The phrase “less than an hour” wielded a lot of power on Hijack Season 1 Episode, with the hopes that it would be what put an end to the nightmarish ordeal the passengers of KA29 found themselves in. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the resolution everyone was hoping for, but it did provide plenty of information about the hijackers and their motive, not only to Sam Nelson, but all of the government agents on the ground, and most importantly, to us, the audience.
The episode was chock-full of intel that’s helping everyone understand exactly who they are dealing with—and, in a surprising turn of events, I’m actually starting to feel for the hijackers as it seems like they have no choice in the matter.
Sam uses his particular set of skills to convince Stuart—who he figures out is Lewis’ brother—that they need to land the plane within the next half hour or so if they want a chance at saving his life. Stuart isn’t particularly fond of Sam’s suggestion, but when he confirms with the doctor—who gets the “less than an hour” message just in time to relay it—he’s convinced that they have no other option. Sam has now figured out a sensitive spot when it comes to the leader of the group, which is major.
And if anyone had any doubt about Sam, you’ve likely been convinced that he’s exceptionally good at his job when he notices that the second pilot, Anna, is Hungarian, which makes her an asset to land the plane in Hungary, while also communicating to the ground staff that they’ve been hijacked and need assistance. It’s the small attention to detail that is really key here and allows Sam to make moves to help get them out of this predicament, even if the plans were foiled in the end due to new information being brought to light. It’s incredible how he can operate without having much at his disposal, though if he did know the full story, he likely wouldn’t have suggested landing the plane in the first place. The moment he understood what was at stake, he immediately pulled back and went to the drawing board.
I’ve said before that these hijackers seemed a bit ill-informed and unprepared, but I’m starting to realize that’s by design—most of them don’t want to be here, nor do they want to do this, but they have no choice because they work for some very dangerous people. They trusted Anna to communicate with the air traffic control in a different language even when it was obvious she was going to try to pull a fast one and get them help.
There were so many risks involved in potentially landing the plane that it was never going to go the hijackers’ way. They are clearly not trained for the situation to go awry—as it has many times—and simply do what they’ve been told.
When Neil, the Home Secretary, questions whether this organized crime group will actually make good on their threat and list of demands, the answer is that they most definitely will at the behest of their leaders, who have given no alternative but to carry this plan through or else.
There’s a lot to digest in this, but mainly, Lewis, before his death, informs them that they cannot land the plane, a sentiment shared by all the other hijackers whose thought process has not been clouded by personal matters like Stuart’s has. They all seem convinced that if they veer away from the plan, they will die, and there are times that you can actually see their own fear manifest. In a way, they are all hostages forced to do things against their will.
Terry informs them that it isn’t just their lives at stake either, but their family members who are in the line of danger if anything goes awry. Sam is shocked to find out that he’s been identified as a passenger who might get in the way of the plan, so not only is he still worried about staying alive and keeping the passengers alive, but now he has to be concerned about his family on the ground, who have become targets inadvertently.
And that’s not an empty warning or threat as we see the hitmen break into Sam’s apartment—with their guns—while his son, Kai, is chilling upstairs. Let’s hope that he has half the skills his dad has and that he was able to escape through a balcony or something because we saw how the others fared the last time the “cleanup crew” arrived at their apartment.
It’s also confirmed that Neela’s (baggage security staff employee) family was held hostage in order for her to let the business class passengers go through—and it’s further proof to Neil that they will absolutely make good on their threat if they don’t get what they want. If she did what they asked, why did they have to kill her and her loved ones anyway? These people are ruthless.
Anyone who stands in their way suffers a truly terrifying fate, a warning that’s also echoed by Lewis and Stuart’s poor mother.
We learn that the whole hijacking was concocted to force the government to free the organized crime syndicate leaders, Edgar and John, who were “wrongfully imprisoned.” Elaine explains that they have control over a lot of people, noting that everyone on the block works for them/has families that are “owned” by them, meaning that word has already spread that they’ve found her. She knows firsthand what they are capable of as they killed her husband, Pete, for thinking he was a traitor, and she’s too afraid to see what will happen to her now that the police paid a visit to her home, so she makes a break for it and runs into oncoming traffic. Much like her son, Lewis, she deemed that death, hers by suicide, was an easier fate than trying to fight back and help the police put an end to it. In one moment, and unknowingly, Stuart lost his whole family to a cause that he may not have believed in all that strongly in to begin with.
