I like Numb3rs usually and some episodes I like a lot, but this one pissed me off so much that I had to leave in the middle of it.

Obviously the writers wanted to be topical and the topic that they chose needs to be put in the public eye. The core matter for the episode is "racial profiling" and, particularly, the cultural stereotype profiling that Homeland Security employs when deciding who is The Terrorists.

But the way that they handle it in this episode is to gloss over it with some tumid rationalization that sounded like it had been vetted by -- if not provided by -- Homeland Security.

At one point Charlie Epps calls out a visiting FBI agent for targeting a friend of Charlie's with trumped up "evidence" about him visiting his home country of Pakistan. This friend and academic colleague is a Pakistani muslim with a doctorate in molecular biology. DANGER! Oh, and an American citizen but no worries there. Hold and question for 30 hours about a trip to visit family and a formula for improving yields on food crops. No problem. The guy is a terrorist without doubt.

So Charlie braces the FBI creep with some Googled info about a member of the FBI guy's family that, using the same criteria as applied to Charlie's friend turns the FBI guy's sister into a Terrorist! (Oh shit, they're everywhere!)

But the FBI guy (that is, the writers who create and manipulate the character of the FBI guy) just snickers at Charlie like Charlie is Yet Another Reactionary Appeasing Hippie Fool and blows him of with a hissed message along the lines of "oh yeah!? But my sister isn't a muslim with a beard. Nyah, Nyah you intellectual pansie."

The whole episode went this way. Grovelling B.S. from the writers & producers while they are trying to give the limp appearance of concern about racial profiling.

I finally had to walk out on it. I'm told that they wrapped it up by making the "real" bad guy a white European -- a member of the IRA for heaven's sake.

This episode is creepy. Shame on them.