The Blacklist

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The Blacklist Review: The Hidden Truth

by at .  Updated at . Comments

With a show like The Blacklist, the series is bound to have some pretty formulaic episodes from time to time. That can’t be avoided.

But I was expecting something far more interesting coming off the heels of a massive attack in The Blacklist Season 1 Episode 10, Red eliminating the man who betrayed him in The Blacklist Season 1 Episode 11 and the continued prospect that there was a mole still on the FBI’s side.

While there were a few decent moments, The Blacklist Season 1 Episode 12 unfortunately was a rather bland adventure of the week.

The Alchemist was a creative character... in theory. Someone who “protects” the guilty, can turn them into entirely different people with his mastery of genetic manipulation and hides them from being found? He’s bound to be memorable.

Instead, he’s a guy obsessed with the lab and his family. There’s no charisma or charm involved, leaving this important blacklister as just another check mark. Even the FBI’s chase to track him down felt like something we’ve all seen before on countless procedurals. Not to mention the cliche standoff where the hero character puts themselves on the line in dramatic fashion to try and negotiate.

Liz’s actions just felt silly at that point.

And while the Alchemist was gunned down, his secret list was conveniently still available. So, you know, no big deal.

It’s tough to find interest when not even Red is willing to stick around and help out. Having his character with less screen time, and noticeably so, was definitely a negative.

I know he had his own business to deal with (just who is Lucy Brooks?) but his character really helps sell this show. I kept wondering when he would come back or when we would see him take part.

Sure, he was able to uncover the FBI’s mole, Meera, but that confrontation was saved for the last few minutes of the episode to have us eagerly looking forward to the next time. It does make me wonder why she would be the mole in the first place, though.

I did appreciate the attempts at providing some character drama outside of the case, even if that didn’t feel all that inspiring.

Sure, Tom skipped his “interview” for Liz, but those two dug themselves further into drama territory and further apart in their relationship. It all just felt so obvious with the arguments about the baby and work, not to mention the “substitute teacher” who has lured Tom to check out a photograph exhibit.

C’mon, Tom. Don’t fall for that one.

I guess it was inevitable for the couple to have some problems, but I find the issues with trusting who Tom actually is more fascinating than their arguments about dinner dates and baby shower parties.

As for Agent Ressler, it’s good he gets to have something to do outside of the office. Did his dinner with his former flame feel like a forced way to give him that something else to do? Maybe. Is it convenient that she also put her current relationship on hold? Possibly.

I like his character, though, so I’m willing to see where it goes.

However, this hour just wasn’t one I’d be rushing to watch again. With a case that should have been more than standard and a huge lack of Red, it's too bad the Alchemist couldn’t have switched this episode with a more engaging version. Hopefully, dealing with Meera as the mole turns The Blacklist back into its thrilling self.

So Meera is the mole! What should Red do with her?

 

Review

Editor Rating: 2.9 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.5 / 5.0 (67 Votes)

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

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Red and dembu had a gift basket made for Juliann,who is under house arrest .Lucy brooks is suddenly a substitute teacher called Juliann. It's obvious that Lucy stole this Juliann's identity. Red obviously cares enough for Juliann to send him a care package , which leads me to the question who is Juliann ?? Is he a worker of Red's who is supposed to be a substitute teacher and supposed to keep an eye on Tom???

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@ Desi123

When mentioning Julian, it is a poular culture refference. The Julian who Red is referring to is Julian Assange, the wikileaks founder, who is currently under house arrest.

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I think Meera works for Mr. Fitch.

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@ sheila

The only problem with that is the according to what we know about Fitch he doesn't know the FBI's source, Red. I believe he was brow beating the oversight lady, I forget her name, into telling him. I could be wrong and someone else here will clear it up.

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I thought Jolene looked like the picture Red found on the data base. She is supposed to be dead. I think if the girl in the pic had more make up, she looks like Jolene.
The expression Red has when he looks at the picture, is not a happy one. It is almost like a bitter look.

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@ sheila

In my opinion, there is a reason why Lucy Brooks (aka Jolene the substitute teacher) appeared in this episode. The episode is about a criminal, the alchemist, who can make it appear as though people have died, even though they have not
The fact that Lucy Brooks appears in the obituary, and then later appears fit and well, as Jolene, means that she herself has used the alchemist.
If she was indeed hired by Red, that is why Red has chosen to eliminate the alchemist at this point, to hide any tracks leading back to himself

