The season 1 finale of The Blacklist is intense. There’s a lot of bloodshed. The whole episode is spent searching for Berlin. It’s all leading up to this. Who is Berlin? What does he want? What’s between him and Red? It turns out that the taskforce’s efforts are wasted, though. Berlin’s still out there somewhere. But that’s not the biggest shock of the night. Can Lizzie’s father still be alive?

The Blacklist finale, titled “Berlin: Conclusion,” opens on a crashed plane. Injured people are stumbling around. Is Berlin somewhere among them? Probably. Matt Lauer is announcing the news of the plane crash.

Throughout the episode, people from the plane are being interrogated. They describe a man handcuffed to a guard cutting his hand off. That man is now in the hospital. They call him “Mr. Hood” because all they know about him is his hood.

Meanwhile, Red is being led away. He doesn’t have immunity anymore and he won’t have a trial. An agent asks if Lizzie was worth it. He says yes.

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Lizzie’s Dilemma

Lizzie goes to Cooper. She thinks Red can help with the crash case. Cooper says that there’s nothing he can do. Lizzie still wants to stop working with Red after this case, so they’re being decommissioned.

Cooper found the bracelet the little girl gave Lizzie in the first episode. He gave it to her to “remind you of all the good we’ve done.”

Red’s Escape

The taskforce has to work on the plane crash case themselves. They talk about it and the agents that arrested Red are getting impatient. They want to talk to Cooper.

Lizzie demands to speak to Red. The FBI agent said he saw Red pointing the gun at her. She was ready to run with him. She tells him it doesn’t matter. Berlin is more important.

Alan Alda comes back to visit Red in his cage! He’s concerned. He knows that the plane crash is connected to what Red was talking to him about. Red says that they both could have avoided their current situations if he agreed to help before. Alan Alda arranges a transfer for Red. He says he can take care of the rest himself. Alan Alda’s not sure if Red’s going to be able to get himself out of this mess this time. He and his taskforce are targets now. I’m not worried, though. The bitter FBI agent from before is in on the escape attempt. Of course, Red manages to escape.

Everyone’s a Target

Tom shows up at someone’s place. The man asks for “the list.” It’s a list of the taskforce. They’re moving forward with their plan.

Red calls Lizzie and tells her that she’s in danger. So is the rest of the taskforce. Ressler and Malik are investigating at a club. That’s not a good place to be when you’re the target of some cryptic bad guy. Lizzie goes after them, which is heroic, but also probably a bad idea. Malik gets her throat sliced. I did not see that coming. Lizzie finds her.

Lizzie comes to Red and tells him that Malik’s dead. Why are they all targets? Red finally explains why he surrendered to the FBI. One of his reasons was Berlin. They forced him out of the shadows and now Berlin needs to stop the taskforce. Lizzie realizes that Tom gave Berlin their names. Sam’s name was also there. Lizzie wants to know why. Red says that his involvement was as her father. That’s it.

The FBI agent talks to Cooper. He says that “people” want Red to continue. He and Lizzie need to get back together and the taskforce needs to go on. Cooper gets back into his car and is attacked, but doesn’t die.

Berlin’s Sad Story

Lizzie and Ressler question the man who cut off his hand in the hospital. He says he doesn’t know Berlin. He only knows a story. He was in the Red Army and then the KGB. He was notorious for sending his enemies to the work camps. Then there were stories that his daughter fell in love with a dissident. She was imprisoned but she escaped. He was sent to Siberia and he went crazy.

He got a pocket watch he gave to his daughter with a picture of her, then her ear, then her finger. His enemies sent her back to him piece by piece. He may have carved a knife out of one of his daughter’s bones. Then he escaped and disappeared. He’s searching for the man responsible for his daughter’s death. He reveals that the man that they’re looking for is not on the manifest.

Finding Berlin

Ressler interrogates the guy he arrested in the club. He wants to know who put him on the plane. It was the Russians.

Ressler’s throwing the rules out the window. He describes his fiance dying before and that’s why he doesn’t follow the rules anymore. He jumps the prisoner. I kind of like Ressler unhinged. 

