'Absentia' Season 3: Julianne or Cal might be leaking intel to the criminals about Emily Byrne's mission
Spoilers ahead for 'Absentia' Season 3
'The world is a scary place and everyone learns to deal with it' is an emotion that Emily Byrne's (Stana Katic) father believes in and he says something along the same lines to Flynn while the two are hiding out in a cabin in the middle of nowhere. Cal Isaac (Matthew Le Nevez) has lived in this scary place. Not at the edges, navigating crooks and killers, but diving deep by serving as a Navy SEAL. He was deployed to a war zone in the middle east where he was one of the many hired guns for the country when he ended up shooting an innocent kid who unfortunately ran into him during an operation.
While Cal had tried to save the kid, the leader of the squad ordered for the boy and his mother to be killed because there shouldn't be witnesses to civilians being killed or wounded during the operation. This heartless world is where Cal lived in and so his view of the world is colored with the horrors of his past. "I locked that monster away", says Cal to Emily when for the first time during their relationship he opens up to her about his life. He tells her he couldn't return to life away from war and lead a normal life because of everything he had experienced in the middle east, but it is by realizing that everyone had a monster within them and by locking this monster away that he was able to continue to live his life.
At this moment, both Cal and Emily are vulnerable with each other, and yet; it is not possible to trust Cal completely. Cal seems to have his eye on the files that Emily had got from Kai and it is clear that he also arrived in Bulgaria hoping to get his hands on those files. To what end though? That is what would really answer if Cal is to be trusted or not. The fact that Nick and everyone else who was held in the remote facility in Jericho were cleared out in a hurry when Cal and Emily arrived to rescue Nick hints at the mole being someone with access to intel. Between Cal and Julianne (Natasha Little), Emily has bet her chances on Cal. After all, she did see special agent Julianne shoot Alice Durand (Cara Theobold) to death when such an extreme step was not necessary.
However, there comes a moment in Emily's chase when she begins to doubt Cal and that moment is heartbreaking. Here is a man she believed had her back over life-threatening situations but he ended up playing both sides by continuing to report to Julianne. What Emily is unaware of is that Cal is on an off-the-book mission approved by Julianne, yes, but has managed to keep any information about Emily to himself. This could be in his own interest, as he seems clearly interested in the files or it could be that he truly does care about Emily. However, in episode 7, when he is forced to step out of Emily's car at gunpoint, his hurt seems genuine. This back and forth continues until the very end of the season, and we even see Emily get captured by Jericho's men.
However, is it really either of them? Agent Crown's investigation into the mole with Agent Thompson's help leads him to believe that the informant within the FBI is none other than the Assistant Director of FBI -- Webb. Thompson is even killed while investigating the informant. Records show that Webb had received money and had also visited Bulgaria and Germany over the past three years connecting him further to Meridian. So Crown and Julianne decide to apprehend him but instead find him dead. At first sight, it seems as if he hung himself to death and Thompson's FBI binder at his place serves as further proof of Webb's crimes. However, something about this seems like a set-up and our hunch is proven right when Crown begins to read the situation the same way.
Crown believes that Webb was caught too easily on the take and this is not like the smart man that Webb was known to be. So Crown confesses to Emily that he has already got something in the works for the actual informant. Emily continues to doubt Julianne and the FBI special agent attempting to push Cal away from the investigation into Meridian and this only increases suspicions. The files that Kai had given to Nick and Emily also explains a lot about the bio virus that refugees who escaped from Jericho were injected with. Will Emily, Nick and Cal be able to untangle the mystery behind the workings of Meridian?
'Absentia' premieres on July 17 and all episodes can be streamed on Amazon Prime Video.