The Ballad of Kevin and Tess

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"The Ballad of Kevin and Tess"
The 4400 episode
Episode no. Season 3
Episode 09
Directed by Scott Peters
Written by Ira Steven Behr
Craig Sweeny
Original air date July 30, 2006
Guest actors
Episode chronology
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"The Starzl Mutation"

"The Ballad of Kevin and Tess" is the ninth episode of season three of the science fiction television series The 4400. The episode aired July 30, 2006 on the USA Network.[1]


Kevin is on the run after mutating, due to his promicin experiments. Tom and Diana turn to Tess Doerner for help.


Kevin Burkhoff, whose body has begun to mutate runs through a forest – running from a group of “men in black”; cornered he is restrained and anaesthetized. Brought to a non-stated location, Kevin is questioned and then shot dead. Kevin’s body is placed in a van, on opening Kevin has disappeared. The episode switches to Kevin Burkhoff again running; tired he stops and rips his shirt to reveal bullet wounds – which are healing, due to his 4400-like ability.

Tom and Diana visit Tess Doerner, who is now working in a book store having recovered from the symptoms of her schizophrenia. They question Tess on the whereabouts of Kevin; Tess states that she has not seen Kevin since she was released from the psychiatric institution she resided, and asks them to have Kevin contact her should they find him.

Returning to her home, Tess enters her lounge and begins speaking to Kevin – who is hidden out at her home. Kevin and Tess discuss Diana, Tess reveals that she and Kevin are “doing something” to Diana.

Tom and Diana trail Tess to her home; they follow in after Tess, unaware she is being followed; Tom and Diana discover Kevin there, after startling Kevin and Tess, Diana draws her gun to Tom. Leaving Tess’ home Kevin states “Please. I am so close to finishing, stop trying to find me. I have no desire to hurt you”.

At a diner, Kevin orders food and is reported to NTAC, they head out to bring him in. Meanwhile Diana is discharged from the hospital she is presently in, at the behest of Tess; who had used her ability to have the nurse bring Diana outside.

Richard and Heather Tobey talk in the hope of helping Richard refine his ability; they discuss Richard’s past and his feelings. Heather realises that she and Richard are floating on their chairs in mid-air; Richard is successfully honing his ability.

Diana is brought to a theatre to hideout with Kevin and Tess. Diana attempts to convince Kevin that his “experiment” is a failure. A workman (who Tess used to gain entry to the theatre) discovers Diana’s hospital-bracelet in his pocket. An NTAC darts man shoots Tess with a sedative. Outside, having grabbed Tess, Kevin is confronted by armed men, headed by Agent Garitty; Kevin injects Tess with a stimulant, waking her – enabling her to use her ability.

On the floor of a roadside toilet lays the shed skin of Kevin Burkhoff, cleaning himself at the sink his body has now returned to normal, his “experiment” has been successful. He and Tess leave together in a stolen vehicle, which Tess “borrowed”.

Isabelle Tyler is inside a laboratory and is hooked to a machine; her body is being filtered of promicin. A man enters on behalf of Dennis Ryland, talking to a technician who reveals that they have enough promicin stored to last two years, the episode closes showing a large room filled with large quantities of promicin vials.

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