Red goes to talk to the Russian Ambassador. The ambassador thinks Red’s going to kill his dog, but our Red would never do that! He threatens the ambassador instead.

Red talks to Alan about what’s going on. He knows who the guy is, but Red doesn’t know why that man hates him so much. He wants Alan to give him access. Alan needs to research the guy. Red will take care of the rest.

Who is Lizzie’s Father?

Lizzie and Red talk again. Red says that Sam said that an old friend came by scared and that he was leaving because he was in danger. He needed someone to care for a little girl. Her father had died that night in a fire. Sam raised that little girl and sheltered her from the truth about her biological father. That little girl was Lizzie, by the way. Red killed him because he had to protect her from the truth. The only memory she has of her real father is from the night of the fire. He pulled her out of the flames. He saved her.

Red tears up and says, “Yes. And knowing his identity will put you in grave danger.” Red says that he loved Sam and that taking his life was the most difficult thing he’s done. He did it to keep her from learning the name of her real father and to protect her. So it’s not like he’s going to tell her now.

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Red Finds Berlin

Alan calls Red. He found Berlin, but Red tells Lizzie that he didn’t.

Red goes to Berlin while killing a bunch of people without blinking an eye. He shows up while the Russian guy is ordering more hits on the taskforce and says, “You must be the one they call Berlin.”

Red interrogates Berlin. He says he’s so successful because he knows his enemies so well, but he doesn’t know this guy. He’s shocked that he actually doesn’t know what this guy has against him. Or how he got to him. Berlin searched for Red’s weakness, and then he found Lizzie.

Tom’s Reappearance

Lizzie’s sitting in her car and Tom sneaks in and points his gun at her.

What did Red do to Berlin? He’s not explaining himself. So Red shoots him in the hand and then continues to shoot him until he gives his story. Berlin finally says “Beirut.” He did something to him in Beirut in 2010. Tom comes in all of a sudden with Lizzie. Red won’t put his gun down. Berlin yells at Tom to kill Lizzie. 

Lizzie begs Tom not to kill her. Berlin berates Tom, so Red kills him. That’s pretty anticlimactic. Tom shoots at Red. He and Lizzie struggle for the gun and Lizzie shoots Tom. Red wants to finish the job, but Lizzie sends him away. She wants to be the one to finish it. Tom apologizes to Lizzie. He whispers something in her ear, and she pulls away, shocked. 

The Real Berlin

Cooper is in bad condition in the hospital. And Ressler’s pissed. There was someone else on the plane that wasn’t on the manifest. Lizzie’s there too, and she’s feeling guilty. She puts the little girl’s bracelet on.

What’s left of the taskforce finds out that one of the passengers they thought was a prisoner was actually a guard. They thought the guard was the man who they talked to in the hospital. He’s actually Berlin. That other guy wasn’t Berlin. He was just some other guy. When the prisoner said he was cutting his hand off, they meant his own hand not the guard’s hand. 

They Run Back to the Hospital But Berlin’s Gone

Lizzie goes to Red to say that he didn’t kill Berlin. Red already knew. He was some guy he screwed over in Beirut. Now it’s time to come clean. Red says that Sam made a difficult choice that changed the course of his life when he took her in. She has to make a difficult choice now. Should she stay with Red? She says no. So he agrees to leave.

Lizzie’s Real Father

Lizzie goes home and looks at old family pictures. Then she leaves her house behind.

Ressler stays with Cooper and sees his hand move. The FBI find fake Berlin, but it looks like Tom’s gone. 

Red’s getting ready to leave, but Lizzie shows up. Tom told her, “Your father’s alive.” Red tells her that her father died in the father. Berlin’s still out there, but Red knows that they’ll find him.

Who is That Girl in the Picture?

The very end of the first season of The Blacklist shows Berlin looking at the picture of his daughter in his pocket watch and Red looking at the picture of number 79 that he had taken earlier in the season. Is this the same girl?

(Image courtesy of NBC)

Robin Lempel

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV