Vanished - Sunday August 5

the cell (10/13)

Continuing this week is the intriguing US drama series revolving around the disappearance of Sara Collins, the wife of Georgia senator Jeffrey Collins. In tonight’s episode, Agents Lucas and Mei interview a convicted murderer in the hope of cracking Sara’s case; the sinister individuals behind the kidnapping make a dramatic raid on FBI headquarters; Sara suffers in captivity; and Judge Rainer makes a crucial decision.

FBI Agents Lucas and Mei have discovered that Sara Collins’ disappearance is somehow connected to an ancient biblical text (see last week’s episode, ‘The New World’). Now their efforts to translate the scroll have led them to a jail where renowned theologian Dr Aaron Hensleigh is languishing on death row. Hensleigh is due to be executed in four days’ time for murdering his wife and research team, but it soon becomes apparent that the disturbed doctor is incapable of answering the agents’ questions.

Fortunately, another lead comes to light when police detain a van connected to Sara’s kidnappers. CCTV footage appears to show that the driver hid something in the vehicle before being killed in a shootout. Lucas and Mei head to the FBI garage to inspect the van, where they find an ancient metal device hidden in the roof of the car. The circular object is covered in Hebrew markings, and the FBI’s astonished expert identifies it as a “cipher wheel”: a 2,000-year-old decoder that could be used to decipher ancient texts such as the one acquired by the kidnappers. “This would be the find of the century,” the expert says. “Biblical scholars would practically kill to get their hands on that scroll!”

However, as the agents consider the ramifications of their find, the kidnappers are already planning to recover the cipher wheel. A pair of anonymous men hack into the FBI system and create fake passes for themselves, before calmly walking into FBI headquarters and breaking into the evidence locker. They retrieve the cipher wheel and are already on their way out when Lucas arrives to fetch the artefact. Upon discovering that the wheel is gone, Lucas chases after the men and engages them in a spectacular gun battle in the middle of the FBI offices.

Meanwhile, Sara is trapped in her windowless cell at the mercy of her captors. Her nameless jailor continues to play mind games by hinting that Jeffrey is doing nothing to rescue her. “There’s more to your husband than you know,” he says. To prove it, he plays Sara a phone recording of Jeffrey in which the senator appears to claim that his rising approval ratings are due to her kidnapping: “Her disappearance is the best thing that could have happened to me,” Jeffrey says. Little does Sara know that Jeffrey’s words have been cleverly edited by the kidnappers. But will she fall for the trick?
Elsewhere, Marcy Collins is shocked to learn that Judge Rainer, her former lover, is continuing his campaign to be elected to the Supreme Court. Marcy had threatened to reveal all about their relationship if he did not stand down and call off Sara’s kidnappers, but now the ambitious judge accuses her of blackmail. “I’m calling your bluff,” he tells Marcy. Undeterred, Marcy calls reporter Judy Nash and promises an exclusive story if she puts her live on air the next day…

Also this week, Sara discovers that she is not the only prisoner when she hears a voice in the next cell. And a clue left by the intruders at FBI HQ leads back to Dr Aaron Hensleigh…

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