“The Scimitar” is the latest bad guy itching for a Red/Liz takedown in this week’s episode of The Blacklist. The hitman has targeted an important scientist in the case of the night that will lead to a world of trouble for Liz and Ressler, some mighty revenge for Agent Navabi and Red finally getting a face-to-face with Berlin. It wouldn’t be The Blacklist without a huge reveal at the end, and this episode gives us one that rivals the “Tom behind door #1” shocker of last week.
An Eye for an Eye (or Scientist for a Scientist)
“The Scimitar” begins in Dubai with a close-up on a pair of legs, specifically Agent Navabi’s legs. She’s being hit on by an Iranian scientist, although you feel like she has the upper hand. They barely make it up to a hotel room when seconds later he’s been thrown out of the window, landing dead on a car. So Samar sexy time equals deadly time?
Red summons Liz as usual but has her invite Navabi as well. He outs her on the assassination in Dubai, saying he has no judgy eyes on the super sexy agent. He is there to simply inform. The Iranian government is going to retaliate: “You killed their guy, they’re killing one of yours.” They’ve dispatched “The Scimitar,” one part hitman, two parts con man, to target a female American scientist.
Information for Your Freedom
Liz is still holding traitorous ex-husband Tom, demanding Berlin information from him. He tries bargaining with her, but when you’re filthy and chained to the floor, that bargaining chip is at an all-time low. He finally gives up a Berlin connection, sending Liz off on her first lead. She does tell hubby that once she has Berlin, he’s a free man. Surprisingly, he doesn’t LOL on that one.
Sad Ressler Makes Us All Sad
After last week’s discovery of Ressler’s pills, Liz tells her cute partner, “We need to talk. When’s the last time you used?” He says over a week ago. She plays it cool, telling him it’s no big deal, FBI agents are always using to get over injuries. Really? Ressler insists that he’s fine, and we all know he’s far from it. This guy’s gone to hell and back and makes a return visit in this week’s episode.
It’s a Set-Up!
Liz meets up with the Berlin supplier, telling him, “You have two options. You either lead me to Berlin or I lead Berlin to you.” She fills Red in about her newly acquired information, but he’s more interested in where she came about the little nugget. He says he’d suspect Tom was the source if she hadn’t already told him she killed hubs. She’s sticking with that story, at least for now.
Liz and Ressler follow the lead to an empty house with pictures of another agent, John Reece, a possible target of “The Scimitar.” They get to him right before gunshots ring out, the hitman perhaps trying to get a little payback. The three are pursued by bad guys on motorcycles who shoot out the windows, ending up flipping the SUV. Liz wakes up in Bethesda with a broken arm, Ressler with head trauma.
We find out pretty quickly that she’s not in Bethesda! It’s a fake Bethesda and she doesn’t even have a broken arm. Oh, these guys are good. Liz, wearing some rather large panties (sorry, distracting) cuts off her cast, takes down the nurse and revives a shirtless Ressler (sorry, distracting) who does not have head trauma after all.
It turns out John Reece was just a con to set up Keen and Ressler and land them in this fake hospital/real warehouse. The partners try to make their escape, almost getting shot twice. Samar shows up to kill the bad guys and save the day in her usual bad-ass manner.
Bonding and Drugging the Food Truck Girl
Red wines and dines the food truck girl with wine (of course) and anchovies while sitting on the back of her truck. They bond and talk kids and fathers before the young lady says, “What have you done?” She passes out, drugged by Reddington. What are you up to, Mr. Blacklister? Knocking out your daughter is not the first step in a healthy relationship. Unless, of course, food truck girl is not your … more on that later. Note to self: wine and anchovies do not mix.
Red and Samar drop in on an old “friend” who has more back hair than a 40-year-old virgin. They know carpet back has info on “The Scimitar” and waste no time in getting it out of him.
The hitman is making his final move of the night, at the hotel of the lady scientist he’s targeting. He almost gets his girl until another girl stops him — Lizzie. She retrieves the science nerd stuffed into the luggage he was rolling away (no joke), but the shifty bad guy gets away.
We see “The Scimitar” on the phone saying they’ve had a “setback.” Dembe suddenly appears putting a gun to the back of his head with Red watching. Of course, they’ve got their man. He calls Navabi in, telling her to do whatever she wants with him. “Don’t do anything I wouldn’t do.”
She confronts the hitman, saying, “You killed my brother.” “The Scimitar” tells her bro was not an innocent victim. He doesn’t think she’ll kill him: “It’ll be cold-blooded murder.” And what agent condones that?
Sadness and Surprises
Liz has a heart to heart with Ressler, admitting that she thought she was losing him back there. He jokes that the prospect of living without him must have been terrifying to her. She says seriously that it was. Sad Ressler is just sad; I couldn’t help but wish that Liz would give the guy a hug already.
In the final scenes, we see “The Scimitar” dead (Navabi did it!), Ressler flushing the last of his pills and Tom confronting Liz. “If you kill me, you’ll have to live with it.” He fears that she has no intention of letting him live. “Do me a favor, look me in the eyes when you do it,” Tom requests.
In the twistiest scene of the night, Berlin makes a surprise appearance, meeting a smug Red who says he’s not going to kill him. “I have other plans.” He goes on to say this has all been a tragic “misunderstanding.” He explains, “I did not kill your daughter.” Berlin is skeptical, so Red retrieves food truck girl from the car. “Is this the daughter you’re referring to? Because she’s not my daughter, she’s yours.”
So who else was surprised with the big Berlin baby news? The hints were everywhere, starting with the fleeting realization that Red would never drug his own daughter, at least not with anchovies.
Who thinks that Ressler has taken all he can, hit rock bottom and will now be making his way back to the surface? Most important, what is the deal with Tom? Kill him already, Lizzie! Next week’s mid-season finale looks to be more psychological warfare between the two former spouses, with another pair (Redlin) teaming up to take down the deceivers who let Berlin believe his daughter was dead.
The Blacklist airs Mondays at 10pm on NBC.
(Image courtesy of NBC)