Sydney Anne Bristow (born 17 April 1975) is a highly skilled and well established agent for the United States government. She deals with some significant trauma over the years: the death of her fiancée, the death of her best friend, the realization that her mother was a former KGB spy, the estrangement of many of her friends and the constant activity and changes that she must endure from being a spy on a regular basis.
Sydney is highly skilled in Krav Maga and is quite a polyglot, speaking English, Russian, German, Greek, Dutch, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Swedish, Romanian, Hungarian, Hebrew, Uzbek, Arabic, Urdu, Indonesian, Cantonese, Mandarin, Japanese, Korean, Hindi, Vietnamese, Korean, Czech and Bulgarian.
After learning that the organization she had worked for seven years was actually a terrorist group, she assisted the CIA in bringing it down. She then worked for the real CIA, but was attacked and kidnapped and forced to believe she was Julia Thorne for two years before returning to the CIA having no idea where she had been for the last two years. Feeling alienated after her return Sydney discovered the truth about what happened to her, realizing she had been brainwashed into believing she was Julia and made to do very bad things. After successfully taking down The Covenant Sydney moved to APO, a real black ops division of the CIA. Her fiancé was threatened by the terrorist organization Prophet 5 and so she helped to fake his death. After APO managed to take down Prophet 5 Vaughn returned and he and Sydney left APO for good.
Personal Information Edit
- ID-CLASS: USS-CI-2300844
- Call signs:
- Aliases: Julia Thorne, Kate Jones
- Height: 5'9"
- Weight: 125lbs
- Characteristics: L/R Shoulders reverse-jointed, R01 Molar extraction.
- Training/Special Skills: Krav Maga, track and field, Pilates, Linguistics, Theatre Arts, and electromagnetic lock picking.
- Languages: English (various dialects), Czech, French, Taiwanese, Mandarin, Cantonese
Hebrew, Arabic, Japanese, Italian, Russian, Hungarian, Uzbek, Urdu, German and Swedish.
- Education: Masters in English Literature, graduated in February of 2003.
- Experience: Recruited to SD-6 Fall of her 19th year, started work with the CIA Fall of her 26th year, first generation (possible test subject) of Jack Bristow's Project Christmas Program.
- Father: Jack Bristow
- Mother: Laura Bristow (aka Irina Derevko)
- Half-sister: Nadia Santos
- Aunts: Katya Derevko, Elena Derevko
- Husband: Michael Vaughn
- Children: Isabelle Vaughn, Jack Vaughn
Before SD-6 Edit
Early life Edit
After her mother was supposedly killed in a car accident and her father was taken into custody, Sydney went to live with Arvin and Emily Sloane. They lined the shelves of her room with stuffed animals to comfort her, but she knocked them all over the floor (Reprisal). As a young child, she was unable to draw her future occupation.(All The Time In The World) She had a piano teacher named Ms. Adams(Cipher) Her father in fact subjected her to Project Christmas, a CIA test programme for young children to determine if they could be potential agents.(The Indicator)(Resurrection)(All The Time In The World).
Seven years before the events of Season 1, whilst in her freshman year at college, Sydney was recruited to SD-6, a supposed black ops division of the CIA. She worked in the cover location, Credit Dauphine, for six months before undergoing eight months of physical training before being taken to the real SD-6 (Q&A). Soon after joining, Sydney took a cheque to her father to repay him for his payment of her college funds. When she told him that she had started working for Credit Dauphine, Jack became agitated and told her to quit, realizing that Sloane had enlisted her to work at SD-6 which he knew to be a criminal organization. Sydney refused and left angrily, saying that she could do what she wanted (All The Time In The World). She quickly passed through all the tests that the CIA had to offer, with the officers there telling her that she was "a natural". She continued with her studies at college despite the fact that head of SD-6 Arvin Sloane disliked it. Her cover with her friends was that she was working at the bank, Credit Dauphine (Truth Be Told)
Working for SD-6 Edit
Three years before learning the truth about SD-6, Sydney escaped capture in an office building in France before getting into a limo with Leonard Dreifuss, a man who bankrolled SD-6 operations, and giving him a package (So It Begins).
