Jan 28, 2014
Right--I Read Jason Evans, Then I Watch the Blacklist
“The Blacklist” is a puzzle wrapped in an enigma shrouded in mystery. My job is to help all of you unravel the mystery and one way to do that is to highlight the most thought-provoking posts of the week in the comment section.
Last week, a poster named Chris brought up a great idea when he said that Tom may have had his memory wiped. On the one hand, lots of nefarious folks seem to be focused on Tom, but Tom’s actions thus far have appeared to be anything but those of a secretive spy. Chris says the Lucy Brooks/Jolene character we met last week may be trying to trigger Tom’s old memories. Great idea, Chris! Keep ‘em coming! Plenty of posters are focused in on Lucy Brooks/Jolene. Many think she may be an older version of the young woman in the photo Red took from The Stewmaker’s book of victims. I am not so sure about that, as the Stewmaker seem to kill all his victims and Jolene is certainly still alive. Still, Red’s interest in Lucy Brooks is one of the main mysteries being explored on the show right now.
A quick reminder that last week’s episode left off with Red confronting Meera Malik because he had discovered she was the mole. I must admit, this revelation left me a little bit confused. What kind of mole is she supposed to be? Everyone knows she is a CIA agent who has been placed at the FBI to be a part of the team investigating Red’s Blacklist members. Is the implication that Malik is working for Fitch (Alan Alda)? I don’t really get what kind of mole she is supposed to be… but maybe she and Red will talk about it and make it more clear. Anyway, let’s see what is happening tonight on the show.
A woman who appears to be an escapee from a hospital, or a mental ward, is walking down the street. She is mumbling, “They took my baby.” A police officer approaches her just as a man comes up, claiming to be her husband. The “husband” has a thick mustache. The officers wants to figure out what is going on but mustache man shoots him. Handlebar then turns around and shoots the woman too.
Tom and Liz are looking at a 3D sonogram of their baby. They are a little freaked out but will soon be parents. Liz has decided she wants to take some time off from work to be with the baby when they get it. Quite a change from her attitude last week. I guess looking at the sonogram has changed her. Sorta sweet.
She meets with Red, who tells her about an evil organization known as the Cypress Adoption Agency. Liz doesn’t believe it is a coincidence that Red is asking her to investigate an adoption agency just as she is about to adopt. He tells her that Cypress offers the promise of perfection. The parents-to-be tells Cypress exactly what they want and Cypress actually abducts the child who perfectly fits the bill. The CEO is a man named Mallory. The agency’s lawyer is a man named Caldwell. Red gives Liz the identity of the child who will be abducted next.
She goes to visit the Rowlands, the couple who were going to adopt the baby. She gets them to work undercover and they go meet with the lawyer, Caldwell. The Rowlands ask too many questions and the lawyer gets nervous. He walks outside and Liz approaches him. He gets very agitated and mumbles, “I’m already dead.” He runs out in the street. As he is about to tell Liz something about The Cpress Agency, a bus slams into him and he is instantly killed. This is muuuch more than just a story about adoption.
Red goes to see Malik, who it appears he is holding in some warehouse. A man who interrogated her says she is clean and telling the truth. She tells Red that someone higher up authorized her to give up information on the blacksite, information that led to Red’s abduction at the hands of Anslo Garrick. She tells Red she wants to know who was behind it as much as he does. She offers to work with Red on the investigation.
At The Cypress Agency, the FBI is raiding everything. CEO Mallory is there and says he knows nothing about illegal adoptions. He seems like he is fully cooperating.
Meanwhile, Liz wants to talk to Dir. Cooper about taking some time off, but she gets the impression that he will not take kindly to it.
The FBI investigation is thus far turning up nothing. The FBI cannot verify any of the details of any of the adoptions by Cypress in the past year, but they cannot prove the adoptions were illegal either. Red gives Liz some advice – don’t just look at the DNA of the children, look into the parents. When the FBI does that, they find that 5 woman are the mothers of many of the Cypress babies… and all the women are listed as missing persons.
All the missing women are attractive, smart women who were students at top universities. The FBI figures out that Cypress is grabbing the women and then getting them pregnant. That’s sick!