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Five casting agencies are the WORST: GRANT WILFLEY CASTING, CENTRAL CASTING, COMER CASTING, SYLVIA FAY CASTING and DELISI CREATIVE. They are HORRIBLE!!! They have no respect for background actors, all they care about is their money! They BLACKLIST YOU! for nothing!
They dont explain anything, they dont respond to any email unless you are director or work for production! You are nothing for them, they use you only ones in a while when they need you! They have their favorites, who gets called on a regular basis. Not because they have talents or they are great looking its because they just like them, they give them chances over and over! Directors and Production companies should know whats going on, they should not use this nasty, useless casting agencies,they should hire them selfs or they should create a new casting agency that dont discriminate actors! We want respect and same chance for everyone! We are human beings and we have a feelings! But we are sure they have no feelings!
Unless they show fake feelings when they need you ones a while or ofcourse you are producer and they do business with you!Background people please speak up! GRANT WILFLEY CASTING, CENTRAL CASTING, COMER CASTING, SYLVIA FAY CASTING AND DELISI CREATIVE, please leave the background people alone, stop thinking that we are nothing, we are human beings trying to make a living in this very diffucult city and show our talents, thats all we want and some RESPECT PLEASE! PLEASE!

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Five casting agencies are the WORST: GRANT WILFLEY CASTING, CENTRAL CASTING, COMER CASTING, SYLVIA FAY CASTING and DELISI CREATIVE. They are HORRIBLE!!! They have no respect for background actors, all they care about is their money! They BLACKLIST YOU! for nothing!
They dont explain anything, they dont respond to any email unless you are director or work for production! You are nothing for them, they use you only ones in a while when they need you! They have their favorites, who gets called on a regular basis. Not because they have talents or they are great looking its because they just like them, they give them chances over and over! Directors and Production companies should know whats going on, they should not use this nasty, useless casting agencies,they should hire them selfs or they should create a new casting agency that dont discriminate actors! We want respect and same chance for everyone! We are human beings and we have a feelings! But we are sure they have no feelings!
Unless they show fake feelings when they need you ones a while or ofcourse you are producer and they do business with you!Background people please speak up! GRANT WILFLEY CASTING, CENTRAL CASTING, COMER CASTING, SYLVIA FAY CASTING AND DELISI CREATIVE, please leave the background people alone, stop thinking that we are nothing, we are human beings trying to make a living in this very diffucult city and show our talents, thats all we want and some RESPECT PLEASE! PLEASE!

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It was a decent episode but clearly a let-down compared to the previous three. I found the whole idea of Tom scheduling an out of state interview without telling Liz (and then cancelling it) to be absurd. Red has warned her about Tom multiple times yet she still remains blindly in love with him. And why is Ressler suddenly so chummy with Liz? He is now telling her intimate personal details and at inappropriate times but prior to last night he was always very guarded. Didn't he just tell Liz that she wasn't qualified to be on the team a few episodes back? I hope the show avoids the rut of using the same formula week after week. I don't think there are as many gruesome mad scientists in the world as this show has already shown us. Enough already. I hope they focus on the mole and exposing Tom to shake things up a bit.

Maedora marie

The alchemist was an interesting story and another means for Red to divert the FBI from what he is really doing to further his own aims. Alan Alda is either the Director of National Intelligence or a high official in that organization. He keeps mentioning that he has Congressional Testimony that he has to do and the DNI was mentioned in the last episode. Tom is a deep cover agent or double agent that Red wants more information on. Jolene is in Tom's and Liz's life to get this information and perhaps in some way to protect Liz. Red may have hired her. Tom is the mole who provided the location of the black ops site. Meera was hired as a mole in the first place...she is working for both the CIA and someone in the DNI. She wasn't working with Anslo and his team. She is a mole but not the way that Red or we are made to believe. Ressler's girlfriend works for Red and in some way is back in his life to give him a healthy diversion away from Liz and perhaps Red. She can be a source of information on Ressler. IMHO

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I thought this show was actually more entertaining than last weeks. I haven't disliked one episode yet. They keep bringing interesting and creative storylines to the table and I see no signs that this show is slowing down.

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So is the substitute teacher the same girl the Red looked up with the ViCAP program earlier? I think it is, not that I know who that is.

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I guessed from the first time she was introduced that in the end Meera would be trouble. As soon as the word mole was mentioned, she was my only suspect. Meera had been cleared too quickly and she was brought in from outside -- not one of any team. She is an obvious plant. Will she turn out to be exactly as she seems? I think so. But I would be happy to be surprised. Personally, I liked the episode. The story did have the chance at being better but wound up being rather average. However, the writers know when to bring Red in to spice it up and make it a good episode overall. I liked seeing that Red does work with people who are not bad guys in the cut throat sort of way. It's nice to see that he does have ways of finding information that doesn't always have to result in bullets or bags. Tom has been the most boring story of the show -- just make him disappear already. As much as I would like it to be at Red's hands, Lizzy would never forgive him -- she needs to find out he's having an affair or that he is a spy (divorce or killing him is fine as long as he's gone).

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