2.07 Collateral Damage
Original air date: January 3, 1998
Written by: Harry Dunn
Directed by: Vern Gillum
Jarod helps clear the name of a soldier accused of selling information to the enemy during the Vietnam War, and Miss Parker finally opens the present her mother gave her on the day she died.
Jarod’s Discoveries: Jell-o
Jarod’s Occupations: Army Ranger Lieutenant
Jarod’s Aliases: Jarod Patton
Jarod attempts to clear the name of an American soldier wrongly accused of selling classified information to the enemy during the Vietnam war.
While observing the Vietnam Memorial Wall, Jarod encounters Denise Clements, a 30-year-old woman handing out fliers. Denise is on a quest to have her father’s name added to the Wall. But a bystander tells Jarod that only the names of heroes appear on the wall.
Jarod returns to his lair. He watches an old news report that focuses on Denise’s father, Mark, who was killed when he stepped on a land mine during the war in Vietnam. The news report features an interview with Lieutenant Prentiss McLaren, who, along with a ten-year-old Vietnamese boy, witnessed the incident. Unfortunately, when McLaren searched Clements’ body, he discovered top secret documents and a bank account containing ten thousand dollars. It was concluded that Clements had been selling secrets to the enemy.
Jarod joins an Army Rangers team, a group of mercenaries under the command of (now Captain) Prentiss McLaren. As the soldiers practice a mission to destroy a narcotics factory in Colombia, they are interrupted by Brad Anderson, a bureaucrat in need of comparative analysis figures for Congressman Stanfield. Later, Jarod is surprised to learn that Stanfield was under McLaren’s command during the war. Jarod creates a comparative analysis requested by Stanfield’s aid. He is granted permission to deliver the document to Capitol Hill. There, Stanfield is quite taken by Jarod and offers him a Santiago Caribe cigar.
Meanwhile, Broots is called away on an emergency mission. With little choice, he convinces a highly reluctant Miss Parker to baby-sit his daughter Debbie during his absence. At first, Parker keeps the girl at a distance, unwilling or perhaps unable to form a bond. The relationship turns especially frosty when Debbie searches through Parker’s belongings and discovers an old gift-wrapped box. Furious, Parker grabs the box away. Later, Sydney tells Parker she is reacting with anger because she feels responsible for her own mother’s death. This hits very close to home, and she storms out of Sydney’s office.
Jarod analyses a photograph from Denise’s flyer. He notices a young Vietnamese boy standing in the background. Computer enhancement reveals a name embroidered above the boy’s pocket: Le Xuan Duc. Jarod realizes it is the same boy who witnessed Clements’ death.
McLaren and his team successfully destroy a drug factory in Colombia. While reviewing videotape footage of the explosion, Jarod realizes the factory was, in fact, empty. He concludes that someone tipped off a drug lord about the mission. Using his computer, Jarod accesses stockholder information on Santiago Caribe cigars. He realizes that the drug lord, Esteban Largo, is the primary stock holder. Using immigration registry information, Jarod locates Le Xuan Duc, or Duke, on a soundstage filming a how-to-get-rich-quick infomercial. Duke denies having any knowledge about a conspiracy. But Jarod tells him he possesses evidence that McLaren and Stanfield are tipping off drugs lords in exchange for cash. Eventually, Duke reveals the entire story. Some twenty-five years earlier, while cleaning up McLaren’s tent, he discovered top secret documents. Sensing something was amiss, he took the documents to Clements, who realized he had to catch McLaren in the act before he could accuse him of treason. McLaren lured Clements and Duke to a clearing north of the camp. When Duke inadvertently stepped on a land mine (planted by McLaren), Clements shifted his weight onto the device and let the boy escape. McLaren stepped from the shadows and shot Clements, later planting the documents on his body. Duke had buried the incident because McLaren had arranged his migration to the United States in exchange for his silence.
Eventually, Miss Parker decides to open the still-wrapped gift she’s treasured for so many years. Before doing so, she explains to Debbie that her mother gave her the present on the day she died. She hands the little girl the gift and gestures for her to open it. Inside is a copy of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, a book Parker’s mother adored. Parker reads aloud a passage from the book. When Broots returns to the Centre, he finds Debbie wearing an outfit almost identical to Miss Parker’s.
Jarod lures McLaren onto the training course. There, McLaren steps on a land mine, then freezes at the sound of the “click.” Jarod fires a shot at McLaren, causing him to “spill the beans” about the clandestine operation. Jarod captures the confession on tape, prompting a Congressional investigation. Later, Clements’ name is added to the Memorial Wall.