Has it really been a month since we last watched James Spader’s Red Reddington pump those shots into Diane Fowler? Yes, time flies when you have True Detective, House of Cards, and the 2014 Winter Olympics on your television as more than intriguing and definitely capable fare to watch.
HOC has run dry for me. Not that it is or was arid as a TV show – merely that I’ve watched every episode, exhausting the mother lode. True Detective has been parceled out, an episode a week, with just two episodes remaining. We still aren’t sure who killed Dora Lang, but we all have expectations of a resolution of all the crimes and misdemeanors previously committed.
Finally, the splendors of Sochi and environs are history which means that it’s high time for The Blacklist.
Yes, I watched The Blacklist, and I hate to say it. But I wasn’t impressed, rather I was depressed. The Blacklist has become Mission Impossible, only with Spader in the tux instead of Tom Cruise. Early on we learned that the key part of the episode would be set in the Syrian Consulate, in short the equivalent of being in a foreign country, with Harry Lennix as Harold Cooper intoning the words that MI used to attribute to the Secretary. Instead of disavowing, Cooper said, You’ll be on foreign soil. We won’t be able to help you.
After the heist, Lizzie was left in the deep end of the pool, requiring a save by Red. Then Spader/Reddington arranged a fake kidnapping, a taser snatch and grab, in broad daylight, on a NY city sidewalk, followed by the incarceration of himself and the target Madeline Pratt played by Jennifer Ehle.
As they recovered from the tasering, supposedly in a lock-up somewhere, in adjoining cells, with a clear window of opportunity as well as being a literal window that they could communicate through. I also thought that suspects, victims, and those about to be interrogated were always kept apart. But hey, that’s just me. Anyway, given the opportunity, Red spun a tale that had Pratt all aquiver. My reaction was to nearly nod off. Yup, it was numbing. And boring too.
Any way Pratt/Ehle couldn’t stand the thought of Reddington being further tortured, so she willingly told the interrogators all that they wanted to know and needed to hear. She no sooner had handed over the info, when she found out that the whole thing was an Mission Impossible-like charade arranged by Reddington himself. Curses – foiled again.
As if all of that wasn’t bad enough, the effigy was a standard MacGuffin, Lizzie Keen’s husband disappointed her twice in this episode.
Diego Klattenhoff was as wooden as ever, and out of nowhere, Lizzie became an adept pickpocket. Will wonders never cease?
Then there was the full daylight shootout with the Russian buyers of the Effigy’s secrets. Ressler, once again was called on to chase down a fleeing perp. Am I wrong, but wasn’t that the worst staged TV fight you’ve ever seen?
Oh yes, one more thing. With Diane Fowler’s remains not even discovered yet, a new face joined the fray. An agent from the DC Field Office showed up to tell Cooper to shut down any investigation of looking for Fowler, and that he’d have to turn over all files.
The DC Field Office? Are they kidding? To his credit, Cooper looked as if he had no faith in this agent. I mean really, shouldn’t something like that come from HQ, if not the FBI Director himself? I guess that means that we shall soon see more of Alan Alda.
To me, the month off, heightened my expectations that a very good show would return. Sadly, these expectations were not met. This was easily an episode that failed to ignite, instead it was simply bad television.