The Blacklist recap: Let's Get Biblical

The parable of the Good Samaritan and a little Revelations from Johnny Cash define this episode, but not quite as much as Red killing everybody
Ep. 11 | Aired Jan 13, 2013

OVER IT Red is getting real tired of everyone's bullsh...well, you know.

David Giesbrecht/NBC

Lizzie and Ressler have connected the ER nurse to all of the Samaritan murders and taken off in search of him, with Ressler moving pretty steadily on that limp. The Samaritan has managed to get the abusive husband on his torture table and it seems that “reconciliation” he spoke of with his abusive mother actually means that he has her in some sort of drugged state and makes her watch as he tortures other abusers. While she is awful, and the abusive husband is awful, the murderous serial killer is also awful. It’s all just really awful, and it gets worse as the Samaritan goes to take a hammer to the guy’s skull. But then, it’s Lizzie to the rescue! She’s figured everything out, enters the torture chamber alone, and shoots the Samaritan before he can hammer-kill his mother. I personally hope the show digs a little deeper into that “we don’t have the luxury of your simple morality” line in the future.

Side Note: A really weird thing happens that almost drags down a very good episode where Lizzie goes to the hospital where the man the Samaritan tortured is, ignores his abused wife, and tells him if he ever touches his wife again, she’ll do to him what the Samaritan would have done if she hadn’t stopped him. I’m sure the abuse victim feels so comforted by your extreme threats of violence, Lizzie. Yeesh.

Aram arrives back at headquarters, where they still think he’s the mole, with evidence from Red on who the real leak is: It’s Newton Phillips. Agent Cooper speaks for us all when he says, “Who the hell is Newton Philips?” Well, Newton Philips is Red’s lurking lackey from earlier in the season, who Red must now kill in some sort of ceremonious plastic-bag-suffocating/river-drowning that James Spader somehow manages to make seem meaningful. But does any of it really matter? We all know that Alan Alda (AKA, Fitch) was behind it all from the last episode and -- Oh, there you are, Alana Alda! There you are sitting at that government top dog table, acting as FBI Director Fowler’s boss, telling her to "cut the crap, Diane." Alight then, I guess we’ll just play this one by ear.

The Blacklist may be a little over the top, and it may really just be a showcase for one great actor, but I continue to be impressed by its ability to balance a serialized mystery and mythology with week-to-week storytelling and narrative arcs. This episode was practically divided in half between Red’s larger quest and Lizzie’s one-night-only story, and both were brought together seamlessly in their final sit down catchup session...even if Lizzie’s almost-flirtatious, “Did you bring me anything?” was super weird. Never one to let his whatever-she-is down, Red did bring Lizzie something: the next name on the Blacklist.

I have my fingers crossed for a slightly lower kill count next episode, but maybe that's just my "simple morality" talking.

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