Tonight on FX their highly anticipated new vampire drama, THE STRAIN airs with its premiere episode called, “Night Zero.” On tonight’s show a plane filled with dead passengers spurs an investigation in the opener of this series, in which a vampiric virus spreads through New York City.
The new series is based on the novels from Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan, the horror story follows Dr. Ephraim Goodweather (Corey Stoll), an epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control, whose team is called in to investigate a mysterious “dead” plane that lands at JFK. Every passenger, save for four, have mysteriously died from an unknown virus that will soon turn them into vampires — cogs in the ultimate war in which vampires will take over the world. This vampire series won’t be a love story like Twilight these vampires will be fierce killing-machines.
On tonight’s premiere episode when a plane lands in New York City with everyone on board dead, Dr. Ephraim Goodweather, head of the CDC’s Canary Project, and his team are called upon to investigate. Harlem pawnbroker Abraham Setrakian races to the airport, convinced that what looks at first like a mysterious viral outbreak might be the beginning of something infinitely more sinister.
This new series looks like it going to be great and you won’t want to miss it. So be sure to tune in for our live coverage of FX’s The Stain season premiere— tonight at 10PM EST! While you wait for our recap check out the sneak peek video below of tonight’s episode!
Tonight’s episode begins now – Refresh Page for Updates
We hear a voice saying that hunger is the first lesson we learn but it’s easily satisfied. But there is another unquenchable hunger that can’t be tamped down. That force is love. It’s night zero. A plane is on its final descent into New York. A phone rings and the flight attendant gets it. The guy tells Rose to get back there now. She tells him to chill and heads to the back. She tells a pale skinned guy to turn off his radio and to put his seat up. He tells her he can get her seats to his gig but she tells him to do as she says. A girl asks if they’re landing in French and the Rose reassures her.
Rose heads to the back and asks Peter why he hasn’t done anything yet. He says there is something alive in the cargo hold. He’s freaking out and says it’s really big and he heard a thumping under the floor. He says he heard it and then ir moved. They kneel down and feel the floor. They are above the hatch into the cargo bay. She opens it and looks down inside.
The plane shudders a little and she shuts the door back. She tells Peter nothing is there but then there’s something beating against the door. She tells him to tell the captain to get emergency services. She says the door is going to give. It does and there’s a giant thing that comes out. The air traffic controllers try to get in touch with the flight. The plane isn’t responding.
He tells them there’s a flight out of Berlin that stopped on the apron and went dark. Bishop is told and he tells them to clear the gates. He’s told there are 210 on board. He goes out to the darkened plane. The other guy tells him to wait. They wonder why its’ all dark. They feel the plane and note that it’s cold like a dead animal. They hear sirens in the distance.
Bishop says there is something really wrong and says it’s like it never moved. The window shades are all shut. Bishop greets the police and the young guy points out one window shade that’s still up. He tells the guy to scramble emergency and says to get everyone. He says this is bad – they’ve got a dead airplane.
In Queens, a guy gets out of a car and puts a CDC placard on the window. He heads into a family counseling center and calls out to Zach. He tells him his dad is late and he says he’s on time. He heads into the office. His wife Kelly is there and Ephraim sits. The counselor says this is the last of the court appointed counseling sessions and he’s been late for all of them.
The counselor gets on him about taking over the sessions. He says he’s thought about it and they’ve created a narrative where he’s the bad guy because he doesn’t want out of his marriage. Kelly says it’s not about him anymore. His phone buzzes and he looks at but then doesn’t take it. He says if he takes time off, people die. Kelly says he’s great at his job.
The counselor starts writing things down and he wants to know what she’s writing. Kelly says he’s barely present. He tells her he moved out like she asked, quit drinking and has jumped through every hoop he wanted. She says Matt is moving in with her and Ephraim calls him the Sears guy. She says he’s always there for her and Zach.
His phone goes off again and he asks if she wants him to quit his job. She says she doesn’t want him quitting for her. She says she loves him but it’s too late. He says he’s decent, employed and loves her and Zach. His phone goes off again then his emergency pager. She says this is the problem and it’s who he is. She tells him to just go take care of it.
He takes the call from Nora and she says there are 12 different agencies. He says he’ll be there in 20 and asks her to keep the other agencies at bay. He got a ticket. He’s annoyed but heads out. Jim hands Ephraim his milk and gives him an update. He says homeland security want to declare it a terrorist event. He’s shocked to hear there are no 911 calls from passengers and that everything is cold and silent.
