The Man From U.N/C.L.E: Season 1 Episode 1 The Vulcan Affair


 The episode begins with a secret U.N.C.L.E. base being infiltrated by a group of men intent on assassination. They are thwarted and we learn they are from a criminal organization called Thrush. U.N.C.L.E. has intercepted some intel indicating that Thrush intends to assassinate the leader of a new African nation during a tour of a plant that happens to be owned and operated by a Thrush leader. That leader, named Vulcan, doesn't have many weaknesses, but the U.N.C.L.E. agent Napoleon Solo discovers that he had a girlfriend in college. He decides to recruit her to help him infiltrate Vulcan's inner circle and stop the assassination.

Enter Elaine Donaldson, the old flame. Solo uses a connection with a bishop to get her minister to vouch for him. He tells her the situation and tells her that while she cannot tell her husband anything he will insist that she go on the trip. It turns out Solo is right, as Elaine has been placed on an important committee going to Washington due to a last minute illness by one of its members. She is given her new identity and a new wardrobe. She goes to Vulcan's party and Vulcan is immediately smitten with her again.

Elaine poisons the Premier, not a lethal dose but enough to make him sick so he can't make the plant tour the next day. Solo's cover has been blown, and Thrush tampers with his car so that he crashes when it hits 50 mph. Solo and Elaine then discover that the Premier is not the target of the attempt, as the tour is still taking place with his two aides going without him. Elaine convinces Vulcan to show her his plant, and Solo uses a parachuting dummy to trick Vulcan into showing him where the attempt will take place. There is a reactor that Vulcan and his evil engineer henchman have rigged to explode and kill the two officials. While Solo and Elaine attempt their escape they are captured by the Premier, who is part of Thrush.

Instead of just shooting them, the Thrush agents chain Solo and Elaine to a pipe in a room under the reactor and open a steam valve so that the two suffocate. Solo kicks the pipe loose, and they are able to escape. They manage to knock out the Thrush agents who have come to dispose of their bodies, and Solo grabs the two officials and makes a dash for safety just before the reactor explodes. Vulcan and the Premier inexplicably decide to run up and stop the explosion and are killed when the reactor literally blows up in their faces.  Elaine returns to her family and Napoleon makes a pass at the flight attendant. The story was good, but felt a bit rushed. I think this would have been a pretty decent full length movie. As it is, it's a pretty solid first episode.


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