The Blacklist S02E22 Review
The Blacklist’s season finale finally sees Keen kicked into a new direction and turns the tables on all the characters. But is it enough to keep viewers tuning in next season?
The season finale plays out – at least in the beginning – the same every other old Blacklist episode does. Red gives Keen logical and well thought out advice. Keen ignores it. She’s got this and she don’t need no man – no matter how well connected or knowledgeable – to be giving her sound advice. Keen quickly come to realise how wrong she was and then doubles back quick smart. Red saves the day. Maybe if she’d just listened to is-he-isn’t-he-Daddy, she wouldn’t have gotten a finger prick and a murder rap in the process.
The Blacklister of the week is Masha Rostova, which makes no sense to have as the Blacklister of the week, or a Blacklister at all, because Masha Rostova is code for Elizabeth Keen. The US government has evidently been on a Marvel binge lately, because they are convinced that Keen/Rostova is some sort of Black Widow…without the kickass abilities, or the intelligence.
Watching Keen’s two fake Daddies team up to get her to safety was a great little sequence. Cooper and Red need to start up a new bromance where they hang out and complain about little jumped-up agents who won’t follow orders, like stat. I suppose Keen can occasionally join in, on certain days of the week, but only because Keen’s scene with Cooper when she admits she doesn’t want to lose him was actually well-acted and kind of touching.
Well done, Show. Personal growth.
That said, I’m not sure Cooper will be inviting Keen over for brunch anytime soon after her little tantrum with Connelly that ended with Connelly dead on the floor. The jump from the Keen-we-know to Keen-who-kills-Connelly felt a little forced, and I’ve got my suspicions that it was purely used as a plot device to kick start Keen’s memory unblocking. It’s this sort of sloppy writing that holds The Blacklist from being a good show, rather than a mediocre show with one or two standout actors (James Spader and Hisham Tawfiq, I’m looking at you). I get it; they needed Keen to remember and they’d already tried the memory therapy, but I’m pretty sure Keen has fired her weapon before now, so what about killing Connelly in particular made her remember everything?
For all that, however, I am excited in the new direction to see the show taking. I doubt it will last long, but Ressler’s dogged prosecution of Keen (until they kiss and make-up in like the second episode of season three – you know it’s going to happen. You’re not as sneaky as you think you are, Show), and everything being shaken up a bit with Red and Keen on the run should prove interesting. Hopefully, the writers will figure out that the weakest part of the show is actually the central idea of the show (the Blacklister of the week) and this will give them a chance to play with alternative formats.
Tom’s solo sail off into the sunset was a welcome move. He’s a strong, independent man who don’t need no woman and who can go at it alone. And let’s face it, that weird scene that intercut Tom and Keen having emotional talk with Tom and Keen having sex was just plain weird. I understand the cathartic goodbye scene, but really editors: talk first, and then sex. Farewell Tom. I’m hoping your weird and creepy courting of Keen doesn’t raise its head next season.
Most importantly: verdict time. Will I give next season another chance to let me down horribly?
Yes, likely. Spader is that damn good and after two seasons of antagonism between Red and Keen, it will be exciting to see them actually work together for a common goal, without Keen’s constant angst-ing getting in the way. Pitting the former partners against each other with Ressler as Keen’s pursuer was an inspired move and is sure to be ripe for missed drama opportunities, which I am sure I will enjoy. However, I will give the show two episodes – and if the most epic bromance that ever bromanced (a.k.a Red and Dembe) are not reunited by then, then all bets are off. Your move, Show.
Review by Hannah Fitzpatrick.