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Person-of-interest

Person of Interest Review: Back to School

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What better way to ring in the New Year than with a brand new Person of Interest? Unfortunately, "2πR" kept Reese behind bars, sporting bright orange. That meant no ass kicking, no motorcycle stunts and no hanging out with Bear.

It was certainly an interesting choice to leave Reese's character as a mere cameo for the hour and instead allow the rest of the team to step up and take the lead.

If anything, it's clear that while the show does love to switch things up, there's plenty of faith in the characters themselves and their ability to each provide a story worth watching.

And while there is something uniquely satisfying in watching Reese take down his enemies each week (and I did miss those moments this go around), Finch, Fusco and Carter were able to hold their own.

Finch's Student

Finch was on major multitasking duty, working on a case of the week that involved a high school computer whiz named Caleb; while simultaneously trying to break out his normally tailored compadre.

Getting to witness Finch take charge and leave his cozy office is always a treat, as there's usually bound to be a more meaningful parallel to the story and a deeper insight into his character.

Finch was able to prove himself as an intriguing teacher, giving a lesson on pi that really made you think outside the box of a simple number. Similarly, it's that super smart thinking that Finch saw in Caleb, almost subtly connecting the two, and perhaps foreshadowing crazy changes for the Machine and technology in general.

So, while it was funny (but too true) when Finch became overwhelmed with the mass texting of teenagers, there really is a drastic change from when he built his own computer to today's streaming of online media. Is there an end point or can it only get bigger?

And does Caleb's codework for a compression algorithm mean something more? Will he ever find Finch's number in the pi sequence?

Realistically, the whole idea of the technologically-gifted student allowed Finch to talk to Caleb and prevent him from killing himself. He opened Caleb's eyes without a preachy speech that required standing on a desk and cheering, but instead reiterating the importance of pi and the importance of living. Truly, it was great to see Finch could get the job done.

Luckily, Fusco was able to help and uncover the secret to Caleb's past. There's always something fun with Fusco's sarcastic comments, but in the end, he's dedicated to helping out. It was really just nice seeing him contribute in a positive way without his assistance being wasted.

The same could be said for Carter, who really has deemed breaking the law okay in an effort to help the bigger picture. And I, too, appreciated the fact that her work in the episode was also important. She had the task of replacing Reese's DNA instead of just sitting at her desk answering phones.

Everyone was involved.

It really comes down to having that ensemble cast you can rely on to keep the show interesting.

But it does make me wonder how long Reese could stay behind bars. And while the episode was still solid, having Reese as a part of the mix really helps keep the series working on all cylinders. Each character is integral to the overall task, providing for a perfect combination. When one is gone, there is truly something missing.

It makes me hope that Reese manages to get out soon, although I am hesitant about Carter's future interrogation of him. I like the recognition of her background, but will seeing her in action be a payoff? I know it's supposed to be a dramatic conflict of interest, but I'm just not sure if it will be a believable interrogation.

If anything, I guess Carter will really be put to the test by being on center stage. Don't mess it up, Detective!

So, while many of us will be vowing to stick to that diet or avoiding that extra cupcake, in the end, it looks like watching Person of Interest is the perfect New Year's resolution. I can only imagine what's in store.

What did you think? Did you miss Reese? Was Finch up to the challenge? What do you hope to see in 2013? Sound off below!

Review

Editor Rating: 4.3 / 5.0
  • 4.3 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (152 Votes)

Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

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I enjoyed the episode. I wouldn't want him behind bars for many more episodes and I did miss Bear.

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I'm sorry, but I could not disagree more with this review... Here's a list of thing what made this episode (by far) the worst in the series thus far. 1. The entire purpose of the show is to stop a crime from happening to or by the hands of the person who's number is up because they are either the victim or perpetrator of a violent crime. The only threat to his life or the lives of others here was the group of drug dealers, but nobody did anything to protect Caleb. Mind you, the main reason that Caleb was going to kill himself was because he wanted his mom to have the money and didn't want the druggies to catch him. But nobody did anything to the dealers to make them even consider stopping. 2. After the intense cliffhanger, they focused so little on Reese that it was quite frankly laughable. To me, there shouldn't have been a POI this week- the focus should have merely been on Reese... 3. Why Finch cared so much about the teacher who he thought was stealing Caleb's code when Caleb's life was in danger makes no sense to me. 4. At the end, Finch somehow managed to track Caleb down without having force paired cell phones. How is this possible? 5. If Caleb was planning on committing suicide before the druggies could catch up to him, he wasn't involved in a violent crime. And yes, you could argue that a suicide is also a violent crime, but then the vast majority of the numbers would be suicides, which would make the show kinda boring. 6. When Carter drugged the guy at the bar, he saw her face, as did many other people. So unless she decided to kill everyone there, she's gonna be in trouble. And since an over exaggerated number of people seemed to be into Carter, I think it's very likely someone would remember his face. 7. Last week, Carter felt the need to put out an APB on the POI's because she "still had to do her job" but this week she's breaking far bigger laws without the slightest bit of hesitation. 8. The ease with which Finch managed to solve the case without the help of Reese takes away from the supposed importance of Reese- It makes you wonder why they need him. 9. The bad guys were so polite this episode- Of course the one episode where Reese wasn't there, a badass wasn't needed to protect the POI (this has never happened before). It would have been better if they gave Fusco or Carter a chance to kick some ass... 10. This guy (The Man In The Suit) is supposedly the most dangerous criminal in the United States, yet, Carter manages to replace Reese's DNA swab without getting caught. The lack of security show there is laughable. To me, it would have been far better if Finch had managed to hack something, because that guy's a genius who can get around just about everything. 11. After all of this and Donnelly realizes that the DNA samples have been tampered with, Donnelly tells Carter that "she's the only one he knows he can trust any more." Why would the one person he can trust be the most recent recruit and the one he known the least about. Seriously, come on. 12. Yes, this is a nitpick, but that first class, Finch said his name, one thing, and then class was over... Please explain how this makes any sense... Finch's speech at the end was beautiful, but it couldn't make up for all that was wrong with it. They used a first-time (and likely cheaper) writer for this episode, and it showed... Hopefully, next week will be better. I know that Shadow Box was an excellent episode, and hopefully next weeks' will be up to par with the typical quality of their episodes.

