“Painkiller Jane” Recaps: Episode 1.1 “Pilot”


p>Later, Jane tells Andre No. 1 that he’s been "cleared," but she still doesn’t know what branch of the government he works for. He’s not about to tell her, but he does want to know why she came after him.

Jane: Saw a buy go down. We’ve been working this place for three weeks. Saw you guys hanging around; didn’t look like your kind of crowd.
Andre No. 1: I’ll take that as a compliment.
Jane: It wasn’t meant as one. What happened in there?
Andre No. 1: I’m afraid you’ll have to be content with a "thank you," Agent Vasco, and leave it at that.

Jane lets Andre know that while he may have checked out with her superiors, he still hasn’t checked out with her.

One of Andre’s henchmen whispers to him in an ominous tone, "Neuros tagged and bagged, boss."

Later, Jane and Heartbreaker Maureen are walking home from the bust. She asks HM if she has ever heard of a "neuro." HM hasn’t, and Jane is pretty sure that they’re not supposed to know what it is.

DOA at the DEA — The next day, we learn from another one of Jane’s tough-girl voiceovers that she isn’t a "by the book kind of gal," which is why she’s enlisted an IT nerd from the DEA to help her try to figure out what Andre and his neuro fetish are all about. This gets her dragged into the principal’s office — or as the G-men (and women) like to call him, the Deputy Director.

(Remember in The X-Files how Mulder and Scully were always getting dragged into Assistant Director Skinner’s office for their spankings? It’s kind of like that, but without the thinly veiled subtext of Skinner digging Scully. Or the one of me digging Scully.)

Anyway, Jane’s boss is all business, and he tells her that her investigation has been "terminated" (heh), and her entire service record has been "red-flagged" by the Pentagon. And that can’t be good.

Later that night, Jane has a secret meeting with Andre No. 1 (I’m assuming). He chides her for trying to hack their database before launching into his pitch for why she should join his special unit.

Andre: Your school records indicate that you were suspended 22 times in a four-year period.
Jane: That’s a lie. It was 23, actually.

Great. Jane is the Jo Polniaczek of the DEA set.

Andre: Reasons included everything from fighting and swearing to feigning an epileptic seizure.
Jane: Yeah, my bad.
Andre: Hospital records show that when they refused to let you visit your dying mother, a nurse found you holding her in the middle of the night. Somehow you’d been living in her room for three days.

Jane tries to storm out, and we’re treated to another one of her childhood flashbacks. This time it’s of Jane at her mother’s funeral. Andre interrupts the flashback and tells her that he knows she’s made a life of "living outside the box" and that he could use her on his team. She wants to know what it is that his team does, but he won’t tell her until she comes aboard. (I guess that whole lame conundrum about how you can’t get a job without experience and you can’t get any experience without a job thing goes for secret agents too.)

She tells him that she loves his "chain-of-command charm" and thanks him for the job offer — whatever it is. As she walks away, she stumbles back into him in a fumbling move that seems very, well, un-Jane. Then she makes a lame comment about not being able to put one foot before the other. He helps her back to her feet, and then tells her to stay out of his "business." As she walks away, she whips out a little gadget that appears to be a tracking device, kind of like the ones Ripley et al used to find the creatures in Alien. So Jane took the fall to plant one on him, and I’m not talking about a kiss.

Jane ducks around a few ratty corners, trailing Andre to his secret underground headquarters. Andre has enlisted a crack team of IT dorks (the PKJ version of The Lone Gunmen?) to help him do whatever it is he’s doing. Yet despite all their fancy gadgetry, they don’t notice that Jane has breached their perimeter until she is practically on their doorstep delivering their Avon order!

Unfortunately for Jane, the old "I could tell you but then I’d have to kill you" rule is in effect in The Secret Location. Only instead of killing her, they’re going to keep her there as their prisoner (aka "new employee"). Predictably, Jane takes the "Oh hell no!" approach to being the newest member of the Geek Squad, but a quick phone call to her boss at the DEA confirms that she has indeed been "reassigned." Still, she sees herself to the door.

Jane’s pad — Jane answers her phone as she’s walking into her apartment, and it’s Heartbreaker Maureen. She’s just found out that Jane got the boot from the DEA (plus, I think she’s worried about who she’ll have to sit with at lunch in the DEA cafeteria now that Jane’s gone). Heartbreaker Maureen tells Jane that she’s getting a bad reputation, and adds: "Get a good lawyer. When the DEA files drug possession charges against one of their own agents, it’s serious."

The possession charge is news to Jane (after all, her nickname is Painkiller Jane, not Dimebag Darryl), and she sets out to kick the ass of whoever is responsible for it.

Underground again — Jane goes back to Andre’s lair to confront him about the drug charges, but he’s not budging. He assures her that "in time" she’ll be cleared of the charges, but only if she joins his team. It’s a crappy choice, but like Mae West, when Jane is forced to choose between two evils, she picks the one she hasn’t tried before.


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