Not all soldiers contain the qualities to become Generals. In fact the skill sets of an exemplary soldier and an effective General likely couldn’t be more at odds with each other. A good soldier never questions orders and does what ever it takes to fulfill the mission even if it means sacrificing their life in the process. An effective General or leader of any kind needs to be able to react to changing conditions and adapt their plans accordingly. There’s too much knowledge and experience within a leader to sacrifice easily. Soldiers are easily replaceable, however wise veteran leaders aren’t.
If you’re a fan of the NBC series “The Blacklist,” you’ve seen this dynamic in place throughout the show’s third season. FBI Agent Donald Ressler got pressed into running the FBI Task Force, formerly lead by Harold Cooper and Ressler’s first mission’s been attempting to capture his former partner, former agent Elizabeth Keen. Before the series took it’s winter hiatus in November, Ressler took Lizzie into custody and likely put her life in great jeopardy.
Ressler believes that his former partner’s innocent and has gotten set-up by the Cabal, a shadow government that secretly pulls all the strings that have caused the greatest catastrophes of our lifetimes. The group’s made up of leaders of governments and industries across the planet and lead by the CIA Director Peter Kotsiopolus whose usually referred to as The Director. The Cabal’s infested the halls of power in the United States Government, with the President’s NSA Director Laurel Hitchin’s among their ranks. She executed Deputy Attorney General Reven Wright, after Wright revealed she knew some potentially incriminating information.
Meanwhile Ressler naïvely sits back thinking he’s winning Hitchin’s confidence and she’ll soon start taking his side over that of The Director’s. Donald Ressler’s a good man who truly wants to do the right thing, however he’s way over his head right now in shark-infested waters. Because he’s been trained his entire career to think within certain parameters, he lacks the skills he needs to think outside-the-box and being able to adjust strategy as the situation changes. Those skills are absolutely essential to being a good leader, we shall see if Ressler takes advice either from Raymond Reddington or Harold Cooper once the series returns on January 7.
That failure to adapt to the situation and to realize that sometimes you have to deal with the lesser of two evils to salvage a situation, has led Donald to feel betrayed by his former boss Harold Cooper. Both share a severe dislike of the man they know as Tom Keen, however only Cooper was smart enough not to turn an asset away in time of need. After Tom approached Ressler in his apartment building about helping clearing Lizzie’s name and Ressler told him to leave immediately, Cooper sought Keen out. Tom’s completed his mission capturing the Russian spy Karakurt and forcing him to admit that he’s responsible for all the crimes Lizzie’s being charged with.
Meanwhile Cooper’s got to be feeling pretty betrayed himself right about now, as his wife Charlene decided that in the midst of trying to get Karakurt to the proper authorities that it was the perfect time to reveal to her husband that she had an affair a couple of years before. Was this her way of getting back at her husband for involving her in the dangerous situation they’re attempting to complete? Or did Charlene simply have a nervous breakdown due to the stress of the situation and that just tumbled out of her mouth?
When the series does return to TV on January 7, reports have surfaced that the first two episode will revolve around The Director Peter Kotsiopolus. David Strathairn who portrays The Director’s a first-rate actor that came to my attention in the late seventies and he’s added several amazing performances to his resume since then. Having Strathairn just appearing along the sidelines for about the last year’s like having a Porsche up on blocks in the garage. I can’t wait to see what he does with all the time allotted to him.
The Director decided to take a gamble in season two that backfired badly. He decided to chance that Raymond Reddington was bluffing when he claimed to have access to The Fulcrum, a blackmail file that if released would put many members of the Cabal in certain danger. Red obtained the file last season and flew in the planet’s most renowned Investigative-Journalists and gave them each a copy.
Kotsiopolus and other Cabal members have attempted to discredit the information revealed in those documents ever since and the Cabal’s not happy that The Director’s gamble failed so badly. Enter one Matias Solomon, the hitman/enforcer/messenger for the Cabal, Solomon just enjoys killing it doesn’t really matter to him who the victim is. He’d just as soon slit The Director’s throat as he would Raymond Reddington, just depends on which way the wind’s blowing.
Elizabeth Keen will get imprisoned in that same glass cell that Ressler and Red got locked in during the first season, until Raymond agreed to surrender to save Lizzie’s life. Ressler’s promised his former partner he’d protect her while in his custody. How much help will he need from this bizarre lineup that now comprises Team-Reddington?
We’re well aware that Raymond would without hesitation trade his life for Lizzie’s, we’re also well aware that The Blacklist recently inked a contract for a fourth season. Without Lizzie and or Raymond there’s no longer a series, so we know going in that they’ll both survive. However this show’s already displayed they’ll sacrifice a regular cast member if they consider it necessary. They ended the first season with the death of series regular Meera Malik, killed by Reddington’s foe Berlin.
Could Ressler, Samar Navabi, Aram or Harold Cooper be sacrificed this season? Or what about Ryan Eggold who portrays good-looking bad-buy Tom Keen? The happy ending that Liz told Red about earlier this season, about her accompanied by her husband and child walking serenely through some small town square will never happen if she stays with Tom/Jacob. Which means more to her, those dreams or her former husband? We’ll start getting answers to those and other questions in just over two-weeks.
Social Media was abuzz this past week as fans of the NBC series “The Blacklist,” expected their favorite show to exonerate FBI Agent Elizabeth Keen and put Harold Cooper back in charge of the FBI Task Force in this final episode before going on hiatus. Even Raymond Reddington stated early in this episode that her life on the lam beginning at the end of last season when the Cabal set her up would conclude very soon. Liz would be partnered up once again with Donald Ressler, while the Director of the Cabal bled-out in some field and Matias Solomon stowed-away on a tramp-steamer to Laos.
Now viewers will display concern for Lizzie until the show returns on January 7, as Ressler tackled her in the woods and arrested her in the episode’s final scene. Although her former partner will do his best to ensure her safety in Federal-Custody the Cabal’s got enough operatives in high-places in the United States Government, that keeping that promise will be challenging for Donald.
Reddington and Dembe speak on the phone as Red’s driving with Keen while Dembe’s waiting in what looks like an antique shop waiting for a package. Dembe says something feels wrong to him and he should be with Raymond right now. Reddington says they need their “Care-Package” and they’ll hook-up in about an hour.
Raymond pulls in to fill up the tank and Liz says she’s going to use the rest-room to freshen up. Red says he’ll get them something to eat in the convenience store that’s part of the station. Liz returns a few minutes later and there’s no sign of Reddington or the beat-up SUV they’re traveling in. She checks with the store clerk and Raymond never made it into the store.
Liz calls Dembe and asks if he’s heard from Raymond and he says he’ll start searching for him, but Keen tells him to wait at the store for the package. She then calls Samar Navabi and asks her if she gives her the information to track Reddington’s computer will she promise not to tell Ressler? Unfortunately Keen couldn’t have picked a worse time to call Navabi as the agent’s lying in Donald’s bed while he’s showering. The morning after their unexpected “coupling” late in the previous episode.
Samar has to use Ressler’s laptop to conduct the search and she tells Liz that Red’s outside Davis Creek, West Virginia in what looks like an industrial building. After she gives Keen the information she deletes the surfing information, a move that came back to haunt her.
Aram tells Donald that Reven Wright’s waiting for him in Cooper’s office. Ressler’s screaming at the Deputy Attorney General that Harold Cooper sold them out and told Tom Keen that he was heading to Wing Yee’s to bust Keen and Liz. Reven’s not concerned with Harold and Tom but she asks Ressler some information about Matias Solomon. When he tells her he can’t answer her questions she says she’s going to do some digging.
Harold and Charlene Cooper get some unexpected house-guests as four assassins carrying rifles head towards their house to kill them Tom Keen and Karakurt. Keen and Cooper kill all four gunmen and the four of them get into the Cooper’s car and take off. They soon realize why Cabal operatives can find them so easily as Karakurt’s got a tracking chip they put into his chest. Keen tells Cooper they have to get under concrete or cement to block the signal.
Raymond come’s to and realizes he’s gotten kidnapped by a gang of robber-barons that look like extras from My Name Is Earl. Three brothers, Cash the oldest and dominant, Pablo the middle-brother with authority issues and T-Bone who speaks with a stutter. They live with Jilly who seems to be Cash’s girlfriend, but she could have a friends with benefits relationship with the other brothers.
The group’s teamed up with a local named Jasper and they kidnap and rob seemingly affluent drivers when they visit the area. Although the brother’s go gaga over Red’s Rolex they complain that he’s only got $700 in his and doesn’t have credit-cards or an ATM card. Raymond says that if they can negotiate terms he’ll make it worth their while to release them.
Harold hides the car inside a tunnel and Tom starts to conduct surgery using what looks like the lid of a cat-food can to slice open his chest. On the other end of the tunnel Solomon and a crew are tracking Karakurt and the man holding the laptop says the signal’s weak but they still can track it.
Aram tells Navabi that Ressler wants him to check out Donald’s personal laptop to find out how search information got deleted. Samar tells Aram he can’t say anything to Ressler as she promised Liz she’d keep it from him, the information she deleted gives Red’s location. Mojtabai asks why she used Donald’s laptop and she says it was on her work station. The tech-guru promises to keep Ressler in the dark.
Liz makes the connection between Jasper and the Kings Of The Road, the name the thieves use and she picks him up in this blue-collar bar. He suddenly looks at his watch and says he’s got to get back to work when she asks him how she’d like her to go back with him to his place instead? Work’s no longer a priority.
Cash says that if they hurt Reddington they might lose out on getting some money, so he suggests that Jilly goes and talks with him. She brings a children’s tea-set with her and pretends to have a tea-party with Reddington. She asks him his first name and he replies Kenneth as it says on the driver’s license he carries. She says no your real first name and he responds the same. She says they’ll hurt her if he doesn’t tell her and Red says that he thinks Jilly likes getting hurt or she would have left long ago. She giggles and starts rubbing him and finds a bank-deposit bag containing 25-grand.
The three brothers and Jilly are whooping and hollering saying that they’ll each get over six grand apiece. Pablo asks what about Jasper and Cash says he’s hired help, he’ll get what they give him. That doesn’t sit well with Pablo who says Jasper’s family, Cash points to the four of them and says this is the family.
Mojtabai breaks his promise to Navabi and tells Ressler that Samar erased the information and gives him Reddington’s location. Donald stomps over to Navabi and starts screaming at her asking how she could have hidden this from him. He says first Harold plots against him and now she does, Samar tells Ressler that she called Liz and warned her about the raid. Donald sneers at her and says you’re out of here, gather your stuff and be gone by the end of the day. Aram looks like he’s about to get sick.
Red’s picked the lock on his handcuffs a while before, but he waits for the right moment to attempt his escape. He decides the time’s best when T-Bone and he are alone at the house and the youngest brother threatens him with the pistol. Raymond grabs the gun and shoots his opponent in the gut then tries to drive away, but Cash smacks him in the back of the head knocking Reddington out.
Mojtabai goes up to Samar and says if he realized Ressler would fire her he would never have told him. She says he promised her he wouldn’t say anything and he says that she lied to him. He says you told me that his laptop was on your workstation but you did your search in his apartment in the wee-hours of the morning. Aram’s jealousy cost Navabi her job.
Pablo and T-Bone convince Cash to let T-Bone go to the hospital to get his wound treated. As soon as the youngest brother leaves Raymond starts telling Pablo that Cash and Jilly are going to kill Pablo and fly to Aruba. At first Pablo tells him to shut-up but soon Reddington’s gotten into his head. Suddenly there’s laughing and hollering coming from the other room and Cash yells he’s on TV.
They see a news-report identifying Red and Liz and Cash calls up Jasper to find out if he knows where Liz’s at and tells him about her. He hangs up his cellphone and starts attacking her but she soon gets the upper-hand and grabs his gun and now he’s her prisoner.
Wright heads to Task Force headquarters and Ressler tells her they’ve got a location on Red and he’s fired Navabi for trying to keep the information from him. Reven asks if he’s perhaps being too inflexible and Donald looks her in the eye and says Tommy Markin and Wright looks confused. Ressler says that when his father joined the police-force he befriended another young cop named Tommy Markin and the two pledged they’d clean up the department. When Ressler’s dad refused to take a bribe from corrupt cops his old pal Tommy Markin ended his life by shooting him.
The four head down a dirt-road and Cash says they’re going to kill Reddington, but Red tells Pablo if Cash wants any money he can’t kill him. Pablo says that must mean he’s going to kill me and Raymond asks if he trusts Cash with his life. Suddenly Cash’s cellphone rings and Lizzie’s on the other end, she says she’s got Jasper as her prisoner and proposes a one-for-one swap. Cash laughs derisively at her and says Jasper’s just dead weight and hangs up the phone.
Pablo’s so angry he’s ready to spit and he tells his brother that Jasper’s family and it’s not his decision to make. The phone rings again and Pablo tells his brother to pick it up and work out a deal and Cash just laughs. Pablo pulls his pistol and the older brother says he doesn’t have the stones to use it. Pablo blasts him twice then tells Jilly to answer the phone and put it on speaker. He says to Keen he’s willing to trade Red to Liz for Jasper and two million bucks. She agrees but says she’ll call back in two-hours after she sets things up. Jilly says to Pablo that was beautiful and Red shudders.
