'The Event': The ballad of Agent Lee

the-event-loyalty-320.jpg "The Event" didn't move the story forward a whole lot in its sixth episode, "Loyalty," because, really, we pretty much knew Sophia and Co. were aliens by now. But it did offer a surprisingly diverting look into the life of what had heretofore been a secondary character.

We'd take a lot more stories like the one this episode told about Agent Lee -- the flashbacks to his time on Earth gave us more insight into his character than we've gotten for pretty much anyone else on the show. Now, if only "The Event's" leads were as fully fleshed out.

We see Lee in 1954 -- named Mason then -- frolicking on Venice Beach with a girl named Violet (side note: Venice Beach was apparently very rocky in 1954. Or, you know, not). Thomas sees him too, and tells Mason that it's time to go. He doesn't even get to tell Violet goodbye.

Cut to the year 2000, where Lee, now going by Simon, has just become a certified government agent. He's off to celebrate with a buddy when, lo and behold, there's Violet, who's now an old woman suffering from dementia but still recognizes her long-lost love. The notion that the aliens -- even those who haven't been detained -- are stuck here because they don't yet have the means to return home is an intriguing one. That's not really what "The Event" is about (so far as anyone can tell), but it could become a richer, deeper show if it keeps exploring that idea.

The touching flashback was followed immediately in the present by Thomas telling Lee that he has "a contingency plan" if the feds close in on him and Sophia in the abandoned building. That's an uh-oh moment for our ageless G-man, who proceeds to get smacked around by all manner of debris as the building is sucked into whatever that weird bluish light was. The preview of the next episode managed to kill completely any sort of suspense about Lee's fate, but at least we cared in the moment.

Meanwhile, in non-Agent Lee developments this week:

Sophia and Thomas vs. the feds

Sophia finds an earpiece and some new clothes on the Metro train (how'd that get there?), then gets off at a station in the middle of town (didn't Thomas say "no stops" last week?) to get some help from Lee, who doses dozens of coffee-house patrons with the radioactive isotope the government is using to track Sophia.

Cat-and-mouse ensues, with Lee clocking Sterling's underling and Sophia and Thomas using the building collapse to disappear. Best we can tell, Lee's warning to his fellow agents to evacuate worked, but Sophia's now in the wind too. Presumably that hatch she and Thomas stepped into leads away from the crater where the building used to stand.

Sean and Leila go home

Sean has to break the news of Leila's mother's death to her, and they then grill Carter about where her little sister might be. He doesn't know -- and could very well be telling the truth -- but he does say that Leila's dad brought everything on himself. Duly motivated, and following a brief argument in which Leila insists she's coming with Sean to find out everything that's going on, they end up in Michael's home office looking for clues.

Conveniently enough, his research into the Inostranka facility is close at hand in the attic, at which point they come face to face with Crazy Expository Journalist Lady ( Paula Malcomson, aka Trixie from "Deadwood"). CEJL rants and raves about how no one can see the truth, man, because they don't want to, man, and we're all just a bunch of sheep and all that, before coming to the point that Michael had seen Inostranka from the air on a flight a couple years back and had contacted CEJL to figure out what it was.

And she also confirms that Sophia, Thomas, Lee and the other Inostranka detainees are, in fact, aliens. That was probably meant to be a bigger revelation than it turned out to be, but as it's been the prevailing theory almost since day one, it's merely confirmation of what we've all been thinking.

"The Event" takes next week off but will be back Nov. 8 to tell us where Sophia and Thomas went. What did you think of this week's episode?

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Photo credit: NBC