Warning: Spoiler Alert
Always remember when you watch the NBC series “The Blacklist,” that every criminal Raymond “Red” Reddington gives up to the FBI, get turned in to help Reddington in some way. Sometimes it takes a while for Red to reap his reward, however in the third episode of this young television season, Reddington reaped the benefits immediately. The former Intelligence Operator turned Genius Crime Lord, multi-tasked quite well in this episode, that also showed some of Raymond’s partners, showing their true colors.
The episode began in the motel Elizabeth Keen’s staying in, trying to keep her paranoia in check that her former husband Tom’s searching for her to kill her. She wakes up and see’s Tom’s glasses on her night stand, then looks up to see him standing at the foot of her bed, his pistol aimed at her head. Tom says that Red’s aware he’s there and he’ll be there shortly, but she can’t trust him. He says that as soon Red kills Berlin, he’ll eliminate Liz. She tells Tom she’d be more inclined to believe him if he wasn’t pointing a pistol at her, and he puts the weapon on the counter. Seconds later Reddington comes through the door and fires multiple shots at Tom, making sure this time he’s truly dead. He then walks over to Lizzie and says she should consider herself warned, which is when she wakes up from her nightmare clutching her service revolver.
We see a middle-aged prosperous looking man sitting at an outdoor café, when a younger man with a shaved head joins him at his table, and the first man’s mood changes radically. The bald guy tells the other man, his time’s up and the man replies he didn’t contact the police. The other guy responds that was smart otherwise they would have hurt his lovely family. The man asks if there’s another way and the bald guy responds, that’s the way they do things. The older man tips the table on his companion spilling everything on the other guy and makes a run for it.
He almost gets hit by an SUV and the driver comes out to find out what’s wrong with him. The man tells the driver he needs to save him, but the bald guy arrives, injects the older man with a sedative and then takes him to an ambulance. The man regains consciousness as he’s strapped to a gurney in a hospital hallway and he starts pleading with anyone and everyone. He’s wheeled into the operating room and the surgeon smiles at him and tells him he’s afraid his time’s up.
The next morning in the Bowery, the cops start to rouse the homeless from their slumber on the streets, when one cop sees a man lying face-down on the pavement in a pair of pants without a shirt and asks the guy what happened to his clothes. The uniform finally gets a clue and turns the man over, it’s the man who was the patient, lying there with a gaping hole in his chest and missing his heart.
Liz contacts Red and he identifies the man behind the surgery as Dr. James Covington, once a renowned heart and lung surgeon who got disbarred performing an illegal operation on a child. Prosecutors weighed pressing charges, but he fell off the grid. Raymond tells her that he now harvests organs for his clientele, people of means, many of them criminals. Others who’re too far down on a waiting list for a new organ, they pay a premium and Covington keeps them alive.
Meanwhile Red and one of his partners in the syndicate a middle-aged Greek man named Niko Demakis, talk about Raymond’s desire to get the rights for a port that would earn the syndicate lots of money. Niko responds that they don’t have enough of a presence in the area to present themselves as credible candidates, but Red says they’ll just make a deeper investment. Niko tells Reddington that the local official’s not aligned with the syndicate, he’s fighting a war against Berlin and the other partners have concerns, but Red says he’ll handle things.
Later that day Niko meets with two other members of the syndicate, who also voice concerns over Red’s plans. Just then a slight man walks into the room and approaches the three men. They believe he’s stumbled into their meeting accidentally, but this man who looks like a yellow raisin in a Beatles wig, says No Niko, I’m exactly where I want to be. Turns out he says he’s a representative of Berlin named Mr. Vargas and he’s there to offer them a deal. However, before I continue, I need to reveal that the role of Mr. Vargas’ performed by Paul Reubens/AKA Pee Wee Herman.
Vargas tells the three men that Berlin would like them to join his operation and leave Reddington. None of the men from the syndicate seems comfortable in the situation, but they listen to what he has to say.
Back at headquarters, Keen and Don Ressler learn from their medical examiner, that the man’s heart wasn’t his to begin with; he had been the recipient in a heart transplant. He tells them he’s able to determine that from all the foreign tissue remaining in the victim’s chest cavity. The two agents go to see the man’s widow and they ask how there are no records for her husband ever receiving a heart transplant. The woman starts tearing up, saying they’ll kill her if she talks, but Liz tells her they can’t protect her unless she does.
