Body part obsessed Berlin hightailed it out of town in last week’s episode of The Blacklist, leaving our FBI heroes in search of a new villain. The wait is short-lived with “Dr. James Covington” ready to step in as a bad guy with a heart. No, he really has a heart, a stolen black-market heart.
Our Blacklisters are back, doing what they do best in this one. The case of the week format returns with Liz and Ressler working closely together, Red landing in some Indonesian trouble and Pee Wee conspiring with Berlin who just won’t go away.
Body Parts for Rent — Cheap
“Dr. James Covington” opens with a terrified man, Mr. Wyatt, being told “You’re out of time,” just as he’s put under in a hospital. Turns out his heart was out of time. It was ripped out in what has to be the biggest case of “take-backs” ever. It’s the body part snatching crime of the night with all the twists and turns we’ve come to expect from The Blacklist.
Our first glimpse of Liz shows her waking up in her bed with a shaggy, grimy Tom pointing a gun at his wife claiming that Red is using her. “Has he told you anything about the night of the fire?” Red busts in shooting Tom dead. Dream sequence, right? Definitely. Liz wakes up, gun in hand, fear in her eyes. As she leaves the seedy motel she’s calling home, she harasses a fellow motel guest she thinks has been watching her. She realizes paranoia’s setting in and apologizes to the cute guy next door.
Meanwhile, Red is working an Indonesian port deal and also working Liz, as usual. She wants to meet ex-wife Naomi. Red says no way and quickly changes the subject, telling Liz all about Dr. James Covington, a one-stop shopping spot for anyone needing an organ transplant who has a wad of money to spend.
The doctor’s killing innocent people to sell off their parts. He had some sort of “meltdown” and went a little organ crazy years back.
Liz and Ressler join forces with Mossad agent Samar Navabi to track down the black market organ dealing doc. Liz and Samar have a quiz-off, questioning each other about their associations. We’ll call this one a tie. Liz suspects there’s a Reddington connection between the two but has no proof.
It turns out heartless Mr. Wyatt had a previous heart transplant. The heart that was taken wasn’t his originally. What? There are no records of him receiving a donor organ. Ressler and Liz visit the grieving widow and she spills “Dr. James Covington” pretty quick. She says hubby “rented” the organ; if you can’t pay, you have to return the product. “My husband’s heart wasn’t harvested. It was repossessed.” Wow, taking repo man to a whole new level.
Pee Wee’s Big Berlin Connection
Is there anything creepier than Paul Reubens (known for his role as Pee Wee Herman) in a turtleneck looking a little (or a lot) like Bert from Sesame Street with a touch of Dustin Hoffman thrown in? I think not. In “Dr. James Covington,” he is on point as Mr. Vargas, a skin crawling Berlin associate who meets with Red’s Indonesian connection to steal the deal to control the port. The associate, Nico, is Red loyal and tells Reddington about Mr. Vargas’ offer to work with him and not our favorite Blacklister. Red seems unconcerned as usual with several somethings up his sleeve.
When Red sees a pic of Vargas, he asks, “Does that even look like real hair?”
Red meets with the two associates he suspects of accepting Berlin’s deal and has them taken away. Crisis averted for now.
The Hunt Continues for the Bad/Good Guy
Liz calls Red for help in getting an impromptu exhumation of a suspected former organ renter. They question a medical examiner, who provides some semi-fresh organs to Covington. Who knew transplant organs could come from a cadaver? There may be a whole untapped market there. The ME agrees to help our duo set up a Covington sting. Ressler and Liz finally catch a break following an organ delivery boy on a motorcycle who they hope will lead straight to the evil doc. The lead goes flat (literally) when delivery man is pancaked by a truck. Chase over.
They find a list on the dead man naming who is up next for a rental. Red tracks down the would-be recipient and says to set up a Dr. Covington meet. Red spikes his drink with a little erectile dysfunction cocktail (so to speak) as extra motivation.
No need for the Red help because the FBI techie uncovers the relative location of Covington in the nick of time … Liz and Ressler have about 20 minutes to find the doctor because of some weird transplant countdown. They wander into a building and discover a secret lower level full of patients. It’s a makeshift hospital housing transplant hopefuls. Liz busts into Dr. Covington operating on a young boy. The doc says he’s just “trying to save his life.”
Covington claims sainthood, saying he’s not the bad guy. He’s sort of the Robin Hood of organs, transplanting adult organs in children who wouldn’t have a chance otherwise. He pleads his case, convincing Liz to let him operate. Ressler’s against it, saying, “This is way over the line.” But because he’s hot for agent, he agrees to let formerly bad doc operate.
The Double-Cross on Red
In the surprise, and perhaps dumb, move of the night, Red’s faithful associate Nico is really working with Mr. Vargas! He needs Reddington dead to make sure he doesn’t pay for the double-cross, but Vargas says Berlin wants him alive.
Berlin’s “friend” admits he’s the double-crosser. “Well played, Nico. I didn’t think you had it in you,” Red compliments. Our hero smugly walks up to Mr. Vargas, grabbing his gun and pointing it at Nico. Well played, Red, well played. Did we really think he was in danger? Nah. Red advises “Value loyalty above all else” right before shooting Nico dead.
Mr. Vargas hilariously complains, “I need to be allowed to leave the room before the blood. I don’t have a strong constitution.” He almost faints, and we realize there’s no Berlin connection.
After the Covington bust, Ressler and Liz get into it, with Ressler going dad mode, saying he’s so disappointed with the “trade-offs” this new Liz will make.
Sad Liz heads to her motel home and says sorry to the cute guy she harassed earlier in the day, even flirting a little. That can only mean one thing, right? He’s bad. Confirmation comes when he rushes to his room and pulls out a huge gun. Liz, you’re a magnet for bad guys.
The final scene shows Red reuniting with ex Naomi, who slaps him hard across the face. Welcome home, honey!
So were you surprised with the bad/good reveal of Dr. Covington? What did you think of the return of Paul Reubens to network TV? Most troubling, why were there no sparks at all tonight between Liz and Ressler?
Looks like we’re revisiting the “Who’s Your Daddy?” storyline next week with Naomi thrown into the mix. Who’s excited for that one? Will Liz finally prove she is a good FBI agent and figure out Red’s her dad (maybe)? Will Ressler man up, get off the drugs and make a move? Or will motel-mate with the big gun beat him to it? Let’s meet up next week for another Monday Funday on NBC’s The Blacklist.
The Blacklist airs Mondays at 10pm on NBC.
(Images courtesy of NBC)