Ressler gets a call from a West Virginia State Trooper and meets him at the hospital that T-Bone’s getting treated at. The officer tells Donald the guy says he got hurt in a hunting accident, but who hunts with a 38? T-Bone walks out soon after and tells both men he’s feeling fine now and just wants to go home and sleep in his bed. Ressler tells the officer that the guy’s wearing Reddington’s coat and he’s going to follow him home.
Dembe’s finally addressed by the man behind the sales counter at the store he’s waited at. There’s a military looking brief-case on the counter and the man tells Dembe that it’s heavier than it looks. Liz picks him up and tells him they’re trading the briefcase for Red and Dembe says they need it to clear her name. She says that Red’s life’s more important.
Reven Wright pays Laurel Hitchin a visit at the President’s adviser’s home and Laurel says what a pleasant surprise. Reven wants to discuss Matias Solomon and says he used to work for Laurel at the CIA and the Presidential adviser says she had lots of employees. Reven says he was a special attaché for you so you must have worked closely. Hitchin says he imagines that Wright’s discussed this with Ressler in great detail and Reven says she came right over to ask Laurel when she discovered the connection.
Laurel pulls out a pistol and fires it into Reven’s heart, when she falls to the floor in a heap Hitchin says she hated to do that. She then asks Wright if she has any last words and Reven looks Laurel straight in the eyes and says Tommy Markin then takes her final breath.
Liz, Dembe and Jasper meet with Pablo and T-Bone and Liz and Dembe see Red on a cellphone and he tells her not to make the trade. Pablo says okay show us what you’ve got and Dembe opens the case revealing the contents to both men, although we see nothing. Pablo asks if it’s what he thinks it is and Keen says it’s worth far more than the reward money. Pablo tells Jilly to let Red go and he tells he she’s sick and needs to get help. She smiles to herself when he leaves.
After being on the run since the final episode of last season, Elizabeth Keen’s finally been captured. Ressler and a crew came seconds after the exchange and Ressler chased her down and finally handcuffed her in the woods. Will he be able to guarantee her safety under his charge? We’ll find out in January.
Although we saw Elizabeth Keen and Harold Cooper gain ground in the effort to exonerate their reputations the latest episode of the NBC series “The Blacklist,” wasn’t as focused on Lizzie as the rest of the episodes in season three. Instead this chapter entitled “Zal Bin Hasaan” focused the spotlight on fellow Task Force agent Samar Navabi, a character that we know relatively little about. Navabi can be brusque and abrasive and doesn’t have any qualms about stating her opinion. While this episode didn’t expose a well-hidden soft and fuzzy side of her, we got at least a taste of what lead her on the path she’s chosen and her motivation behind certain decisions she’s made.
Before we forge ahead let’s take a minute to set the table and discuss what we do know about Samar Navabi. Raymond Reddington recruited Navabi to replace Meera Malik on the Task Force who got killed by Berlin at the end of season one. Samar was an operative for the Israeli intelligence/military agency Mossad, even though she was born and raised in Tehran, Iran an unusual pairing to say the least. We’re aware that she left Iran after killing a government official there and the murder charges haven’t gotten dropped. She’s remained an outsider since joining the Task Force, although events in the closing moments of this episode might change that dynamic.
A graphic informs us that we’re in Tehran, back in 1992 and we watch a girl about twelve and her younger brother planting some flowers in front of their home. A man briskly walks past them and into the house and seconds later we hear a woman scream. The girl runs in as the man leaves and she shouts for her mother but soon sees her parents got shot and lie dead on the floor. Her younger brother Shahin enters and asks her what’s going on and she blocks him from walking past her, not wanting him to see the carnage. She says to him it’s alright I’m here and will always be here. Shahin realizes his parents died and he breaks down crying in the arms of his sister Samar.
The doorbell rings at the Cooper home and Charlene asks Harold to answer it. He’s unpleasantly surprised to find Tom Keen’s on his doorstep and Tom tells him he’s got Karakurt in the trunk of his car. Cooper tells Keen to get the car off the street and put it in his garage. Harold goes out to join Tom and Keen’s not exactly sure if Karakurt’s knocked-out or dead. Turns out he’s playing possum and tries strangling Keen to death with his bare hands until Harold whacks the assailant in the hand with a wrench. Charlene walks in at that point and drops her coffee cup on the garage floor as she takes in the scene.
Reddington, Dembe and Liz stand in the kitchen of an upscale restaurant and watch a breaking news report on the set mounted to the wall. Six employees from Lazarum Systems International based in Annapolis, got abducted at gunpoint and the government’s classifying the incident as an act of terror on United States soil. Red chuckles and says the tip was right.
The head-waiter enters the kitchen and asks Raymond why he’s there and Reddington responds he wants the man to set-up a meeting. The man says he told Red on the phone it’s impossible and Raymond replies that he told him that’s an unacceptable answer. The man says that in most situations he’d gladly accommodate him, but there’s far too much heat on Reddington and the other party and turns to leave. Raymond stops the man in his tracks and asks what if he gives them Zal Bin Hasaan in return?
The head-waiter smirks at Reddington and says the CIA, Interpol and Mossad have hunted him for years and he thinks he can deliver him? Raymond responds he’s waiting for an answer to his question and the man replies sure you get us Zal Bin Hasaan and you’ll get your meeting. As he walks away Liz asks if that’s the tip he got that the elusive terrorist’s behind the abduction and Red responds she’s correct and now they just have to find him. To help reach that goal Reddington calls Navabi.
Raymond tells Samar that Zal Bin Hasaan and his crew’s behind the abduction as Lazarum’s encrypting the defense shield for Israel and that he’s currently in or around Annapolis. She says that’s impossible and Raymond says you thought the same thing in Cairo as he stood right behind you killing your partner and leaving you in the ICU. He tells her she’s got another chance to capture him and this time she’s got a secret weapon she lacked in their first go-round, him.
Remember how excited Ressler was in the previous episode when he acquired security-cam photos of Matias Solomon? They didn’t turn out to be the “smoking-gun” convincing Laurel Hitchin and Reven Wright that the Director had any connection to the Cabal. Peter Kotsiopolus says he’s never seen the man before in his life and Ressler says he’s your employee and he was on that plane to carry out your orders to kill Elizabeth Keen and Raymond Reddington.
He says that Red and Keen have discovered information harmful to his organization. The Director laughs derisively and says his organization’s the CIA. Hitchin reaches her limit and shouts enough, then says it’s obvious that they can’t work together so they should work their leads separately. She looks Donald in the eye and says if she hears about subterfuge or lack of sharing information, she’s going to make that person regret it.
Ressler tells Aram and Navabi that he presented their case and he thinks he bought them some time. Samar then tells the men about Reddington’s information that Zal Bin Hasaan’s behind the Lazarum employees getting abducted. Then she tells them the story about Cairo and Aram mentions that it’s believed he’s behind the explosion in Pishin back in 2009 that killed her brother.
Aram gets a call on his cellphone telling him to turn on the TV and a news anchor reports that the following footage was mass-mailed to news organizations and it’s a tape of one of the hostages reading a statement written by his captors. He says his name’s Michael Hastings and he got taken due to his participation of the Iron Dome project. He then reads we will find you and you will pay for your crimes, we’ll contact you again in two-hours. That’s all that’s written and he looks around him with a confused expression until a bullet in the back of his head kills him. Ressler says they’re taking this case.
Mojtabai approaches Donald and tells him that the guy across the room from them wearing a sweater-vest works for the Agency and hacked a phone-number that Aram believes belongs to Reddington or Keen and he’s monitoring it. Aram however hacked the CIA guy’s hack and now he also has the number and he’s also monitoring it. Ressler tells him to be diligent so the Director can’t set-up a hit on Lizzie and Raymond.
Samar keeps looking at the tape for clues and finds a big one. When the gun fired the muzzle blast back-lit his glasses and she sees an energy-plant in the reflection. Aram quickly identifies it as Sellinger Power and the raid’s on. Samar tells Ressler that Mossad deserves to be in on the bust and he tells her to alert them.
Tom and Harold try to calm Charlene down in the Cooper’s kitchen and Harold tells his wife they can’t call the police. Keen says he’ll get him to talk soon and then asks if they have any power-tools. Suddenly they hear a loud bang in the garage and they run in to find Karakurt’s escaped from the trunk and poisoned himself by drinking a soy-based jug of soap. (Karakurt’s allergic to soy-products and can die from ingesting them like people with nut allergies.) Charlene runs to one of her neighbors and brings back an epipen which negates the toxins in the assailant’s body. They duct tape him to a lawn-chair when he recovers.
The Mossad agents that arrive to assist in the raid include many of Navabi’s former teammates including her former commander Levi. They decide to begin the attack with a concussion bomb that Mossad conveniently has on hand. Ressler starts to question why they’ve got one then shakes his head and says he doesn’t want to know.
The joint-force attacks the building and seemingly kill all of the kidnappers, but Levi informs them that Zal Bin Hasaan escaped through a secondary blast as all the men they killed are too young to be him. Suddenly a Mossad agent tells Levi and Navabi they have to see this and he leads them to a man caged in a cage that’s so small he can only sit. Samar looks at the man then sees his tattoo and her voice breaks as she asks Shahin? The man responds sister and it turns out that Shahin wasn’t killed in the blast in Pishin.
Samar leaves the building and calls Red and asks if he knew her brother was alive and being held by Zal Bin Hasaan? Red says he’s happily surprised by the news and assures her that had he known he would have informed her. She tells him that Zal Bin Hasaan escaped and Raymond responds if he’s in country he must have gotten smuggled in as contraband. He says he’ll put out some feelers.
Shahin’s taken by ambulance as they all go to a nearby Mossad safe-house. After Shahin’s examined and given medical clearance, brother and sister sit down along with Ressler for Shahin to explain where he’s been for the last six-years. He goes back to that day telling Samar that he’d been filled with hope as student demonstrators had finally gotten government officials to meet with them in a meeting open to the public. He says he’d been with the demonstrators but the government set them up to make the people believe students were terrorists and they planted a bomb killing most in attendance. Donald asks why the Iranian government would sacrifice high-ranking officials and Shahin responds that’s how badly they wanted to destroy the student movement.
He says the regime hunted him so he was afraid to contact her. He moved to England and started a new life but got wind that the regime tracked him down so he came to the States. However shortly after moving here Zal Bin Hasaan sent some men to his apartment to capture him and had been there for six months.
Tom tells Karakurt the bad news is he’s going to live but if he exonerates Liz Keen will make him a soy-smoothie. Karakurt says something softly in Russian and when Keen leans in to try to hear him his prisoner head-butts him. Tom laughs and then we see Charlene and Harold sitting in the kitchen when they hear a bunch of banging. Charlene starts to get up but her husband holds her hand firmly and she sits down and sighs.
Kean beat his prisoner bloody with a medal-stool which is now badly bent and Karakurt’s lying on the floor on his side and breathing heavily. Tom says to him here’s your choice, we can let the Russians know you’ve framed them for the murder of the CIA agents and a United States Senator and deposit him at the Russian Embassy. He says we both know how that ends up, or you can cooperate with me.
Raymond and Liz visit a dry-cleaner named Farzin whom Red found out helped smuggle Zal Bin Hasaan into the country. He says that he must know where he’s hiding when he escaped from the FBI and Mossad. The elderly man says he knows nothing and Reddington says he better speak quick or Red’s going to shoot him in the knee-cap. Suddenly the dry-cleaner has an address for Reddington and they bid him goodbye.
We find out that it’s Tom’s cellphone that sweater-vest tapped as he calls Lizzie and tells her he’s got great news and to meet him at Wing Yee’s. Liz tells Reddington she’s going to meet him and Raymond tells her he thinks it’s a bad idea. Aram then calls Ressler and tells him about the call and Ressler tells Navabi he’s got to leave and get down there to keep Liz alive. As he leaves we see there’s trouble at the safe-house as one of the hostages is actually one of Zal Bin Hasaan’s men and he arms a bomb placed under a table.
Cooper calls Ressler to talk to him about Karakurt but Donald says he’s on his way to bust Liz and Tom. He says they’ll soon restore Liz and Cooper’s reputation and says he’ll speak with Harold later. Although we don’t find out until later Harold then calls Keen and he and Liz meet at another restaurant.
He tells her he’s got Karakurt and he’s going to cooperate and soon Liz will be able to walk freely again. He then says he made a huge mistake getting on his boat and leaving her when she was in trouble and promises to make it up to her. He then says he needs to head back to Karakurt.
Ressler and company arrive at Wing Yee’s to see that Liz and Tom aren’t there but Matias Solomon is and Donald recognizes him from the photograph. He pats him down and finds he’s carrying a Glock and Solomon says he’s got a permit to carry the gun as a concealed weapon. When he takes it out of his wallet Ressler drops it in Solomon’s soup and says it’s illegible and they’re heading to the Task Force.
Red and Dembe go the apartment and once inside split-up and start searching for Zal Bin Hasaan. Dembe heads into the bathroom and sees the sinks filled with whiskers. He opens the shower curtain and the man inside tries attacking him but Dembe soon subdues him and he’s on the floor when Raymond enters. Red’s expression shows us that something’s amiss and he asks the man who he is and he says he’s Zal Bin Hasaan.
Reddington says the man’s lying as Hasaan suffered third-degree burns all over his back as a result of a bomb he set-off a couple of years ago. He once again asks the man his name and once again he says that he’s Zal Bin Hasaan. Time for Raymond to call his buddy Brimley.
