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'Intelligence' Season 1 Episode 7: Nanites

Paul Levinson Paul Levinson
February 19th, 2014 9:51am EST

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Nanites made their way on to Intelligence 1.7, in the high-tech bio-tech science fictional manner which the series does so well.  Nanites have played a quasi-metaphysical role on Revolution this season, and will be the subject of a How to Survive the End of the World episode on the National Geographic series this season (the "Monster Storm" episode airs this Wednesday - all episodes feature brief appearances by me as an "expert" in an undisclosed underground location).

The plot features a latter-day uni-bomber who fields nanites that invade and quickly kill the body. His targets are his competition, and eventually the elder Dr. Cassidy is "mechanically infected". The nanite bomber turns out to be one of Cassidy's "favorite" students, but not the brightest, and his quest for fame and power got the better of him.  Cassidy survives a close call, but I wouldn't go to him for a letter of reference if someone was applying for a job at Fordham University, where I teach.

The personal chemistry between Gabriel and Riley is still percolating, which is good and I hope continues and develops into more.  Riley's defense of Gabriel as human, because he makes choices rather than responds to commands, is not only gratifying to Gabriel but makes an important point that goes beyond a man embedded with a telecommunicating chip.  To the extent that we just respond to stimuli or orders or anything without deliberation in our work, we are behaving more like robots than human beings.

Intelligence has struck a winning balance between high-tech and human life, in a way I find more satisfying and real than, say, Person of Interest, which also explores this intersection.  I'm looking forward to more.

Photo Credits: CBS