Before Lewis succumbs to his injuries, he learns that Terry was actually the one who killed his father, as Terry explains that if he didn’t do it, they’d kill him and find someone else. It’s clear that these are not the kind of people you want to mess with, but it’s also evident that the hijackers all go way back and have plenty of history with each other.
Neil makes a bold statement that they don’t negotiate with terrorists, but this doesn’t seem like a black-or-white situation as the hijacked plane with over 200 civilians on board is headed right toward London. On the other hand, releasing two dangerous criminals who operate an international syndicate for drugs, sex trafficking, and weapons, isn’t ideal either.
What’s their next move? And what’s the move if the demands aren’t met? Are they to crash the plane? They seem pretty confident that their demand letter will work, but the hijackers don’t seem ready for a suicide mission if it doesn’t otherwise Stuart wouldn’t have gone through all that trouble to land the plane and give his brother a fighting chance. The hijackers also keep saying that no one was supposed to die, so what’s the plan when things don’t go their way?
It’s an unprecedented situation with a highly-coordinated team of criminals loyal to the cause, leaving the officials no good solution available as it wouldn’t be a good look for London to just shoot down a plane full of its own people either.
No matter what they decide, there will be casualties and a price to pay.
And at the core of it Sam, who may be running out of moves as well. It would be great to see the hijackers do a 180 and suddenly team up with Sam with the hopes of finally regaining their freedom from Edgar and John’s grasp.
What did you think of the episode?
Will There Be a Season 2 of ‘Hijack’?
Hijack just wrapped up its gripping first season on Apple TV+ on Wednesday, August, 2, but fans are already hopeful that a second season is in the works.
It’s unclear if the streaming giant has plans for more seasons of the Idris Elba-led drama as they have not made any announcements, however, it’s likely not entirely out of the question considering the rave reviews the series has received.
Over the course of 7 episodes, the thriller managed to build up a heroic character with a particular set of skills that knows how to carry a series, all while keeping fans on the edge of their seats in anticipation of what’s next.
The series finds Elba as Sam Nelson, a skilled corporate negotiator who is forced to use his tactics to communicate with a group of terrorists after they hijack the flight he’s on and save everyone on board.
Naturally, the series came to a conclusion in the first season, making it slightly difficult to have a second season, though, the counterargument is that there are plenty of situations that can use Sam’s expertise.
“What would be the acceptable scenario that [Sam] comes back?” Elba told Variety. “Because we’ve thought about this, and obviously Apple have gone, ‘Well, we really love the show.’ And I think, you know, Rotten Tomatoes is at 92% at the moment, which is a good sign, but it’s kind of like — he’s not a cop — what would be the acceptable Sam Nelson return?”
He would, however, be interested in reprising the role under the right circumstances, noting, “And if I’m honest, I’m not sure. I’d like that, but I just don’t want to put him on another hijack. I’m open to that character coming back. I think if people were compelled to like the character, then I’m in.”
He also gave a similar response to TV Insider, stating, “Look, I’m going to be honest here. I’d like to see Sam come back, but I just don’t want to see another Hijack. It’s got to be clever, and we can see him make decisions that are impossible to make. And I think that’s going to be fun for the audience, but it has to be the right setup. So who knows? If the audience really wants it, it’s going to happen.”
If a second season never transpires, Hijack Season 1 ended perfectly, leaving the door slightly ajar for more heroics from Elba, but if it does, the audience is surely there and eager for more action.
Hijack Season Finale Review – Did Sam Manage to Land KA29? (107)
I hope you braced for impact, Hijack fans, because the season finale, Hijack Season 1 Episode 7, was a bumpy, yet satisfying, ride.
Naturally, viewers were crossing their fingers for a positive outcome following the hijacking of KA29 with everyone doing everything in their power to get the flight safely on the ground. In the final episode, the passengers all banded together, putting up a united front to take back their power and put the hijackers in their place. It was a promising turn of events—or would have been had it not been for a new power player coming into the picture, one that even the hijackers didn’t anticipate.
With time running out, they were essentially back at square one when Amanda killed the pilot and took over the cockpit after receiving the “now” message from Edgar and John on the ground. Who was she? What was her mission? These were all questions that Sam needed answered with limited time available.