Season 1 Edit
Sydney got engaged to Danny, and so decided to tell him that she worked for the CIA, and whilst he thought about what he was feeling Sydney left on a reconnaissance mission for SD-6 to Hong Kong. When she returned she found Danny dead in his apartment, and realized he had been killed by SD-6 because of his knowledge of their existence. She confronted Sloane who said that Danny was a risk and so their security section took him out as per their procedure, and as she was now a risk she had to take a lie detector test which she had been trained to defeat. Sydney attended Danny's funeral along with her friends including Will Tippin and Francie Calfo. Afterwards she stayed up listening to her answer phone message over and over, which had Danny's voice on it.
She took three months off from working at SD-6, despite the fact that Sloane gave her only one. He became impatient and sent Dixon to bring her back. He told her that the FTL organization had got control of the Mueller device and Sloane wanted her personally go and retrieve it before they could activate it. Still, she refused to go in. As a result Sloane tried to have her killed, sending several teams after her. She managed to take them all out, with the assistance of her father whom she realized also worked for SD-6. He arranged for her to go on a flight to Switzerland to escape Sloane's men, explaining that SD-6 was a branch of the Alliance of Twelve, a criminal organization, and not part of the CIA as she had been led to believe. However she did not get on the plane, deciding not to trust her father, and ran away.
She contacted her friend Will, and asked for one of his sister's credit cards and her passport. He gave them to her, reluctantly, and she styled herself to look like Will's sister; bright red hair. She travelled to Taipei, broke back into the labratory she went in whilst with SD-6. Before she could get there, however, she was captured by Hong Kong agents who tortured her, asking her who she worked for. She refused to answer and made jokes about them, and so they began to pull her teeth out. She managed to escape from custody and she reached the lab. She found the Mueller device that Sloane wanted, stole it, and took it back to him at SD-6 headquarters. She requested the week off, saying that she had midterms.
Sydney then went to the real CIA and offered to be a double-agent working within SD-6 for them. She wrote pages of information about the organization. After she was done she met with Michael Vaughn who said that he was sure it would be helpful to have another double agent in SD-6. However she suspected it was all a ploy in case she was a triple agent. He told her that it was not a play, and she left. She went to Danny's grave, where she encounter her father who told her that he was the other double agent in SD-6, and that she had been authenticated to work with the real CIA (Truth Be Told).
Sydney told the CIA about Ineni Hassan, the head of weapons resources for SD-6 located in Memphis, Egypt. She said that he had to be taken down to significantly help reduce the power of SD-6. Vaughn told her that when she returned to work she had to make sure that she acted as she always had done. He formulated a plan so that when she got her mission from SD-6, the CIA could make a counter mission. She said that her objective was not to satisfy Langley, but to bring down SD-6 so she could leave the spy world. She said that she would be out after two months. Vaughn then showed her a map of how far SD-6 reached, and said that they were not just going to take down SD-6, but the whole Alliance of Twelve.
Will asked Sydney why she used his sister's passport and credit card, but she said that she could not tell him. He assumed that Danny was in some kind of trouble, but she told him to forget about it and to trust her. SD-6 called, with Sydney telling Will that it was the bank, and she left. Marshall Flinkman told her that he was glad to have her back. She met with her father at SD-6 and asked if he knew that they were going to kill Danny. He said that he did, and she slapped him. Sydney told him never to speak to her again, then left. He later told her that he tried to save Danny but arrived too late, and she thanked him. Sydney and Dixon were sent on a mission to Moscow to stop Nabul Hasayn Navor from getting files from the Russian government. She informed the CIA and Vaughn told her the counter mission; they would do two brush passes at the airport and clone then return the files.
The mission was a success and Sydney managed to pass off the files to the CIA and they returned them before Sydney left or Dixon noticed. The discs revealed that a nuclear bomb was hidden somewhere in the US, and than a man named Milovich Ivanov was connected; probably looking after the bomb. Sydney went to an address they had for Ivanov and realized he was dead. She found his gravestone, dug it up and found the bomb inside. She managed to deactivate it with the help of Marshall. However Sloane shipped the bomb to Cairo and sold it to Ineni Hassan who planned to use it. She decided to go and stop it herself. Sydney made it to the bomb but was found by Hassan himself (So It Begins). Sydney tried to bargain with Hassan but he refused to take his gun off her. In retaliation, she threw the bomb, a small ball of plutonium that would kill them both within 48 hours, into the air. In the time it took for it to drop she managed to disarm Hassan then catch it again. She made it back to the U.S. after neutralising further threats from Hassan's men (Parity).