One guy plays a sound for him they recorded. It sounds like rustling. They tell him it’s too short a window to be a contagious event and says CDC should back off. Ephraim explains to homeleand security how fast viruses move and that it’s faster than terrorism. He says plagues begin this way and asks them if they still want to be first through the door.
In Harlem, a guy heads into a pawn shop. He rings the bell repeatedly and asks if they buy silver. He shows Abraham a watch and asks if can get $50 for it. He offers him $25 if it tests good. He says it’s silver plated brass. The guy grabs some money off the counter and he grabs his hand and holds a knife on his wrist. He says if his friend pulls his gun, he’ll stab his artery and he’ll bleed out before they can call 911.
He says to let go the money, hand over the gun and get out. They do as Abraham says. One grabs a clock off the counter and they run out. Abraham watches the news with the story of the dead flight from Berlin. He looks concerned. He goes to a cabinet and opens it and goes inside. This takes him to a hidden area downstairs. He picks up an elaborate silver cane and slides it into a holder. He sits and says – he’s back. He says he doesn’t know if he has the strength to do it all over again.
Abraham says – this time, I cannot fail. He looks at something in a jar and asks if it’s hungry. He pops the lid on the jar open and cuts his finger. He lets a few drops fell into the jar where a weird creature slurps up the blood. It’s about heart sized with wormy tentacles hanging out of it.
At the airport, Ephraim and Nora change into safety gear. She asks what’s up and he tells her about the counseling session and the Sears guy living in his house. She tells him to stay focused and puts the air tank on him. She says he and Kelly have been broken up for a year and that they went through their thing too. He admits he never told Kelly that he and Nora were involved and says she doesn’t know. Nora says he knows nothing about women.
Jim hooks up their monitoring equipment and Ephraim and Nora head into the plane. They shine lights around and everyone is totally still. She asks Jim if he’s seeing this. She says it’s every passenger – they’re all dead. There are no signs of struggle or chemical agents and no bruising. There’s no markings or discolorations. Ephraim says it was sudden and painless. The window shades are all closed but one.
Nora says there are high levels of ammonia and tells Jim to check the cargo manifest. Eph hears a noise and goes to the little girl. Her eyes are open and her mouth is ajar. He checks her over. Her music is playing and he shuts it off. He says her tongue is almost white. He checks her eyes and says her skin is dry and inelastic. He says she looks almost peaceful.
Nora says to try the UV lights and they flip them on. They see stuff everywhere and she asks what it is. Jim and the homeland guys are watching on the screens. Nora says the pattern is biological and where the ammonia is likely coming from. They split up to check the galleys. We see one hand twitch as Eph walks past. He sees the flight attendants in a heap at the back and the open cargo hold.
He sets his equipment down and tells Jim to have them check each piece of luggage for biological agents. He sees more of the UV glowing pattern below and heads down to check it out. Up front, Nora tells Jim the cockpit door just opened. They tell her to back out because it’s supposed to be locked but she heads inside anyway.
Jim pings Eph and tells him that Nora went into the cockpit. Jim is freaking and tells them to answer her. One of the pilots comes to and startles her. Another passenger comes to and tells Eph to help him while he’s walking by. The pilot tells her she can’t be in there. Jim says he’s calling SWAT but Eph tells him to send in paramedics because there are survivors.
[11:06:57 PM] Rachel Rowan: In Manhattan, at the Stoneheart Group building, a guy is in the elevator. His eyes twitch funny – like he’s got reptile lenses. He calls out to Mr Palmer and is told that he’s having dialysis. He asks Fitzwilliam how long he’s walked for Stoneheart and he says his whole adult life. Palmer speaks to Eichhorst (the elevator guy) and Fitzwilliam says he’ll wait outside.
Eichhorst tells him the cargo has arrived and all four survivors have been found. Palmer says he knows what it’s like to cross a line and do things that can’t be undone. He says that line has been crossed now and the man agrees. He says he’ll never get used to his breath and Eicchorst says he sometimes misses breathing as well.
They load up the survivors at the airport. Everett arrives and talks to Eph. He asks how bad it is. In the JFK cargo hold they’ve got body bags galore. They are going to do some autopsies and Eph says he’s invoking the health powers act and will be quarantining the survivors. Everett doesn’t like it and doesn’t want panic to ensue. He saysEPh needs to talk to the families and Everett promises no press coverage.
Mrs Luss, one of the survivors, asks if there were only four survivors of the crash and they tell her it wasn’t a crash. They seal her into a plastic room as she rants about being an attorney. Captain Redfern, the pilot, is also alive and they ask him about any odors he smelled on board. He says he remembers landing the plane and then nothing else.
