Travelers, Season 2, Episode 3: “Jacob” Recap and Analysis
The Traveler Team are finally getting closer to the force that led to their kidnapping and torture last season: Vincent Ingram, AKA Traveler 001, the inventor of Traveler technology.
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Before I get started on this episode, we need to remember who Vincent Ingram is, so here goes.
Vincent Ingram appears to be your standard tech billionaire, but he is also a very special Traveler.
Unbeknownst to the Team, Vincent is the inventor of Traveler technology, as well as being Traveler 001, the first Traveler.
He traveled on 9/11/2001, and when he bodysnatched the wrong person, failing his mission, he went on the run from The Director, who has since found Vincent twice. Vincent (Traveler 001) was, per his missing, supposed to die on 9/11, so The Director of course wants him dead as originally planned. Oddly, The Director has not attempted to kill Vincent with a Traveler, instead requesting that Vincent kill himself.
On one of the two occassions The Director found Vincent, it made Vincent’s wife a Messenger, which resulted in her death.
Vincent now uses his billionaire resources to hunt, torture, and kill Travelers all over the world. Presumably he does this to prevent The Director, who wants Ingram dead, from getting to him, though I’d consider his tactics to be an over-reaction to that problem. He orchestrated the Team’s kidnapping and torture in Season 1.
In doing these recaps, I’ve realized that Travelers typically has separation between the individual “personal” lives of each character and the main, mission-based Traveler story. With that in mind, I’ve separated these two elements into a Character Story Arcs and Main Story Arc sections.
Main story arc recap
Construction Crew Finds a Dead Traveler Team
The episode opens on a construction crew working on a large industrial building. One of the workers finds a water leak, and the crew bashes through a wall to find the source. Through the hole they create in the wall the crew spots a hidden area containing four sets of human skeletal remains. It is 4 out of a 5-person Traveler team, murdered, and in an environment very reminiscent of the one our Team was imprisoned held during Season 1 after they were kidnapped.
The police are called, and they notify the FBI. Grant and Walt go to the crime-scene and meet with Traveler 3185, AKA Police Officer Victoria Boyd (played by Kristine Cofsky). We saw Officer Boyd in Season 1, when Grant ashot her in the vest in a purposely non-lethal ploy to make it look like Boyd tried to kill him (at the request of The Director) and failed. It seems their strategy worked at fooling The Director, but with The Director, you never know.
Trevor and Philip Want a Mission
Trevor and Philip are a bit concerned about how long its been since they’ve had a mission at Traveler HQ when Grant calls the Team together to check out the dead Traveler crime-scene. An FBI forensic team checked it out already and got no leads, so now it’s the Traverlers’ turn.
Marcy, of course, finds something on the ground that the FBI missed: A comm unit that somehow exited the body of one of the dead Travelers.
While most of the Team is still searching the scene for leads, Carly is outside keeping watching, and she spots a suspicious man holding a detonator. Carly immediately calls the Team to get out and shoots the man, who falls, but doesn’t immediately die.
The man hits the detonator button and Carly fires a second bullet into him too late. She watches in horror as the entire industrial building collapses, thinking the Team may not have made it out. They emerge from the dust cloud unharmed, but despite narrowly escaping death, the Team isn’t exactly overjoyed about the situation. They know someone is out there killing Travelers, and that someone wants them dead, too. They may have lost the evidence they needed to find the perpetrator in the explosion.
The Team Discover a Lone Traveler Escaped the Killings
Philip. Trevor and Carly are back at Traveler HQ investigating the crime-scene evidence they found, and trying to figure out what happened with the dead Travelers. Philip has identified the dead Travelers, and believes there was possibly an additional Traveler from the deceased team who escaped death.
Hearing about the bodies on the news, a woman whose husband went missing at the same time approaches the FBI asking if her husband’s body was found there. It wasn’t, so Grant thinks they may have an opportunity to identify and locate the missing Traveler here.