Samar tells Shahin since he entered the States illegally he’s going to get deported. Her brother says then he can return to England but Navabi tells him that he entered England illegally as well and they won’t allow him to stay there, they’ll deport him to Iran. Shahin says the regime will kill him and she tells him she’s already applied to try to get him political asylum as she won’t lose him again.
When it comes to Reddington’s menagerie of odd-ball sidekicks, Glen finder of lost persons is my personal favorite and I also have a soft-spot for Mr. Kaplan. That being said, it’s always a treat when ever the senior-citizen Marquis De Sade, Brimley pays a visit. We watch Raymond and Dembe standing in the hallway as we hear a loud whooshing of air coming from the bathroom. Brimley emerges holding a propane-torch and breathing heavily he says well he’s not Zal Bin Hasaan. Reddington asks him who is he then and Brimley says he could care less. He says the guy’s singing like Ethel Merman, he’s ready for you now and says he needs some air. Then Brimley straps his oxygen mask onto his face and slumps against the wall as Raymond and Dembe go to question the man.
Navabi’s in one of the back room’s of the safe-house when her phone rings. Red tells her to get all the hostages out and secure the safe-house Zal Bin Hasaan’s there and he planted a bomb. Just then the bomb explodes and the two terrorists in the room start shooting Mossad agents. Navabi’s able to hide and she watches as they take the hostages outside and shoot them. We then watch the man who planted the bomb pull back a curtain revealing Shahin and he says Zal Bin Hasaan the hostages were shot. He smiles and says that’s good and asks his soldier if he’s seen his sister. Navabi hears the conversation, she now knows the truth.
The Mossad agents are held at gunpoint as Zal Bin Hasaan walks into the room and says imagine all the money resources and manpower Mossad spends just to try to capture him. We then find out the real purpose of his operation, to obtain the hard copy of all the addresses of every Mossad agent, that’s locked in the safe in the house.
After they kill one agent, Hasaan asks whose the commander and Levi says he is. One of the men drags Levi to the safe and demands he punch in the code. Levi says none of his people will give it up and as the guy raises his weapon to kill Levi, Samar comes in and shoots him. They open the safe and set fire to the files but as they’re burning in the wastebasket Levi gets shot. Zal Bin Hasaan are too late to save the documents but they grab Samar and head to the docks.
Ressler starts interrogating Matias and he says he’s got diplomatic immunity and he was operating as an agent of the German government looking for one of the victims when he was on the plane in the previous episode. Suddenly the Director and one of his aides walk into the office and Peter says to Matias that Ressler believes they work together and he wants to prove they don’t. Ressler leaves and reminds the Director he’s being monitored as Wright and Hitchin are watching a close-circuit feed. Peter pulls out a multi-pronged fishing hook and he says to Solomon he’s going to swallow it. Wright wants to stop the Director, but Laurel tells her to allow him to proceed.
Samar says to her brother there’s nothing noble about what he’s doing and their parents would be ashamed. He says their parents were cowards and tried to weaken the government. She asks him if he planted the bomb in Pishin and he laughs and says that’s the day he became Zal the Warrior. As they head towards an old steamer, Raymond, Dembe and two of Red’s henchmen appear on the docks and take out the three of Hasaan’s men.
Raymond calls down to Samar and he tells her the decision’s hers to make. They can turn Shahin over to Mossad and he’ll die rotting in some hell-hole, or she can let Red take him and make his death count. She asks him what he means and he says saving Elizabeth Keen. She says take him and Shahin says Samar you promised to always protect me. She says I made that promise to my brother and he died in Pishin.
Donald heads to Harold’s and he finds out about Tom’s involvement and that Harold tipped him off about the set-up. Ressler and Keen start fighting in the street until Cooper breaks it up saying he’s got to live there. Ressler gets in his car and drives back to the Task Force headquarters.
Ressler and Navabi both disgusted with the world and life seek comfort in each other and start making out. They head to her place and are about to get intimate when the screen fades to black.
The Story Continues Next Thursday Night at 9:00 pm on NBC.
The latest episode of the NBC series “The Blacklist,” served up more red herrings than a Norwegian fishing trawler likely catches in a day’s excursion. What exactly is a “Red Herring“? It’s a clue given to readers and viewers from the author of the piece that purposely leads the audience astray. The show-runners loaded this chapter up with them, some easily detected by the viewer while others weren’t quite as obvious. The device led to an episode that had as many twists and turns as the road to Haleakala on the island of Maui.
The first person we see is Mr. Kaplan meeting with Raymond Reddington in an airplane hangar with corpses and blood all over the floor. Red tells Kate she’s got 30 minutes to clean up and document the evidence, Mr. Kaplan starts taking pictures of an apparently dead Elizabeth Keen lying near a pool of blood.
Suddenly we’re in somebody’s living-room as an excited teenage girl runs in with a huge smile on her face and telling her dad they got her. She turns on the TV and she and her father watch a breaking news-report from a network anchor announcing they’ve received reports stating former FBI Agent Elizabeth Keen died earlier the victim of a gunman who killed several people in an undisclosed area outside of New York City. We watch the report from a number of venues and we see Ressler’s reaction while he’s waiting for testimony to resume in a Presidential Committee hearing. We also see Samar, Aram’s and Harold Cooper’s reactions as they watch the report.
Kate turns to Red and she asks him if he’s sure this is what he wants? Red emphatically tells her to get the pictures to Sandquist at the Chronicle as he wants everybody to see these. Simple common sense tells us that Keen can’t be dead or the series ends with this episode. We then see a graphic that tells us we’re going back 12-hours to show us what lead up to this moment.
Tom Keen’s endeared himself to Asher Sutton, a trust-fund baby with a taste for the wild side and he informs Harold Cooper about their meeting. Sutton saw right through the con Keen put on at the underground gambling joint and that intrigued him. The two go out for some dinner and Sutton asks the guy he knows as Wainwright what’s his actual story. Keen’s utilizing a pretty convincing New York City accent and tells the rich-kid he used to make money cleaning toilets at Bronx University. He says he got raised by a single mom and he’s got a brother in prison then says he’s a townie, a nobody.
Sutton shakes his head and laughs and he says his great-grandfather was a hustler, a townie and just like Keen. He says the only interesting person in his family’s lineage was exactly like Tom then he invites him to his engagement party. Keen tries begging off saying he doesn’t want to impose and Asher insists on it saying he’ll be the only guy at the party he’ll look forward to talking to. Keen smiles and extends his hand and tells Sutton his real name’s Matt Buckley and he’s pleased to meet him.
Tom tells Cooper that Sutton’s paying some debt to the Russian mob and Harold says he’s been withdrawing 20 grand amount from his bank account. Keen plans to use Asher to meet his Russian connections then he can eventually meet Karakurt the spy that Cooper wants him to find.
Red returns to his friend’s theater where he and Liz are hiding and tells Keen they need to move. Lizzie asks if the Cabal’s tracked them down and Raymond says it’s worse than that Wendigo’s after you. Keen’s got no knowledge of who Wendigo is and Red tells her that he’s a nameless assassin and vigilante. Wendigo’s a lone wolf who dispenses “justice” to those he believes deserve it. Red says he’ll call her later and arrange for her to get picked up, she asks him where he’s going and he responds for help.
The AA support group that Donald Ressler attends is breaking up when Ressler feels a gun pressed to his back and a voice he knows all too well saying he needs Donald’s help. They walk to another part of the building and Reddington tells the agent he can turn around then tells Donald he’s impressed with his commitment to remaining sober. Raymond tells Ressler that he tried a stint with Alcoholics Anonymous, but he could accept that there was a more powerful being out there than him. Ressler smirks then takes out his cellphone and calls in an officer down report at the address they’re at. He tells Red that he’s got four minutes, Reddington replies he needs less than two.
Ressler’s back at the Task Force headquarters briefing Samar and Aram about Wendigo saying he’s allegedly responsible for some unsolved murders on the Bureau’s docket. Wendigo apparently executed a Guatemalan strong-man and some heinous character from South America. Navabi says the reason the cases aren’t solved is because both guys were monsters. Donald says as despicable as they were, both men became the subject of massive searches and no law-enforcement agency found them. However Wendigo found them and he’ll find Keen as well.
Reddington calls Lizzie to know that he’s got a car and two guys waiting for her downstairs. As she walks out of the building one of Raymond’s guys get picked off by a sniper, the other guy tries to take out the sniper but he never gets a shot off. Keen’s able to get to a car and hot wire it then pulls the rearview mirror from the windshield and holds it above her head so she can drive while lying down on the seat. She abandons the car ten blocks away and escapes.
Raymond calls Aram and asks what’s going on and the tech-expert says that two bodies were found at the scene and Lizzie escaped. Red then asks what Aram knows about Wendigo and he replies he’s really not supposed to talk about that with Reddington. Raymond says he’ll give him five seconds and by the time he gets to three Mojtabai’s sputtering that they found the master gunsmith that creates guns for Wendigo. His name’s Zachary O’Toole and he goes by Zed, Raymond disconnects and starts researching the gunsmith. Amar’s asking if Red’s going to count down to zero unaware Raymond’s hung-up.
One of the best aspects of this series remains the people they bring in as guest-stars and reoccurring characters and another great choice appeared on the screen in this episode. Veteran Screen and TV actress Christine Lahti portrayed the President’s Chairman of National Security Laurel Hitchin, longtime friend of Deputy Attorney General Reven Wright. We meet Hitchin as Wright and Ressler arrive for Donald to testify in front of a Presidential Commission on trying to capture Elizabeth Keen. Hitchin tells Donald not to be nervous the commission just wants to hear the truth.
The President’s adviser asks Donald if he’s attempting to interfere in the search for Keen and Ressler responds absolutely not. She then asks him if he’s sharing information with the CIA and Ressler admits he hasn’t. She says after 9/11 the Intelligence Agencies in the United States adopted a policy of working in cooperation with each other and asks why Ressler’s not adhering to that policy. Donald says because the CIA Director’s rumored to be the head of the Cabal that could be the actual source of the attacks blamed on Keen. She responds that’s just rumor and asks if the Director deserves the benefit of the doubt and Donald asks her in return what about Elizabeth Keen?
Hitchin asks Ressler if he believes Elizabeth Keen’s innocent and he responds his job’s to capture her not to determine guilt or innocence. She says he’s avoiding the question and he goes back to saying his only thoughts on the case involve apprehending the fugitive. She stops and smiles and asks him to give her his honest opinion, he knows Keen does he believe she’s innocent. Donald looks her in the eye and says he does that Liz Keen’s not a terrorist.
Liz realizes Navabi’s likely scouring the scene of the shooting for clues and as she walks to the park to meet Red she calls Samar and tells her she believes the sniper fired from the roof of a certain hotel. Navabi and a forensic guy find the bullet inscribed on the back of the casing Psalm 1:1, she tells Keen that Wendigo found her once and he’ll find her again. Lizzie hangs up and keeps walking to the park. The forensic guy asks Navabi what’s Psalm 1:1 and Samar quotes “Blessed is he that walks not in the council of the wicked.”
Red picks her up and Lizzie’s terrified, she tells Raymond the bullets were so close she heard them whizzing past her head. He tells her he’s got good news that Dembe contacted him, Lizzie asks if he called and Reddington explains they’ve got a protocol set-up and Dembe’s put it into motion. He says Dembe will meet them later that day, but we know that it’s actually Vargas that responded instead of Dembe.
They drive over to Zachary O’Toole’s place and burst down the door both brandishing weapons. Red asks where’s Wendigo and the guy asks who they are. Red asks again and this time Zed says he doesn’t know. Reddington laughs and says would you look at that a 416 Rigby Mauser and fully loaded, he then says that weapon can take out an African Bull Elephant and it came in handy on a trip to Africa. Liz asks him if he shot an elephant and Red exclaims God no, he shot a poacher who tried shooting the elephant. Suddenly Zed provides them with an address that Wendigo stayed at before.
They head to the apartment and there’s a radio playing country music as Wendigo’s producing more of his unique bullets. Lizzie tries picking the lock and the assassin hears the sound above the music picks up his rifle and fires it through the front door then he climbs out the kitchen window and onto the fire-escape. Keen tells Raymond to take the stairs while she follows the suspect. He climbs up to the roof and starts running and he tries to use another door to escape but it’s locked.
He jumps down to a lower roof and Keen follows him, he then attempts to leap between two buildings and he’s got a tentative grip on the edge of the other rooftop. Red reaches down and braces him and tells the assassin to grab his arms. Suddenly the guy says I’m not the only one, there are lots of us and they’ll all be coming. Reddington asks him what he’s talking about and the killer says even if you kill me she still isn’t safe one of the others will get her. Raymond asks him whom he’s referring to and the vigilante just starts laughing and Red lets him fall to his death on the streets below.
Wendigo spoke the truth with his last words, Keen’s problems were far from being over as there’s a bounty of over 700 grand on her head. Aram tells Samar that he was just sent a link from the NYPD that shows a Dark-Net site DeadNotAlive.Org is a crowd-sourcing site that’s funded by haters. The more hated a figure is the more crowd-funding they get for the bounty. He says every nut-job’s going to be trying to collect that bounty and Navabi asks how they get the money. Aram says that the killer has to give the time, the place and the method of execution plus leave a signature marker, Wendigo used Psalm 1:1 as his.
