‘The Veil’ Episode 4 Recap & Ending Explained: Does Adilah Help Imogen Survive The Attack?


FX’s spy thriller series The Veil returns this week with more developments as the French and American intelligence agencies rush to prevent an ISIS-led terrorist attack. But the internal conflict of interest and overall distrust between the agencies themselves also continue to play a part in the show, while we learn slightly more about the protagonist, Imogen Salter. While The Veil episode 4 does not necessarily reveal anything majorly shocking, it crucially develops the relationships that the central characters have been carefully building.

Spoiler Alert

Why does Emir visit the graveyard?

The Veil episode 4 begins with Emir visiting the Pere Lachaise Cemetery in Paris, the same spot where Imogen and Adilah had their secret meeting away from the different agencies’ surveillance in the previous episode. Emir had been confirmed to be a member of the ISIS cell planning what seemed to be a biological attack on the USA, as he is one of the chief sailors on the ship that is being used for the plan. At present, Emir takes leave from the ship, which has set sail from Bulgaria towards American soil, and visits the graveyard in Paris for a very particular reason. He walks up to the grave of the legendary musician Jim Morrison, which is the specialty of this cemetery in Paris, and pretends to be paying his respect to the iconic man. As Emir puts down a bouquet of flowers in memory of Morrison, he also picks up one of the multiple cards kept on top of the tombstone. 

A young woman is also present at the spot during this whole time, and she reveals that she has come down from Baltimore, USA, only to visit and pay respects to Jim Morrison. She tries to strike up a conversation with Emir, with the latter clearly not being interested, but she also notices how he picks up a card and then walks away from the gravesite. The woman quickly calls up someone, as it is revealed that she is no ordinary tourist but a CIA agent named Philippa, working under Max Peterson. It is Peterson, whom Philippa calls, who informs her that the CIA’s suspicion about the Jim Morrison grave being a communications spot for the terrorists was correct. She is unable to differentiate between the card that Emir had picked up and the ones he had ignored on the grave, though, and is given the order to collect the bouquet of flowers, which can be analyzed to find some fingerprints of the man. This is also an impossible task for her, though, as there are numerous similar-looking flower bouquets all over the tomb. 

Owing to his awareness and intelligence, Emir had already suspected that Philippa was not just a tourist, and he was sure after overhearing her conversation with her CIA boss. In order to escape the place safely, Emir covers his hair and changes his appearance slightly before intentionally walking in front of Philippa to catch her attention. The woman starts to follow Emir, but she is soon shot to death by the man, who then flees the cemetery. Although Peterson sends his other agent, Matthew, who had been waiting in his car outside the place, to investigate, he is too late to catch or stop Emir. Max Peterson is understandably furious at the fact that the lead suspect could not be caught and also because one of his agents had been killed, but he still has no intel about the terrorist attack. Later in the episode, it is revealed that the card that Emir had picked up actually had a small SIM card attached to it. The man had definitely visited the spot in order to retrieve this SIM card, as it is part of the next part of his plan. 

What does the image on Emir’s card signify?

The card that Emir picked up had a certain image on it, which helped him differentiate it among all the other cards at the gravesite. The image was of a Djinn, and as revealed by the French officials, the terrorist cell was using these images from The Book of Surprises, or “Kitab al-Bulhan,” as a sort of secret code of communication. The Kitab al-Bulhan, also translated as The Book of Wonders or The Book of Surprises, is an Arabic manuscript containing information about matters like astronomy, astrology, religious spirituality, and so on. Among its contents is also extensive detail about supernatural demons, or Djinns, and according to the book, there are separate specific Djinns for each specific day of the week. Only those aware of the information given in the book would be able to understand the day that a certain Djinn image would represent, meaning that the chronology of the images or the cards with the images on them could not be understood by any unaware person. Therefore, the ISIS team is making use of this very knowledge, and the arrangement of the SIM cards used to plan the whole operation is being hidden behind this secret code regarding the Djinn images. Emir and his team know that the SIM cards they will be using will be quickly traced, meaning that they will have to keep changing them continuously. In this way, each stage of the terrorist operation has been assigned a certain Djinn, based on the Kitab al-Bulhan, and an entire secret code has been developed.

How does the French DGSE react to their findings?

The DGSE officials have always been suspicious of their American counterparts in the CIA, especially Max Peterson, and they take a certain step in this episode to find out more about what Peterson and his friends have been hiding. The head of the organization, Magritte, appoints the help of a tech expert with questionable personal hygiene named Cesar, and with his help, they override the American communications system. According to the information found through this source, the British MI6 agent Imogen Salter has been most definitely working directly with Peterson, and this is a shock to the DGSE agent Malik Amar. Although Magritte had always been a bit suspicious of Imogen and her intentions, Malik genuinely believed that the woman, with whom he also had romantic relations, was helping them. This sudden discovery that she was actually directly in touch with Peterson and working with him disturbs him.

