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Pilot

The Brink Season 1 Episode 1

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SeasonEpisode

11

Production number

Running time

Original airdateJune 21, 2015

Nielsen rating18-49 rating:
0.7
Viewers (million):
1.60

Written byRoberto Benabib & Kim Benabib

Directed byJay Roach

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In Islamabad, Pakistan, low-level State Department bureaucrat Alex Talbot asks his driver Rafiq to take him to a bazaar to score some weed. Encountering a mass protest that turns violent, they flee their car and take refuge in the house Rafiq shares with his parents and sister. In Washington, D.C., Secretary of State Walter Larson is fetched from a hotel tryst by his seen-it-all aide, Kendra Peterson, to attend an emergency White House meeting on the growing unrest in Pakistan. After learning that paranoid General Umair Zaman is threatening the region with destruction, President Navarro and ultra-hawkish Secretary of Defense Grey put a plan in motion to remove Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal, against Larson’s advice that such an operation is risky and reckless.

The group soon discovers that Alex is their only source of hard information on the ground in Pakistan. Meanwhile, onboard an aircraft carrier in the region, ace pilot Zeke “Z-Pak” Tilson calls his ex-wife, Ashley, in Florida, urging her to send more “product” for his lucrative side business selling drugs. Later, Zeke’s mounting troubles are put on hold when he and his co-pilot, Glenn, are ordered to take off on a mission he knows could lead to catastrophe.

SummaryEdit

In Islamabad, Pakistan, Alex Talbot, a low-ranking employee at the State Department, convinces his driver Rafiq to take him into town so he can score some weed for that evening's embassy gala. As Rafiq attempts to get them out of the crowded bazaar, the car runs over a nail-ridden plank and rolls to a stop in the middle of a crowd of violent protestors. Rafiq orders a terrified Alex out of the car just as a rock smashes through the back window. The demonstration, Rafiq observes, is far from random: it's a show staged by the military. With the route back to the embassy blocked off, he and Alex seek shelter at the house Rafiq shares with his parents and sister.

Rafiq introduces Alex to his parents, whom he has told them all about. "Our son informs us that your ignorance of all things Pakistani is truly astonishing," says Rafiq's mother. Hasan, Rafiq's uncle, worries to the others that Alex is secretly with the CIA.

After his much-beleaguered aide, Kendra Peterson, extracts him from an afternoon of kinky sex, Secretary of State Walter Larson heads to an emergency meeting at the White House. President Julian Navarro and his cabinet have gathered in the Situation Room to deal with the coup in Pakistan, run by an as-yet-unknown leader. Secretary of Defense Pierce Gray worries that Pakistan's nuclear weapons will fall into the hands of Al-Qaeda unless the President allows him to launch a pre-emptive airstrike. Walter vehemently opposes the attack, believing it will lead to World War III.

Aboard an aircraft carrier in the Red Sea, pilot Zeke Tilson calls his pharmacist ex-wife, Ashley, and begs her to send him more "product" -- pills he's been selling to his fellow soldiers. Ashley refuses to send more, insisting Zeke increase his price instead. She reminds him that he's late with her alimony check before hanging up.

Zeke prepares for take-off, knowing only that he's been handpicked for a very important mission. His earlier financial woes are compounded when his co-pilot Glenn "Jammer" Taylor reveals that Gail Sweet, a public affairs officer aboard the ship, is pregnant. Zeke explains that he can't afford another baby as he's already dealing with two underwater mortgages and child support. He pops a Xanax to calm his nerves, and hands one to Jammer as well.

In the Situation Room, the President and his staff watch a broadcast from former general and ex-ISI leader Umair Zaman. CIA Director Susan Buckley explains that Zaman was backed by the U.S. until he turned radical, though he remains supported by the Pakistani army and leads the country's Unity Party. He lost the most recent election, but as Buckley observes, Zaman clearly isn't "waiting around for a recount."

An attractive Urdu-speaking aide, Nayyara, translates Zaman's speech for the group, which takes a bizarre turn when Zaman claims that the US-backed drone war in Pakistan has spread "dangerous electromagnetic activity" across the country as part of a diabolical plot to "alter the reproductive biology of our girls and emasculate our boys." Believing it to be a Zionist conspiracy, Zaman vows to use long-range missiles to blow Israel off the map.

Alex and Rafiq watch the broadcast along with his family, and Hasan agrees that Zaman is "certifiable" -- in fact, Hasan certified Zaman when he treated him for a psychotic break several years prior. After the family goes to bed, Alex searches through Hasan's patient files and faxes the information to the White House. Before the transmission is complete, however, Hasan catches Alex red-handed and smashes the fax machine.

With just enough of Zaman's medical history in hand, President Navarro allows Sec Def Pierce to launch his airstrike -- despite Walter's repeated objections. Walter's opposition is quickly justified when the Chinese ambassador announces that a strike on Pakistan will be seen as "an act of aggression against an ally" and in turn, China will act on their border dispute with India.

Zeke is patched into the Situation Room to speak directly with the President about his impending mission. But before they can get down to business, Glenn shouts that he can't feel his "fucking face" and the transmission cuts out. Zeke realizes with horror that he's mixed up the pills, and if they've taken what he thinks they have, he and Jammer are in for one hell of a ride.

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  • Human (First appearance)
The Brink Season 1 (2015)

101. "Pilot"
102. "Half-Cocked"
103. "Baghdad My Ass"
104. "I'll Never Be Batman"
105. "Swim, Shmuley, Swim"

106. "Tweet Tweet Tweet"
107. "Sticky Wicket"
108. "Who's Grover Cleveland?"
109. "Just a Little Crazy Talk"
110. "There Will Be Consequences"

See also: S1S2