The episode starts with a few Allahu Akbars three years ago in Afghanistan. Nick Vera (Chris McKenna) shows Charlie a digitally enhanced field of beautiful, red flowers. In the present, Charlie thinks back to those days, before heading to work. Dashiell (Tommy Savas) shows off a satellite view of the terrorist compound, while they wait for Sheikh Hakam’s arrival. Nick calls in and warns Charlie about the large amount of firepower at the compound, before the call is dropped.
The group has a big problem, with a large typhoon headed for the compound. Charlie confides in Maureen and asks for her assistance with making a new plan, in order to prevent Nick from being bombed to death, by the President. Kurt (Cliff Chamberlain) successfully hits it off at work, before being pulled aside, by Victor Gantry (Adam Arkin), who tasks Kurt with collecting human intel. Meanwhile, Senator Burke (Rex Linn) has discovered the photo of Charlie, Nick and Omar Fatah. He contemplated shopping it to TMZ.
Next, the one man army, Jack Dawkins, is warned about the weather around the compound. Charlie attempts to use it, as a way to prevent the attack. Although upset, President Payton (Alfre Woodard) agrees to call off the attack for the time being. Despite Charlie’s wishes, the president begins to order the airstrike. David Patrick (David Harbour) is confronted by Acting Director Banks (Matthew Lillard), who demands to know, if they’re going to sacrifice his man on the ground. David admits it is a possibility. Banks describes the potential blowbacks and Senate subpoenas of a failed mission.
The F-18s begin to load up, when Maureen receives a text from Kurt. Charlie bullrushes her way into the President’s control room and requests the F-18s to be stood down. The president stands by her initial decision and says they can’t miss their chance, in order to save Nick. Another flashback to a beautiful life for Nick and Charlie in Afghanistan. Charlie and Nick argue, after watching a news report about a suicide bombing credited to Hakam. Next, Charlie calls Jack and insists they need to get Nick out, but Charlie admits it is impossible. Jack refuses to help in touch with Nick, since it could potentially ruin the mission.
Kurt uses his iPAD to break into a safe and steal a bunch of CIA documents. Burke meets with Jules and discusses the plan, which is to go public with everything that links the CIA to Omar. Burke admits he obtained the information from Senator Greene, before he is confronted by Banks, who doesn’t say much. The President leaves the room and allows Charlie to take over. The group discovers the terrorists have retreated under the tunnels! This news makes the bombing ineffective.
Burke confronts the President about Charlie’s relationship with Fatah. Maureen contacts Charlie and tells her to check WNR’s website, which shows the picture Burke leaked. Meanwhile, Nick and crew head through the tunnels, while Fatah bleeds from his stomach wound. Fatah passes Nick a radio. Kurt plays a little Need for Speed, while being chased through the streets of DC, but is trapped, by Syd. Nick makes contact and agrees to paint their targets, by using his signal. In the meantime, Omar and Hakam seem oblivious to Nick’s disappearance, while the President gives the other to bomb the target.
In the past, Charlie leaves Nick a note, before disappearing. He reads this, while he is bombed outside of the tunnels. Dawkins confirms the hit, with a flyover. The President suggests telling the American public the truth about Omar and Charlie. When questioned about her opinion, Charlie exits without saying a word. She returns home to find Syd holding Kurt at gunpoint. Charlie insists Kurt gave TKG information to track Nick, before blaming him for Nick’s death. Kurt insists he is working for the CIA to infiltrate the TKG. Kurt reveals Omar Fatah has been a TKG asset from the beginning. Charlie puts two and two together and realizes Omar Fatah is the real leader of Ar Rissalah. Now, she feels stupid, because she’s been played the whole series.
All in all, the episode of State of Affairs had some decent moments, but it was ultimately dragged down, by poor pacing. The potential bombing of Nick drug out a bit too long. Of course, the episode was filled with a major plot hole, since it didn’t explain how Omar escaped the bombing. It is difficult to not remember other shows and moves that have followed this same routine. The murder of the hero, who gives himself up to save millions, has been played out time and time again. In fact, many times it has been done with better results. The episode deserves a 6 out of 10.