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Jesse L Martin Exposes a Twisted Kidnapping Scam on The Irrational — and Scores a Hot Date

Alec Mercer has been pining for his ex-wife Marisa on The Irrational, but a new love interest catches his eye during a complicated kidnapping case. 

By Jill Sederstrom

It’s no secret that Alec Mercer has been hoping for a reconciliation on The Irrational with his ex-wife, the FBI investigator extraordinaire Marisa Clark (Maahra Hill) — but a new woman may have captured the behavioral scientist’s eye in the latest episode. 

How to Watch

Watch The Irrational on NBC and Peacock

Alec, portrayed by Jesse L. Martin, crosses paths in Episode 4 with Rose Dinshaw (Karen David) an “expert on corporate security and crisis management” when she’s called in to help with a complex kidnapping case. 

There are definite sparks between the pair (something Marisa doesn’t seem all that happy about) as Alec and Rose join forces to track down the surprising culprit.

Who is kidnapped on Season 1, Episode 4 of The Irrational?

There’s obvious tension between Marisa, who is also working the case, and Rose from the moment the two women cross paths at the home of Tara and Keith Moore. 

The Moores' daughter Veronica (Rhinnan Payne), an aspiring artist about to start college, has been kidnapped by someone demanding $2.7 million for her safe return. The figure is way beyond the capability of the Moores, but they do have a connection to a man with deep pockets. 

Rose Alec Marisa on The Irrational episode 104

Tara once worked for paper tycoon Theodore "Ted" Edmund Akehurst Jr. (Vincent Gale) and also had a lengthy affair with the businessman. Because of Tara’s job, Veronica had virtually grown up at Ted’s home alongside his own son Theodore “Trey” Edmund Akehurst III (Ben Cockell).

RELATED: Jesse L. Martin Teases the Unfinished Love Story at the Heart of The Irrational

With Veronica in trouble, Ted was all too eager to jump in and help the close family friend, bringing along Rose to try to track down the kidnapper. 

From the beginning, Rose and Marisa were at odds. Rose told Keith (Jerod Haynes) she believed the anguished father should “minimize FBI involvement” and just “let my firm handle it.” 

Marisa acknowledged Rose may have more experience with corporate kidnapping cases overseas, but she argued that she was the more experienced investigator when it came to domestic kidnappings. 

The Moores decide to move forward with both investigators, but when they get a tip that Veronica was last seen getting into the car of her ex-boyfriend Corey Gibson (Alec Carlos), a known drug dealer, it's Alec and Rose who pretend to be a couple looking to score some drugs to get closer to Corey.

“You’re rather impressive,” Rose admitted to Alec as the pair waited alongside the side of the road. “The way you sniffed out the affair, how you helped get to Corey as a suspect.”

“Like how I know what you’re doing?” Alec replied. “You and Agent Clark are in conflict over this case. You want me to be your ally so you’re buttering me up.” 

“Or I’m just flirting with you,” Rose playfully shot back. 

What is Rose’s background on The Irrational

Meanwhile, Marisa and her new love interest and fellow FBI agent Jace (Brian King) stood nearby in the woods, watching through binoculars. Jace was quick to call Marisa out on her bad mood. Although she initially tried to play it off by blaming her hatred of nature, Marisa ultimately admitted it was Rose who had rubbed her the wrong way. 

 “I am not a fan of corporate fixers like Rose. They are almost always former bureau or police who couldn’t hack it or decided to cash out, or both,” she fumed. 

Rose and Alec on The Irrational episode 104

But Jace suggested there may be more to Rose than meets the eye, revealing he believed it’s possible she was a former spy with MI-6.

Who is the kidnapper on Season 1, Episode 4 of The Irrational

Alec and Rose got cozy as they waited for Corey to play the part of a loving couple, but the drug deal didn't go as planned. When Corey spotted the FBI with a drone, he took off, leading Alec and Rose on a high-speed chase. Using his behavioral science skills once again, Alec was able to predict Corey’s next move and they cut him off before he could get away, no doubt impressing Rose even further with his powers of deduction.

While Corey doesn’t end up being the kidnapper, he did have some telling information about the crime. He said shortly before Veronica disappeared, she had asked him for $200,000 to pay for tuition at a prestigious private art college. He refused to give her the money and she texted someone else for a ride home.

The revelation caused Rose to wonder whether Veronica had been behind kidnapping herself to “fleece” the wealthy Ted. Rose turned to Alec for his opinion and a chance for some more playful banter.

“I defer to your expertise,” she said. 

“I told you, you don’t need to flirt with me. I’m on your side,” Alec told her. 

“Ever consider that you’re a handsome and intelligent man and that my flirting has nothing to do with the case?” Rose asked. 

“You only think I’m handsome because you’re standing on my good side,” Alec said, referring to the scarring to his face that he got from a church bombing decades earlier

The scars didn’t seem to bother Rose, however, who told him she thought they added “character.” 

The case finally got the break it needed, with the help of Alec’s computer whiz sister Kylie (Travina Springer). Using her research skills, Alec discovered there was someone with an even bigger financial motive to pull off the crime. 

Ted’s own son Trey needed $2.5 million to funnel into his fledgling start up, but his wealthy father had refused to foot the bill. Yet, he had always been willing to financially support Veronica, who he thought of like a daughter. 

Alec believed Trey initially thought Veronica would agree to the kidnapping plan and decided on the $2.7 million figure, giving them enough to fund his business effort and her tuition, but when she refused to go along with the plan, he kidnapped her himself and decided to stick with the same ransom amount. 

What is zero-sum bias?

To explain Trey’s actions, Alec turned to the “zero sum bias” effect, which is the erroneous belief that non-material resources like love and respect are finite. 

“Now for families, zero sum bias can make children believe that their parents' love is a limited resource and the more one child gets, the less there is for anyone else,” Alec explained. “In Trey’s eyes Veronica stole his father’s love.” 

The team rushed to an abandoned warehouse that Trey had once looked at purchasing for his company, but Ted had beat them there. When he confronted his son, Trey shot his father. Just moments later, Alec, Rose, and Marisa rushed in. 

Alec once again put his impressive psychology skills to use to talk Trey into giving himself up and getting his father the medical help he needed. Veronica was also freed and had an emotional reunion with her parents.

What happened with Alec and Rose on The Irrational

While the case may have been over, it looked like things were just starting to heat up between Alec and Rose. 

“I’m no expert, but that looks like a win-win-win,” Rose told Alec. “You should let me buy you dinner to celebrate. I’ll expense it to Ted.”

“You want to learn more about zero sum bias?” Alec joked. 

“Among other things,” Rose coyly responded. 

It’s too early to say just where the new romance will go from here or what that means for fans of Alec and Marissa. While Alec and Marisa definitely have the history together — they were married for years and still find reasons to work together — Marisa has made it clear she’s moving on with her life and is now dating Jace. 

As for Alec and Rose, it could just be the new beginning Alec needs.