EW Community TV Show Episode Guides and Recaps from EW's Community

Image Credit: ABC

'Alias' nostalgia react: 3 theories about Sydney's role in Rambaldi's 'Prophecy'

Season 1 | Episode 16 | “The Prophecy” | Aired March 10, 2002

When we last left our heroine, she had just discovered that the blank page she recovered for the CIA contained a very creepy, disappearing-ink portrait—of a woman who looks just like Sydney Bristow. The oh-so-creepy catch? The drawing is something like 500 years old.

In “The Prophecy,” Sydney undergoes a series of tests (mental and physical) to determine if she fits the rest of the prophecy about the woman. Surprise, surprise: She fits the bill. The prophecy says that the woman in the picture will “render the greatest power unto utter desolation,” so the secret paranormal studies department of the United States government takes Sydney into custody, STAT.

Alias Sydney Rambaldi


Since it looks like I’ll have to wait until at least next week (but probably a while longer) to find out what kind of destruction Sydney might pull off, I’m left to imagination and guesswork for now. Here are my three top theories about how Syd might play into the Rambaldi prophecy:

1. She doesn’t! Since this is Alias, I have to start by assuming that I’m being lied to. Yes, everyone is saying that Sydney fits the prophecy, but does she really? This could all be a hoax or a plot to get her out of the field. Of course, if the CIA/X-Files-y department keeps her in custody for too long, it will blow her cover with SD-6 and, as she pointed out herself, probably her father’s too. Is that all part of the plan? Does Jack want Sydney out? Does Vaughn? Does Sloane? This could go a lot of ways.

2. It’s a Harry Potter/Neville Longbottom situation. For those of you who are not giant nerds, let me explain. In the Harry Potter series, Harry finds himself the subject of a prophecy as well. We later learn that two babies actually fit the prophecy: Harry Potter and Neville Longbottom. By assuming that it referred to Harry and going after him, Voldemort made Harry the subject—when really, it could have gone either way. I think this could be really relevant to the world of Alias. Maybe Sydney does look like the Rambaldi girl and maybe she does have all of the genetic quirks he described .. but she (and the rest of mankind) would have been just fine (thankyouverymuch) if the government hadn’t swooped in and reacted to her as Prophecy Girl.

Now that the government has done that, maybe it’s set off a chain of events that technically places Sydney at the heart of rendering great power for utter destruction (for instance, she might be forced into drastic measures whilst trying to escape the government). But that wouldn’t have even happened if she’d just been left alone.

3. Rambaldi was a bad guy; even though Sydney will destroy things, they will all be bad things. What if Rambaldi was on the wrong side of this fight? What if the thing on the receiving end of Sydney’s “utter destruction” is something we should all want “utterly destroyed,” like kale or the complete Nickelback discography?

Knowing Alias, the real answer is probably something so insane, I won’t have even seen it coming.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

You May Like