Grant questions the woman, who tells a familiar story of her husband’s personality changing “almost overnight” (for the better) before he went missing. Grant takes the info to the Team, and Philip has successfully gotten the recovered comm working. Grant uses the comm and calls the Traveler, who freaks out, telling them to “stand down”. Grant warns the Traveler, who we now know is named Jacob, that his wife is in danger, and that her phone is being tapped by a third party. Jacob responds by cutting the comm out of his own neck as the Team listens. Grant then rushes out to find Jacob, going straight to the only real lead he has: Jacob’s wife.
The Team Find the Missing Traveler, Jacob
Grant goes to see Jacob’s wife, who is clearly stressed and hiding something. When Grant finds a smashed cellphone, he knows what’s up, and Jacob runs right past him, attempting to escape. Jacob runs, but the Team catches him outside, behind his building. Jacob is terrified and filthy, with a wound on his neck from removing his comm. He’s not looking good, and it’s about to get worse. Jacob warns the Team that Travelers are being killed all over the world, saying The Director assigned him and his (now deceased) team to investigate this very thing.
Out of nowhere, Jacob is shot in the chest. I immediately thought he was a goner, but he’s not dead yet. Grant immediately calls Marcy to rush to Team HQ to treat Jacob. On the car ride to Team HQ, Jacob is still talking. He tells the Team that he has made a discovery: All the companies he connected the Traveler killings to are under one name. A name he is unable to say before he passes out from his wound.
The Team works on Jacob at Team HQ, but it’s too late. Jacob dies without telling them who is behind it all, but, as always, they have more tricks up their collective sleeve.
Grant Meets Vincent
The FBI discovers that Vincent Ingram owns the building where the dead Travelers were found, and lets Grant know. Vincent doesn’t resist an interview, so Grant heads over to his house to see what’s up.
Grant arrives at Vincent’s house and is immediately met with outlandish procedure before he is allowed inside. Outside Vincent’s house, mute guards show Grant written instructions on a tablet, reminiscent of the textual questions displayed on TV screens to the kidnapped Team in Season 1, telling him he must remove his weapon and all electronic devices before he enters.
Grant clearly doesn’t know that Vincent is a Traveler, but, though he doesn’t say so, Vincent knows that Grant is one.
Vincent is acting even more oddly than he did in the season premiere. His very white room with white furniture speaking to Vincent’s self-described germaphobia. Vincent obviously doesn’t want to speak to Grant. His discomfort at their meeting even seems to rise to the level of physical pain for him.
Vincent quickly reveals that he knows Grant, saying that he met Grant at a function before the real Grant’s body was inhabited by the friendly Traveler 3468 we now know and love as Grant. Vincent even “remembers” Grant’s wife’s name and what she looks like. Suspicious.
Grant doesn’t know what to make of this, because he, obviously, was not inhabiting Grant’s body during the time period when Vincent claims they met. This could all be Vincent testing Grant, and Grant may have failed, so Grant, getting nothing else of use out of Vincent, takes the little information he got to the Team.
The Team Hacks Vincent Ingram
Grant, Philip and Trevor check records on the event that Vincent says he met Grant at. Vincent is nowhere to be found in the photo or records of the event, but pre-Traveler Grant was definitely there.
At this point, Trevor reminds Grant and Philip that they’re breaking protocol by investigating Vincent at all, but Grant says they potentially be saving all fellow Travelers if Vincent is involved in the Traveler abductions/killings.
After some significant trouble getting through Vincent’s digital security measures, Philip successfully hacks into Vincent’s computer, and they hit the mother-lode, finding photos of tortured Travelers, including themelves. Uh oh, The rest of the Team arrives and are shown the photos. They’re not happy.
The Team Decides to Kill Vincent,
But The Director Has Other Ideas
Carly immediately suggests the Team kill Vincent before he kills any more Travelers. Everyone agrees but old man Trevor. The Team decides to go for it, and get all their weapons and gear ready to assassinate Vincent immediately.