However, when she returned home she was berated by her professor for not handing a university paper in on time. He allowed her to be late with it this one time, but said that the next paper, due Thursday, had to be in. After speaking with Francie, Sydney decided to confront her father about all the questions she had regarding the past. However, he was reluctant to answer and angry that she had approached him unannounced.
Back at SD-6, Sloane announced that the Mueller device actually was created by an architect from the 15th century, Milo Rambaldi. He invented some sort of machine code in 1489, which SD-6 only possessed half of. The other half was on the back of a Rambaldi sketch in the possession of Eduardo Benegas before it was stolen from him by K-Directorate. Sloane sent Sydney on a mission to Madrid to retrieve the sketch, which she informed the CIA about. Before leaving, she got a call saying that the landlord at Danny's apartment found some of his things, and asked Will to go (citing her bank trip to San Diego as a reason not able to go herself). She met with Vaughn and got her counter-mission; a dead drop of the intel from Madrid. He then told her that he was being replaced by a senior officer as the CIA felt he wasn't experienced enough to be her handler. He said that it was good to have met her, and wished her luck for Madrid.
In Madrid, Sydney attended a party Benegas was hosting. Marshall gave Sydney a coin that could be used as a sonic wave emitter, the explosion of which Sydney used as a distraction to get to the top floor of Benegas' apartment to get the sketch. Sydney realised that Anna Espinosa, K-Directorate member and her enemy, was also there on a similar mission. As Sydney reached the sketch Anna beat her to it. Sydney managed to catch up with Anna but after a fierce fight Anna overpower Sydney. However, just as Anna was escaping to her chopper Sydney managed to shoot the shoulder strap of the bag that Anna was carrying the sketch in, and take it for herself.
Upon her return, Sydney met with her friends and, whilst drunk, kissed Will. The following day she learnt that Marshall was unable to open the box containing the sketch, and so her father had been called in to assist. Jack contacted K-Directorate, who was in possession of the key that opened the case, and offered to meet at a neutral location and the two agencies to open the box together. Sydney dismissed the idea but Sloane said that K-Directorate did not know that there was another half to the code that SD-6 already had, so they had nothing to lose by showing the enemy this half. Sloane left and Sydney asked Jack one more time; did her mother know that he was with the CIA? He said that she did, and there was no secrets between the two of them.
Sydney, who had adopted an uncooperative relationship with her new handler after he referred to her murdered fiancée as "Kenny", met with Lambert who gave her a two-way earpiece to use during the meeting with K-Directorate. He said that they wanted Sydney to tag Anna, but she said that it was suicide and one of Anna's agents would see her doing so and shoot her. She said that if Vaughn wasn't on the other end of the earpiece when she turns it on, she would give the CIA nothing. Lambert tried to reason with her but Sydney walked away. Vaughn was reassigned back to Sydney's case and when she met with Anna in Berlin he was on her comm. The two met in the centre of a large stadium and opened the box (Parity).
Season 2 Edit
The Game Edit
Working for the CIA Edit
Season 2 Edit
Season 3 Edit
Sydney wakes up in Hong Kong with no recollection of how she got there. After getting in contact with the CIA, she is sent to a safe house, and is told that someone from Los Angeles is coming to debrief her. Vaughn comes to meet her in Hong Kong and tells her that she has been missing for the last two years, and that everyone thought she was dead. Sydney also discovers that her apartment was burned down after her fight with Allison Doren (Francie's double) and that Vaughn is now married and has left the CIA. Sydney, not believing that this is the real Vaughn, attacks him and runs away. Vaughn catches up to her, however, and shoots her with a tranquilizer gun.
