White Collar – Season 1 – Episode 8 – Hard Sell
Peter recommends Neal to infiltrate a boiler room scam. He is working to get a guy named Brad. Brad is a huge misogynist. Neal has to do an “interview” where he has to make a sale. The FBI reroutes the call to Peter. There is also a really gross moment where Brad says he has dibs on Madison, the FBI mole. When Neal asks if Madison knows that, he says, “Since when does that matter.” Neal’s look of disgust is how someone should react to that statement.
Neal has the best sales on his first day, and Neal gets asked to meet “the man behind the curtain”. Neal calls Peter to go look into Avery Phillips. Neal suggests working at Peter’s house and looks at a photo on the wall where he sees that Peter has the same FBI ring as the man in the photo. (But wouldn’t all agents have the same ring?)
Peter is then set up to go undercover as the CEO of the fake company that the boiler room scam has invested in. Peter gets invited to a private party at Avery’s house, where Avery shows him a room where all the air gets sucked out if someone steals from it.
Neal and Peter have a really tense moment while shooting clay pigeons. Right after they realize the FBI agent, Madison, has been made. They have another tense moment as Peter tells Neal to back his play and Neal refuses, saying he saw Peter’s ring and knows he has Kate. Peter brushes it off a little and tells everyone that Neal is the mole.
Neal tells Avery that he works for Reed, Avery’s partner, who already knows that Avery is planning to flip on him. Avery tells Neal to tell Reed that they’re going to dump the stock next Friday, while the real dump is this Friday. He plans to cut Reed out. Neal finds out that Avery has a paper ledger. Peter remembers the security room Avery showed him and figures that has to be where Avery keeps the paper ledger. At the party to celebrate, Neal goes into the security room to find the ledger, but Avery and Reed realize they’ve both been played. Avery grabs a gun but Peter gets there first. Before Avery can shoot him, Neal sets off the alarm to drop the bulletproof glass in the room, trapping him and Peter as the air is getting sucked out of the room. Neal tells Peter to use the air, while Peter wants to share it. Neal insists Peter do it because 5 minutes for 1 person gives more time to find the kill switch. Neal tells Peter he trusts him. They find it and Peter has his gun and is able to hit the kill switch right as the FBI backup get there. Neal regains consciousness.
Peter explains to Neal that the ring is a 10-year anniversary FBI ring. Work for the FBI for 10 years and you get one.
After everything has gone down, Peter tells Neal about Kate. He says that Neal calls him “the man with the ring” and Neal doesn’t know how Peter would know that. Not for nothing, but it seems the most obvious guess as literally the only thing they knew about him was he was a man with a ring. Anyway, so Peter tells Neal what happened, and we learn that Kate is kind of horrible. She showed up to meet Peter and Peter told her to leave Neal alone, “because he’s my friend” and Peter is tired of watching Kate play with Neal’s emotions. She tells Peter that Fowler wants a music box that Neal stole as her price to disappear and leave Neal alone. When Peter asks her if she ever loved Neal, she doesn’t answer.
Neal still defends Kate, saying Fowler is controlling her. Peter disagrees and tells Neal she had no concern for him. Neal tells Peter that the music box isn’t worth all this so they figure it has some kind of secret.
In the last scene, Neal tells Mozzie that he doesn’t actually have the music box. People just assumed he had it and he never corrected them. They now must figure out a plan to steal the music box.
The Neal/Peter Relationship:
This episode sees the relationship between Neal and Peter really strained as Neal suspects Peter of being the one to have Kate, and Peter hides the fact that he met with Kate. It gets pretty tense, but comes back around at the end as Neal decides to trust Peter and Peter decides to tell Neal everything he knows about Kate.
“Just because I don’t like guns doesn’t mean I can’t use one.” – Neal
“Just so I’m clear, if anything goes wrong, I suffocate.” – Neal
“That was a long five minutes.” – Neal
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