In the fourth episode of Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan entitled ‘The Wolf’, we pick up with Suleiman’s brother, Ali (Haaz Sleiman) as he makes his escape from Paris through the mountainous area of Auvergne-Rhône Alpes. A Gendarmerie officer (Bryan Morneau) lights him up for speeding and pulls him over. Ali stays calm and speaks politely to the Gendarme, who asks for his license and registration. As Ali digs in the glove compartment, the officer notices blood on Ali’s sweater and gets visibly nervous. But then a call comes in over the radio and the officer leaves Ali with directions to stay in the vehicle. As Ali watches the officer in the mirrors, he gets a grip on the handgun stashed between his seat and the gearbox and psyches himself up to shoot the officer. But when the officer returns, he hands the paperwork back to Ali and lets him off with a warning.

Haaz Sleiman and Bryan Morneau in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

As Ali drives off, we see Jack (John Krasinski) and Sandrine (Marie-Josée Croze) in her car parked out of sight nearby, watching drone footage of the Ali’s car on a tablet. Sandrine gets on the radio instructing all local authorities to stay out of the area and out of their way. As she chain-smokes like a fiend, Sandrine harps on Jack about snatching Ali up now, saying it’s a mistake to wait for like the fiftieth time, which Jack rolls his eyes at. Jack reiterates that it’s worth it to wait – by following Ali, they’ll find his contact, perhaps the rest of the cell, and find out where Suleiman’s planning to attack. Sandrine grumbles about preferring “a bird in the hand” as she puts the car in drive and gets back on the road.

In the car behind them, Greer (Wendell Pierce) rides alongside Lt. Cluzet (Stéphane Krau) and grows increasingly annoyed with Cluzet’s ranting about Muslims in France – how they’re taking over the country from the inside and that if the government doesn’t stop allowing them in, it’ll become “sharia (Islamic law) for all of us.” Fed up, Greer digs out the prayer beads his friend gave him and starts praying. Cluzet asks what the beads are and Greer says he uses them when he needs “Allah to grant him restraint.” Cluzet immediately shuts up.

At Suleiman’s (Ali Suliman) compound in Syria, he listens to a news report about aid workers from the US and Europe who’ve gone missing from Aleppo. Then he goes over to Hanin’s dresser and picks up her hairbrush, sadly pulling out a single strand from the bristles before he tosses it in a drawer. Then he travels with his group to meet Colonel Al Radwan (Jameel Khoury), his “superior,” the same guy who brought Dudayev to Suleiman’s house. Suleiman arrives to find Al Radwan’s men looting a wealthy home (I think – I couldn’t quite tell if they were moving stuff in or out), and the Colonel himself sitting on a fancy gilded chair that looks like a gaudy throne. They greet each other, and Suleiman politely asks to speak privately.

John Krasinski and Marie-Josee Croze in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

Meanwhile, back in Capt. Sandrine’s ashtray-scented ride, she starts grilling Jack about his love life, telling him she’s been married four times. When Jack tells her about Cathy, she tells him to text her and ask her out. Then she corrects him when he tells her he’s asking Cathy “how things are going.” He’s being way too polite. “Be confident! Be sexy! Be funny! You’re a wolf, remember?” Sandrine says – so Jack takes her advice, changing his text to sound more direct. Sandrine approves – but then says she hopes Cathy won’t find it “creepy” because American women tend to be more uptight than French women. Jack sighs – too late. And in the meantime, up ahead of them Ali looks like sh*t. He’s sweating, feverish and the car’s running out of gas. He’s got to stop – somewhere.

Back in D.C. at Washington Memorial, Cathy (Abbie Cornish)receives Jack’s text. She’s definitely interested but still not entirely sure about him. After talking shop with a colleague (Natalie Brown), Cathy tells her about him, saying he’s not her usual type-A guy. More like a B or C. Her friend says that’s a good thing and she should go out with him.

Ali Suliman and Jameel Khoury in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

Back in Syria, Suleiman and Al Radwan have tea and discuss things, mainly everything Al Radwan’s been hearing about Suleiman – that his wife’s left him, that his brother’s missing – and that he’s recruiting his own militia from all sects, and he won’t allow it. Suleiman says he’s not asking for permission. He picks up a duffel full of money and shows it to Al Radwan saying he’s buying something from him.

Cut to the missing aid workers being let out of their cage. Suleiman’s guys load them onto a truck – but when Suleiman goes to hand the duffel of money to Al Radwan, he snatches it right back. Then he takes out the money and distributes it to Al Radwan’s men, saying he’s heard the men haven’t been paid in months. Al Radwan laughs, saying money won’t buy their loyalty – but when he orders them to disarm Suleiman’s guys, they refuse to move. And then one of his own guys draws down on him, rifle aimed right at Al Radwan’s head. Guess Al Radwan’s not the boss anymore.