Sydney wakes up in a hospital bed in LA, where she is greeted by Dixon, who informs her that he is now the director of their division. Sydney also discovers that her father has been in prison for the last year, charged with resisting authority because of the contact he had been making with her mother, Irina Derevko, in efforts to find Sydney. Sydney returns to the CIA headquarters, where she is reunited with Marshall and Carrie, who is now pregnant with Marshall's baby. She tells Dixon that the Covenant held her captive at their base in Paris and she heard them mention the name Scott Kingsley. Kingsley, a CIA agent who was recently killed by the Covenant, was in possession of a chip which contained the schematics for an undetectable spy drone that could be used as a bio-weapon delivery system. The Covenant took possession of the chip when Kingsley was killed. Sydney later confides to her father that she pretended to have been held by the Covenant in Paris so that she could regain her clearance and be sent back into the field.
Sydney and Weiss go to Paris with a team to recover the chip. They are ambushed, and fail to recover the chip. Weiss is almost killed, but Sydney saves his life. She then tells him that she was never held in Paris, and that if she goes back to Los Angeles, her security clearances will be revoked. She decides to go after the man who stole the chip, and steal it back so that the CIA will trust her. Weiss tells her that Arvin Sloane is no longer in CIA custody, but is living instead in Zurich, where he is the CEO of a powerful humanitarian organisation called OMNIFAM, and also works as a consultant for the CIA. Sydney goes to visit him, and he tells her the identity of the man who stole the chip. She travels to Prague, where she finds the man—Gordei Volkov—and blows up his car. She then steals the chip and returns to Los Angeles. She then threatens to destroy the chip if the NSC's director—Robert Lindsay—does not release her father. He agrees, and Jack rejoins the CIA.
Sydney runs into Vaughn, and tells him just how hurt and angry she is that he completely gave up on them. She tells him that, if it had been her, she would have waited for him to come back. She also tells him what a waste she realizes that would have been.
Jack then meets Sydney in a hangar and shows her a video, explaining that this was the reason he knew she was alive. The video shows Sydney, disguised in a blonde wig, killing a Russian diplomat named Andrian Lazarey. (The Two)
Working for APO Edit
Season 4 Edit
Sloane informed the team that a device known as the Valta computer had been stolen, and given to the wrong people it could cause the utmost destruction. It was going to be bought by a terrorist group known as the Baden-Liga, but the name of the thief was unknown. Payment made to him was in a bank in the Bahamas and his name was sealed inside a vault there. Using the alias Claudia Maria Viasquez DeMarco, Sydney and Marshall (posing as Leon Frost) broke into the vault and used the bank manager's fingerprint Sydney obtained upon shaking his hand to access the vault when the manager left the room. They found out the thief's name; Martin Bishop. To find the location of the Valta, someone had to hack from the inside as it was impenetrable from the outside. APO hatched a plan whereby Sydney, posing as Sharleen, was supposedly in a car crash which Bishop saved her from whilst driving down the road. He invited her back to his house and when he temporarily left for business she hacked his server and found the location of the Valta. A CIA team, led by Weiss, went and were stopped by an effective force of Bishop's men, but not before destroying the Valta.
Bishop realized Sydney to be CIA and kidnapped her. Bishop said that the Baden-Liga would kill him for not delivering the Valta, but if he gave them more valuable information they may not. He asked who leaked the information about the Valta to the CIA, which showed that Baden-Liga had a mole. Sydney and Weiss refused to talk. Bishop left to talk to the Baden-Liga, and Sydney managed to break free using a device Marshall gave her. She knocked out their guard and untied Weiss, who curiously asked her why she was still working for the CIA. She said she would tell him later and went after Bishop. After chasing him in his car (which she jumped on top of) Sydney fell to the floor and Bishop was about to shoot her. Just in time Nadia Santos arrived and shot Bishop with all the bullets in her gun. Sydney was curious why she shot him so many times, and Nadia explained that he was the one who killed their mother (having been tricked to believe so by Jack Bristow) (The Awful Truth).
