Episode Two

Strike Back: Origins

S1 E2 Episode Two

Episode Two

John Porter returns to the site of the 2003 hostage extraction in Basra. He takes a hostage and uses Hakim Al Nazeri's man to lead him to where the kidnapped journalist Katie Dartmouth is being held. Porter is taken captive alongside Katie, and he assures her throughout interrogation and torture that the Special Air Service will rescue her. The would-be suicide bomber, As'ad, recognizes Porter and ignores his attempts to connect.

Al Nazeri promises he will execute both hostages the next morning, and Porter plots an escape plan. As dawn breaks, the terrorists remove Katie from the cell. Porter breaks out and storms the room where the execution is about to begin. He struggles with Al Nazeri while As'ad nervously points a gun at him. But bound by the debt of honor he made as a young boy, As'ad can't bring himself to pull the trigger. Porter grabs the gun from As'ad and turns it on him. The boy swears he did not kill Porter's friends. Katie trusts As'ad's story and pleads for his life. Porter spares As'ad, who then helps them all escape as Sword of Islam reinforcements arrive. Making contact with Section 20 operative Layla Thompson, Porter arranges for them to be rescued, but Hugh Collinson refuses to give Layla permission to extract As'ad as well.

Back safely in the UK, Katie tells Porter that As'ad said it was a British soldier who killed his friends in 2003. Porter suspects the truth is that Hugh Collinson murdered the men.