Keen’s sitting on a bench in the park with a laptop looking at the site and she looks around her and imagines everyone she sees is a potential assassin. Red puts his hand on her shoulder startling Keen and he says it’s time to meet Dembe. They walk towards the street and Mr. Vargas gets out of the car they expected Dembe to emerge from. Reddington asks where’s Dembe and Vargas somberly shakes his head and Raymond asks what happened?
We join “Matt Buckley” at Asher Sutton’s engagement party as Sutton’s fiancé Gwen Hollander says to Keen that he must be Asher’s new BFF. She says she fell in love with her fiancée at first sight and she puts up with him collecting unusual personalities even at her engagement party as long as she’s assured of one thing. That he’ll never cause any harm to the man she loves and Matt gives her his word. She gulps down her last sip of wine and says get started then I need a refill. He laughs and says she’s got it.
When he arrives at the bar to get Gwen her refill he sees Asher’s dealing with some low-level enforcer sent by the Russians. Sutton says to the guy he’ll get the money Friday and the goon responds the money’s due right then. “Matt Buckley” asks if everything’s alright and Sutton quickly says all’s good, the enforcer then says he said no problem. Keen smiles and says he heard him and it’s time for the goon to leave. He glares at Sutton as he walks away and says this not over. “Matt Buckley” says it looks like he made a friend and Sutton replies he wished he’d stayed out of the conversation.
Back at the park Mr. Vargas lies to Reddington saying he stayed with Dembe until the end and that if he attempted to bring back Dembe’s body they both have gotten killed. Camera strays from the three of them for a moment and we see a well dressed man appear to make eye contact with Reddington and leaves something among the flowers. Red grabs Vargas face between his hands and says we will avenge this good man’s death. Something seems off Red would be far more devastated if he truly believed Dembe died. Lizzie suddenly gasps and tells Red she’s seen the symbol from the website that’s got the bounty on her head.
They return to Zed’s the gunsmith’s place and Liz says he gave up Wendigo because he plans to kill her himself and she points to the doodle of the symbol on his desk blotter. He stammers and stutters and Reddington asks who created the website and he says he doesn’t know and Raymond shoots him in the thigh. He screams in pain and says all he knows is the creator goes by the name of Gavrilo Princip, Raymond politely thanks him and then shoots him dead.
The Task Force arrest Gavin Delgado, Princip’s actual name and confiscate his computers. He tells the agents they’ve got no right seizing his computers as their his intellectual property. It doesn’t stop the agents for locking up the laptops or Delgado.
Red gives Vargas the keys to the car and tells him to call Edward to get the jet ready. Vargas makes a call and says this is Mr. Vargas. Mr. Reddington would like you to meet us at Garden Avenue Airfield. Matias Solomon’s actually on the other end of the phone and says he likes the name Edward, then tells his assistant to get the car ready.
CIA Director Kotsiopolus give his testimony to the commission and Hitchin’s asks him why he believes that the FBI hasn’t shared information with the Agency. The Director replies because the case involves Special Agent Elizabeth Keen. She asks him if he shares Donald’s belief that Keen’s innocent and he almost chortles as he says she’s a Russian Sleeper Agent. He says she admitted as much to Ressler when she scaled the wall of the Russian Embassy and asked for asylum.
She asks Kotsiopolus about the Cabal and he says it’s a discredited relic and mentions an article debunking it in the Washington Post. Hitchin says she doesn’t rely on columnists for information, the Director says the Fulcrum got published by Raymond Reddington getting it to the media. He says Reddington lacks any credibility and says the attacks in Washington emanated from Russia and the cold-war has re-escalated. He says in times of trouble people look for simplistic explanations and the idea of the Cabal suits that purpose. He says he’s flattered to be accused of heading up a shadow-government that controls world events but that isn’t true. The Cabal simply doesn’t exist.
Vargas, Keen and Reddington arrive at the hangar and as soon as they leave the car Red asks Vargas where’s Edward and then asks him what he did as gunmen start to surround them. Once again this just feels wrong, Raymond Reddington didn’t elude capture from every law-enforcement agency on the planet by being this dumb.
Matias Solomon walks out of the jet and asks what’s the story with you too anyway, that’s what everybody wants to know? Some think it’s a daddy/daughter thing while others believe it’s a May/September romance, I like to think of it as a bit of both. Liz and Raymond are still holding their weapons though guys are encircling them with guns aimed at their heads. Mr. Solomon says that at best Red might kill one or two and Keen might do as well, but they’ll still both die. Raymond tells Keen to drop her gun and the second time he says it she does. Once again something seems wrong, Raymond Reddington’s going out with a whimper instead of a bang?
Navabi’s over her head trying to question Delgado so Aram goes into talk to him. He tells Delgado to take Lizzie’s name off the site and he refuses to saying the masses control the process. Aram threatens to knock out the site with a virus and Delgado laughs at him and says that people put millions into the site because he’s thought of every bad case scenario. Aram says they realize he can’t run with the money and suddenly realizes Delgado needs the person to put the bounty on Keen’s head to remove her name from the site.
At the airfield Matias has one of his thugs bring over a metal table and two other guys try putting Liz on it. She kicks one of them in the face but they finally pin her down. Raymond says to Matias to call the Director if he allows Liz to live he’ll give up all the incriminating documents on him that he possesses. Solomon’s eyes grow wide as he gets in Reddington’s face and says not to concern himself with the director any longer, he now belongs to him.
Back at the engagement party, Gwen and Asher are discussing his problems with the Russian’s when “Matt Buckley” comes over and wants to help with the situation. Sutton asks him if he know of underground boxing tournaments and Keen replies that’s like human dog-fighting and advises him to refrain from betting on that. Asher says he fought in one and was supposed to throw the fight but he won. Lots of bad people lost lots of money. Gwen then says Sutton paid them all back but when they found out about his family they demanded 20 grand a month. Asher says it will never stop but “Matt Buckley” says it ends now as I’ll stop them. Sutton says no, however Gwen tells him to shut-up and asks Keen his proposal.
Matias Solomon pulls out a long knife and says the reason people fear him so much as he keeps going more and more over the top in his crimes. He says he’s going to carve up Keen artistically, like a great chef would fillet a salmon. Lizzie screams and suddenly there’s the sound of machinery in the hangar. A dead man’s at the controls of a forklift which confuses everybody. Suddenly Dembe struts in carrying an automatic weapon in each hand and then either kills, wounds or scares away all the gunmen. Vargas sits on the floor with a bullet wound in his side and Red walks over to him and shoots him at point-blank range. Dembe’s shirt’s covered in blood and when he and Red embrace he sinks to the floor.
Next scene opens with Dembe on a stretcher with an oxygen mask on his face and paramedics are going to put him in an ambulance and Raymond gives them the address of a safe-house he secured to treat Dembe. He tells Dembe that they’re going to get him well and he kisses him on top of his head. Red calls Aram and asks if Lizzie’s names off the website and Aram responds that until the person that set her up as the target thinks she’s dead her name will remain on there. Hence the reason that Mr. Kaplan faked Lizzie’s death.
Raymond’s able to get the address and name of the person that put Keen’s name on the site, he’s Arioch Cain the father of the teenage girl we saw early in the show. Red and Liz arrive at his door and he looks at Lizzie and says your dead. She asks him why he put her name on the site and he’s totally clueless. Suddenly we hear his daughter Blair says she’s responsible that she wants Keen dead.
Blair’s mom died in the explosion that Karakurt created and pinned the blame on Liz last season. She promises the teenager that she had no involvement in the explosion or the death of Blair’s mom. She tells her that she lost her mother when she was a little girl and she still dreams about the sound of her voice and the way she smelled. She looks Blair in the eyes and says that she’ll do what ever she can to bring her mother’s killer to justice. Blair removes Lizzie’s name from the site.
The Russian enforcer drives up and Sutton gives him an envelope filled with cash. When he takes off “Matt Buckley” steps up to the drivers window and tells the thug that’s the last payment his people will get from Sutton. From now on they deal with him. The guy responds they will come for you and Keen says he’s counting on it, dude draws his pistol and “Matt Buckley” grabs it and kills the driver.
Reven Wright comes to get Ressler and Laurel Hitchin has also arrived. Donald says he hopes the President’s adviser’s stopped by with good news when we hear the Director raving about the lollipop that Laurel gave him. She says that from that point onward they’ll share information. Ressler says he disagrees with the way she’s resolved it and she smiles and says the President favors it.
Asher and Gwen go to meet with “Matt Buckley” and he says he took care of it. Sutton asks him if that’s blood on his collar and Gwen asks him for the keys to his trunk and he tells her please not to look in there. She takes the keys out of his hand and opens the trunk and sees the enforcer’s corpse, “Matt Buckley” says he told them he’d handle it.
The Story Continues Next Thursday Night at 9:00 pm on NBC.
Raymond Reddington must be an amazing chess player, due to his ability to think 10-12 moves ahead of his opponent. That skill served him well as he eluded the FBI and other Law Enforcement Agencies, before making a deal with the Bureau two years ago. That gift’s going to be crucial for Red to obtain his goal in season three of the NBC series “The Blacklist,” clearing Lizzie Keen’s name and restoring her reputation. Possibly getting her reinstated at the Bureau, but at the very least getting Keen her life back.
Prepare yourself for a long battle, this situation’s not going to straighten out in the next few episodes. Keen and Ressler won’t be sharing drinks at the FBI Task Force Christmas party, if they ever share them again. The second episode dealt with Reddington getting a strategic piece of his plan in place. His move won’t help he and Liz next week, it’s a long-term maneuver, also helping a victim of the justice system gain their freedom.
The action kicks off minutes after the conclusion of the previous episode, as Liz Keen’s seeking refuge in the Russian Embassy. A middle-management type starts questioning her and she demands to speak with the official in charge, the guy tries to stall her so she stands up in front of the security camera. She looks directly into the and says her name’s Masha Rostova and she’s a deep-cover agent for the Russian Spy Agency the FSB. She says she’s completed her assignment and now seeks asylum. Two men watch her on a monitor behind a closed-door and one picks up the phone.
The Russian Ambassador to the United States is engaging in a little afternoon-delight with the wife of a US Senator, whose also a TV News Anchor. The two are having fun in the tub when his cellphone rings, he goes out to answer it and sees Red sitting in his hotel-room holding a pistol at him. The Ambassador starts to call his security team, when Raymond suggests the Kremlin wouldn’t look kindly on the scandal that getting caught with his shower-mate would cause. Reddington tells the Ambassador he wants real-time reports on every move Lizzie makes while in the Embassy.
Ressler and Samar Navabi are with an FBI SWAT-Team outside of the Embassy and Ressler’s boiling mad. Navabi tells him that the State Department’s requested that they send Keen outside, but they’ve refused. Donald says if a Middle-Eastern Terrorist was in the Embassy they’d go in guns blazing, Samar reminds Ressler that Keen doesn’t fit that description.
Inside the Embassy Alexander Raskovich, the head of the FSB for North and South America, introduces himself to Keen. He tells her he knows the names and faces of all of his agents and she’s not one of them. So he asks her what she really wants and she tells him that she and Russia have been falsely accused of treacherous acts by the Cabal. She tells him the purpose of the Cabal’s to reignite the Cold-War between Russia and the USA. He tells her he’ll speak to his superiors in Moscow and for her to relax.
The Ambassador tells Red that Liz will get granted immunity, but they’re transferring her to Moscow. Reddington realizes that it’s a set-up by the Cabal and Liz will get killed before she makes it to Russia. He calls Ressler and tells him to make sure she doesn’t leave the Embassy. Donald tells him it’s too late they just took off and Raymond tells him the man that arranged for Russian agent Karakurt into the USA is behind this flight. Ressler realizes that Lizzie’s going to get killed unless he can stop her from getting to the airport. To confirm that to the viewers we see one of the security guys calling Mr. Solomon and telling him the package’s being delivered.
Donald starts ramming the limousine from the side with his SUV, the security guy in the back with Keen tries to shoot him but Liz wrestles away the gun. The driver crashes into a cement barricade and Ressler leaves his vehicle to try to retrieve Keen. Ressler and the security guy are aiming at each other when Keen takes out the security guy from behind, when Donald finishes his fight with another guy, Lizzie’s run away on foot. She heads to a park and punches in her location into her cellphone and perhaps Mr. Kaplan sent her an address to head to.
Deputy Attorney General Reven Wright’s trying to convince Task Force Director Harold Cooper to resign from the FBI. She says the Bureau will give him his full pension and retirement benefits and they’ll decline to file charges against him. Wright says that even if Harold wins by some miracle, he’ll finish out his career as a pencil pusher in some out-of-the-way locale. Reven says Harold deserves better than that and he says that’s right, he does.
The address leads Liz to a diner where Red’s already seated in a booth. In the booth ahead of him an abusive husband’s starting to get rough verbally with his wife. He notices Red’s glaring and asks what you looking at old man? Keen walks in at that second, which likely stops a confrontation from occurring. Raymond asks her if she’s okay and she says she’s not that Ressler just tried to kill her. Reddington informs her that Donald actually saved her life, if she’d gotten on that plane she’d be dead within hours.
