Alex Rider season 1, episode 5 is a standout thus far, thickening the plot and the espionage vibe with a good grasp of pace and tension to boot.
This recap of Alex Rider season 1, episode 5 contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
If you were wondering what Alex was “ready” for in the previous episode’s cliffhanger, I’m afraid you’ll have to keep pondering the matter since Alex wakes up in Alex Rider episode 5 not able to remember a thing about his “dream”. Kyra (Marli Siu) explains she experienced something similar, which should be something of an alarm bell, especially since Laura returns after her leave of absence with seemingly a new personality.
Back in the equally immoral climes of London’s shady intelligence underbelly, Mrs. Jones and co. try to piece together why Martin would have been a double-agent. What’s the connection between him and Point Blanc? Or him and Yassen, who is paying particular attention to Alex? There are plenty of dramatic questions still remaining as we cross the show’s halfway point.
Here’s one: What’s going to happen to Tom? While it seems he’s doing okay with the ladies, awkwardly discussing more parties with Steph, the girl who ralphed on him in the premiere, he’s also earned the attention of Yassen, who is lurking at the school. Not a good development.
For now, Yassen seems a step ahead of everyone, even after some fancy-pants vocal manipulation by Smithers and co. that allows them to impersonate Martin. Dr. Greif seems to get the same warning calls about security protocols as Yassen does, strengthening that still-nebulous connection.
Since Greif holds all the answers, his office is targeted by Alex, Kyra, and James, who aren’t keen on all their personalities being altered and resolve to get to the bottom of matters. This requires bypassing some intricate security, a task made all the more difficult by the fact that Greif and Yassen both were warned about updating their protective measures. There’s a key code that relates to Hitler’s birthday – never a good sign – and a physical key card that’s also needed. Nothing’s ever easy in the world of espionage, and Alex Rider episode 5 feels like easily the most on-brand of the episodes thus far when it comes to this kind of thing.
Even without turning out Greif’s pockets, the shape of his plan begins to emerge all the same, largely thanks to Parker Roscoe being quite public in his desire to control his late father’s empire. These notions of control are compelling ones, and the immediate vibe is of Point Blanc producing puppets that can occupy positions of power and be manipulated to Greif’s ends. Where exactly Alex fits into that plan remains to be seen, but he also doesn’t intend on sticking around to find out. He, James, and Kyra hatch an escape plan, but while James is forced to miss out on it, Alex and Kyra follow through. They turn up constant surveillance on all of them as Greif and Eva thank Dr. Baxter for his work by plunging a knife into his chest.
Alex Rider season 1, episode 5 is a standout thus far, thickening the plot and the espionage vibe with a good grasp of pace and tension to boot. It’s the most spy-like the show has gotten, but still built on a strong foundation of character and mystery that retroactively makes the first four episodes – even the torpid third – feel as though they were doing good long-term work. An impressive outing with plenty of promise going forward.
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Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has been Senior Editor and Chief Critic of the outlet since 2017.