Jack learnt that Marcus Dixon thought he saw Irina Derevko alive when he was shot by Elena, her sister. Sydney assured him that Dixon must be wrong, but Jack was less sure. When Sydney reminded him that it was Jack who shot Irina, he said that they have seen doubles before, citing the Helix Project. Sydney said it seemed too convenient that the only person who could stop Elena was being dangled in front of them, but Jack thought her refusal to accept the idea suggested fear. He said that they had to pursue every lead. Sydney, Jack and Nadia located her through Lucian Nisard, and saved her from Elena's guards. Irina was buried underground when they found her. During their escape the three triggered a tripwire. The guards were alerted but they managed to overpower them and escape (Search And Rescue).
On the plane home, Sydney informed Irina about what Elena and Sloane were doing in Sovogda with the Mueller device. She apologised for not finding her sooner, then tried to hold her arm. Irina flinched at the human contact. She told Sydney about "Il Diluvio", and said that they needed to go to Sovogda to stop what was happening (as Irina was capable of stopping a Mueller device). Jack said it was too late for that city, but she insisted that Elena and Sloane would move onto another city unless they stopped them now. Jack agreed, and Irina left to clean up. When she returned, Jack received a call saying that they had to go back to the United States before heading to Russia, as per official orders from Langley. When they arrived, Irina was arrested. Sydney, however, managed to talk Director Chase into releasing her mother so she could help stop the attack on Sovogda. Her deal with the government was that she would return to CIA custody after helping to stop the Mueller device (Search And Rescue).
The team got to Sovogda in Russia and met with Agent Brodien from the DSR who had already sent a team in. He told them about the infection before himself being killed by one of the infected. The team made it into the subway to travel to the epicentre of the Mueller device to shut it down. Jack reactivated the train's wirings while Nadia and Sydney got the lights working. However, only Sydney returned. Nadia radioed in, saying that she was being chased by the infected. Sydney and Vaughn tried to get her out the back of the train, but Nadia was caught by the infected. They pulled into the station by the epicentre of the Mueller device, where they saw Arvin Sloane. Surrounding him were the dead bodies of Elena's men, sent to kill the APO team. Sloane tried to convince them that he was there to stop Elena, but the team did not believe him. Sloane began issuing orders until Jack punched him in the face, knocking him to the floor. Jack said that Sloane was no longer in charge of this team (Before The Flood).
The team were contacted by Marshall and Weiss who said that Elena was trying to uplink a subaudible frequency to the Russian mil-sat network to distribute the infection world-wide. The second that the bombers were scheduled to destroy Sovogda, the frequency would be broadcast causing the effects of Sovogda to occur worldwide. Weiss told them that they had around forty minutes to stop Elena. Marshall sent them building blueprints, but they realised that Elena would have every exit guarded. Jack told Sloane that he would help them get in, or he would shoot him. Sloane said it was possible to get to the roof, but stopping the device would be less easy. Irina explained that she could shut down the device by stopping the ionisation, and the only result would be the impact of the water. They got to Elena and Irina knocked her to the floor with her gun. Sloane put Elena in a chair and Jack and Vaughn went to the computers to stop the mil-sat network from uploading the frequency. However, they could not retract the transmission (Before The Flood).
Meanwhile, Sydney arrived on the roof. Just as she got there, Nadia arrived. Sydney soon realised that Nadia had been given the infection, and she was guarding the device. Via comms, Jack and Irina urged Sydney to take Nadia out, but she said she could not do that to her sister. They fought for a short amount of time and Sydney managed to overpower Nadia, chained her away from the device's control box. Sydney managed to get into the main circuit board, but found a blue and a white wire. Irina did not know which to cut, and she asked Elena. When she refused to answer, she told Jack to start torturing her. Before he could do so, Elena told him to stop, and said to cut the white wire. Irina immediately shot Elena, and told Sydney to cut the blue, other wire. Just before she could do it, however, Nadia began to strangle her with the wire that she had escaped from. As Sydney was about to die, Sloane arrived on the roof and shot Nadia. Vaughn arrived and, with Sloane, took Nadia into the elevator as Sydney cut the blue wire (Before The Flood).