Suddenly we can hear the wife telling her husband he’s hurting her and Red glares again, while Liz turns around to see what’s going on. The guy again screams at Reddington and Keen to mind their own business. Raymond gets up from his booth and walks over to the couple’s booth and starts to sit down next to the husband. The dude says you’re dead old man, then turns white when he realizes Red’s got a pistol pressed into his gut.
Raymond says to the guy that he’s obviously clueless about how to talk to a lady but he and his friend are having an important conversation. He concludes that the guy should finish his muffin, but if Red hears him say anything to his wife other than please or thank you, he’ll drag him into the restroom and wash his mouth out with soap. If that doesn’t work he’ll cut out his filthy tongue with the butter knife on the table.
Aram Mojtabai receives a tip where Liz and Red are and they all head to the diner where they’ll coordinate with the SWAT Team. Red and Liz see the police cruisers pull up in front of the diner and checks and sees they’re behind the diner as well. He goes into his dufflebag and pulls out a shotgun and shoots out all the lights and windows on the cruiser. He then locks the diner’s doors and apologizes to all the diners, he says if everybody remains calm and in their places they’ll have a great story to share at parties.
The driver of the limousine from the Russian Embassy’s the same guy that called Mr. Solomon and as he recuperates in the hospital, Solomon pays him a visit. He injects the guy with some toxin and the man starts convulsing and soon dies quickly after. One less person who can possibly tell the FBI and the Justice Department about the Cabal.
The SWAT-Team and the FBI Task Force converge on the diner and Ressler puts his pistol down on the hood of a car and says he’s heading in there. He goes to the front door and Red’s got all the occupants forming a human-shield across the windows and doors. Donald starts calling for Liz and Reddington heads to the door toting his shotgun and tells Ressler to get a pen and paper for his list of demands. Donald keeps talking to Keen saying he knows she won’t hurt anybody. Red puts the shotgun to a young man’s head and says that he will.
Raymond tells Donald he’s got three demands, that he restore power to the diner, that he get them an armored vehicle that will give them safe passage to any airport of his choosing. His third demand’s to get him Marvin Gerard, they’ve got 90-minutes or Reddington will start killing a person every half hour.
We find out from Navabi that Gerard’s a former attorney in prison for kidnapping his son. He arrives in a police-van wearing his orange-prison jumpsuit. Samar asks him if he’s apprised of the situation and he responds he got pulled out of his cell thrown into a van and treated roughly, but received no explanation. She tells him Reddington wants to engage his services and wants him to wear the jacket, pants, shirt and tie he provided. The FBI wants him to wear a wire, he says he’s going to ask me right away and I’m going to say yes but he agrees to wear it.
Gerard gets to the door and tells Raymond he’s got a parole hearing next week and this will ruin his chances of getting paroled. Red sets him up in a booth with a laptop and tells him to go through the contents of the Fulcrum and see if he can find anything to use against the Cabal. Liz asks Reddington why he brought him there and Red replies that Gerard’s the best at doing what makes lawyers so loathsome, finding loopholes.
Red then tells Liz the real story of Marvin Gerard. A brilliant young-man he graduated at the top of his class from a prestigious law-school and was the youngest man named as a federal judge. He had the perfect life, but then his marriage broke up and his wife started abusing their son. Gerard tried to go through every legal channel to gain custody of his son, but his ex-wife came from a very influential family. Then a friend of her wife started giving the teen barbiturates and other pills and the kid soon got strung out. Gerard kidnapped his son to save him.
However he soon got tracked down, the boy was returned to his mother and Gerard got disbarred and imprisoned. A year later their son hung himself and died at the age of just 15. This was not a case of justice getting served, this was the system working against a father to save his son’s life.
Some of the diners are starting to get edgy and the abusive husband makes the stupid mistake of trying to get Liz’s gun tucked into the back of her pants. Lizzie beats the crud out of the guy and halls off and whacks the diner’s owner when he tries to pull her off. Keen then keeps kicking the guy in the ribs until Reddington points the shotgun at her and yells that’s enough. Liz immediately aims at Raymond he walks over to her and slowly takes the pistol out of her hand. Keen looks around the diner and sees all the customers looking at her and recoiling in horror.
Reddington calls Ressler and asks what’s going on with his other two demands and tells Donald he’s got sixty seconds to restore the power to the building. He thinks Reddington’s bluffing, but the SWAT-Team commander orders they get turned on. He shows Ressler and Navabi his rescue plan and says it’ll cause little collateral damage, Samar says they can’t endanger any of the hostages.
The woman starts crying that her husband can’t breath and Reddington says Liz likely broke some ribs and may have punctured a lung. She tries to help but the woman tells her to stay away from her husband and she looks totally terrified. Liz backs off and shrinks into a corner.
Gerard calls Red over and tells him to read four lines from one of the documents. Reddington reads it and looks incredulously at Marvin and asks if that can be correct. Marvin says it looks like it to him and Red’s jazzed that he’s got something to use.
The woman says her husband’s getting worse and Lizzie says that he needs medical attention. Raymond says that within half an hour he’ll be in Ressler’s hands and tells her they’re leaving. He then tells all the customers that their afternoon together has concluded and has them all walk into a walk-in refrigerator. The diner’s owner, his waitress, Red, Keen and Gerard go into a walk-in freezer that has a hidden wall. Behind that’s an elevator which takes them to some money-laundering operation the diner’s owner runs. Soon Gerard, Liz and Red are out on the street blocks from the diner.
Marvin says to Reddington this will delay him getting parole for another ten-years and now his fiancé will leave him. Raymond asks Gerard if he likes Tahiti and then tells him that’s where he and his fiancée will now live on a banana farm Reddington owns. He tells Marvin he’s a free man and he’s going to keep finding nuggets in the Fulcrum, right then a limousine pulls up with Marvin’s fiancée in it.
Keen and Reddington are drinking some brandy in what looks to be a very posh apartment somewhere in the Metro-D.C. area. He tells Lizzie they put an important piece in place, they’re not going to fight their way out, they have to think their way out.
Keen says she can’t stop thinking about the man she pummeled or the way his wife looked at her. She said she’s never seen that kind of terror in someone’s eyes and asks Raymond how he deals with people being intimidated and scared by him. Red chuckles and says when he was a boy he dreamed of becoming a sea-captain, Liz asks why he didn’t pursue it. He says we don’t have time for every silly idea we think of and Keen says she thinks he would have made a great captain.
Red smiles at her and says he can understand her being concerned with how people perceive her. However he says if it gives her any consolation, when he sees her… He smiles and she does as well as we hear Graham Nash singing the CSN&Y classic Our House. Red throws open the door to the night sky filled with stars and water below them, they’re actually living in a storage container on the waterfront. He points out Polaris to Lizzie and says that’s how ancient sea-captains found their way home. He tells her when he looks at her he sees his way home.
The story doesn’t conclude with the lovely montage. The music fades out as the camera focuses on Mr. Solomon whose taking his shirt off. He says your granddaughter received the antidote, now you need to give something to me. He reaches into a bag and pulls out a sock and starts filling it with billiard-balls. He says nobody knows where Red’s hiding, but I bet you do. The camera pans to Dembe, tied up on the floor as Solomon starts swinging the sock.
Still not finished, Ressler’s walking into his apartment when he feels a presence behind him and turns around with his weapon drawn. The figures wearing a gray hoodie like Liz wore and in the shadows he can’t make out the person’s face at first. Suddenly he focuses on the face and realizes it’s Tom Keen. Tom says we have to talk and Ressler lowers his weapon.
The Story Continues Next Thursday Night at 9:00pm on NBC.
Season Three of the NBC series “The Blacklist,” picks up seconds after the conclusion of season two as former FBI Agent Liz Keen and Raymond Reddington, attempt eluding capture by a manhunt that’s shut down all of Washington D.C. Lizzie’s former partner Donald Ressler heads the effort, coordinating law-enforcement agencies to catch the duo before they get out of the city. Ressler’s attempting to ignore his personal feelings for Keen and trying to focus on the fact she’s a fugitive from justice. He’s addressing the team assembled around him, emphasizing that they have to capture the pair before they leave the city, or they’ll be chasing ghosts.
Back at the Task Force headquarters Aram Mojtabai tells Agent Samar Navabi that he believes Keen’s innocent, then reveals he’s found the vehicle they’re trying to escape in. Navabi and Aram get a visual image of the silver van they’re in and they watch it go into a tunnel, but it doesn’t come out the other side. Rewinding the video-feed they realize that the van went onto a truck carrying new-cars in the tunnel and eluded capture.
Ressler heads back to the Task Force center and starts questioning the Task Force’s former director Harold Cooper about Liz shooting United States Attorney General Tom Connolly. Cooper tells the agent that Connolly worked for the Cabal and tried to make Harold believe he was dying, to put Cooper in a compromising position. He tells Ressler however, he ordered Liz not to shoot the Attorney General. She wouldn’t listen however as Connolly threatened to take down everybody on the Task Force, including Donald.
The pair get out of the van at a trucking facility, each wearing police uniforms and they jump into a Metro-Police cruiser. They then drive to a bar owned by a longtime associate of Red’s, but there’s a wildcard Reddington wasn’t expecting. The guy’s sister Tiffany’s now living with him, after her husband died in Denver about a month before. The guy tells Red that his sister’s trustworthy and Raymond gives her the benefit of the doubt. That turns out to be a rare mistake on Reddington’s part. They go into the bar’s kitchen step down into an underground bunker, hidden beneath a trap-door. Red tells Kean this is where they’ll wait until the Troll Farmer’s ready, she’s got no idea what he’s referring to.
Young woman’s in her kitchen fixing a meal when she hears a strange man’s voice on her baby monitor. She grabs a kitchen knife and runs in, seeing a strange man holding her infant. He asks her which toy Ellie would like to take on her trip and decides on a panda. The woman asks the man what he want’s and he replies he wants her father and he’ll text her instructions. She tries to attack him with the knife, but he easily pushes her to the ground. We’ve just met the “BIG BAD” for season three, a man who works for the Cabal named Mr. Solomon.
Down in the bunker Red and Lizzie watch a newscast on an old black and white TV, the newscaster says although the Government accuses Keen of being a Russian spy, several major newspapers claim that’s not the case. We then cut to a press-conference being held by the Director. Liz suddenly realizes that Red gave the Fulcrum to journalists and the Director’s attempting to put these reports to rest.
He tells his audience that in the 65-years that the CIA has had a Director of National Clandestine Services, the Director’s identity’s never been revealed during their tenure. However he received permission from the President to reveal himself and to challenge these irresponsible accusations, that not only smear his name but threaten National Defense. He then asks whose word will you believe, two fugitive criminals or him. Liz shuts off the set and says if she didn’t know better, she’d believe him.
The press conference didn’t sit well with the other members of the Cabal and Mr. Solomon pays the Director a visit. He reminds the Director he convinced the other member Red was bluffing about possessing the Fulcrum and he was very wrong. He says that puts our plans in jeopardy, the Director corrects him and says my plans. Solomon tells him they were his plans, but no longer as he’s lost the Cabal’s confidence. He then tells the Director he’s dancing on the edge of a razor-blade, as the Cabal control just how long he’ll remain breathing.
Red hears Tiffany and her brother arguing upstairs and Raymond grabs Tiffany’s cellphone and hits redial, reaching the FBI Tip-Hotline. Reddington tells Lizzie they’re leaving but the FBI have arrived, he grabs the brother and tells Tiffany to get rid of them or her brother dies. They head to the bunker as Ressler and a SWAT Team burst through the door.
Tiffany denies calling the FBI and the SWAT-Team announce the house’s clear, Donald heads into the kitchen but doesn’t notice anything amiss. They’re about to leave, when Ressler tells one of the officers to call back the number that left the tip and Tiffany’s phone rings from beneath the bar. Donald tells them to come up and when they don’t respond he throws a smoke-bomb down into the bunker. The agents climb down into the bunker only to realize Red and Lizzie escaped through a grate.
The pair reemerge on the street and open a valet parking box and grab the keys for a two-seater Porsche. Lizzie figures the owner lives alone or maybe with a girlfriend and his apartment’s likely empty. They can get his address off his registration in the glove compartment.
Turn’s out the young woman’s Isabella, Dembe’s daughter and Ellie’s his granddaughter. He asks her to describe the man and then asks what he wanted. Isabella tells her father that the man wanted him, Dembe swears to his daughter that he’ll get his granddaughter back to her safe and sound.
Red and Lizzie hideout in the Porsche owner’s apartment and Keen dyes her hair honey-blonde, causing the usually loquacious Reddington to start stammering. She suddenly remembers the picture of her mother on Red’s desk and that she’s blonde in the photograph and she looks like her mother. Red then tells her they’ll have to change their plans and go see the Troll Farmer now.
Raymond explains that the Troll Farmer’s a master manipulator of social-media and creates events to hide other situations. Red claims that among the Troll Farmer’s accomplishments, he invented an Ebola plague in Atlanta to raise the price for a drug manufacturer’s stock. They’re about to leave when the housekeeper enters, Raymond assures the woman they won’t hurt her. They’re just going to take her cellphone and lock her in the bathroom.
Back at Task Force headquarters, Navabi tells Ressler she scoured all of the footage of the shooting of Connolly at a hotel and Cooper’s not complicit. She says that she knows Ressler helped Liz escape from the Task Force center, which lead to Connolly’s shooting. She says she doesn’t know why he won’t admit it, but she’s wary of him.
