Previously on The Blacklist, ‘T. Earl King VI’
On this week’s The Blacklist, anyone who hasn’t been watching gets a crash course in all things Red and Liz.
While Liz goes to court to help quash a subpoena and stop an investigation that will cost her her freedom, as well as dismantle the task force, Red goes in search of a Blacklister in order to save her. Although the DAG tries her best to stop the investigation in its tracks, the judge—who just so happens to be one of those “transparency” types– orders Liz to speak with him in his chambers so he can determine whether or not the investigation into the Harbormaster’s death will violate national security. So now 43 people know about the task force. Loose lips, people! This episode played like a 100th episode special, complete with flashbacks and scenes that explain how we’ve all gotten to where we are now.
The Blacklister: The Major runs a finishing school of sorts. He takes in young, intelligent, sociopaths with specific skill sets then picks them up, dusts, them off, and teaches them how to do bad things as deep cover operatives. Just as I figured, Red hired Tom to marry Liz, but The Major let him turn when Berlin offered more money. Oh, what a tangled web we weave.
Liz: In the judge’s chambers, Liz wastes no time spilling the beans about the task force, its purpose, and who their informant is. Although the judge is surprised that Red is her informant, he seems more surprised that all of this action has been taking place right under the noses of the American public. I mean, how could they not know? I’ve been asking that for a minute, your honor. Liz tells the judge about all of the Blacklisters the task force has taken down and the judge questions Red’s motives and the team’s compliance in helping him expand his criminal empire. But it’s all good because they’re getting bad people off the streets. Liz explains that many of the Blacklisters are connected and lead to The Fulcrum. Okay, Liz is talking way too much for my comfort. Even though she’s giving up all of the task force secrets, Liz continues to stick to her story: she was on the ship looking for Sam but never found him.
Red: Red tells the team that in order to save Liz, he has to find The Major. Since they had a falling out, he needs their help in the form of kidnapping the Malaysian Deputy Minister of the United Nations. After scaring the living shit out of the DM, a meet up with The Major is scheduled. Red tells The Major he owes him for selling him a bad product in Tom and demands to know where Tom is currently working. The Major gives up the goods on Tom’s whereabouts, but before they can head out, Dembe gives Red some advice: tell Liz about Tom and tell her everything.
Get a grip: Only the Malaysian Deputy Minister was kidnapped. Was that because Liz was busy elsewhere?
Teamwork: Red tells them they need to kidnap a Deputy Minister of the UN and they agree with very little fuss. Methinks they’re getting the hang of being the bad guys. Cooper lies to the judge, telling him that Liz was on the ship on official business. Cooper is getting better at turning a blind eye and lying and I don’t think I like it.
Tom: His German accent has improved. Danke, Tom! It was grating on the ears. Liz must have really gotten to him because he’s offering the name of a gun runner to a mob boss he’s just met like that’s not even a little bit suspicious. Take some time to let that persona marinate; get to know them a little bit better. After his early dismissal, he spies on a weapons supplier, and takes him out. The mob boss has no choice but to go to Tom for the name of his gun running buddy. How fortuitous.
Caught up: Detective Wilcox goes back for another shot at Sam and tells him that Liz is putting everything at his door. Sam says he caught a bullet for his troubles, but he’s not going down. Hearing the blunder, Wilcox sends someone to the ship to look for the bullet fragment. A fragment is found, tested against Liz’s gun and Sam’s blood and proves that Liz is lying. And I want to rip out my hair.
Red’s Best Line: “I’ve always been leery of the United Nations. The very concept is comically dichotomous—nations putting their self-interests aside in the hopes of building a global community, holding hands, and Kumbaya. I mean, honestly, it’s like Kindergarten. Do you have rug time? I did love rug time.”
On my first watch, I wasn’t enthused about the format of this episode; look backs typically only work on sitcoms so you can see the funniest bits. I began to appreciate this more on my re-watch because it ties up some loose ends and answered questions I had. It also served to remind me of things I had forgotten. I would have liked a lot more Red and a little more Tom and the others in the task force.