One of the survivors, Barber, tells Eph there are noises in his head. Then the fourth survivor, Bolivar, asks for demerol. He asks what he remembers and he says flickering lights. He asks about the cuts on his arms and he says it’s just for the fans and says his father is a Baptist minister. Eph is called back to the cargo hold. There is a large thing that came out of the cargo bay and it’s not on the manifest.
They look at it and Nora says it looks like a giant coffin. Eph says it’s old and looks hand carved, not machined. Jim calls them over. They tip the giant thing over and he says the NTSB doesn’t want them touching anything but Eph opens it. There is only soil inside. They agree that it should be impossible for something this large to be loaded and not on the manifest. Eph orders tests of the soil.
Nora notices there is a latch on the inside. Eph tells Bishop to call Berlin and see if they know anything. Matt, Kelly and Zach watch the news about this. They hear that CDC is on the scene and Matt asks what he thinks. Zach says his dad can handle it. He texts his dad though to ask if he’s okay and says he’s worried. Eph texts back that he’s good and tells him to go to bed.
Nora tells him the families of the survivors are waiting and says this is about Everett covering his own ass. She puts a tie on him and ties it up neatly for him. She tells him to talk to them like he’d want to be talked to himself and says she’ll be with him. He kisses her on the head and hugs her. Bishop talks to Berlin while the box is sealed up in plastic. He hears a buzzing sound and touches his head.
He asks if anyone else heard it but it was just him. He walks outside and then down one of the aisles in the giant cargo hangar. He walks further in and then hears voices. He goes into another area and then out another door. He keeps walking as if obsessed. He sees a giant shape on the ground and says – what the – it rears up and grabs him. Hands grab him and then a long tongue thing wraps around his neck and a tooth impales him. The thing snaps his neck then beats his head to a pulp. It speeds away in a swirl of dirty looking cloaks.
Eichhorst finds some gang bangers in Harlem. He speaks to Gus and says he’s avoiding him. Gus tries to get sassy but Eichhorst glares him down and he sends his boys on their way. He hands him an envelope and says he has to go to the airport to retrieve it. He says it’s all been arranged but Gus says it’s on lockdown.
He tells him he’s never let him down before but Eichhorst says this is different and says his brother’s criminal record and his mother’s immigration status depend on it. Gus asks if it’s a threat but he says it’s a reward. He says if he gets caught, they’ll send him back to jail. Eichhorst says the van isn’t stolen, he’ll be let in and then his mother’s immigration status will be fixed and his brother’s criminal record erased.
Gus says this his last job. Eichhorst says there are three rules – he can’t look at the cargo, can’t make any stops and must cross the bridge into Manhattan before daybreak. He asks if he understands and Gus tells him to screw him, suck his dick and then flips him off but he heads off to do as asked. Eichhorst isn’t amused.
At the airport, Abraham shows up. He hears a commotion and sees a protest of families who had loved ones on the flight and another group chanting for them to blow up the plane. Abraham is told to stand back. He looks down at a bottle of pills then walks over toward Jim who is trying to get the cops to get the crowd under control. Abraham acts frail and Jim asks if he’s okay. Abraham asks if he’s in charge and says he needs to talk to someone about the plane.
Everett says he recognizes some of the names from first class. He leads Eph in to speak to the families. He promised no press but there are cameras everywhere. Nora looks at Everett in disgust and says she almost believed him. Eph introduces himself and the press are talking over each other demanding to know how many survivors there are. He says he has no reassurances for them.
He says there are 206 dead passengers and four survivors and they don’t know what happened. He says the only comfort he has to offer is that they seemed to have died peacefully. He says he won’t stop until he finds the answers. A guy slaps Eph in the face and says his daughter Emma was on the flight and he wants to see her dead or alive. Eph tells them he’ll have more answers for them in 48 hours and walks away.
The coroner calls Eph on his tablet and shows him an incision on their necks that punctured the carotid without making any undue trauma. He says all the bodies they checked have the same wound in exactly the same place. Then he shows him something. He cuts into an arm and white opalescent fluid comes out. There are no erythrocytes and no blood pooling.
Eph comes into the terminal and says he needs to talk to Abraham. He says he has some insights into the outbreak. Abraham says he’s seen this disease before and says it must be contained. Eph says they are taking every available measure but Abraham says he can’t be and that’s what “he” is counting on. Then he tells Eph it’s too much to say right now. He tells Jim to take care of Abraham but then he says the tissues aren’t decomposing and Nora asks how he knows that.