Stuart made it clear that his group of hijackers had no idea about this part of the plan, so they weren’t much use. He realized he had absolutely no choice—having lost all of his backup—but to relinquish control of the plane to Sam, who was determined to survive this whole ordeal at any cost.
When the RAF jets appeared alongside KA29, it was clear that losing control of the cockpit came with much larger implications. Panic began to ensue on board as Sam did his best to quickly come up with a plan. Meanwhile, as the plane switched courses and intentionally set its sights on central London, they were now a threat to millions of people on the ground, with the powers at be trying to determine whether to shoot them down over the ocean and avoid mass casualties.
It’s at that point that Sam decided to simply be completely honest with Alice, the plane’s air traffic controller, who assured him that no one wanted to shoot the plane down, and they wouldn’t, pending he’d tell them what was really going on.
And that’s when the series pulled off yet another unexpected twist as Alec, the man that Sam helped get on the flight at the onset of the series, came forward admitting that he knew Amanda would never listen to reason because much like with his partner, Edgar and John were holding her daughter, Elodie, hostage, unless she did what she was told.
At this point, Sam knew that his negotiation tactic had to be parent-to-parent; he needed to show that he understood her desire not to open the door—if his child was in danger, he wouldn’t either—while also underscoring that these men are so ruthless, regardless of what happens to the plane, their plans included killing Elodie as she couldn’t be a witness that could testify against them. Letting her walk was essentially a loose thread—and those need to be cleaned up even if the person you are blackmailing does what’s asked of them.
Amanda, who was all too freaked out when she stopped receiving word from Edgar and consumed with the guilt of having executed the pilot (definitely done for shock factor mostly, but also to prove that she means business and to prevent anyone from getting in her way), allowed Sam into the cockpit to help land the plane.
Naturally, they weren’t privy to what was happening on the ground, which found Edgar and John at odds about the mission (which is why they weren’t responding), with another shocking twist coming when John ordered a man to put a bullet in Edgar’s head. Seems like Edgar wasn’t the head honcho we all thought he was after all. I wish there would’ve been more of a payout to this moment, but Edgar’s death didn’t have much of an impact on the overall situation aboard KA29, nor did we ever find out what happened to John. What was his other plan?
Did he just book it with all the money that Edgar managed to make off of the rigged stock market? He did mention a helicopter waiting for them, so I imagine he booked it to a country with no extradition with all the money in tow.
We also found out that there was a two-fold purpose to the hijacking—first, they needed to convince officials to let Edgar and John walk free, but the second part included Alec, the trader aboard who smuggled in the guns, to help them tank the shares of KA29 so that they could profit. It was a huge cash grab at the end, which was never communicated to Stuart and his team, and I imagine if it was, they wouldn’t have been as committed to the plan as it would’ve been a watered-down motive. They thought they were sacrificing everything for the freedom of their leaders, while in reality, it was all about getting richer. It’s another part of the plot that fell slightly flat, though I wouldn’t have minded it if Edgar and John’s roles had a bit more impact.
The whole show was anxiety-inducing, right down to the emergency landing that was expertly guided by Alice. It’s a good thing she showed up to work that morning. In fact, the whole ground operation was really effective because of the women, with Alice putting her foot down that she would land KA29, while Louise ensured that Home Secretary Neil didn’t convince her into steering the Prime Minister in the wrong direction by giving the advice to shoot down the aircraft and all of the British civilians. I also loved that after the high pressure of landing a hijacked plane, she did her job and simply got up and ran to school because her child wasn’t feeling well—a clear look at the responsibilities moms carry on their shoulders, and the definition of a super mom.
KA29 was cleared to land with passengers all bracing for impact as there wasn’t enough runway for them to master a clean landing, but despite the flames and parts of the plane flying off, everyone made it off safe and found—though, admittedly, the trauma will likely still way them for years.
Sam, however, went back to get the necklace he got his wife—a reminder that he was in this mess because of his devotion to getting back his family–and was trapped in a cat-and-mouse chase with Stuart, who figured that if he was going down, Sam was going down with him. I didn’t think that this moment was necessary considering Stuart seemed rather defeated after he turned his gun over to Sam upon realizing that Edgar and John had a master plan that excluded them despite all that they did, but it did keep everyone on the edge of their seats till the final moments. It also made it clear that, in the end, it all boiled down to a fight between good and evil, with Sam’s wits prevailing yet again with some quick thinking.