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I'm sorry, but I could not disagree more with this review... Here's a list of thing what made this episode (by far) the worst in the series thus far. 1. The entire purpose of the show is to stop a crime from happening to or by the hands of the person who's number is up because they are either the victim or perpetrator of a violent crime. The only threat to his life or the lives of others here was the group of drug dealers, but nobody did anything to protect Caleb. Mind you, the main reason that Caleb was going to kill himself was because he wanted his mom to have the money and didn't want the druggies to catch him. But nobody did anything to the dealers to make them even consider stopping. 2. After the intense cliffhanger, they focused so little on Reese that it was quite frankly laughable. To me, there shouldn't have been a POI this week- the focus should have merely been on Reese... 3. Why Finch cared so much about the teacher who he thought was stealing Caleb's code when Caleb's life was in danger makes no sense to me. 4. At the end, Finch somehow managed to track Caleb down without having force paired cell phones. How is this possible? 5. If Caleb was planning on committing suicide before the druggies could catch up to him, he wasn't involved in a violent crime. And yes, you could argue that a suicide is also a violent crime, but then the vast majority of the numbers would be suicides, which would make the show kinda boring. 6. When Carter drugged the guy at the bar, he saw her face, as did many other people. So unless she decided to kill everyone there, she's gonna be in trouble. And since an over exaggerated number of people seemed to be into Carter, I think it's very likely someone would remember his face. 7. Last week, Carter felt the need to put out an APB on the POI's because she "still had to do her job" but this week she's breaking far bigger laws without the slightest bit of hesitation. 8. The ease with which Finch managed to solve the case without the help of Reese takes away from the supposed importance of Reese- It makes you wonder why they need him. 9. The bad guys were so polite this episode- Of course the one episode where Reese wasn't there, a badass wasn't needed to protect the POI (this has never happened before). It would have been better if they gave Fusco or Carter a chance to kick some ass... 10. This guy (The Man In The Suit) is supposedly the most dangerous criminal in the United States, yet, Carter manages to replace Reese's DNA swab without getting caught. The lack of security show there is laughable. To me, it would have been far better if Finch had managed to hack something, because that guy's a genius who can get around just about everything. 11. After all of this and Donnelly realizes that the DNA samples have been tampered with, Donnelly tells Carter that "she's the only one he knows he can trust any more." Why would the one person he can trust be the most recent recruit and the one he known the least about. Seriously, come on. Finch's speech at the end was beautiful, but it couldn't make up for all that was wrong with it. They used a first-time (and likely cheaper) writer for this episode, and it showed... Hopefully, next week will be better. I know that Shadow Box was an excellent episode, and hopefully next weeks' will be up to par with the typical quality of their episodes.

Wolfshades

I really enjoyed watching this episode. Seeing Carter giggling as she got into the car with that guy (after slipping him a roofie) certainly got my attention. And Finch giving that lesson on pi was spellbinding. With or without Reese (my preference is with), this is an excellent show. Good writing, excellent acting and directing - it has it all.

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Didn't like this episode, this show is based on the interactions of the two main characters with interesting side notes of Fusco and Carter. When you lose one of the main actors, the rest falls short. Bring back Reese to kick butt and spar with Finch. No dog either this episode.

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I too was okay in letting him remain ...after all Finch was missing for like 2 1/2 episodes when Root took him. i think next week will be kind of a bottle episode and i think it will b interesting how they play it.

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I was ok about Reese staying in prison. Actually I'm even happy, that they didn't take him out too fast or too easy, which would totally ruin dramatic ending of "Shadow Box". Reese is all right, he will be back, Finch keeps his eye on the ball, and hopefully, there is more than one challenge to go for all of them.
Very glad, that PoI is back after holidays :)

Person of Interest Season 2 Episode 11 Quotes

Math is not punishment.

Finch

That line you're talking about? I crossed it a long time ago.

Carter
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