Hunted closes the show out on a high note as two of the three teams that made the finale won the money! It was pulse pounding all of the way until the finish and was a great way to wrap up its first season. Before I get into the recap so rules for the finale that they went over. Each team must retrieve escape details for a secured website. These include where to pick up the money and where their escape plane is going to be. They then must pick up the money get to the escape plane on foot. As for the command center side of things, once the team logs into the website the hunters will know where they logged in from. The only information they get besides this is that the teams escape locations are within 100 miles of Atlanta. With all of that in mind let’s break down the finale!
Aarif and Immad
First we have to dig in to the only team from the finale that did get caught. After pinpointing the call from the student who drove them to the Atlanta area, Aman, to business owner Sam Huff, command center is digging into Sam’s background. While this is happening Sam is giving Aarif and Immad a ride to a farm owned by another one of Meadow’s friends. After digging for information about Sam command center is able to plot Sam’s location through cell phone towers. They find out he has been sitting at one location for a while and send teams there. Three teams are sent there to get the fugitives because its a huge compound. One car, driven by team Charlie, will block an exit while the other teams, India and Golf, move in to search the area. When the hunters get there they find the main road blocked by a gate. The teams jump the fence and start looking. Aarif and Immad see the teams hopping the fence and start running. While searching the area one hunter from team India finds the fugitive’s backpack stuff stashed away in what looks like a play house. While all of this is happening Aarif and Immad stay hidden for a while in one of the many buildings on the compound. Eventually they keep moving to try and confuse the hunters into thinking they are not there. The hunters are getting very frustrated because they feel like they have searched the whole compound and found nothing. At one point team Golf walks right past them awhile they are laying in a pile of mulch. While double checking though team India finds them. They capture Aarif and then Immad tries to run and trips and gets caught as well. They came so close, but just failed to consider some of the cell phone usage and that was their down fall.
Stephen and English
Following up on last week’s plan, command center has put out wanted posters and are following up on leads to do with the old college network of English. They call English’s friend Meredith and try to get information from her. Meredith did tells Griff and Buck of team Alpha about getting a phone call from English needing help. Griff then asks if she knows anything about their whereabouts and she tells him she can’t give up that information. Griff then offers her money, $500, and she gives up Rachel Stapleton who took English and Stephen to her brother, Tommy’s, house. At Tommy’s house English and Stephen leave a note and leave the house. They walk along the street looking for a ride. Meanwhile hunters interview Tommy and he tells them that English and Stephen have no electronics on them and are hitchhiking. While walking English and Stephen find a guy who will give them a ride in his truck. He gives them a ride to his business where they log in to find out their escape information.
The business owner, Buck, agrees to give them a ride for a good part of the distance to their escape location. Meanwhile at the command center they find out the location of where Stephen and English logged in. They tag Buck’s mobile number in order to find out what general area they are heading towards. In the car, English and Stephen are arguing about calling Amber, English’s sister, through the Buck’s phone. Stephen is not sure its a good idea because he feels the hunters will find out about it. English calls Amber anyways and asks her to pick them up and bring them to Blue Ridge, Georgia which is their escape location. As Stephen predicted the command center gets a notification about the call because they tagged Buck’s phone. They get a geolocation on the phone Buck’s phone was calling and realize that they were calling Amber. The command center now knows Amber is the one they contacted and that she will be helping them.
On day 27 they are about 120 miles away and looking for a place to stay. They walk up to a stranger’s house and ask to pitch a tent in their backyard. The guy says they can and offers them pizza. When talking their predicament over with the homeowner and their neighbors they decide to use Amber as decoy. The people say they have an extra car and will allow them to use the car while they meet up with Amber for Stephen and English as the decoys. The next day they stop at a funeral home and call Amber to pick them up while very explicitly stating a location and time frame. Command center picks up on the call and gets the recording where they get the location, time frame and what Amer will be driving. They send teams Alpha and Charlie to the funeral home to catch them. When they arrive Griff thinks he has the fugitives in a white Volvo that is parked there. They see Amber’s car and pull in to capture the fugitives only to find the decoy people. Team Charlie interviews Amber and find out it was a decoy. The strangers are interviewed as well and won’t give up any information.
