying to find out who her source is. Meantime, in the West Wing, Emily, Aaron, and Seth are shooting the breeze after a hard day, right up to the point where Seth realises that he’s very much the third wheel. So he gets the hell out of the way, and Emily and Aaron totally make out! #Aamily4EVA! Except… well. POTUS has asked Emily to investigate how the plans for how one might blow up the Capitol, were one so inclined, were leaked from the White House. So who was it? To start with it looks as if it came from the then Chief of Staff, Charles Langdon, but instead it came from his deputy. One Aaron Shore. Except… well. If it’s obviously him, it obviously isn’t him. I think. It’s a hell of a speed bump for #Aamily, though, one way or another.
Oh yeah. Q’s source. There’s the usual step-by-step for tracing someone in a procedural: the burner phone, the CCTV, the zoom-in-on-the-car, the running of the plates, everything apart from facial recognition. And sure enough the source is run to ground, and it’s REDACTED, which is surprising but not actually shocking, probably because s/he isn’t someone we’ve really had a chance to become invested in. Not until now, anyway. But Q works out that someone’s about to take a shot at POTUS during MacLeish’s swearing in ceremony, and gets to the ceremony just in time for the show to take a break until March. Which is a long time: I know that’s how the business works these days, but it’s gonna need to be a cracker of a comeback or Designated Survivor’s audience might just melt away in the interim. I’ll be there, though; this was another very good episode, and there’s a lot to like about this show.