Taken Season 1 Episode 3 Review: Off Side

It didn't take long for Taken to land on an obvious target.

Yes, terrorism was the topic at the center of Taken Season 1 Episode 3.

Tracking Information - Taken Season 1 Episode 3

Fortunately, there was a twist, so the case wasn't totally heavy-handed.

Of course, most law enforcement pros assumed Ismat, the missing Iraqi Muslim, was the one plotting mayhem.

However, Christina's team members were a little more jaded than your average gung-ho agents.

Is [Ismat] on the FBI watch list for a real reason, or is he another name they added to cover their asses?

John [to Riley]

I thought it was pretty evident early on that Ismat was being set up and wasn't a terrorist.

It was a good thing Bryan snagged Amir's cell phone so that Riley could uncover all that evidence incriminating unknown, hawkish, government officials.

It just took most of the hour to figure out who some of the rogue officials were.

You knew there had to be some pretty high-up officials if they could reach the office phone for Christina's super-secret unit. You can't get that number from 411. "Which black-ops squad was that? Do you have an address?"

Christina already placed a lot of faith in Bryan since she was willing to blow away the two men threatening to set off Ismat's explosive vest before he found a solution.

It was a good thing Christina took the proper proactive steps to discourage others.

Christina: We need to send a message.
Bryan: A message?
Christina: Coerce the president at your own peril.

Still, I don't think knocking off a few members of a conspiracy will end it, by any means. This cabal will be back on Christina's radar again and probably soon.

Tense Showdown - Taken Season 1 Episode 3

And for those skeptical of such a conspiracy happening, just look at the political atmosphere in Washington now. Or study history. 

Any group that is considered different by the group, not in power is always being made the boogeyman by those in power.

Christina's medical problem was an unusual development, an intriguing crack in her armor. It even forced her to reach out to Harry, a person outside of her work circle.

Throughout the case, as happened previously, Bryan followed his own lead, first and foremost.

Take, for example, his refusing John's orders to leave.

Bryan: I'm not leaving here.
John: Yeah, you are.
Bryan: Or what? You gonna shoot me again?
John: We don't have time for this.
Bryan: I'm not leaving this man. I'm the new guy and that makes me the expendable one.

It's good that Bryan's history is being slowly revealed. Bryan felt a connection to Amir, a boy whose father was missing because Bryan's father had been lost at sea for six days before being rescued.

He was doggedly hunting for ways to save Ismat because he wanted to spare Amir the pain of permanently losing his father.

Father and Son - Taken Season 1 Episode 3

Bryan's combat skills have proven impressive, but his strongest ability have been being able to think on his feet.

He found an out-of-sight way to smuggle Ismat out of the cafe and kept looking for a way to block the cell signal before the hour on the timer was up.

Still, while it's heartwarming that Bryan visited Ismat and Amir after the fact, shouldn't a covert agent be a little more, I don't know, covert?

And Bryan's decision to let Asha in on his secret obsession was probably a mistake.

The environmental lawyer just doesn't belong in Bryan's world of secrets, and that can only get her into trouble. Also, she's a smart woman, and he's said enough that she's probably figured out her crush's new profession, also not a good thing.

Bryan: I'm finding it hard to let go.
Asha: I understand. More than you know.

Asha is trying to bring Bryan back from the dark side, but that's where he lives. I think it's more likely that she will get pulled into his mission of vengeance in the end.

There is another thing about Asha. Her best friend, Bryan's sister, Cali, appeared to be about 16. Asha has gone to law school, so that's got to make her in her mid-20s. That makes it seem like Bryan is robbing the cradle a little bit less. Maybe Asha was Cali's slightly older best friend?

To follow Bryan's development, watch Taken online.

How do you think Bryan is fitting in with his team? Who's your favorite team member? Will the conspiracy storyline be ongoing? Comment below.

Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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