'The Hot Zone: Anthrax': Matthew Ryker races to stop anthrax attacks post 9/11

With an increasing number of anthrax poisoning cases claiming lives, it's up to Special Agent Matthew Ryker to find the cause and end it

                            'The Hot Zone: Anthrax': Matthew Ryker races to stop anthrax attacks post 9/11
Daniel Dae Kim stars as FBI Agent Matthew Ryker in 'The Hot Zone: Anthrax' (National Geographic)

For all you fans of 'The Hot Zone', the anthology series is back with Season 2 as it chronicles a different threat. 'The Hot Zone: Anthrax' takes place after the events of 9/11, where a team of experts tracking down the killer and mailer of the anthrax letters. Believed to be a form of biological warfare, it is up to them to end this potential terrorist attack before it is too late.

The synopsis for Episode 1, titled 'Noble Eagle' reads: "After an anthrax attack on US soil, Special Agent Matthew Ryker begins his investigation." If you're looking for other series such as this one, you might want to consider 'Seal Team' and 'Yellowstone'. You can also catch up on episodes of Season 1 on 'The Hot Zone' which follows the 1989 Ebola scare.


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For Special Agent Matthew Ryker, the three months following the 9/11 attacks have been one of pure turmoil as he is unable to shake off the fact that there was plenty of evidence pointing towards the attack, yet the FBI failed to stop it. Early on in the episode, it is revealed that Russians had been producing anthrax, with 300 pounds of the chemical being found in one warehouse alone. 

However, the informant, who presents this information while seeking alliance, mentions one crucial point -- Russia might not be the threat that the USA needs to look out for. For Russia, an enemy's enemy is a friend and he explains that they have been selling to buyers. Following these events, Ryker believes that activity in Florida should be closely monitored, seeing that two of the Al Qaeda hijackers were in Florida. 


When a man named Bobby Steven, a photo editor for American Media Inc lands in the hospital, Ryker soon finds out that his worst fear has come true, Steven has anthrax poising. While hunting to find out just how he got it, Ryker makes a startling discovery -- American Media Inc, a publishing house, often receives a copious amount of mail. Stevens received mail that was laced with anthrax, causing him to be poisoned by the same.

The attacker hit American Media Inc again, with Ryker finding anthrax spores above a secretary's desk. While they seemed to be getting the situation under control, this isn't the only media house hit. A researcher at a new channel realizes that she too might be poisoned when she notices that she has a lesion similar to the one an Al Qaeda member who was handling anthrax had.

While Ryker's hunt continues, Bruce Ivins, a microbiologist working on the case, notices that his office might have been broken into and is starting to believe that he is being followed. The question is, will Ryker be able to solve this in time or will more lives be lost?

Catch 'The Hot Zone: Anthrax' on Sundays at 9/8c on National Geographic, and also streaming on Hulu.

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