Due to the Franco-Prussian War, France decides to transfer a newly discovered radioactive substance to the United States for safekeeping. West and Gordon - along with Lt. Renard of the Sūreté - are assigned to provide security and, when the material is stolen anyway, to recover it. Their only clue is a set of fingerprints found on the ankle of a pretty secretary.
Tropes present in this episode:
- Absent-Minded Professor: One scientist keeps insisting that he's met Artie before, despite Artie's assurances to the contrary. In the end Artie just gives up and goes along with it.Scientist: "You did a fascinating paper on the libration of the moon. How can you be so absent-minded?"
Artie: (throwing up his hands) "All right! The libration of the moon!"
- Artificial Limbs: Renard has one. This becomes a minor plot point.
- Bulletproof Vest: Jim wears one as a safety measure when he and Artie engineer Amelie's escape. Fortunately, as Artie points out, she aimed for the chest when she shot him (five times!) and not for the head.
- Chemistry Can Do Anything: This is the first appearance of Artie's "chemical leech," a compound which won't stick to your skin or clothes but can, upon being applied with moderate pressure to any surface, support a man's weight for ten seconds. How? Uh... chemistry!
- Magic Countdown: This episode features a time bomb with a countdown timer which has approximately fifteen divisions on its face. The divisions are unmarked in an effort to hide the use of this trope, but the indicating hand takes around three seconds to cover a division and yet the bomb doesn't go off until over two minutes have passed.
- Sickly Green Glow: Anything exposed to the newly discovered substance (and presumably the substance itself) glows with an eerie light.
- Trick-and-Follow Ploy: The agents allow a prisoner to escape in the hope that she will lead them to her employer.
- Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: Cluny encourages Iron Foot to do this instead of giving in to Jim's suggestion that they fight it out. It's unlikely Iron Foot would have wound up plunging into a lye bath and getting killed if he'd just shot Jim like she suggested.