In Paris, and Sandrine and Jack lose sight of Ali’s car. The drone can’t pick up a decent image after dark. But there’s a ski resort up ahead. Tired and frustrated, Sandrine says she’s pulling over for gas – and of course, more cigarettes. She radios Cluzet and Greer, telling them to keep going and check out the resort.

Suleiman returns to his compound with his guys, Al Radwan’s guys and the aid workers in tow. Everyone (including Suleiman’s son Samir) watches as the aid workers pile out and at the very last, Al Radwan himself, now tied up like any other prisoner. Suleiman grabs Al Radwan like a stray dog by the collar, announcing to all the men that unlike the Prophet, Al Radwan did not set a good example for his men. Instead of being a good shepherd, he was a wolf. (Again with the wolf thing – get it?)

Jameel Khoury and Amir El-Masry in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

Suleiman then grabs a rifle and makes like he’s going to execute Al Radwan as he yanks off his turban. Al Radwan tells Suleiman he’ll regret doing this – but instead of shooting him, Suleiman bashes his nose in with the stock instead. Blood sprays everywhere and everyone’s at least intimidated, if not impressed. Suleiman then says that if the men will trust him, he will unite everyone in a perfect Islamic kingdom and they will get their land back.

That night, a curious Samir (Karim Zein) sneaks out to talk to the aid workers. He talks to Dr. Nadler (Matt McCoy), who asks Samir if he knows what Suleiman wants with them. Samir shrugs, shakes his head – he has no idea. But before he can say anymore, Suleiman catches him and orders him back inside the house.

Matt McCoy, Brittany Drisdelle, Shailene Garnett in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

Meanwhile, Jack and Sandrine pull into a gas station and while Jack pumps the gas, Sandrine asks if Cathy’s texted him back. Jack says, “Nope…don’t tell me, that’s bad?” Sandrine shrugs – Cathy’s a doctor, she’s probably just really busy – “or, she’s an idiot.” As she heads into the store, Sandrine gives Jack a flirty smile, saying she would have texted back by now. (Awww…I think Sandrine wants Jack to be Husband #5.)

Up ahead, Cluzet and Greer spot Ali’s car. They get out to check, and find it’s abandoned. Then Greer notices that a few other cars are parked nearby – and one’s missing. Ali switched cars – to one that just happens to be parked right next to Jack and Sandrine. But at first Jack’s too busy waving his cell phone around to see if he can get a signal and see if he heard from Cathy. But then he does notice the car, and peeks in the window – it’s been hot-wired. Red flags going up in his head, he walks around the car, checking the backseat and trunk – just as Ali emerges from the bathroom on the other side of the building.

Haaz Sleiman in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

Ali walks up behind Jack and draws his weapon – but then Sandrine comes out of the store and sees him. She draws and fires – Ali fires back as Jack dives behind Ali’s car and realizes he doesn’t have his weapon. Then a Gendarme who just happens to be there too comes running out of the store and pulls his gun on Sandrine, yelling at her to drop hers. She turns on him without immediately identifying herself, and he shoots her.

As Sandrine goes down, Ali shoots the Gendarme and puts him down. Jack scurries around to the front of Sandrine’s car and as Ali circles around, Jack jumps into the front seat and digs in the glove box for his gun. Ali fires a few more times, nearly hitting him – but then he runs out of ammo. As Jack emerges and starts firing, Ali books it across the road and into the woods. Jack tends to Sandrine, who’s bleeding badly. He yells for the gas station attendant to call for an ambulance. Sandrine tells Jack to go after Ali, and he reluctantly leaves her.

Marie-Josee Croze in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

Jack follows Ali’s footprints and blood trail to a woodshed and checks it out. Ali jumps him and the two of them fight just as hard as they did in Yemen. Ali almost manages to choke Jack to death, but then Jack starts punching Ali in his wounded side. Jack gets free and manages to grab his gun back – he slams the butt upside Ali’s head, knocking him flat.

Both men struggle to their feet – Jack asks Ali where the attack is going to happen. Ali draws on Jack and Jack shoots him, putting him down. Ali dies staring Jack in the face, and he’s horrified at what he’s done. Then he gets back to the gas station only to find that Sandrine is dead, too. (No! Waaah!)