The Troll Master’s a young Asian guy and none too happy to see Red and Liz at his door a week earlier than he expected. He tries sending them away, but Red convinces him to let them in. Once inside we see the large-scale hacking network, that the man whose real name’s Chang operates.
Keen starts walking around the facility and bumps into a double of herself as a brunette, wearing a police uniform. The woman’s posing s Keen to try to redirect law enforcement officials and suddenly recognizes Lizzie and acts like she’s meeting Lady GAGA. She asks if Red’s there as well and practically squeals when Liz tells her he is. Then she asks what’s it like being a fugitive?
Ressler tells Harold that Charlene’s been released and he’s getting released as well, pending future questioning. Cooper says he’s glad Donald doesn’t think he’s complicit in Lizzie’s crime, but Ressler corrects him and tells him they’re both complicit as he allowed Liz to escape. He says he’s going to catch her though, because his job isn’t going with his gut. His job’s to enforce the law.
Lizzie tells Reddington when she was a little girl she fantasized that her mother was a prima-ballerina and would one day come for her. She then asks Red what happened to her and Raymond says at one time he thought he knew, but as the years have passed, he realized he had no idea where she is or what happened to her. Chang comes in and tells them that in an hour they’ll either be free, or in prison on charges of treason.
Liz and Red each are transported in a separate van to double their chances of one of them escaping and clearing Keen’s name. Chang tells Red that their business relationship’s over and tells Raymond he’s a crazy old man. Reddington and Liz are each hidden in secret compartments in each vehicle and they head north, while the Troll Farmer’s network sends out pictures over social media having them in five different locations in the south. Ressler realizes it’s a set-up and redirects all officers to the north.
Reddington gets past the perimeter and it appears Lizzie has too, as a radio-dispatcher tells all officers to stand down, as the duo’s in custody. However seconds later Ressler shows up and the search resumes. Raymond calls Liz and tells her that he’s made it out but she won’t make it, so she has to hide. She tells the driver to take her to 2650 Wisconsin Avenue.
Dembe’s outside a restaurant he knocks out the doorman, then heads inside and takes out two goons. He sees Mr. Solomon eating a shellfish dish and Solomon motions for him to sit down. After he finishes his meal, he takes out his cellphone and calls Isabella, he tells her to go to her front door and open it. Ellie’s in her little travel seat, he tells Isabella to take a picture with her phone and to send it to him. When the picture arrives, he thanks Isabella and shows the picture to Dembe.
Dembe asks what’s keeping him from ripping Solomon apart with his bare hands and the Cabal operative, explains he’s infected Ellie with a deadly toxin and if he dies, she’ll die a painful death within three weeks. He then gives Dembe a small gas mask attached to a vial and tells him to breath deeply. After about three breaths, Dembe’s knocked out.
Samar and Donald drive around trying to figure out where Keen’s headed, when they seize on the fact she’s accused of being a Russian spy and they head to the Russian Embassy. They get there just in time to watch Lizzie scale the fence and then tells the soldier’s her name’s Masha Rostova and she’s a Russian agent. She asks for immunity as the screen fades to black.
The Story Continues Next Thursday Night at 9:00 pm on NBC.
Revelations and a rather shocking ending, left fans of the NBC series “The Blacklist,” looking forward to the series’ return at the start of the new TV season. The episode concluding the second season of the show, radically shook up the dynamic that had been in place, as events and people forced others to make life-altering decisions. Whether things can go back to the way were, is unclear at this point. However, deep down this series has always lived in a state of flux, since Raymond Reddington turned himself into the FBI, stating that he’d only talk to a rookie agent named Elizabeth Keen.
This episode showed just how powerful the organization know as The Cabal, truly is in the Blacklist universe. Their reach seems to be limitless and can turn fiction into fact, by pressuring the right people. As this evening started, Liz Keen stood in the Cabal’s crosshairs, in retribution for saving Red’s life by threatening the Director, saying she’d give the Fulcrum to the New York Times, if he refused to call off the hit on Reddington.
We found out last week that Liz got infected with the designer virus that killed Senator Hawkins, as Red realized that the United States Attorney General Tom Connolly set her up. We join Keen seconds later in the Task Force headquarters, as Connolly and some agents from the Justice Department, come into the building to arrest Liz. Reddington tells Lizzie to run, but Keen’s determined to clear her name.
Connolly heads into Task Force Director Harold Cooper’s office and tells him that he’s arresting Keen for the murder of the Senator, an outspoken critic of Russia. He says that Keen’s mother was a KGB operative and that she and Reddington have subverted the Task Force, for Reddington’s own needs. Cooper tells the Attorney General he won’t help him and Connolly replies that all he needs are the results from Keen’s blood-test. Lizzie’s standing outside of Cooper’s office, hears Connolly and decides she best get out of there.
Connolly tells Harold he’s putting Deputy Attorney General Reven Wright in charge of the investigation and Cooper threatens to tell Reven everything about the Cabal. Connolly says that Harold would face perjury charges in the Harbor Master case, Charlene would get charged with leaking a Federal document and Harold’s participation in the clinical trial to fight his cancer ends. Cooper opens his bottle of pills and throws them on the floor and says he’d rather die than roll over. Connolly tells the two agents to escort Harold to his car, he’s relieved of duty until the investigation ends.
Keen tries to leave through the elevator, but as she reaches the ground level Connolly and his agents are waiting for her. The Attorney General says he and his men were just looking for her, they take her into custody. She’s interviewed by two men, that apparently are from the Justice Department and seem to have an extensive knowledge of her background.
They ask her where she was born, she responds she was raised in Nebraska, they inform her she was born in Moscow. They ask her what her birth-name is and she looks at them blankly, they tell her that it’s Masha Rostova and that her mother was a KGB operative and her step-father had a criminal background. They then ask her how long she’s spied for Russia.
Wright’s listening to the interview and calls over Ressler. She says she doesn’t know Liz, but she’s suspicious that Harold got put on Administrative leave. She tells Ressler she wants him in charge of the Task Force during the investigation. She’s aware of his boy-scout reputation, in regards to upholding the law and says she trusts his instincts.
Harold and Red meet in a church, Raymond tells Cooper that he’s got a man inside the Task Force Headquarters and he’s getting the power cut, which gives them two minutes to get Lizzie out of the building before the cameras reset. He tells Harold that he’s going to need him to guide her through the quickest way out of the building.
The power goes out at the Headquarters, one of the agents leaves the office to find out what’s going on. A bald man walks in and Keen attacks him and the agent that’s still in the office, suddenly a phone rings and the bald guy says the call’s for her. It’s Cooper on the phone, giving her instructions on where the secret tunnels are. She’s two feet from the exit and Ressler finds her and tells her not to run. She tells him she’s being set-up and she asks him to look the other way, he does and she escapes.
Red gets her to a safe house, where Cooper joins them and Red asks Lizzie to think when she may have had her routine diverted in the last 24-hours. Harold says Union Station when she got knocked out by a man she believes was Russian spy Karakurt. Red tells her to go check out the station’s surveillance footage and says he needs to attend a meeting, concerning another aspect of their war.
Liz gets to check out the surveillance tapes and she discovers that it wasn’t Karakurt that attacked her, rather it was the scientist and designer drug maker Leo Andropov that knocked her out. He then infected her with the virus through a nasal spray.
She goes to the restaurant owned by the Russian criminal informant she had asked about her mother Katerina Rostova. The man says he doesn’t remember anything about Rostova, as he’s on retainer from Red, who instructed him not to talk with any Federal agents about Rostova. However, she says she wants information on where Leo Andropov’s staying at. He gives her the address of the safe house he’s hiding in. She asks him once more about her mother, this time he says he can’t tell her anything.
She heads back to the house Red’s at and she asks him why he got the restaurant owner to remain silent about her mother? He replies that he’s a sin-eater, a man who swallows other people’s sins, so they don’t have to. She asked him what kind of sin could she have committed when she was four-years-old. She then says every time he acts like he cares about her, he then blows it by protecting himself.
She heads to ex-husband Tom’s boat and asks him to go with her to Andropov’s safe-house, he says they should both just sail away to a new life. She says that if she doesn’t take care of this now, she’ll be looking over her shoulder for the rest of her life. He agrees to go with her.
They enter the apartment, with guns drawn and see a laptop on the coffee table, Liz notices the hard drive attached and she puts it in her pocket. Suddenly they hear a noise from another room, Andropov has climbed out the window via the fire escape and hits the street, then takes off in his car. Tom and Liz go on a high-speed chase, that ends with Andropov getting killed by gunmen from the Cabal.
Red’s gathered eleven of whom he labels the best investigative reporters on the planet and gives them each a copy of the Fulcrum. He tells then to study it, investigate it and report it, once they’ve verified its veracity. He says that any of them that publish stories will become targets of the Cabal. However in the end the truth will come out.
Back at Tom’s boat, she takes a look at the hard drive and quickly realizes she’s found a treasure trove of documents that implicate the Cabal and Tom Connolly. The files even include Cooper’s medical records, as his doctor works for the Cabal. She calls Cooper and tells him they need to meet, she has information about his doctor.
Harold heads to his doctor’s office and tells the patient meeting with him to get out, then he grabs the doctor around the neck and tells him to let him know what kind of monkey business he’s pulled on Cooper. The doctor’s ready to wet himself and tells Harold they threatened his family and there wasn’t any clinical trial. He then informs Cooper, that the tests were falsified and he doesn’t have cancer. Andropov was supplying pills to make Harold feel sick, then altered the compound to make him feel better again. He says to Harold that he’s in perfect health.
Harold goes to confront Connolly, who tells Cooper he’s got a lot of stones showing up. Cooper takes him into a room and Keen appears, then tells Connolly he best not call his security team until he hears what they have to say. Cooper then tells Tom, that the doctor taped all their conversations and the tapes prove that Connolly blackmailed the doctor.
Liz then tells him he’s going to make this go away, he’s to exonerate her, drop any charges against Harold and Charlene and tell the Director to leave Reddington alone. He laughs and says why would he do that and Cooper says he’ll give the tapes to the Bureau or a Federal judge. Connolly says that Harold’s got no idea how deep and wide the Cabal’s river of influence is.
He then says that Keen and Cooper are heading to Federal prison, Samar Navabi’s to be extradited to Iran, where she’ll stand trial for killing an official. Reddington will get tried for treason and executed, Ressler’s Oxy addiction will get him drummed out of the Bureau. He’s even got things planned for Aram and Charlene.
Lizzie pulls out her pistol and aims it at Connolly, he laughs again and says he’s just a cog in a very big machine. If she kills him, they’ll put someone else in power who’s equally influential, they just won’t know their identity. Harold tells Liz to put the gun down, that if she shoots Connolly, they’ll get her for sure. She looks disoriented and then fires off a couple of shots into Connolly’s chest, killing him immediately. She suddenly remembers herself at four pulling the trigger of a gun, then runs out of the building.
Lizzie’s on the street when she gets a call from Ressler, pleading with her to turn herself in. He says he’ll help her any way he can, but she shot the United States Attorney General. She hangs up on Donald and calls Reddington, she tells him she killed Connolly and he tells her he knows and he’ll soon be there to pick her up.
Red and Dembe embrace, as Dembe won’t be making the trip with them. When he leaves the pair sit down and she tells Red she remembers the night of the fire and remembers that she shot and killed her father. He was hurting her mother and her pistol fell to the floor. The little girl picked it up and then shot her father.
She tells Red he truly is her sin-eater, he says he failed though, as he never wanted her to be like him. They are then picked up by a white SUV and driven away. We watch Harold taken into custody, Tom Keen leave the States on his boat and Ressler putting up a new wanted poster. Elizabeth Keen’s now on the Bureau’s ten most wanted list.
In the end it all disappeared under the guise of National Security, blunt words from a very powerful man, ended a Superior Court Judge and a Metro Homicide Detective’s quest to take on the United States Government’s Intelligence agencies, trying to prove FBI Agent Elizabeth Keen killed Harbor Master Eugene Ames. Actually, two powerful men made everything vanish, FBI Criminal Informant Raymond Reddington and the man who believes he’ll become the United States Attorney General, Tom Connolly. The NBC series “The Blacklist,” once again showed that perhaps this country’s greatest enemies, are Government Operatives, willing to make heinous crimes just go way, by eagerly waving the banner of National Security.
The show’s previous episode ended with Metro Homicide Detective Martin Wilcox, presenting Superior Court Judge Richard Renner, with a shell casing found on the boat she hid her ex-husband Tom Keen, trying to obtain the information to insure Red’s enemy Berlin’s demise. Ames wandered onto the wrong boat at the worst possible moment, paying with his life, strangled to death by Keen to protect Liz.
We start the episode off in Dresden, Germany as Keen’s infiltrated German racist gang “The Disenfranchised,” as the old man Tom’s impressed and two of his thugs, race after a dark-haired young man. The old man pushes the younger guy into a chain link fence and tells the man he wants his product and his money. He may live in the old man’s country, but he won’t allow immigrants to deal drugs in his territory.
Suddenly Keen runs at the guy and kicks the stuffing out of him, he tells the guy he’s got 30-seconds to give up his stash and cash, or the old man will kill him. The other guy responds he’ll die anyway, but Keen assures him if he gives them what they want he’ll live.
