As Alex walks into a swanky bank, numerous trendy shopping bags in hand, you know that something is up. Sure enough, she is there to – supposedly – find a secure bank for which to deposit her countless millions from Zetrov; but in actuality she is the inside man for a bank robbery. A robbery that is being handled by Michael and Nikita – in hooded disguises, of course – and Birkhoff at home base helping her retrieve files on Percy’s money. It seems this bank is one of the locations where his pilfered money from Division has been stored and the team is looking for the best way to take him down.
The bank robbery rouse works, getting them the information they need on the money man who handles all of Percy’s finances: Ian Damascus (guest star Carlo Rota). Ironically, or not, Percy is on the phone with Ian, surprising the money man with the call. It’s been at least a year since Ian has heard from Percy and now Percy wants all of his money, because he has learned about a threat to his vast fortune. He demands that Ian get him all the money – quickly.
The reveal of Ian as Percy’s money man is the opening that Nikita takes to attack the man behind Division. She has already set up a meeting with Ian, to launder money from a “new client”: Birkhoff. Upon hearing that Ian requires a minimum of $20 million in order to meet with a new client, Birkhoff is incredulous that Nikita would assume he would give up his fortune –ill-gotten though it was (he stole it from the federal government while a hacker before Division snuck their claws into him); but Nikita is able to convince Birkhoff that they will get not only his money back but also all of Percy’s money. “Haven’t you always wanted to bank roll a revolution,” she asks him.
As Birkhoff and Nikita roll up in front of Ian’s well-guarded mansion in a spiffy sports car, Michael and Alex are nearby keeping surveillance on the place and at the ready to hack into Ian’s money the minute the laundering transaction begins. But the plan doesn’t go as they had hoped because Ian is in dire need of money for Percy. Turns out, Ian tricked Birkhoff – who was posing as Morris Mitnick – scanning the barrier bonds into a system that wasn’t even online and pocketing the money that he handed off to Percy’s real money man, er, more to the point money woman, who drives up to Ian’s mansion with Roan by her side shortly after Michael and Alex take their place a short distance from the mansion.
Soon enough, a bloodbath takes place at Ian’s mansion with Roan shooting Ian dead because he is $30 million short on the payoff to Percy; Birkhoff and Nikita are surprised by the armed guards inside the mansion with Nikita getting hurt in the crossfire because Birkhoff – who was able to retrieve a gun during the melee – hesitates long enough to allow one of the guards to reload his weapon and Alex and Michael taking out the guards in front of the mansion as Roan and the money woman make their getaway unharmed.
Back at home base, Michael is treating Nikita’s gunshot wound to her shoulder while Alex and Birkhoff are frantically trying to track down Roan and the mystery money woman to no avail. This dead-end search leads to Nikita and Birkhoff having a full-blown argument with the computer tech high-tailing it out of there, telling Nikita that Alex can bankroll them from now on. When next seen, Birkhoff is at a coffee shop, looking for a way to recoup his losses; and it seems, he goes back to something from his past: the very thing that got him on the radar of Division. He hacks into the federal government – just like he did – before, but unbeknownst to him, the feds have set up an alert that notifies them that “Shadow Walker” – Birkhoff’s persona from his hacker days – is back. Soon enough, he is arrested by the police and that arrest sends a ping to the home base computers, alerting Nikita and the team that Birkhoff is in trouble. Division is also notified of the arrest, so now it’s a race to save Birkhoff or retrieve all of Percy’s money.
Nikita decides to send Michael and Alex after Percy’s money while she gets into the police station – under the guise of a CIA agent – to save Birkhoff. Just as it looks like she and Birkhoff might get out safely, Percy’s men show up and another big firefight goes down, but this time Birkhoff steps up, taking down one of Percy’s men and then saving Nikita from being killed by one of the other men from Division.
Meanwhile, Alex and Michael are on the trail of Percy’s money, but it turns out that Percy is ready for any possibility: he has three trucks on the move. And, it’s up to Michael and Alex to decide – instantaneously – which truck to follow. Unfortunately, the truck they decide to follow turns out to be one of the decoys; and they are deeply concerned that they might be too late. But, enter the newly escaped Nikita and Birkhoff, who works his computer magic, backtracking on the video feeds of the trucks as they left the warehouse where the money transfer took place. Using a trick that Alex told Michael she saw in a movie once (ala “The Italian Job”), Birkhoff measures the distance between the road and the weight of the truck to figure out which one is actually carrying all of Percy’s money.
The race is now on for Michael and Alex to catch the truck, but there is no way they are going to be able to transfer all of the money from the truck to their sports car (they can’t simply steal the truck because Percy will have fail safes in place to monitor the truck) so Birkhoff tells them to blow the truck up – which is something the team considered early on if they couldn’t get all of the money. So, in the end, that is exactly what Michael and Alex do, they blow the truck up – once the driver has run for cover after two deliberate near misses. Percy, of course, sees on the monitor’s at Division that his money truck has been destroyed, but only he and Roan are aware of what was inside. As Sonya asks Percy what was really on that truck, Percy states it was “nothing that can’t be replaced”, but is it really?
It would seem that Percy does have an alternate route to take now that all of his money was destroyed, as he meets with a mystery man at an art gallery, who seems to know all about Percy’s money truck being blown up; and Percy alludes to this mystery man knowing about Oversight. Where will this potential new allegiance lead?
Meanwhile back at home base, Nikita and Birkhoff are commiserating over his hesitation at Ian’s mansion and how he stepped up to save her life at the police station. Birkhoff also berates himself for not seeing through Ian’s scheme to begin with; but Nikita assures him it wasn’t his fault. He shares with Nikita that his money “was the last remaining evidence that he was something more than just a computer geek” and Nikita tells him that he is so much more than that. He is her lifeline, he is irreplaceable to her. Their little heart-to-heart is interrupted, though, with Alex and Michael coming in with food, as well as a sizeable check which Alex hands over to Birkhoff, telling him that she is sure he can double that investment in no time.
“Shadow Walker” is the 20th episode of the second season of Nikita. The next new episode of Nikita will air on Friday, May 4 at 8 PM on The CW.
How did you feel about this episode? Were you surprised by Nikita’s plan to use all of Birkhoff’s money to get at Percy? Were you sorry to see Birkhoff freeze just long enough for Nikita to get hurt; and, how about his stepping up to take down the Division agents at the police station? Or, how about Birkhoff’s decision to let Michael and Alex blow up the money truck? Were you happy to see the dismay, brief though it was, on Percy’s face when he saw his money truck destroyed? Who is this mystery guy Percy met with and what affect will this possible new alliance have on Nikita and the team? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.