Malik establishes communication with Imogen and confronts her about what she has been doing, but the woman does not try to hide anything. He tries to enforce the French rules on her, stating that no foreign spy agency can carry out any counter-terrorism plan on French soil without the consent of the DGSE. Imogen promises some answers during a secret meeting, and Malik requests his boss to allow him one last chance to bring Imogen under control. Within this time, the DGSE officials are able to track and listen in on a phone call between Emir and an associate, in which he speaks about the ship headed towards the US coast with a bomb inside it. The surveillance is done through bugs already set at a restaurant from where Emir makes the call, and it might still be that he and his associates are trying to mislead the intelligence agency with false information. Nonetheless, Magritte takes the decision to inform the US authorities about this imminent terror attack, despite the fact that they were the ones to decode this crucial information. 

That night, when Malik and Imogen finally meet, he tells her everything that the DGSE has found out so far, including the secret code being used with the names of the Djinns. Imogen states that this Book of Surprises had been shown to her by Adilah back in Turkey, which was proof enough to her that Adilah was indeed pulling the strings in her ISIS cell. The protagonist once again requests that Malik have faith in her instincts and let her continue her investigation of Adilah El Idrissi. She is confident that she can make the woman talk about the entire terrorist mission, the name of the ship, and other details. Imogen also assures him that she will be safe, and a number of kisses that they share confirm that the two are still lovers. She then talks about how she and Malik were so close to achieving their plans, which seems to suggest that Malik also has some personal intentions that might conflict with the DGSEs.

What does Imogen learn about her father?

Imogen’s only condition in agreeing to work with Max Peterson was any information regarding her father and his mysterious death in exchange for her troubles. Since she has indeed been following the CIA agent’s orders and maintaining her friendship with Adilah accordingly, Peterson also delivers on his promise and hands Imogen a USB drive with pertinent information about her father. At this time, the CIA agent also states that whatever happened in Morocco was not what it had seemed to be. This matter in Morocco was something that Imogen had used to blackmail Peterson to help her find out more about her father. But what exactly happened in Morocco still remains unmentioned, and we might find out about it only in the later episodes.

At the end of The Veil episode 4, Imogen goes through all the information contained on the USB drive after she prints out numerous pages of CIA secrets. From these files, Imogen learns that her father, Marcus Seabright, was actually a double agent who had established unlawful communications with the Russians. Marcus was proven to be leaking CIA information to the Russians, and this was why he had been killed by the CIA, with the act passed off as a terrorist attack on his car. How the protagonist will react to this information and whether she will further investigate the matter remain to be seen. 

Why does Adilah help Imogen survive the attack?

In The Veil episode 4, Adilah continues to grow closer to her new friend Imogen, and she even talks about a certain event from her past. Back in her early days in ISIS, Adilah had been sent on a suicide bombing mission, in which she was made to wear bombs all over her body. Her mission was to visit a luxury restaurant that was often frequented by American tourists and to blow the place up, killing everyone, including herself. But Adilah could not make up her mind to do it, and even though she visited the restaurant wearing the bombs, she could not pull the switch that could explode them. While narrating this incident, she tells Imogen that the fuse in the bombs did not work, which was why her plan failed. However, the protagonist states that she clearly understood that Adilah could not pull off the bomb blast because she was not someone so evil.

Later on in the episode, Adilah takes Imogen to a local club in Paris, where she also secretly meets with Emir. In the previous episode, Adilah had received a text message, now understood to be from Emir, in which she was told to bring Imogen to a specific spot so that the MI6 agent could be dealt with, and the club is obviously this determined spot. However, Adilah now begs Emir to not hurt Imogen, which the man obviously does not pay heed to, and the two women are soon attacked by a number of gunned men. Although Imogen is clearly their target, Adilah helps her friend escape the attack because she, too, is playing her own game with the MI6 agent. Just like Imogen is trying to extract information from Adilah by posing to be her friend, Adilah too is determined that she can get close enough to Imogen and find important information that would be useful for ISIS. Thus, she saves Imogen from the attacks in order to build trust and confidence, and Adilah might soon have to protect her friend once again. The end of The Veil episode 4 shows Adilah receiving a message asking her to meet someone at the stairwell of the building at a designated time, and it seems like the house itself will be attacked, with the intention of killing Imogen Salter.

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Sourya Sur Roy
Sourya Sur Roy
Sourya keeps an avid interest in all sorts of films, history, sports, videogames and everything related to New Media. Holding a Master of Arts degree in Film Studies, he is currently working as a teacher of Film Studies at a private school and also remotely as a Research Assistant and Translator on a postdoctoral project at UdK Berlin.

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