The man gives up his drugs, then Keen pats him down and takes his bankroll. The guy says I thought you said if I cooperated, you’d let me walk away, Keen says he told him he’d live, he never said walk away, then shatters the man’s leg.
Renner brings Liz into his chambers, shows her the bullet casing and tells her Samuel Aleko’s blood’s on it. She tells the judge she didn’t kill Eugene Ames and Renner says unless you tell me more, I’ll indict you for murder tomorrow morning. Liz refuses to talk and Renner says he’ll see her the next morning.
Red shows up at the Task Force headquarters and reveals to Samar and Aram that Keen’s still alive and tells them about Liz’s imprisoning her ex-husband to get information on Berlin. He then tells them that Tom’s new assignment’s working for “The Disenfranchised,” a gang he describes as racists masquerading as patriots to keep Germany pure. However their true agenda’s dealing drugs and according to Interpol, may have killed a dozen foreign-born competitors in the last year.
He tells them he’s heading to Germany to bring Keen home and to confess that Tom killed the Harbor Master. Ressler says he’s coming with him and Red says that’s not happening, but Tom promises to keep his mouth shut and stay out-of-the-way. Just then Liz arrives and Donald tells her what he and Red are doing, she asks to speak to Raymond privately.
He tells her he’s doing what ever he can to keep her safe, she cries if Red brings Tom back he’ll spend the rest of his life in prison and Raymond says one step at a time. Then she says Keen won’t come back, Red assures her he will.
The next scene takes us to Munich as Reddington’s visiting an old associate at a rehab-center. The man named Max tells Raymond he’s never worked with “The Disenfranchised,” but an old friend was a gun-runner for them. Unfortunately he’s unavailable to talk to as they killed him last year, but he says they’ve got a new guy on board that hooked them up with Austrian arms-dealer Franz Becher. He says if Red puts some money in Max’s canteen fund at the Rehab Center, he’ll get him information.
The next day Ressler and the BMI raid where Becher’s weapons are stored, the German organization impound the weapons, making Red a critical figure in the Austrian getting his shipment back from the BMI.
Reddington visits Klaus who’s covered in body piercing’s and getting a tattoo applied, Raymond tells Becher he heard about his snafu at the airport and Klaus tells the Tattoo Artist to give them privacy. Red then tells Klaus he can get the weapons back from the BMI, but he wants a 35% cut, he then tells Becher they’re now partners and he’ll go talk with “The Disenfranchised.”
Back at Task Force headquarters, Liz calls her financial planner to close an account and have it transferred to another account. She says she realizes the amount of money she’s dealing with, then tells him to close the account and transfer the funds that afternoon.
Cooper walks into her office and chews her out, after he tells her he perjured himself to protect her. She apologizes for forcing him to do that, but she said with Meera dead and him near death, she did what she believed to be right. Cooper says he doesn’t recognize her or himself any longer, his nose starts to bleed, he passes out and has an intense seizure, as Liz calls for help.
Keen and the old man are waiting for Becher and the old man gets nervous, that the Austrian won’t show, seconds later a car pulls up and he says he’s going to get Elias. Tom approaches the car and his jaw drops when he sees Red and Ressler and Reddington says good evening in German.
Charlene Cooper meets Liz at the hospital, Dr. Harper tells Harold’s wife he’s still unconscious and had an intense seizure, it’s too early to tell how he’ll come out of the episode. Charlene then tells Liz that Harold’s got a brain-tumor, but he’s in a trial-program and appeared improving until, this incident. She then begs Keen to keep that between the two of them and Liz says of course.
Tom tells Red and Ressler to leave before Elias and the old man come out, but Ressler says he’s coming home with them, to confess killing Ames, are Liz will go to prison for the murders. Tom says tell her she’s on her own, when she put me down in that hole, that was it. I’m not going down for her, or for you.
The two men come out and Elias asks if there’s a problem, Red says yes, then introduces himself. He then tells them that Becher’s weapons got seized by BMI, but he can get them released in exchange for Keen. He says that Keen’s either an idiot or was setting them up and he wants to find out which is true. Elias says he can kill him out back and Red says that’s splendid, Keen shoots the man who approaches him then runs from the building. Dembe, Ressler and Red kill all the remaining members of “The Disenfranchised.” Donald says they have to go after Keen, but Red says they sent their message.
Cooper’s fine he had a bout of hypoglycemia, that caused him to black out and the trial-treatment seems like it’s slowed the tumor’s progression. He says the seizure may have been a side-effect of the meds, he says it’s too early to call but things are looking brighter for Harold.
Tom calls Ressler from a burner-phone and tells him to put Red on. Raymond asks if he can live with himself knowing Lizzie will spend her life in prison for a murder he committed. Tom shows his internal conflict, but once again tells Reddington he’s not returning to the States.
Renner is about to issue an indictment on Liz, when the Deputy Attorney General asks for a sidebar, saying this is coming from the Attorney General. She tells the Judge that the Attorney General’s representative will soon arrive and asks for him to recess until they arrive, but Renner refuses. He’s about to indict Liz, when a court officer tells the judge there’s a man in the hallway saying he killed the Harbor Master.
It’s Tom as Liz gasps when he enters the courtroom, he tells the judge he killed the Harbor Master and Renner asks his name, he replies he’s Tom Keen. Renner smirks and says he’s relieved to hear that as someone told him he died.
The judge brings Keen into his chambers and listens to his story. Renner says he’ll dismiss murder charges against Liz, but still will indict her on perjury and accessory after the fact. Tom says he’ll give Renner a full-blown confession, but only if Liz gets her name cleared, a man walks in and says you’re not testifying. It’s Cooper’s old friend Tom Connolly and Renner has his officers escort Tom from his chambers.
Connolly proceeds to rip Renner up, down and sideways, telling him he’s a Superior Court Judge and not authorized to hear matters of National Security, that they have a branch of justices for that reason. He says he should get him arrested and locked-up, but he tells him instead, Renner’s going to dismiss the case on grounds of National Security.
Renner addresses the court and says after reexamining the evidence, he’s decided for National Security purposes to throw the case out. Wilcox first insults Renner and then Liz, telling her that he’s got to go to his wife and daughter now and tell them they won’t receive justice. Connolly tells Wilcox that’s enough and he walks out of the court-room, Keen then asks Connolly what happens to Tom and he asks Tom who? He then tells her he’s never met him, or is he in Federal Custody.
Liz sold the apartment that Red bought for her and sent the money anonymously to Ames’ daughter for her college fund. Red comes into the college study room, where Liz watches the young lady talking with classmates. Raymond then tells her to watch out as this could end up as a long-term relationship, then with little pretense explains to Liz what he’s done for her all these years, but the satisfaction wears off. Suddenly you realize you’re doing this for yourself, not the person you’re attempting to help.
Liz looks at Red and smiles, then says you knew that if Tom came back here to testify, they’d throw the case out because of the task force. She says you saved someone you hate, so you could save me, Raymond and Lizzie’s relationship seems to have gotten better in the last few weeks.
The Story Continues Next Thursday at 9:00 pm on NBC.
The latest episode of the NBC series “The Blacklist,” turned into an intriguing combination, of recounting the story from the first episode of the series, along with some reveals that should make the next few weeks interesting, at the very least. We also found out two pieces of information, one of which will help viewers gain insight, the other an unexpected twist, involving the number four man on the FBI’s Most Wanted List, Raymond “Red” Reddington, causing viewers to once again question what Red’s true agenda is.
Although the episode was chock-full of scenes from previous episodes, the action starts with a flashback to long before the story started, as the graphic tells us we’re in 1994. We watch a young teenage boy who looks about fourteen, running out of a hotel after snatching a purse, a waiter in close pursuit. Suddenly, a limousine pulls up beside the teen and the door opens, the kid hears a man yell come on in, which he quickly does, leaving the waiter in the dust.
The teen, still breathing heavily, thanks his benefactor sitting in the seat beside him, he then says that the other guy stole his sister’s purse. The man responds, you stole the purse Jacob, just as you stole the credit cards and the Pontiac. We see the man’s got a dossier on the teen, whose name’s Jacob Faust and a product of the foster-care system. The man tells him he’s been watching him for a while and he’s ready to offer the teen a situation, then tells him the reason he doesn’t get along with others is because he’s special.
The teen laughs at that, saying Social Services, tell a different story and the man berates the institution. He then says he’s offering him a chance to escape the life he’s known, he can take a ride with the man and the man can help him become anything he wants to be. This is the first meeting between Bill McCready, also known as the Major and his latest protégée, Jacob Faust’s now become the man we know as Tom Keen. McCready’s, like the Henry Higgins of sociopathic criminals, he targets very intelligent delinquent teens and molds them into the perfect asset for any criminal organization.
Back in the present, Task Force and Deputy Director of the FBI Harold Cooper, summons FBI Agent Liz Keen into his office, she joins the Deputy Attorney General, already seated. Cooper tells her a Grand Jury’s investigating the murder of the Harbor Master and they’ve subpoenaed Cooper to testify, he asks his agent what she was doing on the docks when the Harbor Master confronted her? She says Meera was dead, you were in the hospital and I did what ever I could to stop Berlin, that’s all I’m saying.
The Deputy Attorney General says as far as she’s concerned, she doesn’t want Liz to say that much, she filed a motion to quash the subpoena. A very select few know about the Task Force and she wants it to remain that way, and she won’t allow it to come out in this trial. Cooper says Keen best hope the motion works, as he won’t perjure himself for her, Liz looks shocked but nods her head.
Metro Detective Martin Wilcox shows up to Superior Court, looking disheveled and unorganized, his boss meets him there and chastises him for being tardy. He then tells Wilcox that the case got moved to another courtroom. As they approach the courtroom, they realize something’s strange as the Court officers make them surrender any electronic devices and even pens and pencils.
We go into the courtroom of Judge Renner, who states this is the first time his courtroom ever got changed, or closed to the public and asks the Deputy Attorney General what’s up with all the cloak and dagger stuff. She replies that any testimony by Harold Cooper, could endanger National Security, as Cooper and Keen are both part of a secret Task Force. She says it’s the Government’s right to determine what is and what isn’t vital to the nation’s interest and Wilcox blurts out she’s attempting a cover-up.
The Judge agrees that the public or Wilcox shouldn’t have the power to decide what should get revealed, but in his courtroom, he’s got that power. He says he can hold the Deputy Attorney General and the two agents in contempt and incarcerate them, or Agent Keen can be in his chambers in five minutes.
Harold heads back to the Task Force headquarters and soon he and Donald Ressler are greeted by Reddington and Dembe. Cooper tells him what’s going on and Red says in order to save Keen he needs to locate the Major, but they’ve had a falling out. So he needs the FBI to kidnap Malaysian Deputy Minister Mahmoud, as Raymond has information on the man to force him to reveal the Major’s location. Mahmoud’s out doing his daily run, when Samara Navabi distracts him, then Ressler and some other agents, overcome the Deputy Minister and get him in a van.
Renner tells Keen, she has the right to counsel, however if she requests it or refuses to answer his question, the discussion ends and he’ll see her in court. She’s then sworn in and slowly at first, then in a deluge reveals to the Judge, exactly what’s gone on in her life. How she went from having a seemingly ideal life, to realizing the whole thing didn’t really exist. How she went from her first day on the Bureau, from a rookie analyst, to the catalyst in a Task Force, centered around Raymond Reddington, a man she thought she had no connection with. She then tells him her husband was in reality a spy, only with her due to her unknown connection to Reddington and she killed him over four months before the Harbor Master got killed.
We head to Dresden, Germany where Tom’s on his new assignment for the Major, trying to infiltrate a German criminal’s gang. So far we’ve got very little info on the man running this organization, other than he’s in his mid-sixties and bought Tom a beer in the previous episode. He’s talking with an associate, about acquiring guns, when Tom interjects he knows someone in Salzburg. The older man says until they know him better, Tom may want to mind his own business, Tom says suit yourself and walks out of the pub.
Wilcox goes to visit Samuel Aleko, in prison and the Samoan says he’s got nothing to say to the detective. Wilcox says Liz’s testifying that Samuel killed the Harbor Master and Aleko calls him a liar. The detective says Wilcox could get the death penalty and Samuel laughs, saying he’s already taken a bullet in this situation. Wilcox realizes that Liz shot Aleko, at some time on the boat and sends forensics to investigate.
Red meets with Deputy Minister Mahmoud and tells him he’s aware that he also got created by Bill McCready and got put into power by a cartel, looking to exert influence in Asia. He says he doesn’t want to hurt Mahmoud, or reveal his secrets, but he will unless he gives him the Major’s location.
Renner becomes more and more incredulous with each statement Liz makes as we watch a greatest hits compilation of the Blacklist members they’ve taken down through the Task Force. Keen could extract herself at any time by admitting that Tom killed the Harbor Master, but she refuses to, because despite every rational molecule in her body, she’s still in love with him.
Meanwhile Tom’s tracked down the arms-dealer that the old man chose to supply him with guns. The man’s driving in his car with Dancing In The Moonlight blasting, when a motorcycle pulls up next to him at a stop light and knocks on the driver’s window. It’s Keen and he shoots the man through the forehead killing him instantly.
Mahmoud summons the Major to a closed restaurant to meet him, saying it’s urgent, McCready arrives with a bodyguard and berates Mahmoud for contacting him while on assignment, saying he knows the rules. Dembe walks out with gun drawn and the Major’s bodyguard aims back at him, but puts his gun down seconds later when Red walks in, also brandishing a weapon. McCready asks what he wants and Raymond responds Tom Keen.
