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Hole Puncher Recap

In LA, Mac goes up to bat as his coworkers cheer him on. Mac gets a hit but is taken out at second, while Riley gets tagged out running into home. Jack calls everyone in, and insists that they have a chance to win even though they're behind 17 to 3. It doesn't go well, and the referee calls them back to the field. Matty says that something big has come up and they have to forfeit.

Back at Phoenix, Matty tells the team that they've intercept intel that a terrorist group known as Omnus is gearing up for a major attack. Omnus is a new group and Phoenix's best chance is tracking down the man that they want killed. The group is offering $10 million to someone who kills a target codenamed "the Architect." The identity of the assassin is known: Murdoc. They figure Omnus doesn't know that Murdoc is locked up, and if they can ID the Architect then they can get ahead of Omnus. Mac says that he knows how they can do it, and points out that Murdoc is obsessively secretive. And no one but them knows what Murdoc has been captured and what he looks, then they can give them Murdoc.

Mac and Matty go to see Murdoc and Matty introduces herself. Murdoc tells her that he has nothing disparaging to say to her, and he hides what makes him different in his mind from the world. He tells Matty that she has his admiration, but Matty isn't impressed. They get down to business and explain that someone has hired Murdoc to hire someone, and they need to identify the target. Mac explains that Murdoc is going to teach him how to be him, and Murdoc laughs. He finally says that he'll pass, but Mac asks if he wants Murdoc to see if he can pull it off. Murdoc warns that even if Mac can pull it off, he has no reason to help them. Matty orders Mac to leave the room.

Mac waits outside with Jack, and Matty glares at Murdoc. She finally says that he'd get uncomfortable and talk before she would, and gives him with a file with a photo of a boy. She knows that he's Murdoc's son, and Murdoc claims that he doesn't care. Matty knows that he's gone to great lengths to hide the boy at a boarding school in Switzerland, and explains that Phoenix has taken him into protective custody. If Murdoc helps them then the boy will never know what Murdoc really does. She gives him 60 seconds to consider. A minute later, Matty walks out and Murdoc tells Mac that it's time to get to work.

Mac enters the cell and Murdoc says that the hard thing is to teach Mac how to convince a client that he's a cold-blooded killer. Later, Mac goes to meet with the client at a table, and finds a couple there. The couple, Ed and Cindy Morris, say that they want to hire a killer. They explain that their daughter Rachel was murdered a year ago and figure that her husband Brett did it. The police couldn’t find enough evidence to convict Brett, and Mac says that he can handle it and they need to discuss his fee. They hastily say that there's been a mistake and leaves.

Back at Phoenix, Murdoc tells Mac that sometimes he kills people for free. He warns Mac that things change and he has to improvise, and says that the Morris couple instinctively realized that Mac wasn't the real deal. Murdoc tells him that Mac has to become Murdoc or Omnus will sniff him up. He then teaches Mac on how to become a shadow and he has to believe that what he does is right. Mac doesn't buy it, and Murdoc tells him that when he was 3, he ate his first and last peanut at a baseball game that he went to with his father. His parents didn't know that he was allergic to peanuts, and he nearly died. Murdoc tells Mac that he should have died but he didn't, and his immune system somehow saved his life. He targets people that make society better by killing people, and insists that his way is more efficient. Murdoc tells Mac that they basically have the same job, and points out that Matty threatened a child to get what she wants. He knows that Mac's father is still alive and hints that he knows what he's doing. Mac grabs him by the throat, and Murdoc says that he's a killer and the sooner he accepts that Murdoc's way is the right way, the sooner he'll be ready. Matty texts Mac and says that Omnus has moved up the meeting. Murdoc tells him that it's show time.

Jack drives Mac to the rendezvous with five minutes to go. He worries that Mac is walking into a trap, and says that Mac has ten minutes to get the information. Mac goes into a building and subdues the security guard, while Jack and ten more Phoenix agents set up on a nearby roof. After relieving the guard of his gun and security badge, Mac whistles and takes an elevator to the 24th floor, and Jack worries that Mac is getting too much into character.

A cell phone goes off and Mac realizes that there's a burner in the alarm panel. He answers it despite Jack's warning, and the Client says that they haven't spoken since the El Salvador job. Before Matty can confirm if Murdoc was in El Salvador, Mac calls the Client's bluff. The Client, satisfied, tells him to use the one number on the burner phone to send him proof of death. The target's dossier is also on the phone, and Mac has twelve hours to kill the target. The Client says that Mac has picked up a tail, and Mac says that he'll lose the tail and contact the client when the job is done. He hangs up, takes out the phone's sim card, destroys the earbud, and steals a car key from a passing businessman in the parking garage, and then drives off. Jack spots the car leave, but Matty tells him to have faith in Mac and come back to Phoenix.