And that’s it. The episode ended with Stuart getting arrested alongside his buddies as Sam walked off the plane with Marsha on the line.
And I felt kind of jipped. After the nightmare that we all lived alongside Sam and the passengers, I would’ve liked to see his reunion with his family, even if it was simply a moment of gratitude for his survival before accepting that Marsha moved on. They all worked together so brilliantly, even with minimal communication, so it’s proof that there’s a reality where they respectfully move on as friends and co-parents.
However, the visuals underscored that Sam was left all by himself—and we know he’ll be okay—while Marsha and Kai were in good hands with Detective Daniel; even Kai’s relationship with his mom’s new boyfriend entered a new phase following Daniel’s swift rescue. And Kai even displayed some of his dad’s skills when he was able to convey a message to Daniel despite having a gun pointed at him
While I wish we would’ve gotten some proper closure for Sam’s storyline, I do hope that by ending it abruptly it means we haven’t seen the last of him and that Hijack season 2 will continue to tell his story and show off his incredible negotiating tactics in a new, equally as tense, setting. We don’t need another plane situation, but there are so many avenues that the series and creators can pursue with such a strong and leading character like Sam.
And even with the few hiccups, if we can even call it that, I thoroughly enjoyed Hijack for its masterfully crafted twists, storytelling, and pacing that managed to keep us all on the edge of our seats for 7 episodes straight.
You can read all of the reviews and recaps here.
Hijack Review – A Twist No One Saw Coming (106)
This show is absolutely unhinged… and I’m loving every second of it.
It’s been a while since there’s been a show so meticulously crafted, keeping twists and turns close to the chest and keeping fans—and passengers, in this case—on the edge of their seats. Plane dramas have a natural thill factor to them since no one ever wants to be on a plane when an incident, any incident, occurs, but even with something as hair-raising as a hijacking, without the proper story development and writing, this could’ve easily taken a nose-dive… pun-intended…. as the setting doesn’t change and there aren’t many external obstacles providing momentum and conflict.
Instead, Hijack chose to make the things that could easily work against them work for them, turning the heat up on the anxieties felt throughout the passengers, including the hijackers, while morphing the plane into a ticking time bomb of sorts. There’s absolutely no way to predict what’s going to happen next when everything is so uncertain and the people on the plane find themselves in a somewhat unprecedented situation. Even the hijackers themselves don’t seem to be confident in what’s to come as they are taking orders, somewhat blindly, from the ground. The texts come few and far between, but while they seem to be following a well-orchestrated plan, there’s plenty of room for error as there’s no way of anticipating passengers’ behavior or their own feelings of anger, guilt, frustration, fear, and panic exploding and changing the course of the plan.
And then, there’s the ultimate twist—a part of the plan that’s seemingly been kept from the hijackers themselves that turns this whole operation into something else entirely, though it’s unclear what at the current moment, as we descend into the season finale.
Hijack Season 1 Episode 6 featured the most action on the ground as we’ve seen this whole time, underscoring just how much reach and pull Edgar and John actually have. While negotiating with terrorists was never something the Home Secretary or anyone in the government actually wanted to do, it wasn’t so black and white as they would’ve liked. The tactics they deployed, referred to as “comply slowly,” were anticipated by the criminal masterminds, so upon being released from prison, they immediately held the upper hand and were always one step ahead of the civil forces and national government agencies.
The thing that’s so striking to me is that Edgar and John are very smart and capable, yet the people they sent into the plane definitely don’t share the same level of intellect. Why is it that Sam had to step up and remind them that they already had a dead body that they could send a photo of as leverage versus killing yet another innocent person? These are the kinds of things you should probably be able to figure out on your own if you’re operating at this level and leading the charge on a plane hijacking… but alas, this also seems to be a thought-through part of the plan, further proving how crafty Edgar and John are.
When the woman passenger, who we’ve only seen in passing in episodes and who hasn’t even been on our radar, appeared out of the bathroom and put a bullet in the captain’s head before locking herself in the cockpit, well, I don’t think anyone, including Stuart and his goons, saw it coming.
The moment happened just after Edgar sent the “NOW” text message, alluding to the fact that she’s on his payroll and has been a silent player up until the moment she was activated with a rather pressing job to fulfill. She didn’t have to kill the captain in order to take over the cockpit, however, so it makes me wonder if he has a bigger connection to all of this as they also used his affair as leverage when the hijacking initially began.
