By Dustin Rowles | TV | May 8, 2023 |
By Dustin Rowles | TV | May 8, 2023 |
Kiefer Sutherland’s Paramount+ series Rabbit Hole concluded its season this week, and in addition to spoiling the ending for those who bailed before the season’s end, I’ll let you know if the series is worth watching. We will start with the latter, in which the short answer is: No. The longer answer is also no, unless you’re a Kiefer Sutherland and Charles Dance completist, or unless you care more about the twists than the story that supports them. It’s messy, convoluted, and often incoherent, but it’s also intense for those who value intensity over story and character.
Here’s a brief overview of the season (spoilers):
Kiefer plays John Weir, the CEO of a firm that specializes in corporate espionage. In the opening episode, he’s hired by a close friend to do a thing. Weir and his team do the thing, but it quickly goes south when Weir is accused of murdering their target, a Treasury Department investigator named Ed Homm (Rob Yang). The close friend who hired Weir then throws himself off a skyscraper, and the building that housed Weir’s firm and his employees explodes. His employees all die.
Weir also gets tangled up with Hailey (Meta Golding), a woman with whom Weir had a one-night stand. Initially, he believes her to be a spy, but the two ultimately form a partnership (and a romance). Meanwhile, Ed Homm isn’t dead. Weir kidnapped him because Weir and his father Ben (Charles Dance) — who we were initially led to believe killed himself when Weir was a child — kidnapped Homm because he holds the key to revealing a giant conspiracy orchestrated by a man named Crowley, who we initially believe is played by actor Peter Weller (an imposter), but who we later learn is actually played by actor Lance Henrickson.
Ben has been after Crowley all his life. He was playing the long game, which meant faking his own death decades prior. Meanwhile, FBI Agent Madi (Enid Graham) is trying to arrest Weir for the murder of Homm (who is not dead) and the murder of his co-workers, who were killed before the building explosion by Kyle the Intern (Walt Klink), who was working for Crowley all along.
The conspiracy, by the way, involves a lot of corruption, some payoffs, and the murder of a Presidential candidate and three Supreme Court judges. It’s all done to pass legislation that allows the wealthy elites to control the population by permitting them to collect otherwise private data from every person in the country. It’s like a Mr. Robot storyline if Mr. Robot had been beaten in the head with a baseball bat.
With that context in mind, here’s a brief overview of the finale: Weir’s plan all along was to get Edward Homm in front of a television news camera to bust the conspiracy wide open. Crowley tries to stop him by compromising others to do his bidding for him. Weir is arrested, but we learn that — briefly, anyway — he and the FBI Agent (who realizes that the cops are in on the conspiracy) work together. Madi arrested Weir, but then Madi helps Weir sneak out and transport Homm to the news station. Once there, however, Crowley phones Weir and tells him that if Homm speaks on television, he will kill Weir’s father and ex-wife, whom he abducted.
Here’s where the final twist comes in: Weir, anticipating that Crowley would kidnap his ex-wife and use her as leverage, hires a lookalike assassin to trade places with Weir’s ex-wife. Instead of being used as leverage, the assassin-posing-as-the-ex-wife takes out all of Crowley’s bodyguards and shoots Crowley himself. Ben finishes the job. Homm delivers his remarks on television, and the plot is foiled.
However, in a prelude to season two (should the series be renewed), Ben pulls an earpiece out of dead Crowley’s ear only to discover that Crowley — the mastermind behind this massive conspiracy — had a boss of his own who was providing instructions to him. Season two, presumably, will deal with the boss of the boss.