Later, Riley and Wilt follow Brett to a golf course. Matty wants them to prove that Brett has done it, and riley hacks Brett's call and snoops through his phone. She discovers that he has two mistresses, and Riley and Wilt admit that they can understand why Murdoc kills people like Brett for free.

Mac drives to the home of Joshua Abdal Khalid and sees him inside his house with his wife and daughter. Joshua brings the garbage out and Mac slips a noose around his neck and takes him to a motel room. He demands answers about Omnus and why they call Joshua the Architect, and he says that he works IT at a cellular company. Joshua says that he and his wife have a baby coming, and Mac takes out a knife and cuts the noose around from Joshua's neck. He says that he does believe him and isn't going to hurt him, but wonders why Omnus is paying $10 million to have him killed.

The others are waiting at Phoenix when Mac calls. He tells them that Joshua doesn't know anything, and Matty tells a tech to pull up info on Joshua while Riley is in the field. His story checks out, and Mac insists that he got everything out of Joshua that he knows. The burner phone rings, and the Client accuses him of tampering with their phone. He demands results, and Mac says that he's an artist and is raising the price to $15 million. The Client agrees if the job is completed in the next thirty minutes. Once Mac hangs up, Joshua wonders what's going on. Mac tells him that he's just trying to buy time so that he can fake Joshua's death, and Joshua says that he's been trying to filter static out of cellular lines.

Riley and Wilt figure that they need more evidence. She says that she knows what Rachel went through because her mother met a guy who took her for everything she had. Riley hired a biker gang to break his legs, and he gave everything back. she discovers that the mistress works at a place that sells GPS locator tags, and she sold some to Brett. His subscription went out a month after Rachel's death, and he bought 14 golf clubs thereafter. There are 24 in a set, and Rachel was killed by blunt force trauma.

Wilt and Riley track a missing golf club to a junkyard that had the GPS locator tag in it. They find the golf club with dried blood on the head.

Mac uses the supplies in the bathroom to make fake blood and set Joshua up as a corpse, while Joshua says that four months ago they got calls from clients about static on the lines. Joshua explains that he finally discovered the static was a high-frequency tone buried in the cell traffic that contained data. Matty figures that someone was hiding messages in the static. The tech hacks Joshua's files and finds the program that he designed two days ago to pinpoint the signal origin, and that's when Omnus put out the contract. They figure that Omnus has a secret communication signal, and Matty runs the program. The users are every operative that they know is working for the Organization, and they nailed Patricia four months ago so they came up with the message system. Joshua is the system architect, and Omnus is the Organization.

Wilt and Riley come in, and Mac takes a photo of the made-up Joshua. Riley tells him not to send it just after he sends it, and explains that every photo stores the GPS coordinates. They spot twelve signals converging on Mac's location, and figure that they've made Mac and agreed to the $15 million to get him to tell them where he is.

As Jack and a Phoenix squad team head out, Mac admits to Joshua that he has no guns. He says that he's going to buy them some time and goes to a garbage can filled with pop cans. Mac brings those and a cleaning cart back to the room and MacGyvers a fog machine. As the Omnus agents pull up, Mac tosses an electrical cable into the pool and gets Joshua back inside, and the Omnus soldiers move in. The client is with the squad and orders his men to go to thermal. Mac and Joshua take cover behind a patio table, and Mac tosses a candle into the explosives that he also made. As they take cover, Jack arrives and takes out the Omnus soldiers.

Mac finds the Client and punches him unconscious, and the Phoenix agents take the soldiers into custody. Jack and Mac hug, and Jack asks if he's okay in the head. His friend says that he was just playing a role and they head back to Phoenix.

Riley and Wilt meet with Ed and Cindy, and tell them that Brett is getting arrested. They show the couple video of the police arresting Brett, and Riley assures them that justice will finally be served.

Mac visits Murdoc and says that he was able to complete the mission without killing anyone. Murdoc is fine with any outcome that keeps Mac alive so that he can kill Mac himself. Mac tells him that he and an innocent man would be dead without Murdoc's advice. Murdoc doesn't care and Mac says that he doesn't care because the important thing is that he said it. As he starts to go, Murdoc takes out a peanut and eats it. He tosses the shell on the floor with others, and says that people just believe what they want to believe. Murdoc tells mac that he wants to believe that it's over, and Mac walks out.

Matty interrogates the Client, Daniel Horn, and reviews his background. She knows that he received a dishonorable discharge for selling DARPA computer codes to enemy hackers. They've matched his signature to a dozen attacks all over the world on behalf of the Organization, Daniel tells her that she doesn't know that he wanted to be caught.

Written by Gadfly on Apr 8, 2017

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