As the Team arrives at Vincent’s house, we see another team of men in black arrive with guns outside of Vincent’s house and set up to shoot someone. I believe this in Vincent’s security, somehow aware of the imminently arriving threat of the Team.
As the Team is about to go for it, guns drawn, there is a knock on their door. It’s a little girl, acting as a Messenger of The Director. She reminds them that they are off mission and warns them to “stand down” or face “repercussions”.
Simultaneously, Vincent’s son also becomes a Messenger of The Director, warning Vincent to stop his pursuit of Traveler 3468 (Grant) and his team immediately. So, The Director knows what Vincent is up to, but doesn’t want him killed. How odd. If this is the case, why is Vincent so afraid of The Director, and why is he interrogating and killing all those Travelers? Is he actually on some kind of mission from The Director? Nothing seems to fit.
Much to the chagrin of Carly, Grant orders that the Team stand down and leave Vincent alone as ordered. Vincent flees his house with his son and says he’s not coming back. This dude is crazy. I have no idea why he’s so afraid if The Director never tries to kill him. Grant walks the un-Messengered little girl home and sees Vincent’s goons driving past, and seems to recognize them, possibly from when the Team was captured and tortured in Season 1.
Character story arcs recap
Grant is Doing Okay
When we last saw Grant and his wife, Kathryn, things were not going well. Between episodes, Grant seems to have done some significant work on their relationship, and things are going pretty well now, comparatively. Kathryn, is now hanging out with Grant and going to pre-natal doctor appointments with him. Grant reveals he hasn’t told anyone about her pregnancy, but it looks like Kathryn has decided to keep the baby because of how freely and happily she discusses pregnancy cravings.
Trevor Has Recovered, But His Dad Hasn’t
Trevor, in the car with his dad (Gary), talks to him about his slow recovery from the bullet-wound he sustained at the end of Season 1.
Gary is concerned about the amount of time Trevor’s recovery is taking, and is saddened by the memory of how Trevor, before his injury, was extremely physically proficient, excelling at football. Trevor ironically tries to comfort Gary, almost as if he is the parent and Gary is his child. Trevor gets dropped off and, as a kindness, throws Gary a “Dad” instead of his usual “Gary”. When Gary drives away, we then see Trevor is faking that his injury is still hurting him, and he begins sprinting without the assistance of his cane. As we know, Trevor was injected with future technology by Grace in the form of nanites, which have fully healed his injury.
Marcy May Not Be Over David
Marcy is working at a hospital as an x-ray technician. Something about Marcy attracts the most awkward men ever created to her. This is evidenced by, of course, David, and now when a doctor at the hospital attempts to ask Marcy out on a date. The doctor engages in a the masterfully cringe-inducing exchange that he abandons before actually getting proposing a date, Marcy doesn’t seem particularly interested, but treats the doctor with kindness. I’m sure the doctor will try again. Props to the actors and writers for this scene, because it was truly one of the most uncomfortable attempts at flirtation that I’ve seen since The Office ended, and it was enhanced further due to its unexpected nature
David is rebounding (after the pseudo-breakup with Marcy) with an ex-girlfriend, Blair. The two of them are at his apartment, and David is cooking them breakfast. Blair, apparently, broke up with David (no surprise there), and remarks that he’s ‘like a different person’ now, saying he’s more mysterious and confident. David still seems hurt by the fact that Blair dumped him in the first place, and keeps saying that he’s the “same guy” she broke up with. Blair then experiences some stomach pain, and because it has been happening for a while, David insists she gets examined by a doctor, so he takes her to the hospital where Marcy works. Great idea, David.
David finds Marcy at the hospital and tells her that he’s back dating Blair, at the same time requesting that Marcy examine Blair. Awkward, but Marcy is very patient and agrees to x-ray Blair for him.
