Human Target, "Ilsa Pucci": lawyers, guns, and women?

Quick Take: Human Target, "Ilsa Pucci"
And this is what sets Human Target apart, when it gets to show its cheeky side along with kick-ass action.

human target

Review: Human Target, "Ilsa Pucci"
(S0201) Two days after Winston’s kidnapping, the same man that arranged the invasion of the warehouse roughs him up and is about to force him to retrieve the all important “book” from a bank vault. This book is what caused all the major fuss from the end of Season One. The kidnapper, AKA the Interrogator (Timothy Omundson from Psych, Jericho, Judging Amy), had blamed the Old Man for letting the book go, and had traced it to the shipyard container car in last season’s episode, “Christopher Chance.” Winston apparently retrieved it and has kept it safe in a bank for the last six years.

Now at the bank, the Interrogator and posse bring Winston through the lobby after they’ve retrieved the book. Chance and Guerrero are posing as bank security, and are ready. They create a diversion – a tacky one, just shooting in the air – but it works. But then the Interrogator rips open Winston’s shirt – revealing a bomb vest!

And this is what sets Human Target apart, when it gets to show its cheeky side along with kick-ass action. Chance starts to apologize to Winston for all he’s been through, and tosses in an apology about “Aunt Suzie.” We know it has to be some sort of code, because Winston grimaces and braces himself. Naturally, Chase gets a non-lethal shot off, hitting Winston and effectually getting him out of the way, while Guerrero shoots the Interrogator in the hand (he seems to have a penchant for appendage targets).

The book is dropped, the detonator is dropped, and Chance rushes to Winston to see about defusing the bomb while Guerrero handles Interrogator and posse. It doesn’t hurt that the other bank guards have their guns trained on the bad guys too. After a tense moment, Chance plucks the right wire, and Winston along with the bank folk is saved! But just before that, while Winston closes his eyes, hoping that he will actually open them again, Chance disappears. Gone for good.

Fast forward to six months later, and a beautiful and beyond wealthy woman finds Chance in Nepal, all serene-like in an ashram. Pause for a gripe. Was it really necessary for the word “ashram” to be repeated around three times in the space of as many minutes? No, I didn’t think so either. I felt like they just kept saying it, as if they enjoyed the way it rolled off the tongue or some such.

So Miss Moneypockets is really Mrs. Ilsa Pucci, widow of famed software entrepreneur and philanthropist Marshall Pucci. She believes her husband was murdered and that she is also a target. Chance briefly declines her request of protection, but before you can say... oh, I don’t know, ”ashram,” she’s seated with the team back in San Francisco. So, now we know how Indira Varma was introduced, what about the other girl?

Under the guise of a charity ball, Ilsa Pucci is paraded about as beautiful bait in a beaded dress. While Chance and co. scope out the scene and mutter into their shoulders and wrist comm-links, a lovely young thing is introduced to her “hero,” Mrs. Pucci. Chance notices how strenuously and how long the hottie shakes hands with Ilsa, and quizzes her Ilsa on her well being, “did you feel a needle-prick?”, that sort of thing.

Winston and Guerrero corral the cocktail hottie, while Chance tries to figure out what happened. After W & G have a chance to go through the young woman’s purse they find a diamond ring, identical to the one that Ilsa is wearing. Suddenly the ballroom is being shot up, but even with the dozens of bullets flying, no one, especially not Ilsa, is being hit.

Chance knows it’s a set-up, warns Ilsa to stay, but she takes off with her security chief. Bad choice, dear. Her bodyguard is killed and she is abducted. Poor Chance is going to have to head back to the you-know-where to gain some more inner peace after this. He blames himself for this recent abduction even though Winston tries to console him. Guerrero – who probably never had inner peace and doesn’t care – consoles himself with scaring the crap out of the young ring thief whose name we learn is Ames.

In an astonishingly short and not quite realistic amount of time, enough trust and/or respect is gained by Ames, and she’s allowed to accompany the team on a rescue mission to Geneva. We learn that Ilsa was kidnapped by her lawyer, the smarmy Sheldon (Rick Hoffman of Samantha Who, Hostel, The Bernie Mac Show). It’s a simple enough plan; he just wants to rob her is all.

The climax seemed fairly anticlimactic after all. Ilsa, Sheldon, and goons reach the security check point for her safe deposit box – a biometric device that needs to scan both her and her husband to allow access. Sheldon alludes that her husband will be joining them there – and for a moment the shocked Ilsa hopes that her husband is not dead after all.

Sorry dear Ilsa, Marshall is still dead, but evidently is keeping “an eye” on things. Sheldon brandishes a special case that reveals a single eyeball – Marshall’s. Maybe it’s because they are in impeccable Switzerland that this lone eyeball does not remind us of the dripping, root-dangling orb used in other such switcheroos like Minority Report or even Never Say Never Again. Okay, the eyes, living and dead, are scanned and the group heads into the vault.

Sheldon explains (why or why do the bad guys always explain their master plans, seriously?) that he will gain billions if he impersonates Marshall by means of accessing his personal accounts and holdings, now that he has a simple briefcase full of passwords and other goodies.

Ilsa realizes that her usefulness in this caper is finished, so she stalls leaving the bank. Nice. This gives time for our heroes to take position, and take aim. In an familiar scene, Chance enters the bank, shoots his gun in the air to cause a diversion, Guerrero shoots Sheldon, in the hand – again with the hand wounding – and Winston picks up the pieces, including Chance and Ilsa who jumped seven stories into water below.

What about Ames? As the team mulls over Ilsa proposal that she become their silent benefactor, Ames is seen struggling in the custody of police officers, accused of stealing a diamond bracelet. She claims that she was just trying to return it to Mrs. Pucci and pleads with the team to exonerate her. And of course they will, and we look forward to seeing how the upcoming new team dynamics evolve with the additions of these two gorgeous women.

And time to leave you with a question – Guerrero’s hand-shooting shtick, will that become his M.O.? Like Jack Bauer’s preference for a nice meaty thigh for his targets, will Guerrero keep this up? What say you?

Video: Human Target, "Ilsa Pucci"
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By MaryKay15

About the author

Entertainment writer and essayist from the Boston area

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