Jack Ryan Season 4 Episode 1 Recap – why is the CIA linked to the assassination?

By Adam Lock
Published: June 30, 2023 (Last updated: July 4, 2023)
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Prime Video series Tom Clancys Jack Ryan Season 4 Episode 1 - Triage - Recap


Dull politics and cliched criminals mar this season premiere. John Krasinksi is as great as always playing our charming action-hero lead, but the other subplots get in the way of Jack Ryan’s central role. Hopefully, this disjointed narrative starts to even out in the following episodes.

We recap the Prime Video series Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan Season 4 Episode 1, “Triage,” which contains spoilers.

The global espionage thriller Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan returns with its fourth and final season.

In the season opener “Triage,” Jack Ryan (John Krasinski) is tasked with investigating internal corruption in the CIA. Meanwhile, a partnership is formed between a Mexican cartel and a Southeast Asian crime organization.

Jack Ryan Season 4 Episode 1 Recap

The premiere starts with a mysterious prisoner being dragged into a torture chamber in Myanmar. A bag is removed from the man’s head, revealing the identity of this prisoner. It’s none other than Jack Ryan himself. He is then tortured by his captors.

We rewind to three weeks earlier. A strike team infiltrates President Udo’s palace in Lagos, Nigeria. The four-man operation assassinates the President with ease, yet they are soon attacked by the President’s army of guards.

The man giving the orders, known only as Walters, leaves the strike team to fend for themselves and disconnects from all forms of communication.

He then phones Chao Fah to confirm the elimination of the target. Chao is located in Myanmar, where he runs Wukong Palace Casino.

Why is the CIA linked to the assassination?

The American President discusses this assassination with Jack Ryan and the CIA’s acting director Elizabeth Wright. One of the assassins was captured and he appears to be one of their own, linking them to the murderous act. Jack can’t confirm or deny that the CIA was behind this attack. He promises to investigate further, though.

Jack is questioned by the Senate about the assassination in Nigeria. Again, he can’t say whether the CIA was or was not involved in the attack. He adds that he will be investigating any corruption within the organization himself.

One senator queries Jack’s rogue activities in Russia, concluding that he might be part of the problem.

Meanwhile, in Mexico, a religious assassin called Chavez is up to his own criminal acts. He chops off the hands of cartel boss Perez.

Chavez then takes the severed hands to another cartel boss called Marquez. This act of violence means that Marquez is the last cartel standing, and he is now able to do business with a crime syndicate in Southeast Asia.

Why is Chao Fah working with the cartel?

Chao is sent a photograph of the cartel boss’ severed hands, confirming that their plans are in place. It seems Chao wants to work with the Mexicans as a gateway to America. He wants to use the Marquez cartel as his sole distributor. Chao heads to Mexico straight away to meet the new business partner face to face.

Assassin Chavez is working with the Marquez cartel on this business deal, but it is later revealed that he is also working undercover for the CIA. He has his own strike team in place for the cartel’s meeting with Chao.

Back in Washington, DC, Jack believes that the previous CIA director Thomas Miller may be behind these illegal operations. Jack and James look through Miller’s files. Jack deduces that there are nine illegal operations still live in the CIA. He asks Elizabeth to shut them all down.

What happens during Chao’s meeting with the cartel?

In Mexico, Chao arrives at the Port. He is shown the cartel’s drug operation and given a tour of their laboratories. The Mexican police crash this party, though, and a shootout follows. Chavez and his team seem to be unaware of this altercation. Chao escapes unharmed while Chavez’s team aborts their mission.

Jack and Elizabeth then attend the Nigerian gala back in the USA that night. Elizabeth is under the impression that the Mexican shootout is linked with Miller’s dirty operations. This gala introduces viewers to lobbyist Adebayo Osoji and fundraiser Zeyara Lemos, characters that will have larger roles later in the season.

Jack Ryan Season 4 Episode 1 Ending Explained

The episode ends with Jack returning home from the gala with their girlfriend Cathy. Yes, Abbie Cornish is back after five years away. Jack hunts for a snack in the fridge and is then held at gunpoint by Chavez. He tells Jack to ‘turn Pluto back on,’ giving him 24 hours to complete this task.

What did you think of Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan Season 4  Episode 1? Comment below.

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