Abraham says the heads must be cut off, the bodies destroyed. As the police haul him away, Abraham says if they still have the coffin they have him and says he can’t let it cross the river. At the ME’s office, the head coroner makes a recording as he goes to examine the next body under UV light. He does and sees a pattern on the body.
Nora asks Eph how the old man knew about the coffin. Eph says the guy is crazy – he had a sword and called it a coffin when it was clearly a cabinet. They are back on the plane and he calls her over and shows her a little filament like thing that’s wriggling. He says it’s beautiful and when it snaps at his finger, he says it’s desperate for a host. He puts it in a jar. He says this means it’s not airborn and is a carrier.
They look around and she grabs up a handful of the critters and there is soil on them. They go running through the hangar to where the coffin/cabinet was but it’s gone. Eph asks where it went and a security guard asks what cabinet. They watch security footage and there seems to be a gap in the footage because it’s there and then it’s not. They stop on a frame where they see a brown blur grab the box and it’s gone.
Eph says that it weighed 500 pounds and that nothing could drag it off. Nora reminds him what Abraham said about having the box and him. The footage is just seven minutes old. Eph makes a call. Gus is at JFK and walks behind the CDC vans. He goes to one and unlocks it. He gops inside and puts the CDC placard on the dash. He finds his stack of money waiting as promised and looks in the back at the box.
He shines a light on it and asks what the hell it is. He calls Eichhorst a crazy ass white boy and then drives away with it. Eph calls Jim and tells him to seal off the airport. He says they have to stop all vehicles big enough to hold it – no vans, no trucks, no exceptions. Jim says he gets it and calls out to security on his walkie to make it happen.
Gus speeds through the parking area in the CDC van. Jim checks outgoing vehicles and then the van pulls up. He’s told to pull to one side and wait. He curses. The cop comes back and asks for his ID and permit. Gus hands him over what he has and the dog starts barking at the van. The cop tells him to step out of the vehicle. Gus goes to step out as Jim walks up.
Jim says it’s one of their vehicles and tells the guard to let him through. Jim tells Gus to tell the sons a bitches that he’s done and isn’t going to help anymore. The coroner has removed a chest plate from one of the bodies and has found abnormal neoplasms in the major organs. He says the growths seem like new fully functional organs not aberrations. He goes to weigh and organ and then hears a thumping sound.
He goes to investigate and walks into the room full of bodies in bags. He hears a noise back the way he came and then sees the organ he dropped into the scale moving. It’s a deformed heart like Abraham had in his jar. He drops it and then panics and pulls off his gloves. One of the little worm things from it is trying to burrow into his hand. He grabs a tweezer and pulls it out of his hands. When he turns, there is a room full of formerly dead bodies closing in on him growling. They pounce on him and he’s buried in a pile of them. The deformed heart twitches on the floor.
Jim comes and tells Eph he didn’t find anything. Eph says he can’t figure out how something that big got away. Jim says they’ll get a break and just need a clue of where to start. He shows him the box of worm creatures and says this is where to start. Jim asks what they are and he says it’s something new.
Abraham is checked into the jail and left in holding at about 4 am. A drunk checks out his arm and asks about the numbers on them. He asks if they mean anything and Abraham says – only to me. Back at Stoneheart, Palmer is told that everything went as planned. Palmer mentions to Eichhorst about the old Jewish man arrested at the airport with a sword.
He’s surprised that he’s still at it after all these years and tells Palmer he’ll take care of it. Palmer tells Fitzwilliam he should venture out and walk the streets one last time before the fall. He asks if Palmer needs anything else and he says for the first time in his life, he has everything he needs. Gus drives toward Manhattan. He calls his mom and asks if Crispin is home.
Gus tells her that he’s getting on the bridge now and will be home in an hour. Gus tells the box that he doesn’t know what he is but he’s good luck for him. The narrator speaks, it’s Abraham, and says love is the force that can’t be explained. He says it’s a beacon that guides us back home when no one is there and that its absence robs us.
[11:42:38 PM] Rachel Rowan: We see Emma’s dad staring at the photo of his daughter. He hears a noise and sits down. He cries and calls out his daughter’s name. He hears a knock at the door and she comes in. She calls him papa and says she’s cold. He goes to her and takes her in his arms. He looks at her and then tells her she’s home. Abraham says love is our greatest downfall. His daughter holds him but her eyes are utterly dead.