Marcy completes the x-rays and tells David that Blair has a mass in her stomach, and David immediately knows what it is. In the past, David tells Marcy, Blair has tried to lose weight by swallowing cotton balls. Marcy is appropriately horrified by the danger and stupidity of what Blair has done, but says Blair’s stomach can be pumped and she will be sent on her way. David is frustrated that Blair is still acting like this. and seems embarrassed that Marcy now knows about it, but he gives Marcy a half-hearted “thank you?” and leaves.
David calls Marcy and invites her to dinner with him and Blair, supposedly as a thank her for her help at the hospital. David clearly isn’t over Marcy (he’s not even trying to hide it) and leaves a typically rambling, awkward message on Marcy’s phone.
Marcy dresses up and arrives at David’s apartment for dinner. Blair has not yet arrived, and David tells Marcy he’s feeling better after his trauma in the most graceless way possible.
Marcy, clearly having feelings for David but not sure yet about what’s going on with her, asks David to ‘tell her, about her’. David tries to give her information about what she was like (her likes and dislikes, her personality) before she lost her memory, but Marcy isn’t satisfied.
David goes further, telling Marcy he always got butterflies whenever she arrived or left. Before Marcy can respond, Blair arrives, and Marcy immediately gets a message from Grant over comm to leave and meet the Team.
Looks like David is just trying to make Marcy jealous by “dating” Blair, and I think it’s working. This will probably come to a head in the next episode, when I suspect Marcy will have an emotional event that will start her on the path back to David.
Carly Gets Her Baby Back
Carly and Jeff are working on a relationship, for Carly, this is not even platonic, its sole purpose being to get her child back into her care. Jeff’s motives are a little more confused, and he appears to want more. Regardless, Carly and Jeff are hanging out, exercising together. Carly is in much better shape than Jeff, by the way.
Jeff tells their therapist that he’s feeling severe guilt about his prior actions, but Carly arrives, so we don’t find out anything more specific than that.
Carly and Jeff also meet with a CPS social worker in charge of their custody situation. The social worker correctly discerns that Carly and Jeff are putting up the front of a loving relationship for the purposes of getting their child back, but she thinks that’s actually a sign of dedicated parents, so she gives them what they want: Their baby.
Carly and Jeff get their child back, and Jeff immediately wants to celebrate by drinking champagne. Carly isn’t into it, due to Jeff’s problem with alcohol (and physical) abuse, but eventually accepts the glass. This doesn’t bode well for them. The baby cries when Jeff picks him up.
Philip: Still an Addict
Trevor questions Philip about his excessive use of those dang eyedrops. Remember? The ones that are supposedly for the purpose of harmlessly getting him off heroin?
Trevor wisely asks if Marcy knows what’s in them. Philip responds defensively, and, probably lying, says the eyedrops are “Marcy-approved”.
Later, Philip loses his eyedrops, and Trevor walks in on him trashing Traveler HQ in an attempt to find the bottle. Philip is being very aggressive, and Trevor’s suspicion that the drops are not a fix for addiction is confirmed. Philip, paranoid and guilty, accuses Trevor of stealing the drops, but Trevor looks for only a few seconds and finds them on the floor, saying sarcastically that he’s “Glad these are helping with your addiction”. Philip responds by quickly squirting the drops into his eyes. What would the show look like with Philip clean? We may never know.
We don’t see Jenny, the Traveler that gave Philip the eyedrops, at all in this episode. I suspect she isn’t actually acting on The Director’s orders at all, and may be a saboteur from the anti-Director Traveler group, “The Faction”. We’ll see!
What about those timeshare people?
No word on the Traveler mass-transfers that happened at timeshare sales pitches in the last episode, but we can be sure they will come into play very soon. Because of the speed and indiscretion those transfers are marked by, I suspect someone is amassing an army for some nefarious purpose unknown to us, or our favorite Team of Travelers.