‘The Brave’ on NBC (RECAPS)

Here are Drunk TV recaps for episodes of The Brave on NBC.

Desperate Times (November 20, 2017)
When the team foes undercover in Iran to bring down a bad guy involved in that first-episode-ending terrorist attack on the beach, Jazz gets to shine as she goes undercover, assuming the identity of a woman to try to get closer to the man the team needs to take down. I enjoy the stand-alone episodes The Brave a lot, but since it’s 2017, I guess ya have to go back to that whole “season arc” thing every so often. But despite a slow start, the episode is wall-to-wall thrills, leading up to Jazz’s last-minute escape plan when sh*t hits the fan, as she risks life & limb in the episode’s final scene.

Stealth (November 13, 2017)
Dalton & the gang must fly in to Mongolia on the search for a super-secret high-tech stealth Russian drone that crashed there. See, this drone is undetectable, and flew right over the US without anyone noticing. If the team can snag a piece of its skin & bring it home, they could study its properties & detect it in the future. of course, the team must battle both the Russians & the Chinese (the crash happened at the border of Mongolia & China), and they must do it old school – without the tech team back home backing them up (i.e. like driving without your Google Maps, kids).

It’s All Personal (November 6, 2017)
Amir goes undercover as the team tries to bring down an ISIS plot to blow up innocents in Paris using a young child as a suicide bomber. Amir’s willingness to do it alone causes some tension with some in the team, especially Jazz, who likens Amir’s heroics to those of the man he replaced who was killed in prior mission. A good outing that digs into the characters’ backgrounds a little more, adding depth to their characterizations. Meanwhile, Preach is becoming a favorite – like a character from Looney Toons, when he’s asked to whip out some sort of high-tech gadget (in this case a device that can remotely read a vehicle’s GPS log), he reaches back & finds it out of this air, like a real-life Inspector Gadget.

The Seville Defection (October 30, 2017)
Dalton & the gang are kickin’ back off-duty at a fancy restaurant bar in Spain when McG lays the smooth move on a sexy female. They share drinks, go back to her place, & before you know it, she’s figured out he’s a Special Ops man (careful with those tattoos, guys, they’re dead giveaways), which could come in handy since her Russian father is a spy trying to defect. Of course, the team can’t help but get involved. As an added bonus, the mission allows office-based nerd Morgenthau to enter field & try to flush out a Russian mole. Teamwork is dreamwork, folks.

Enhanced Protection (October 23, 2017)
When the Defense Intelligence Agency gets wind of an attack on a peace summit in Nigeria attended by a US ambassador, Dalton & the team are thrust into action & contend with a hostage situation at a mall. A taut, tight & terrific episode highlighting The Brave’s strength as a stand-alone story machine. Back at headquarters, director Campbell learns more about her son’s death when she receives an unexpected surprise. This episode saw an uptick in the ratings, a good sign for a show on the ratings bubble.

Break Out (October 16)
Deputy Director Campbell joins our brave souls on a mission to an Afghani military prison hoping to interrogate an American who joined the Taliban & might have intel on a potential attack. Before you know it, all hell breaks loose as the Taliban prisoners stage a prison break! Can Dalton & crew escape with the prisoner before Taliban reinforcements arrive and kill everyone? Having just watched an episode of The CW’s Valor at 9 p.m., I flipped over to CBS at 10 o’clock looking for SEAL Team before realizing it’s NBC’s The Brave that airs Monday at 10! Who can keep these shows straight? (Can’t wait to add S.W.A.T. to my list in November to muddy the waters even more.) Thankfully, The Brave has a light, action-packed approach that continues to tickle my throwback fancy to action/adventure shows of the 60s, 70s & 80s. Unfortunately, viewership still hovers around 5 million, likely not enough for such an expensive show to continue for long on a Big 3 network.

The Greater Good (October 9, 2017)
Our team is in Mexico attempting to plant a bug on a paranoid arms dealer (Andrew Howard) who supplies weapons to terrorists.  The team is aided by an undercover Mexican agent (Lakin Valdez) and a mole in the terrorist organization, Sofia (Gabrielle Walsh), who happens to be the leader’s mistress (Ohhhh crap!). We get some backstory on series regular, analyst Hannah (Sofia Pernas), and learn a bit about her scars (in more ways than one). Good, believable guest turns by all involved in this fun outing that continues to echo the ghosts of Mission: Impossible & A-Team past. Throw in a well staged car chase where the team has to finagle a way to plant that bug on the bad guy & you have an hour of throwback TV that any fan of classic television can appreciate. Ratings continued to hold in the 5-million viewer range…a good sign, but it’s too bad more people are finding this gem.

Moscow Rules (October 2, 2017)
C’mon guys, it’s all about teamwork! And this week the team is charged with rescuing captured & injured CIA operative Cassie Conner (Stacey Farber in a great action turn – wow, she kicks some ass!), whose team is caught off guard in the Ukraine. Handsome team leader Dalton continues his larger-than-life hero act (almost cartoon-like – think Duke from G.I. Joe), but it’s reassuring knowing he’s in charge. Team sniper Jaz goes at it with fellow teammate & medic, McG, as she gets emotionally caught up in the team’s reluctance to wade into danger to save her fellow woman warrior. Meanwhile, back at headquarters, agency head Patricia Cooper (Anne Heche, better in this second episode) deals with both the mission and her superior, who shows up out of nowhere to tell her the team MUST succeed in this mission. The Brave is fast becoming a fun, tight, fast-moving hour-long adventure, reminiscent of The A-Team (how about that bloody handprint-on-the-wall gag they pull on those Russian baddies?). Hopefully next time more viewers will tune in than the 5.17 million recorded for this episode. (One minor quibble: whatever happened to the van-on-the-beach finale from the first episode? They “discussed” the fallout early in this episode, but it wasn’t a good way to pay off such a great cliffhanger.)

Pilot (September 25, 2017)
It’s Law & Order, Mission: Impossible (the real Mission: Impossible, not those Tom Cruise films), M.A.S.K.& a wee bit of G.I. Joe for the grown up ’80s kids. In the pilot episode we meet “The Brave,” a team of highly skilled special ops whose missions take them around the globe, righting wrongs, rescuing those in need and generally kicking terrorist ass along the way. In their first mission to Syria, the team must save a kidnapped American surgeon who we learn was taken not for the fun of it, but because a bad guy once thought dead is in need of some medical procedures. Leader Adam Dalton (Mike Vogel) assembles his team, complete with Mission: Impossible-style interruptions to his squad’s “everyday lives” (they’re variously hangin’ with fam, shootin’ hoops, etc., before answering that all-important pager to immediately leave for headquarters & prep for a Middle East action affair.) Anne Heche stars as the head of the team who hangs with the analysts in a sort of 24-like/CTU high-tech office. (The Law & Order approach — analysts interpret the data; field agents use that data to bring the bad guys in). A good first episode that throws a lot of characters at the viewer, but the action takes center stage in The Brave, complete with a familiar closing line: “Let’s go home.” (But don’t worry, a cliffhanger to entices ya back for episode two.)

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