Malik steals Dir. Cooper’s ID and uses it to hack into some secret FBI files and copy them.
The FBI figures out that a Georgetown student named Charlotte is Cypress’ next target to be kidapped and turned into a mommy. We see handlebar mustache man stalking her. Ressler and Liz arrive moments too late to stop handlebar from grabbing her, but they get his license plate.
Handlebar takes the woman to Mallory, who is upset. Mallory says the Agency was supposed to go silent. Mallory pulls a gun and kills handlebar.
Mallory goes to a fertility clinic called Galatea. He tells the doctor there to shut everything down.
The FBI finds the dead body of one of the women who tried to escape from Cypress. An autopsy reveals that she had been sedated for the past three years… but she has given birth multiple times in that time. Wow, Cypress doesn’t just farm babies from these women, it keeps the women unconscious the whole time. Super sick!
Malik gives Red the intel she got from Cooper’s computer. He examines it and says, “Our business is done, Agent Malik.” Red now knows who betrayed him. I am sure we will soon find out.
The FBI delves deeper into Mallory’s background. He came from the foster care system and had deep psychological problems. He had to take some strong drugs just to maintain his sanity. The FBI tracks Mallory to the Galatea fertility clinic by tracking the drug he takes. Ressler ends up having to shoot the lead doctor at the clinic. Liz chases Mallory and ends up finding all the sedated women who are pregnant. She and Mallory get into a fight but Ressler saves the day when he shoots Mallory in the arm.
One final cherry on top of the Cypress Agency sickness. Liz finds out that Mallory is the father of all the children the agency put up for adoption. He stole women, but he was the only father.
Liz goes home and tells Tom she just cannot go through with the adoption. She tells him she does not think they are ready for this. “Something’s not right,” she tells him. I think Red’s constant mantra that Tom is not who he claims to be has broken Liz’s trust in her husband.
Red goes to the home of FBI Director Dianne Fowler. It is nighttime and she is in her nightgown. He tells her he knows she is the one who betrayed him and gave up the plans for the blacksite. He pulls a gun on her. She starts talking about how Fitch (Alan Alda) will protect her. “Shut up,” Red says and he shots her in the belly. He tells her that he and Fitch have an agreement. They each go about their business and don’t get in each other’s way. “You and I don’t have an agreement,” he tells her. She tells Red that she knows the truth about “that night” and what happened to his family. She asks him if he wants to know the truth. He tells her he does, “But, if you know the truth then somebody else also does.” With that, he pumps several more bullets into her.
We see Tom being comforted about Liz’s decision not to adopt by his new friend, Jolene/Lucy. The episode closes with Red’s “clean up expert,” the old lady named Mr. Kaplan, cleaning up Dianne Fowler’s body.
And the episode is over!
Strong episode! The Cypress story was so creepy and sick that it held my attention more than the susual weekly blacklister does. And thank goodness Liz and Tom have decided not to adopt. Getting a child in the middle of all this would have been really messy! I think this allows the show to still turn Tom Bond into a bad guy, if they want, and not leave Liz stuck with a child she must care for. I love that Red got revenge on Fowler and that we learned at least a little tiny bit more about what Red wants (to know the fate of his family) as well as more talk about his relationship with Fitch.
Now it is your turn. Let all of us know your thoughts and theories about the show by posting something in the comment section. As always, I’ll be highlighting the most thought-provoking posts in my recap next week. It is worth noting that Blacklist Executive Producer Jon Bokenkamp told me when I interviewed him that he and his staff read this blog and the comment section to see what we all think and even to get ideas, so don’t be surprised if your crazy idea ends up actually happening on the show!
If you want to read more of Jason Evans’ commentary on the Movie and TV industry, follow him on Twitter @TVFilmTalk and be sure to check our Speakeasy every Monday and Wednesday for his recaps of The Blacklist and Arrow.
copied from wsj....speakeasy.....jason evans
So, Jason Evans comes out with his Blacklist update on Monday evening before the show--First, I read Jason, then I watch the show, then I read Jason and the comments.............I think Fitch is from outer space and wants to take over the world and Red was forced to work for him and Tom is in on it--clearly........what do you think?