Might I add that all of this could’ve been avoided had the pilot mustered up the courage to simply run to the cockpit and re-claim the plane when the opportunity presented itself. In life or death situations, you have to act, especially after the man carrying everyone’s safety solely on his back—yes, Sam—rallies the troops to “get ready to shake things up.” This was the moment and swift action was needed. The captain froze, and it cost him his life. Sam had Stuart in his grasp and in a chokehold, while the other passenger clocked a bag over Terry’s head, and they truly needed everyone’s participation to be able to stand a chance.
Hugo, especially, should’ve stepped up considering he’s seen Sam in action plenty of times and knows they’ve extinguished all their options of playing it safe. Where is his adrenaline rush? Does he not feel a sense of responsibility? This is truly what separates the heroes from the zeroes—and I know that’s harsh, but it’s true.
But with this new twist, it’s unclear where they stand or what the orders are, though it seems that if Edgar and John aren’t able to get away with their masterplan—and have the government look the other way—that the unidentified (for now) woman will likely fly the plane right into the ground. That seems to be my understanding, at least. How will Sam use his skills to navigate this intensifying situation?
At every turn, Edgar and John made it clear that they aren’t playing, though the government agencies didn’t seem to take their threats as seriously as they should’ve. It’s one thing for the hijackers to lack common sense, but I surely expected the forces that are trying to prevent this from being a national incident to have a bit more knowledge on how to play the game. When they “lost sight” of the vehicle in the woods, it was clear that they were going to swap cars during this “blind window” and that the people arriving at the airport were decoys. How is that not a thought that crossed anyone’s mind in the room where it happens?
Every part of this was calculated and premeditated by the criminals, so they needed to lead the watching eyes in one direction while they continued on with the true plan. It’s Crime 101. This scene was beyond frustrating as my faith in the powers at be faded; you never want criminals to outsmart those who are in place to protect and serve.
However, it’s also a commentary on why you can’t always rely on those in power to help you out of a bind. The passengers on KA29 had no insight into what was happening on the ground or what the government’s strategy was, nor could they rely on it, so they had to take matters into their own hands. They exhausted every other option in terms of playing nice as it was clear that Stuart was acting on orders that he couldn’t refuse, so fighting back was all that was left.
Admittedly, the cleverness of their communication and getting on the same page is one of the most entertaining parts of the episode, as is seeing them use everyday objects as full-on weapons, including that one woman’s hair clip. Never underestimate the power of hair accessories as an object of self-defense.
I also feel inclined to point out that the children on the plane are absolute angels because if my child was on that flight (who is arguably a lot younger than the only two girls on board), he’d be screaming and crying throughout, especially when Stuart warned that the next person to make a sound is executed. Maybe they purposefully picked a flight where the manifest reflected minimal children aboard? I know that holds no weight on the series or its outcome, but as a mom, it’s something that I noticed.
Now the question remains—are the hijackers now hijacked? Will they work with the passengers to ensure that they make it safely to London?
How will the government proceed now that they’ve lost sight of Edgar and John and have no way of knowing what their next move is? Will they finally get on the same page now that the hijacking has made its way to the public? And if I’m not mistaken, Devlin, the man who framed Felix and forced him to leak the news to the public by threatening to expose him as a fraud for insider trading, is the same man who gave the Home Secretary the list of demands. Does that mean Edgar and John have pull within the government?
There’s also Kai, who is trying his best to fly under the radar while the two hitmen stake out his father’s house. This scene simply upped the anxiety factor, and I found myself yelling “Sneak out through the window” several times throughout. Thankfully, it seems like Kai has inherited his father’s “skills,” at least somewhat, as he found a way to alert the police, which will hopefully scare them away and allow him to escape unharmed and warn his mother.
Speaking of Marsha, I know Daniel is busy with his shoddy tailing of Edgar and John, but I wish he’d find some time to update her on what’s going on since she’s in danger (I understand he doesn’t know that part, but still) and is the one who informed him about the hijacking in the first place.
What did you think of the penultimate episode of Hijack? Will this plane land smoothly come Hijack Season 1 Episode 7? Will Sam and Stuart turn into partners working toward a common goal?
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