Rich Dotcom has become one of Blindspot's best-known characters. Blindspot Season 2 Episode 14 brought back the eccentric genius played by Ennis Esmer for the third time, and like the last two times, his presence turned the show into something completely different.
"Borrow or Rob" was more about Rich and his story than anything having to do with the FBI. It opened with a flashback showing Rich and his partners as ne'er do well college students, and then naturally those classmates wound up being the bad guys in the case of the week.
That's great if you're a Rich Dotcom fan. If you're not, this episode probably dragged for you.
Rich certainly has his moments. His weird obsession with Kurt Weller allows for Sullivan Stapleton's comedic talents to come out, and Esmer is a great person for him to play off of.
The scene in which Weller is forced to dance with Rich to scan the secret party is fun, and Stapleton had some fantastic reactions as Weller tried not to kill Rich (although he did get to shoot him).
Plus, Rich gets to say all kinds of ridiculous things that none of the other Blindspot characters would ever get away with:
Weller: What's wrong with rich people?
Rich: We get bored.
But here's the thing: as pointed out by Boston in this episode, Rich never shuts up. And he's always in a state of either panic or anger.
He can't be in a scene without causing a scene, and that gets annoying. Not in the "we can empathize with Weller sense" but in the sense that it can take away from our enjoyment of the show.
And within that, some of his jokes just fell flat. The quips about Weller being his boyfriend were funny for about ten seconds.
They got less funny the longer it went on, and just cringe-worthy when they became quips about Weller being a male prostitute.
This is the second time Rich has come back this season and frankly, that's one too many. Obviously, the show loves to use him, and Esmer is a fine actor. But the character is just so big and so different from what Blindspot is that once a season is enough for him.
Patterson: Stop touching this.
Rich: You're touching it.
Patterson: I'm allowed to. It's mine.
It was more entertaining that "Borrow or Rob" brought back Boston, and turned him into a foil for Patterson.
Those two do have a fun banter together, and any time Blindspot uses Patterson outside of the lab or exposition is always a plus.
Unfortunately, since Boston leaves New York at the end of this episode, this might be the last we see of that unlikely partnership. That's a shame because it was more entertaining than Rich and Weller at certain points.
And at least Patterson finally exploded and admitted that she wasn't fine.
But let's talk about the case of the week.
The whole "secret society" idea felt like it was just a bit too weird for Blindspot.
At least the show stopped the ridiculous ceremony scene early, and it wound up being more of a joke. But that's more of something you'd expect to see on The Exorcist.
Plus, revealing that the episode's first suspect was a bad guy and working with Shepherd?
That scene felt like it was tacked on as a way to connect the plot to the bigger story, and to give Ukweli Roach something to do. (Even when he's a bad guy he still can't get much screen time.)
Maybe it will make more sense later on but evaluating this episode on its own, it felt more like a fun time playing with a favorite character rather than a story important to the season.
It's not exactly Comic-Con for me either, dude.Patterson
Speaking of ongoing storylines, Jane and Roman went searching for their childhood home with some help from Nas. A stop at Jane's apartment prompted Roman to recall a memory, and it was a nasty one.
Now we know that it's Roman who killed Emma Shaw, Taylor Shaw's mother.
It makes sense because obviously he was part of getting Jane into the FBI originally but it was still heartbreaking to see, as was Roman's reaction when he remembered it.
But Blindspot denied us the full potential of the moment because even though Jane said she needed to tell Weller about the recovered memory, she didn't. She told him about her date with Oliver instead.
True answers come from within, Jane.Rich
Obviously, that scene will happen sometime – probably in the next episode or two – but from an audience standpoint, if you're going to set us up with that reveal and with Jane saying she's going to tell Weller, she should tell Weller.
Instead, whenever it does happen now, it won't be as powerful because we'll be a week removed from our shock and anger with the knowledge of what Roman did.
And as far as Roman is concerned there's not a better character on this show right now.
Luke Mitchell has come on and brought a whole new energy to the series. We're just left waiting for the inevitable moment when he realizes it was Jane who wiped his memory.
I can't even remember the house I grew up in.Roman
"Borrow or Rob" was an entertaining episode to a point. But especially coming off Blindspot Season 2 Episode 13, which was supposed to be the big reveal episode, it felt a bit off.
Instead of building on the tension of Weller having met Shepherd, instead, he's sent on a comic caper.
The big personality of Rich Dotcom and the slightly weird premise also wore it down a little bit, and we're not even going to discuss the ridiculousness of Reade still snorting crack cocaine.
Now that Blindspot's had its fun, let's hope it gets back to the pressing matters at hand next week and starts giving us some of the big answers. After all, we're only eight episodes away from the end of Season 2!
We'll be back February 22 with Blindspot Season 2 Episode 15, "Draw O Caesar, Erase A Coward."
Will it provide any more concrete answers? Will Jane tell Weller about Emma Shaw's death? And will someone please get Reade away from the drugs?
If you want to re-watch "Borrow or Rob" again or catch up on any of Season 2 so far, you can watch Blindspot online.
Don't forget to leave us your thoughts on the episode in the comments below. Where do you think Season 2 will take us next?
Brittany Frederick is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.