'SEAL Team' Season 5 Episode 1 Review: Bravo tries to avert WWIII in gripping opener

Season 5 establishes early on that priorities have changed for Bravo over the last few months

                            'SEAL Team' Season 5 Episode 1 Review: Bravo tries to avert WWIII in gripping opener
Bravo team head to North Korea in 'SEAL Team' Season 5 opener (CBS)

Spoilers for 'SEAL Team' Season 5 Episode 1 'Trust, But Verify: Part 1'

It isn't 'SEAL Team' if it doesn't grip at frequent intervals. The mission begins late, but the Season 5 opener's first 30 minutes is spent giving a brief look at the characters recovering from the traumatic events of Season 4. There's also enough backstory to provide a quick recap and then moves swiftly to the present. It's a predictable start when Bravo intend to use their downtime with family, build relationships, get some R and R and a barbeque going, only to get an early callback to head to North Korea to extract a defector Kwan Jon-Wi (MJ Kang) and Jin (Keong SIM).

The mission though doesn't exactly see a Bravo that was what it was once. Ray's (Neil Brown Jr) PTSD makes him a concern to the team, and then the still depleted energy reserves don't help. The episode ends with part II coming up as trouble hits them hard and fast. 'Trust, But Verify: Part 1' is not so much about the mission, but the slightly fractured relationships within the team, and Jason Hayes (David Boreanaz), in particular.


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A still from 'SEAL Team' Season 5 (CBS)

Hayes' headaches that became a discussion point in Season 4 are clearly more than just a classic case of migraine. Clay (Max Thieriot) after being happily married to Stella, will have to navigate his marriage. Ray's PTSD forms a key storyline of a man suffering, but still willing to suit up. The move will surely have consequences, and only time will tell the impact it will have on the team.

Season 5 establishes early on that this was a unit whose priorities have changed over the last few months. Sonny's father's time is cut short, and the disappointment shows the new direction he's heading in. That said, 'Seal Team' starts off on a crisp, suspenseful, and promising note. The episode switches to action mode pretty seamlessly and there are no clunky lines. The Dennis Rodman reference shows a marked improvement. Safe to say, it is witty writing at its best.

The ladies occupy just enough screentime to make their presence felt, and there's no doubt we'll be seeing more of them in the episodes to come. But for now, let's hope Bravo can pull this one off before it goes south real quick.

'SEAL Team' Season 5 airs Sunday nights at 10 pm ET on CBS.