THE GIRL ON THE RUN
Quantico began with the worst terrorist attack on the United States since 9/11. New York City's iconic Grand Central station was blown to steaming rubble, and top of the most wanted list was a certain Alex Parrish - brilliant, beautiful, smart, and fresh out of the FBI training facility at Quantico. If you think she doesn't sound like the most obvious of terrorist candidates, you'd be right. The reason she took pride of place as suspect number one is that someone had carefully put her there.
On the run from her fellow Feds, Alex had to desperately investigate the attack while dodging the full might of the US intelligence network. Plus, she'd been implicated in shooting and almost killing a man who'd been a Quantico trainee alongside her: Ryan Booth. Except he hadn't really been a trainee at all. Here's where the twists and turns start coming, so brace yourself.
THE (UN)USUAL SUSPECTS
Ryan Booth was actually a full, proper, bona fide FBI agent who'd merely been posing as a trainee. He had been under secret orders from one of the instructors, Liam O'Connor, to keep tabs on Alex Parrish during her training at Quantico, for distinctly strange and mysterious reasons. The assignment got just a tad complicated when he slept with Alex about five minutes after meeting her (if you can refer to a casual bonk in a car as "sleeping together").
These flashback scenes, set long before the Grand Central bombing, introduced us to a motley group of trainees and instructors at Quantico, and it was apparent that at least one of them was the real mastermind behind the attack. They all clearly had their secrets, from Shelby Wyatt - a golden girl with a tragic family history - to Simon Asher, who was a disillusioned veteran of the Israeli Defence Force, and had lied about being gay to get recruited by the FBI.
MORE BOMBINGS, MORE PROBLEMS
Not to be left out, Alex herself had a dark secret. As a child, during a family row, she'd gunned down her own father, and later realised he'd secretly been an FBI operative. This revelation, and the guilt of killing her dad, had led her to join the Bureau herself. Not that she had much time to resolve family issues, what with having to a) graduate and b) trying to prove she wasn't behind the New York attack.
The real mastermind was keeping busy too, detoning more explosives and killing droves of FBI agents. Alex herself became a sort-of-pawn of the terrorist, carrying out tasks for the bad guy/gal while trying to unmask him/her all the while.
IT WAS [NAME REDACTED] ALL ALONG!
And so, after much mayhem and confusion and mistrust, the truth was eventually revealed. Who was the big bad behind the lethal bombings? None other than Liam O'Connor, the bigwig at Quantico who'd been a mentor to so many. Confronted by Alex and Ryan, he 'fessed up in true supervillain style, explaining that he'd actually been motivated by a sense of gross injustice.
Basically, Liam had been sickened by what he regarded as corruption within the FBI, and the botched operations which had claimed the lives of innocent people over the years. His solution? To destroy the reputation of the FBI and force it to be rebuilt it from the ground up. And why did he so meticulously frame Alex? Turns out Liam had been close buddies with Alex's FBI agent father, and felt it was high time Alex paid penance for killing him as a kid. Yeah, Liam's all about justice.
A NEW BEGINNING?
After ranting and raving for a good while, Liam was finally put out of his misery courtesy of a bullet from Alex. Trouble was, there was one loose end left: a nuclear bomb which Liam had intended as his grand finale. There wasn't a dry eye in the house as Alex's pal Simon Asher drove the bomb into a body of water to stifle the eruption and prevent nuclear fallout, sacrificing his own life in the process.
As for Alex? She was canned from the FBI for her efforts. But not everyone in the corridors of power shared their ingratitude, and we last saw her pondering a new job offer... from the CIA. Will she take it? And will she ever be able to expose Vice President Claire Haas of having colluded with Liam to further her own political career? The next season is going to be very, very interesting...