Episodes: 10 (hour).
TV show dates: February 28, 2018 — April 18, 2018.
Series status: Ended.
Performers include: Jeff Daniels, Tahar Rahim, Wrenn Schmidt, Bill Camp, Louis Cancelmi, Virginia Kull, Ella Rae Peck, Sullivan Jones, Michael Stuhlbarg, Kelly P. Williams, Erica Cho, Katie Flahive, Jennie Paul, Samer Bisharat, Jamie Neumann, Tawfeek Barholm, Ali Suliman, Ibrahim Renno, and Peter Sarsgaard.
TV show description:
A counter-terrorism drama, based on the Lawrence Wright book, The Looming Tower TV show explores the rise of Osama Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda, beginning in the late 1990s. It also delves into the issue of whether the tug-of-war between the FBI and CIA could have accidentally helped set the stage for the tragedy of September 11, 2001 (i.e. 9/11).
The FBI’s New York-based I-49 Squad and the CIA’s Alec Station in Washington, DC are those agencies’ counter-terrorism divisions. As they engage in a global search for intel that is meant to keep the USA safe from terrorist attacks, they struggle over ownership of that information.
Chief of the I-49, John O’Neill (Daniels) is a man of large appetites and dogged determination. Although he is certain Al-Qaeda is targeting the US, he and his Muslim-American protégé, Ali Soufan (Rahim), are frustrated by the lack of cooperation from other government agencies.
Fluent in Arabic, Ali is outraged by the way enemies of the United States pervert Islam. Whether or not he’s working undercover, Ali is ready to pull out all the stops, in order to prevent an attack on US soil. A dedicated agent, he will use every tool in his arsenal, to hunt Al Qaeda.
Martin Schmidt (Sarsgaard), O’Neill’s CIA counterpart, is smart, and no one is more convinced of that than the man, himself. His own protégé at Alec Station, Diane Marsh (Schmidt), is with him, as he disobeys orders from the President and keeps information from the FBI. At his core, Schmidt believes only the CIA can truly protect the nation from foreign threats.
After the bombings of the Nairobi Embassy, Dar es Salaam Embassy, and the U.S.S. Cole, the FBI dispatches O’Neill and Soufan to investigate terrorists in Europe and North Africa, as well as in the Middle East. Back in DC, though, Schmidt and Marsh discover that the Al-Qaeda members the FBI is trying to track have entered the US.
As Marsh rises through the ranks at Alec Station, she helps Schmidt keep that information under wraps. Meanwhile, thanks to his keen understanding of Islam and facility with Arabic, Soufan moves ahead at the Bureau, as he connects with both suspects and foreign intelligence operatives.
As the personal and professional lives of these CIA and FBI agents reach a crescendo, Al-Qaeda operatives set to work in the US, to bring their evil plans to fruition.
Episode #10 — 9/11
It’s September 11, 2001 and no one can get a hold of O’Neill. Soufan’s evacuation from Yemen stops short as the CIA Station Chief gives him all the answers he has been asking from the CIA for months. Schmidt is reinstated into Alec Station. Soufan finally interrogates Abu Jandal.
First aired: April 18, 2018.
What do you think? Do you like The Looming Tower TV series? Should this TV show have been renewed for a second season on Hulu?