Brothers & Sisters picks up in the immediate aftermath of Cassie’s (Kaley Cuoco) relapse. She’s worried that Annie (Zosia Mamet) will judge her or be disappointed in her relapse, but Annie is nothing but supportive to Cassie. Their heart-to-heart is cut short by a knock at Cassie’s apartment door. Her CIA handler, Benjamin Berry (Mo McRae), is there looking to talk. At the same time, Cassie realizes she’s supposed to be flying to New York with her brother, Davey (T.R. Knight), to see their parents. Annie holds Benjamin off at the front door while Cassie sneaks out the back for LAX.
Megan (Rosie Perez) is also in New York and attempting to reconnect with her son, Eli (David Iacono). What should be a sweet moment is ruined by Megan’s realization that things have changed for her family in her absence. Eli had to quit the swim team to pick up more shifts at work, they lost the house, her husband, Bill (Terry Serpico) was fired, and they’re buried in legal fees. Eli calls his father so Bill can talk to Megan. Bill tearfully asks why she’s on the run and admits that he’s going to call the FBI.
Even though Cassie relapsed, she’s still planning to go through with the amends letter writing step of the AA program. Her father, also an alcoholic, has passed away, so Cassie reads the letter to his grave. It’s a tear-filled confrontation of her childhood as well as a promise to herself to not become the person her father was.
Back in LA, Annie and Max (Deniz Akdeniz) are combing through the laptop of the mysterious couple now known as the Diazes (Callie Hernandez and Joseph Julian Soria). The laptop is filled with multiple identities, appearances, and accounts of torture and kidnapping. As they’re snooping through the laptop, a woman in a blond wig sneaks her way into the apartment through the backdoor. She leaves a bloody weapon on a shelf in Cassie’s kitchen before disappearing without being noticed. This woman seems to be the person who is impersonating Cassie.
On the laptop, Max has discovered a trove of information about Cassie. They have information about Cassie’s trip to New York, the address of her mother’s house, and Davey. The Diazes have been sending all of this information to a Korean group. Max and Annie try to warn Cassie, but she sends the call to voicemail.
Davey has tricked Cassie into reconciling with her mother (Sharon Stone) on this trip as well. He promises that their mom won’t be home and that they need to get some boxes out of the house. However, it was Davey’s plan for Cassie and their mother to see each other again. There’s no hope in reconciling as their mother slaps Cassie and tells her that Cassie is becoming exactly like her dad.
Davey and Cassie begin to pack up boxes after their mother leaves. In one of the forgotten boxes in Cassie’s room, she finds old Viewmaster slides. It strikes her as odd because her mother mentioned a recent break-in, but nothing was taken.
Cassie’s thoughts are interrupting by Benjamin’s boss at the CIA, Dot (Cheryl Hines), who tells Cassie that she’s starting to believe Cassie’s side of the story from the Berlin bombing. Dot has some suspicions about Benjamin’s allegiance. She tells Cassie to be careful before abruptly ending the call.
This episode let Cassie take a break from the international espionage mystery that’s swirling around her. It’s a departure that was unexpected, but not unwelcome. The Flight Attendant has done an impressive job allowing Cassie’s struggle with sobriety to be told in a very nuanced way. She’s not suddenly sober with no urges and Cuoco has really shined in this season as a person who is trying so desperately to make changes for the better. Never once has the show fallen into cheap tropes or had Cassie’s sobriety be the butt of the joke.
Brothers & Sisters is a change of pace for The Flight Attendant. In a series that has leaned into absurdism and grand-scale drama, it’s somewhat jarring to have such a quiet episode about Cassie and Megan. How their actions have had consequences on the people in their lives. This decision adds a richness to the otherwise outlandish world of The Flight Attendant. Quite possibly Cuoco’s finest episode yet.