Haaz Sleiman, John Krasinski in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

Cut to Andrews Air Force Base, as Greer and Jack get off their plane and head for their cars. Greer advises Jack not to go home and just sit around staring at the walls, thinking too much. He says Jack can call him if he needs talking down – but only if he really needs it. So of course, Jack does what Greer told him not to do and goes home. Luckily, though, he gets a text back from Cathy, who’s in the midst of preparing herself a disgustingly healthy bowl of veggies for dinner. She says she’d love to meet him.

Cut to the two of them at a local bar and crab shack – one that Jack used to go to in college. It’s Cathy’s first time cracking crabs and they both laugh at how terrible she is at it. Then she realizes her water glass is chipped. Jack calls over a manager named Buster (John Robinson) and starts yelling at him, acting like an extremely wound-up a**hole – convincingly enough that you think he might be venting his rage over everything that happened on this poor guy.

John Krasinski, Abbie Cornish in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

Cathy certainly gets freaked out – until both Jack and the manager bust up laughing. Turns out Buster is an old friend of his father’s. Both of them were Baltimore P.D. back in the day. Jack then tells Cathy a story about drinking his first beer at the bar behind them, and seeing his girlfriend making out with his best friend. Jack says he and his dad just sat there drinking beers in silence until his dad finally turned to him and said, “Whenever you’re ready.”

“Ready for what?” Cathy asks. “To move on, I guess,” Jack replies – and it’s as if his father is right there, giving him advice on his current situation. Cathy then asks exactly what a “State Department Supply Chain Logistician” actually does. Jack tries to dodge it by just saying it’s boring, but she’s not going for it. So Jack gives her the full cover, that it’s his job to make sure officials and ambassadors have everything they need when they travel overseas. It’s all about receipts and manifests, he says. Cathy seems to accept it and says it really does sound boring and won’t ask again. Jack walks Cathy home and politely asks if he can call on her again. Being the confident, modern woman, Cathy’s like, hell with that. You’re coming in now. Once inside her posh apartment, they waste no time getting each other’s clothes off – and there are plenty of shots of Jack’s scarred-up back and recent knife wound. No way Cathy isn’t seeing that – but for now it’s bow-chicka-wow-wow time.

John Krasinski, Abbie Cornish in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

The next morning in Paris, a funeral’s happening for that priest we saw get mugged and stabbed two episodes ago – remember that guy? In the audience sit the priest’s attackers, along with Dudayev (Goran Kostic) – all three of them dressed as priests. Intercut flashbacks show those vials Dudayev packed up in bottles of olive oil back in Syria being loaded into old artillery shells with cell phones taped to them in the back of a van driving through Paris.

Dudayev and the other two guys exchange looks as the Bishop (Charles Roger-Bour) gets up and starts eulogizing. The three of them each have a duffel bag at their feet, hidden by their robes. They switch on the cell phones as the Bishop calls for everyone to stand and pray. Then Dudayev and the others get up and calmly walk out of the church.

Goran Kostic, Zarif Kabier in TOM CLANCY’S JACK RYAN

When they get outside, they lock the main doors with a heavy chain and padlock – and as they walk off down the block, Dudayev uses his phone to activate the shells. Back inside the church, all three shells pop inside their bags and release streams of gas into the air. Within seconds, everyone’s coughing – then everyone starts rushing the exits. As the seconds pass and the gas fills the church, people start collapsing – and those left trample over each other to get to the doors, only to find them locked. They’re all trapped – and they’re all dying.

***

Thoughts

Wow, so much packed into one episode that wasn’t even a full hour long! The shootout at the gas station was outstanding – I’m glad they gave Sandrine a chance to kick some a** before she went out. I’m still mad about that – Marie-Josée Croze was awesome and I really wish they hadn’t killed her off. Honestly, I think she and Jack made a better couple than Jack does with Cathy right now – they’re kind of blah. No sparks whatsoever between them, I hate to say.

Buuuut anyway, only a couple of sloppy things I noticed, like how Lt. Cluzet has apparently been working counter-terrorism all this time but doesn’t recognize a set of prayer beads? Or how the drone they’re using to follow Ali can’t “see” at night but don’t they outfit drones with infrared/thermal cameras? Also, I wish it had been made a bit clearer just what the power structure was with Suleiman and Al Radwan. I mean, I know Al Radwan was the “boss”up until Suleiman took his job in this episode, but boss of what?  Were they part of ISIS or some other group? It would’ve just be helpful to know that ahead of time.

 

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Lorinda Donovan

Originally and always at heart a Philly girl (yo!) -- art school grad, veteran of the film biz and currently a writer living in Flyover Country, North Dakota (yah, you betcha). But wherever I go, I'm a geek and proud of it!
Lorinda Donovan
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