‘Reacher’ Season 2 Episode 5 Recap & Ending Explained: Did Swan Send Snipers To Kill The 110th?


Last week’s episode of Reacher Season 2 revolved around the 110th trying to unpack the connection between their old (and missing) colleague, Swan, the CEO of New Age Technologies (NAT), Shane Langston, and the mysterious assassin only known as A.M. While going through Swan’s emails and the documents the 110th had stolen from NAT’s office, they found out about a project called Little Wing that Swan was overseeing on NAT’s behalf. That was greenlit by Senator Malcolm Lavoy and his legislative director, Daniel Boyd. So, Reacher and his team got a hold of Boyd and squeezed him until he revealed that NAT was making surface-to-air portable missile launchers in the name of national security. This shocked Jack and his team to the core, and they decided to alert Homeland Security and visit NAT’s Denver office to see what they were doing. Langston tried to stop them in their tracks with the help of a biker gang, but Reacher and his team wrecked them in a matter of seconds, and Reacher even sent an unforgettable warning to Langston.

Spoiler Alert

Neagley and Dixon Get into a Gunfight With A.M.’s Men

Episode 5 of Reacher Season 2 opens with O’Donnell preparing his wife and children for the long haul because they have to go somewhere safe, while the 110th deals with Shane Langston and his associates. One of the earlier episodes gave me the impression that Langston and NAT were only going after the 110th and not their family members. They killed Franz, but they didn’t hurt his family. They killed Sanchez and Orozco, but they didn’t touch their friends. But based on O’Donnell’s actions, it seems things are going to get more serious, and he fears that Langston is going to hit his weak spot to exploit him. In addition to the plot-related stuff, this is a great scene because you see Reacher observing the messy beauty of family life. Alan Ritchson is so good because he shows that Reacher is impressed with O’Donnell’s growth as a human being, and he is probably a little sad that he will never get to settle down due to his nature and state of mind. The scene then shifts to the Denver branch of NAT, where Neagley and Dixon are pretending to be representatives of the DCMA (Defense Contract Management Agency) so that they can look into their missile shipments. They realize that they are too late because all 650 of the missiles have already been shipped. By the way, that clears up the numbers game.

Reacher said that the digits they had acquired from Franz’s pen drive were a tally of unsuccessful and successful deliveries of a mystery product. The total number of unsuccessful deliveries was 650. Sanchez’s last words to his girlfriend, Milena, indicated that each of these 650 items cost $100k. And now that 650 missiles have been shipped out of NAT, it means that they are going to purposefully misplace them and show them as “unsuccessful deliveries” so that they can be used for terrorism. This is confirmed when a group of assailants, pretending to be truck drivers, stop NAT’s truck, kill the driver, and then inform A.M. that they’ve got their hands on the missiles. Neagley and Dixon catch up to these goons, and a brutal gunfight ensues. The ladies shoot down most of the men, but one of them manages to drive away with the shipment. Since their car is unusable, Neagley and Dixon are forced to go on foot before the police arrive at the crime scene. Reacher and O’Donnell chat with a pair of Homeland Security agents, who have worked with Joe Reacher in the past, to talk about A.M. They say that A.M. is a wanted individual, and they’ve been trying to track him down, albeit unsuccessfully. Reacher realizes that, based on the data that Homeland Security has on A.M., he’ll be present physically during the transaction of the missiles, and that’ll be the perfect opportunity to nab him. The Homeland Security agents promise to deal with him legally, but Reacher says that if he gets to A.M. first, he is going to kill him. By the way, there’s this awkward and melancholic moment where Jack gets uncomfortable when the agents keep comparing him to Joe. It seems like Jack is okay with nonchalantly referencing his brother’s death, but when someone else talks about him, it doesn’t sit well with him.

Reacher meets Senator Lavoy

While walking through the forest, hopefully until they get to hitch a ride and reconvene with their friends, Neagley and Dixon inform Reacher and O’Donnell about the truck hijacking. The only thing worse than that is the fact that Swan has apparently signed off on the shipment. Reacher, as per usual, doesn’t want to believe it, but Neagley and Dixon continue to give more and more evidence that suggests that it’s impossible for Swan to be innocent in all of this. Reacher, almost childishly, goes for a walk, and the episode flashes back to a time where the 110th used the heroin that they had acquired during a drug bust to catch a dealer. Neagley, Franz, Orozco, and Sanchez were waiting in a van, and Reacher and Swan were talking to the drug dealers. Everything was going fine until the drug dealers’ personal delivery boy recognized Swan, thereby forcing the 110th to jump the gun and kill the criminals. Swan did take a bullet for Reacher. This shows that it’s tough to get a read on Swan, especially for Reacher, because on one hand, some of Swan’s actions are highly suspicious, but on the other hand, he was loyal to the 110th. That’s why, even though Swan’s stint at NAT is dubious, Reacher doesn’t want to accept the fact that Swan is working with the villains and trying to kill his own friends.