Her husband’s heart was failing and too far down on the waiting list to use conventional channels, so he contacted Covington and got himself a new heart and a new lease on life. Unfortunately, business went down hill then he started swindling his own company, he faced criminal charges and they filed for bankruptcy. However the widow revealed that Covington doesn’t sell organs, he rents them at a fee of 500 grand a year, when money kept flowing no problem, but he couldn’t pay them this year and Covington ripped out the heart as an example to others thinking of avoiding payment.
The woman revealed that they sent all their payments to a charity, that was a front for Covington’s organization. They search the files and find a doctor that got paid a hefty sum from the charity and track him down. Turns out the doctor’s a medical examiner and he’s been the one harvesting organs for Covington. He tells the agents he’ll do what ever they ask if they’ll protect him. He tells them that he calls the facility when he gets a suitable organ and they send over a courier.
They setup a sting using a pig’s heart, which the medical examiner says would fool most people that it’s a human heart. The bald guy’s the courier, he looks at the heart calls the facility grabs the case the organs enclosed in, jumps on his motorcycle and takes off. They start to prep their new patient, whose a crime lord known as BB. The guy on the bike spots Ressler and Keen and tries to escape, but gets slammed into by a truck and bites the dust. Although they lose the lead they find out about BB from the paperwork and Red happens to know him quite well.
Niko shows up at Red’s office with some pictures of the other two partners with Vargas on the street, he tells Raymond they accepted Vargas’ offer while he remained loyal to Reddington. He thanks Niko for the information and suggests they take a trip and confront the two men. Red, Niko and Dembe travel in Red’s SUV, while four of Red’s soldiers follow in another vehicle. Red and Niko approach the two men and ask why of the three of them, only Niko told him about the offer from Vargas. He then nods to the soldiers and both pairs of men grab one of the partners, while they beg Raymond not to do anything.
Niko and Vargas meet together, the plan was setup by Niko to rid Red of his allies and now he wants Vargas to eliminate Reddington. Vargas shouts that if Berlin wanted Red dead he would have killed him, but Niko says now the equations changed since he turned in two men who were loyal to Reddington. Vargas, snarls that he’ll get it done.
Red finds BB at a local bar and grill courting death with every bite. He approaches the gangster’s table and sees the pretty young girl whose his companion. Reddington brings up the operation and BB tells the sweet young thing to take a powder. Red tells him he wants to contact Covington and BB says he’s got a number for emergencies and he’s not about to give it to Red. All of a sudden the gangster starts grabbing at his chest and says he can’t breath. That’s due to the act that Red kept sending over free drinks to BB, that the gangster thought were from the house, but Raymond added a little something special to each cocktail, Viagra. Red shows BB the two paramedics that will help him as soon as he calls the doctor.
Aram’s able to track the call somewhat, but can only narrow down the signal to a five block radius and Liz and Don go out searching. They finally track down the right building and they burst in on Covington performing an operation, but it’s a lung-transplant on a 12-year-old boy. Children don’t get offered adult lungs on the normal waiting lists, but Covington’s saving this young boy’s life with this procedure. They allow the surgeon to conclude the surgery before arresting him and they boy will live.
Red shows up at Niko’s with Dembe and asks him what’s so important that they had to rush down. Niko tells him that he wanted to look Raymond in the eye when he tells him he’s out of the syndicate, then admits he accepted Vargas’ offer not the other two partners. Vargas then shows with two henchmen and all have guns pointed at Red. Raymond walks over to Vargas, says chrome’s so flashy in describing his pistol then takes the weapon from his hand. Vargas turns to Niko to inform him that actually he’s the one who got fooled and the other two partners come out in perfect health. Red then tells all they won the rights to run the port he was seeking, the local official that held things up, was due to get a heart transplant, but the operation got cancelled and the man died. The man who replaced him is totally aligned with the syndicate.
With that announcement Reddington shoots Niko in the heart killing him instantly. Mr. Vargas screams, how many times do I have to ask you to not shoot anyone until you clear me from the area. Red tells his soldiers to get Vargas a chair before he faints.
The Story Continues Next Monday at 10:00pm on NBC.