The Mueller device exploded, and water flooded Sovogda. The team made it into a safe location away from the water. Meanwhile, back at APO Marshall looked at satellite footage of the building and saw that it was no longer there, assuming the rest of the team was dead. They were alive, however, and in the streets Vaughn requested an evacuation from United States air support. As he did so, Jack told Irina to leave. He said she could reach the border by daybreak, and told her that he would tell the CIA that "no one can hold on to Irina Derevko for too long." She smiled and they kissed. Irina then went to see Sydney and told her to take care of her sister. She said that Sydney had fulfilled her prophecy to "overcome the greatest evil" as Irina had said she would three years before. Irina then said that although she would not see her, Irina would be watching on her wedding day. She then left (Before The Flood).
After leaving Sovogda, Sydney and Vaughn were driving through Santa Barbara. They discussed plans for their wedding, and Sydney suggested that they elope. Vaughn agreed, and they each said that they loved one another. He said that he had to tell her something, so there was no secrets between them. She asked what it was, joking that he should not say that he was a "bad guy." He looked at her suspiciously, and he said that would depend on how you would look at it. He told her that it was all from before they met and was, in fact, the reason they met. He said that it was not an accident that he was the one who she met when she became a double-agent when working at SD-6. He told her that his name was not really Michael Vaughn. Before Sydney could react, a car crashed into Sydney and Vaughn (Before The Flood).
Season 5 Edit
After APO Edit
Sydney had an antagonistic relationship with her father. They did not agree upon many things but a friendship began to form when she learnt that he was also a mole within SD-6 for the CIA (Truth Be Told).
When Sydney and Vaughn first met, she acted very hostile towards him, thinking that he was being condescending to her with the CIA counter missions. Furthermore she even commented that she thought he was too young to be her handler (So It Begins). However, when Vaughn was replaced by a more senior agent, Sydney refused to work with him and demanded Vaughn back (Parity). A mutual attraction is evident almost instantly and he becomes her primary love interest throughout the show's run.
Since discovering that Sloane was a traitor to his country, Sydney held an intense dislike towards him.
Sydney was incredibly happy in her relationship with Danny, and after dating for two years he proposed to her. Realizing that getting married would be a big change in their relationship, Sydney decided to tell Danny that she worked for SD-6, a government organization. He was shocked by the news, and due to a drunken phone call Danny placed to Sydney in which he alluded to her spy status, Arvin Sloane had Danny killed as he felt he was a security leak. Sydney found Danny's body in the bathtub at home (Truth Be Told).
Will and Sydney had been close friends for years, but Sydney did not realise that Will had held strong feelings for her for a long time. One night whilst drunk the two kissed, but Sydney immediately regretted the decision and tried to forget about it (Parity).
Noah Hicks and Sydney were partners and dated (attempting to keep it quiet from Arvin Sloane) during her early training years at SD-6. Noah and Sydney met up again several years later, when Sydney and Dixon went on an SD-6 operation to Vienna to retrieve a microchip regarding "The Man" from two deep-cover agents. Sydney and Hicks were in a safehouse, when the CIA learnt that K-Directorate has hired an assassin known as "The Snowman" (believed to be long dead). While together, they rekindle their relationship. It was later revealed that Noah was The Snowman, after he attacked Sydney and she managed to defeat and kill him (Snowman).
Anna Espinosa was a great rival of Sydney's, the two having competed on many similar missions for different organisations throughout the years. Anna often seemed to be more highly skilled than Sydney in terms of attack methods, but Sydney was more skilful when it came down to it and often could win Anna in battles of brain over brawn (Parity).
- Sydney Bristow: Get a pencil. Write this down. E M E T I B. Got that? Ok, now reverse it. (Truth Be Told)
- Sydney Bristow: (to Sloane) The thought that I did something that might have given you a warm and fuzzy feeling makes me want to kick my own sister out of my house. (The Awful Truth)
- Arvin Sloane: (referring to Fenton Keene) He claimed to have become legitimate.
- Sydney Bristow: Seems to be all the rage amongst evil geniuses. (Ice)
- Sydney shares her middle name with actress Jennifer Garner.
- Sydney shares her birth date with actress Jennifer Garner, although Sydney is three years younger than the actress.
- Sydney is the only surviving character at the end of the series to appear in every episode of Alias. See Character appearances for more information.