Colby is not a spy. Now, all of you who didn't watch the episode but who have worried yourself raw over the summer can take a deep breath, relax, and enjoy the ride.
Okay, so in this Numb3rs season opener and series premiere for Television Without Pity, we are anxiously dealing with last year's revelation that Colby -- the solid, ex-military agent who knows the answers to all things frat-boy -- is a lousy, dirty, good-for-nothing spy. Who runs. Each FBIer close to Colby deals with this issue in their own way. David gets extra-angry during busts, Don rewatches the Colby interrogation tape again and again and again, and Megan logs a lot of time with Larry at the monastery. I also think she's gone on a hunger strike until Colby comes in from the cold, but that's just my personal observation. Meanwhile, Charlie -- in that selfish way of his -- deals with the Colby issue by immersing himself in teaching and enjoying it.
However each of these characters wants to deal with Colby's betrayal, they are forced to confront Colby proper when Colby and Carter escape from a prison transport and go on the lam for a while. While the FBI is combing the city for them, Colby calls Charlie in order to talk to Don to tell him that he's not really a spy. He's a pretend spy. That is, Counterintelligence tapped him to spy on Carter way back when Carter approached Colby in Quantico. So he's sort of a spy, but not in the bad, treason-y way. Don isn't sure if he should believe him but decides to follow up on Colby's info by locating his handler. Who is now dead. And, judging by Megan's and David's reactions, very whiffy.
There's a whole lotta math being flung around in this episode, but what it boils down to is finding a Chinese ship before it hits international waters and saving Agent Colby. While on said ship, Colby isn't quite having a Kathie Lee Gifford Carnival Cruise. I mean, he's getting injections, but they are hardly geared toward filling in laugh lines and plumping his lips into a provocative pout. Instead, Mason Lancer -- played by Val Kilmer in this surprisingly brief role -- is filling Colby full of all sorts of bad things, while interrogating him. All Mason Lancer really cares about is learning whether or not anyone has discovered that he, as special assistant to the Deputy Attorney General, is really, really evil and has been spying for the Chinese since birth. Luckily, Don and his crew figure it out just in time, send all sorts of flying and sailing vessels, and board the Chinese boat. Unfortunately, Mason Lancer -- there's just something about that name that requires you to say it in full -- has decided to dispense with Colby finally and totally by plunging (it's really more of a prick, but "plunge" is much more interesting) a syringe into his chest and pumping his heart full of potassium chloride. The good ol' KCl stops his heart, which David pounds on while yelling at Colby to WAKE UP AND LOOK AT HIM! We fade to black and come back with Colby in the hospital, alive but asleep. Megan and David stand outside his room with David still struggling with who Colby really is.
I tell ya, it's a heart-stopping episode. Heh.
Sporting a nice new haircut, Don sits in front of a LCD screen and watches the Colby interrogation over and over and over again. He rewinds to the point where David came in -- eyes ablaze with the tears that didn't fall -- yelling that Colby wasn't a "damn spy," he was a traitor. Don rewinds again.
We zip over to a dank pool hall populated by lots of bald tuffs and their molls. We quick-cut between beer bottles, boobs, baldies, and balls until a door bursts open -- letting in all that harsh light of day -- showing David, his vest on, his gun drawn, and his mouth screaming. His team of machine guns follows. The music kicks up so we don't hear what David's saying, we just see the angry gaping hole of his mouth and note that he's adding another bald head to the room. He shoves a photo in front of a cuffed guy's face and demands, "Do you know this man?!" over and over. We cut back to the same shots of David, looking around, silently yelling. He moves down the line of cuffed bald men in their clean wifebeaters, shoving the picture at them and demanding responses. One guy yells, "FUCK!" but without sound. Another guy gives lip and David slams his head on the pool table and bellows, "I will put cases on every one of you! EVERY ONE OF YOU!"
Back to Don, frowning, obsessing over the Colby interrogation. Watching Colby's eyes as David calls him a traitor. He sees something but he doesn't know what he sees. He doesn't know what he missed. Two more keystrokes and the headphones go on to hear what he missed. He can't hear what he missed. What sort of Pond's, Neutrogena, or Aveeno regimen is Don using? Because his pores look FANTASTIC.
From one Eppes to another we go -- to Charlie's classroom where he's talking about a game of chicken and the Nash equilibrium and game theory and nuclear war. What in the holy hell happened to Charlie this summer? His hair is…worse than usual, he's unshaven, his clothes are unbelievably slovenly, and he's teaching like that? You'd think he's the one who got betrayed by a colleague, yet Don's the one with a spruce new haircut, a very close shave, and noted fabulous pores. Charlie's 'fro, while not the dire greasy pubes of the past, is instead a shaggy place on which a few pigeons have set out a welcome mat. Amita leans gently in the doorway and listens to Charlie tell his students about how math can "illuminate the human condition" and some day possibly "define what lives deepest within our hearts." "Oh, excuse me while I barf!" the Evil Dr. Mathra snorts. "Those are the kinds of dumb-ass 'math' speeches that encourage my non-mathematical friends to come up to me in a bar and say, 'Why don't you figure out a mathematical formula to explain why she won't date me.'" Charlie turns back to his board and says, "Tomorrow, however, we're going to return to parameters -- specifically partition congruences."