Judge Renner falls just short of calling Liz a liar, then tells her he’s going to question her boss, so if she wants to save herself, this is her last chance. We can see Liz’s shaken by the statement, but she says she’s got nothing to say and he dismisses her. Cooper comes in and Renner asks if Liz was at the dock on official business and Harold perjures himself, saying she was. Another selfless act from a man who believes he’s got weeks to live, Renner says he expects they’ll talk soon.
Tom’s talking to some guy at the pub, when the old man comes over and the other guy makes himself scarce. He asks Tom if his guy’s reliable and Keen responds, he thought the man had somebody? The gang leader says they did but now they don’t and Tom laughs and says then we’re friends now. The man ignores the remark and again asks if the guy from Salzburg’s reliable.
McCready tells Red he can’t give Keen up as he’d betray a client by doing that. Raymond tells him he did that to him, we find out that Keen was hired by Red to connect with Liz, but Berlin offered him twice as much and he switched allegiances. He tells the Major he owes him and if he doesn’t get the info he wants Bill dies.
Red’s much happier in the next scene, gaining an ally in Mahmoud and getting the info on Tom from McCready. Dembe’s perhaps the most loyal human being on the face of the earth and he never questions anything Reddington asks or tells him to do. However he says you have to tell her Raymond and Red asks tell her what? Dembe says you have to tell her about Tom, Raymond and you have to tell her the truth about everything. Red says he doesn’t think he could do that. Dembe responds maybe it’s time he stopped thinking about it and just did it. An incredibly powerful scene, Dembe’s a man of few words, but the ones he uses, he makes count.
Renner’s visited by Wilcox and his boss and the detective tells him that forensics just found this shell casing on the boat, it’s from Keen’s service revolver and it’s got Samuel’s DNA on it. He says that’s physical evidence that Agent Elizabeth Keen, murdered the Harbor Master.
The Story Continues Next Thursday Night at 9:00 pm on NBC.
FBI Agent Elizabeth Keen and asset Raymond Reddington, are in the midst of another squabble, however that did nothing to detract from the NBC Series “The Blacklist” episode’s quality, entitled “Ruslan Denisov, Number 67,” by the network. This was non-stop action from start to finish, it also showed us the first signs of the past catching up with Liz Keen. Without Red in her corner, things could get rather sticky for the agent over the next couple of weeks.
Our story starts according to the graphic, in the village of Khumhara, Uzbekistan, which we get a breathtaking view of from the sky, showing the village surrounded by snow-capped mountains and the ocean. We see the prominent building in the village’s a Catholic Church. We go inside, see the flame of a candle, a man singing in prayer and the Priest about to eat the host and drink the wine.
Suddenly the church’s invaded by gunmen, the priest hides something in his podium and all the gunmen head straight for him. He begs the men saying he’s a simple man of God, when the leader Ruslan Denisov, slaps him in the face and says the man’s no more a priest than he is. They quickly find what the man hid, an overseas phone to contact the CIA, as the Priest’s actually an Agency operative. Denisov, says there’s your burning bush, talk to your God, the agent named Burk calls the Agency and says he “has a situation.”
Back in the States, we see an elderly woman sitting in her kitchen with a female uniform, when the doorbell rings and in enters Metro Detective Wilcox. He tells the woman Mrs. Ames, they’ll do their best to find her husband. She tells them her husband got the scare of his life a couple of days before he disappeared as he ran into a female FBI agent who had her gun pulled. We realize, this is the harbor-master that Tom killed earlier in the season. Liz gave her card to Eugene Ames, which his wife gives to Wilcox.
At the Task Force headquarters, Liz gives Tech-Wizard Aram Mojtabai, the piece of tech she found in her childhood stuffed bunny last week, she believes that’s connected with the Fulcrum. Aram says that there are many more qualified to inspect this, but Keen says none that I know and trust, then asks him to let her know what she finds.
Reddington walks in on them and Keen’s like an iceberg towards him, believing his only interest in her is finding the Fulcrum. She says she only wants to deal with him on business matters and he says that’s why he’s there. He shows her a newspaper article, about a Priest taken hostage in Uzbekistan and she looks back at Red blankly. He tells her that the Priest’s actually a CIA agent and taken hostage by an associate of his, Ruslan Denisov. He then tells Liz that the Agency will attempt to interfere.
We enter a meeting in Task Force Director Harold Cooper’s office, he’s talking with a man and a woman. We soon find out the man’s named Hayworth, Director of the CIA and the woman’s the Deputy Attorney General. Hayworth won’t confirm or deny that Burk’s his agent, so the Deputy AG, puts Cooper’s Task Force in charge. Keen and Agent Donald Ressler, fly to Uzbekistan that evening.
When they arrive they’re met by a Uzbekistan Army Commander, who has two moods; nasty and nastier. He tells them they’re working for him and they won’t negotiate with Denisov, they’ll negotiate with him. They’re then driven to their hotel, when they hear a familiar voice holding court, Red’s telling a tale to some businessman. He excuses himself to talk with Liz and Donald.
Keen asks Reddington why he’s there, he replies he can’t help them from thousands of miles away. He then tells them that Denisov finances a movement called SRU, to bring political change to Uzbekistan, by kidnapping American executives and holding them for ransom. A CIA agent’s not usually his target, but he tells them to go to their room and get cleaned up and join him for dinner.
They get into the elevator to head to their rooms, when the elevator stops and goes black, a back panel opens and men grab both of them putting black-hoods on their heads. They’re taken for a forty minute drive, when the bags get removed Denisov welcomes them to Uzbekistan.
They’re at Denisov’s facilities that he holds the hostages in, he explains that the reason they kidnapped a CIA agent’s to get the United States Government to pay attention to what an American corporation Anneca Oil’s doing to his country. Twenty-five-years earlier the Government of Uzbekistan sold the land rights to Anneca, for a fortune, which barely trickled down to the citizens. However, Denisov’s not upset about that, the pipeline that Anneca built, sprung a leak and is killing villagers. Hundreds have died, with hundreds more critically ill, the company won’t do anything and the American Ambassador ignores them. The CIA agents are plentiful reporting on any interference with American interests, so he took one.
He then tells the two agents he talked with a Vice President for Anneca, who assured him the water’s fine, he pulls up a cage with a man immersed in water. It’s the Anneca executive, with holes all over the top layer of his skin. Denisov says he’ll release him on good faith, he’s taken to the hospital and the doctor says he’ll survive. Some petroleum products caused the damage to his skin.
They tell the Uzbekistan Commander that Denisov, abducted and talked to them and he blames them for the conversation. They’re now prisoners in their hotel, via the Commander’s orders. Red has dinner with Donald, Liz chooses room service.
Red asks if they need help getting to their meeting with Denisov in the morning and Ressler says they’ve got things figured out. The next morning they get in the elevator, pull out the emergency stop button and they get handed their black-hoods again. Denisov says he’s not going to negotiate himself, he’s brought in a professional and who appears but Reddington himself, who proposes they go on a field trip.
Denisov takes the pair on a tour of some of the local villages, where they see the results of the toxic water. People are contracting cancer as well as a rash of kidney and liver failures. Ressler says the United States Government, wouldn’t tolerate this from an American corporation, Liz counters unless the information’s kept from them. She says she’ll contact the State Department and Red says, he’s pretty sure he can secure the release of Burk. Everybody wins.
Liz gets a call from Detective Wilcox asking about Eugene Ames, she said she lied to him about the case, due to national security and can’t comment on it now for the same reasons. She asked who filed the missing persons report and he responded his wife. She says good luck finding him and hangs up, but she knows this is Trouble.
Cooper meets again with Hayworth and the Deputy Attorney General and Harold informs them Burk’s alive, that Keen and Ressler were at a facility, but didn’t see the operative. Hayworth asks the location and Cooper says they approximate it’s in the Southeast quadrant, the CIA Director says he can have Black-Ops there in minutes. The Deputy AG warns Hayworth to stand down with negotiations going so well.
Hours later Liz comes to the restaurant to talk to Red, when he makes her watch the tango performed by the evening’s entertainers. It’s been a while since Raymond showed his appreciation of culture and he describes to Liz, that the tango’s the perfect analogy for negotiations.
It’s all give and take, the man can only do what the woman allows, eventually that line gets larger and larger, until they almost become one. At the same time we watch the Commander and his soldiers kill all of Denisov’s men at the facility, but a soldier tells the Commander, there are no hostages. Suddenly Red’s face turns ice-cold, as he sees a CIA operative in the restaurant, Keen asks if everything’s okay, Raymond responds everything’s terrible.
Keen and Ressler are on the phone with Cooper, when Red walks in and asks Harold why he told the CIA Director where the location was when he told him not to? Cooper says let me deal with Hayworth, Red replies deal with this, negotiations over. Then leaves to join Denisov.
Liz and Donald look out the hotel window and see troops lining the streets, Ressler says he think’s they’re now hostages. Keen tells her partner she thinks she’s in trouble, then tells Donald about Tom killing the harbor-master aboard the ship, she tried to stop him but couldn’t. Ressler asks if there were witnesses and Liz replies, there was one.
Back in the States we’re in Detective Wilcox’s office, as we see he’s found the one witness, as the man known as the Samoan’s sitting there answering questions. He says they can’t hold them and Wilcox says he’s right but tell him about Agent Elizabeth Keen.
Ruslan screams at Reddington, he should never have trusted him, Raymond responds we moved the hostages, just for that reason, all your assets are safe. One of Denisov’s men bring over one of the Uzbekistan soldiers, alive but injured, left to rot by his Commander. Red says he’s worth more dead than alive, but Denisov shoots him in the head.
He then pulls CIA Agent Burk out of his cell and points a gun to his head and Red says, you don’t want to do this Ruslan. You kill a corporate executive, you got one company upset with you, you kill a CIA agent, you’ll get boots on the ground and drones over head.
He then says to Burk that his friend’s too upset to see the big picture, tell us about Javin. The agent says he won’t and Red says that his friend’s still deciding what bed to lie on, but his bed’s been made for years and it includes a wide spectrum of events, now tell us about Javin. When the operative refuses again, Reddington asks for the gun and the operative sing’s like a canary.
Leonid Javin, former Cabinet Minister, ran the country during the last years of the Soviet Union, negotiated the deal with Anneca and is responsible for all the sickness. He’s turned religious, possibly insane, punishing himself for his past crimes. We watch the elderly former leader whip his own bare back in front of a fireplace until he bleeds.
We see the Samoan talking with Wilcox again and he asks if they have a deal and Wilcox says if the information you give us is pertinent to the case we can negotiate a deal. The Samoan asks if leading him to Eugene Ames’ body’s pertinent enough, because he can take him right to it.
Javin goes to church and slips into the confessional booth and asks why the Lord shields his face from him, Red opens the window and says maybe he doesn’t like you. Denisov pulls the former leader from the booth and Red says that Javin’s not getting absolution that easily.
Red tells the old man that he needs all the details on the deal with Anneca and he refuses, they drag him over to the sink filled with Holy Water and dunk his head under. Red nods to Denisov to pull him out and says the American Government doesn’t consider this torture, how about you? When Javin doesn’t talk they dunk him again, this time he comes up sputtering and says he’ll talk.
They arrange a meeting with Keen, Ressler and Dean Walker, the Anneca executive who tried earlier to say that Denisov sabotaged the pipeline. Javin tells all about the negotiations for the pipeline, but then reveals there was a first pipeline Anneca installed that killed thousands of people in 1988. When the Soviet Union fell apart, Javin helped cover it up, but he still has all the documentation. Walker says that Anneca will pay reparations, to family’s that lost members, but Denisov says that’s not his terms. He says Anneca will close off the pipeline and leave Uzbekistan. Walker laughs at him until he says they’re going on a field trip to one of the mass graves unless Anneca agrees.
The next morning Walker gives a press conference saying that Anneca’s leaving Uzbekistan and as a parting gesture they’re going to build schools. We watch the Commander shake his head and leave the room, he’s trapped in a stairwell by Dembe and Red.
Ressler get’s a call while he and Keen are watching a TV report about a French company coming into Uzbekistan and building a new pipeline, he tells her they’ve got to leave as Burk’s getting released a few miles out-of-town. As they start to leave, they see Red with an executive for the French oil company that’s coming into the country, it was one of the men he talked with when Liz and Donald arrived. Liz says he planned this whole thing out, knowing he’d make money from the French. Everybody wins.
Liz and Donald are to meet Dembe, Red, Denisov and Burk for the release, Hayworth’s on the phone with operatives, with orders to arrest Reddington and kill Denisov, when Keen and Ressler have Burk. Cooper boosts in his office and rips him a new one for storming the facility and tells him to expect a call from the Attorney General. Hayworth tells his agents to stand down.
Aram tells Liz that the tech’s circa late seventies/early eighties, but he can’t figure out how to operate it and suggests she asks Reddington. She not only nixes that idea, but asks Aram to promise to keep it secret from Raymond, and Aram agrees.
The Samoan brings Wilcox and some uniforms to Ames’ body and asks if he’ll get immunity if he testifies. Wilcox replies, tell me about Agent Keen.
The Story Continues Next Thursday Night at 9:00 pm on NBC.