FBI explores the nature of undercover work in “Identity Crisis”, as Maggie and OA investigate the murder of a judge and her daughter.
This recap of FBI Episode 11, “Identity Crisis”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
Even though the murder of a federal judge and her daughter was the catalysing incident in this week’s episode of Dick Wolf’s FBI, “Identity Crisis” wasn’t really about that. Even though a minor character revealed that this was only the fifth time in U.S. history that such a thing has happened, it still wasn’t treated with that much importance.
It’s surprising, really, and in its earliest scenes that’s exactly where “Identity Crisis” looked to be going. Dana (Sela Ward) knew the victim personally, and the general office sentiment was that, since the perpetrator had technically targeted one of their own, it was all hands on deck. The usual investigation commenced, spearheaded by Special Agents Maggie Bell (Missy Peregrym) and Omar Adom ‘OA’ Zidan (Zeeko Zaki) as ever, but some cursory poking around revealed a connection to an exclusive lounge and its shady owner, Rossi.
In Rossi’s employ were both Clayton Cardenas fresh from his tenure on Mayans M.C., and an undercover FBI agent, Gina, whom Maggie knew from Quantico. You might be surprised to learn that Cardenas doesn’t play an upstanding member of the public, but rather a trigger-man with Cartel connections. And in case the episode’s title didn’t clue you in, Gina’s allegiances can’t exactly be relied upon.
“Identity Crisis” continued down this path, with Gina gradually revealed as being in love with Rossi, and it made for a few fun scenes, including brief undercover gigs for both Assistant Special Agent in Charge Jubal Valentine (Jeremy Sisto) and Analyst Kristen Chazal (Ebonee Noel). It also contained a few moments of absurdly clunky dialogue, such as when the club’s doorman was interviewed after being caught on camera eyeing up the late judge. “When I see something lean and mean I can’t help checking it out.” I blush even to reproduce such tosh.
While it’s nice to see Maggie have a relationship with an actual human being who isn’t OA, I still didn’t buy her connection to Gina, and for that matter I could see the inevitable Stockholm Syndrome twist a mile away and became increasingly frustrated that Maggie didn’t. If we’re supposed to buy that she was blind to it because of her fondness for Gina then we needed to actually see a bit more of their connection beyond Maggie uncharacteristically fawning over her every time they met up.
Still, FBI maintains a baseline level of quality, and “Identity Crisis” hit all the usual beats that keep the procedural show consistently entertaining, if rarely memorable. It wasn’t a standout episode by any means, but I don’t believe we’ve had one of those from FBI yet. Perhaps we never will. But the show does what it sets out to, and it does it relatively well. Sometimes that’s all you need.