When former SD-6 agent McKenas Cole with his crew of bandits take over SD-6, Sydney has to forget her previous plan about quitting the agency and has to focus on her mission with Jack to ... See full summary »



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Francie Calfo (credit only)
Tchen (as Ben Bray)


When former SD-6 agent McKenas Cole with his crew of bandits take over SD-6, Sydney has to forget her previous plan about quitting the agency and has to focus on her mission with Jack to save their colleagues. In the meantime, as he was about to quit his work on a story, Will Tippin gets an unexpected push to continue from the third party. Written by evamatijevic

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Plot Keywords:

payback | kgb | russia | betrayal | vault | See All (8) »


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Release Date:

20 January 2002 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


Although credited, Merrin Dungey (Francie Calfo) does not appear. See more »


Jack Bristow leaves the CIA with a bandage on his face, in a scene or two later in the elevator with Sydney the bandage is gone. See more »


McKenas Cole: [holding one 'needles of fire'] Each one is like you took a bag of red jalapenos, threw them in a blender, and used them for an enema. And Arvin, you're about to get to know them.
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References Die Hard (1988) See more »


Written by Rob Zombie
Performed by Rob Zombie
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User Reviews

Lies are the most dangerous kind of captivity (Part 1)
1 July 2016 | by (Belgrade, Serbia) – See all my reviews

Before I start my usual rant on rights and wrongs from this week's episode, let me just say that this was well spend hour of my life. I know it was a little bit too "talkative" for other people's likings (according to some, too much talking in this hour was purely because of Tarantino; but I can't really judge considering that even tho I saw 85% of his work I still can't wrap my mind around him). Unlike many, I do not see this episode as part of some two part larger story because this one had all the qualities of the regular Alias chapter : there is a mission (Sydney wants out), something goes wrong and a cliffhanger at the end. I don't care what the title says, for me this was perfect stand alone episode with awesome scenes, story and even Tippin was at his best.

When it comes to a traditional recap there is not that much to add really, except some really clever subplots thrown in to fulfill characters developments. One thing we all need to understand is that "The Box" is a push towards deeper and more complicated plot (e.g. The Man, that whole struggle for Rambaldi's artifacts.. ). Neither Will nor Vaughn were boring, which is something. Will's investigation takes darker turns and his subplot feels like a very odd distraction from what's really happening considering that he is the only "normal guy" out there. His struggle with that secret world of spies and SD-6 serves as needed contrary to Sydney's and Vaughn's struggle with reality. And for the first time, Vaughn's subplot finally feels like it's headed somewhere interesting. And that Haladki guy is awesome, but not in a positive way. He is boring, but he is awesome. It's really complicated, try to understand. Or even better, watch the episode.

Unfortunately, every show does the "prisoner crisis" kinda thing so we have to live with it. Only good thing is that they did it so early in the series that now there is no need to worry about whether will they use that story or not . Plus, watching Sydney and Jack working together and at the same time trying to overlook an obvious generation gap is amusing. "The Box" also does that funny thing with parallels where bad guys (SD-6) are able to work together to somehow help each other in the time of crisis but the good guys (CIA) can't stop talking about something so unimportant as one man's relationship (not even a real one) with a woman. And the best part is that that with this whole real hostage situation the doors were opened for us to see a characters inside of their everyday masks where they feel like a hostages of their own lives.

Naturally (because it's a Part 1) most of this episode sets the scene for the next week, but it still (thankfully) holds enough energy for itself. It's a strong episode with good character development and several intense scenes packed with humor from time to time. Seriously, you should watch it.

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