Before Reacher can ponder this topic any more, he is picked up by Senator Lavoy’s security detail for a private conversation with him at the Smithsonian National Zoological Park. Initially, Lavoy and Boyd antagonize Reacher for pretending to be a “special agent” and remind him about his adventures in Margrave. But eventually, it becomes clear that Lavoy actually wants Reacher and the 110th’s help. Based on all the convoluted stuff Lavoy is saying, it seems like he did greenlight the Little Wing project in the name of national security and to make some money on the side. However, now that he sees that it’s going to be used for domestic terrorism, he wants to make amends, that too in a discreet fashion. Since Reacher and the 110th have a personal stake in all this, and he is already investigating the matter, Lavoy wants them to take care of it. He says that the 110th has the freedom to go to any lengths to ensure that the missiles aren’t used to harm anyone. If NAT, A.M., and anyone else associated with those missiles are eliminated, it’ll be a win for Lavoy and the 110th. Although Reacher doesn’t explicitly agree with Lavoy, it seems like he is okay with this arrangement because he is getting a senator’s approval to do his favorite thing: murder criminals. Talking about criminals, A.M. has a conversation with Shane while driving through Indiana, where they talk about the shipment and the resistance his men faced due to the 110th’s involvement. Shane assures A.M. that the missiles will be ready for use by the time he gets there and that he has already organized another assassination attempt on the 110th.

Did Swan send snipers to kill the 110th?

Reacher, O’Donnell, Neagley, and Dixon arrive at Franz’s funeral, and they go over the details of their investigation so far. They come to the conclusion that they have to move swiftly in order to stop the missiles from reaching their destination, or else they won’t be able to stop all the impending terrorist attacks. Russo is seen comforting Franz’s wife and kid, and that somehow irks Reacher a lot because Russo doesn’t have any connection with Franz or his family. Reacher gets into an argument with Russo, with Reacher trying to accuse Russo of being a dirty cop who is in on the whole operation that’s happening against the 110th, while Russo tries to convince Reacher that he is there for Franz’s family because he has been in their position when he was a kid. Russo also says that he has done a full background check on NAT’s employees, and they all happen to be former dirty NYPD cops from the 3rd precinct. The only exception is Swan, and Russo insinuates that he has been hired because of his military experience, which will be helpful for the terrorists. That irritates Reacher, and he tries to one-up Russo by asking why he hasn’t interviewed NAT’s employees as a part of the investigation. Russo says that Reacher and the 110th’s bombastic display of power has forced all of them to go underground. Apparently, all of their houses are empty, much like Swan’s and Marlo Burns’. Lastly, Russo advises Reacher to look into Swan before labeling him as a dirty cop again.

At the end of Reacher Season 2, episode 5, two snipers begin shooting at the funeral with the intention of killing the 110th. Neagley manages to kill one of them on the spot, while the other one makes a run for it. Reacher tries to chase him down on foot, but the shooter gets away in a car. Russo shows up to assist Reacher, and a car chase ensues. Seeing Russo’s slow and cautious driving, Reacher hilariously takes matters into his own hands and causes the sniper’s car to crash. Then, he interrogates him, who reveals that Swan had hired him to kill the 110th. Next, they take the sniper to the place where he was supposed to get his fees. As soon as he steps into the building, it goes up in flames, thereby erasing all evidence of the assassination attempt. Is that enough to prove that Swan is actively working for Langston to kill the 110th? Yes, I think that there are way too many fingers pointing at Swan. However, something about Reacher’s doubt says that there’s more to it than meets the eye. Maybe he is being forced to do all this. That said, if Reacher is wrong and if Swan is doing it because he wants to save NAT, then Reacher and the rest of his team are in for an unpleasant altercation. In addition to that, I want to point out a few other details. Boyd said that there are two NAT offices, situated somewhere in Denver and New York. But it seems like Shane Langston is operating from a third office. That means the 110th has to locate that place to stop the missiles from going out. During the final act of this episode, Reacher’s run, his verbal spat with Russo in the car, and the way he keeps squeezing the sniper’s neck even when he was ready to spill the beans are some of the best moments from the show.

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Pramit Chatterjee
Pramit Chatterjee
Pramit loves to write about movies, television shows, short films, and basically anything that emerges from the world of entertainment. He occasionally talks to people, and judges them on the basis of their love for Edgar Wright, Ryan Gosling, Keanu Reeves, and the best television series ever made, Dark.

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