Its now day 28 and Stephen and English arrive to the bank to get their money. They immediately start to run to their plane location. Meanwhile the command center get the bank notification on Stephen and English. Earlier while trying to figure out which airports the fugitives might be going toward operations supervisor Andy Stumpf had come up with the idea that at least one of the teams might be using a sea plane. He actually pinpoints Blue Ridge, where English and Stephen are, as one possible location. When they ge the bank hit in Blue Ridge they are sure that they are escaping in a sea plane and try to figure out where it might be. During all of this Stephen and English are running and looking around in paranoia. While they continue to try and get more details at command center they send team Bravo and team India to go after them at a marina in the town. On their end command center is trying to get a hold of the pilot of the plane. They get the tail number of the plane by calling the marina and call the pilot. His phone goes straight to voice mail though and they are frustrated once again. Meanwhile, English and Stephen are running up the dock to the plane. They get to the plane and get in, but in a momentary scare the plane is getting ready for take off and won’t start. It finally gets going and starts its take off. It takes off leaving the two hunter teams behind. The one team I have been counting out all season has won their money!
Lee and Hilmar
It’s day 25 for Lee and Hilmar and they are preparing for the home stretch. They go to a local gas station with Hilmar’s friend Topher to fill up before the final leg. The next day they log in from Topher’s place and head out in their car. After the log in, command center gets the notification and they look into Topher. They send team India to investigate Topher’s house and interview him in case they can get any information from him. During the interview Topher tells them about going to get gas at the BP station as well as what he thinks is a vague description of the car, but is still helpful. Command center decides to look at CCTV to try and find the car and get its plates. They end up getting plates on Lee and Hilmar’s car and place a tag on the license plate to get information from license plate readers. They get some information and send team Alpha towards their general direction. In the meantime, Lee and Hilmar decide to sleep in the car for the night after pulling off the highway. The next day Lee and Hilmar are in Blairsville, Georgia to go to their bank. They go in and get the money. The bank security footage then catches them bursting out the front door and starting their sprint toward their airport. After the withdrawal command center gets the bank hit on Lee and Hilmar. Due to their location they deduce the fugitives are headed toward the Blairsville Airport and send team Alpha there. They are about two miles into their three mile run and Lee is dragging. He has to sit down for a moment after ditching his suit jacket he had been wearing. After a short rest Hilmar encourages Lee to keep pushing and they begin their final sprint.They arrive and their plane and it is already running, just waiting for them. Their plane takes off shortly after they board as team Alpha arrives and videos them taking off. They have also won and celebrate by throwing the money around the cabin of the plane!
A few thoughts about this finale. One I think some of the final stretch rules are a bit unfair. The secure log in website really should not notify the command center. I feel like it gives them an unfair advantage. Also making the teams run from the bank to their final destination is a bit much. The show really tries to make sure the escapes are as close as possible. It was interesting to me to see how dejected some of the command center people looked when the final two teams got away. Its almost as if they took it as a slight that these people were able to best them. It just goes to show that these people are competitive too and will do anything to win their side of the game.
I was real happy that one of my season long predictions of Lee and Hilmar winning came true. I thought they did a great job and they were super entertaining as well. Every show needs at least a pseudo villain and that’s what these guys were with their cockiness. It proved to be valid cockiness though. Another prediction I got right was that Aarif and Immad would be captured right before the end. I am kind of sad I got that one right though as I really liked this team and would have liked to see them go all the way. It was also super impressive that they did the whole thing while fasting for Ramadan. They had an extra hurdle that no one else did and handled it well. As for English and Stephen, what can I say, I was wrong. Her over preparedness and paranoia really paid off and they were able to make it. From a production perspective though it is kind of weird that they introduced a winning team half way through the season. We did not get much of their “story” and that leaves their win kind of unfulfilling. Maybe they just did super boring things to win so there was not much to show, but it just felt weird. I feel like we needed more to make their win satisfying.
Overall I was super excited by this show and really hope it gets a second season. It is really entertaining and kept me coming back week after week. I just hope it gets the ratings and enough people are talking about it for CBS to give it another chance because I would love to see another location as well as the new strategies people would bring after seeing this season. I will keep my fingers crossed and hope for the best. Let me know what you thought of this season of Hunted and comment down below! Also get pumped as Survivor returns next week!