Liz has officially gone to the dark side . . . And it’s a bit more melancholic and less exciting than one might expect from a dark side.
In the season seven finale of The Blacklist, where her coat was puffing up in the wind like a supervillain outfit and the Rolling Stones playing suitably over the head, we were told that Elizabeth Kane was officially broken. We are openly told that Liz finally chooses to « embrace » the darkness as another good part of her is cut, then another part, then another, until all that’s left is someone who takes what she wants.. And what Elizabeth wants are the answers.
But after watching the season 8 premiere on Friday night, Liz appears to be embracing her inner darkness, as if . . . I gave up a lot. When Liz made her darker, wildest move in the episode – ahem, Ressler accepted in order to take his rifle, shortly after the entire Task Force betrayed the entire Task Force and deliberately sabotaged the FBI investigation – she did so with all the energy of a teenager rolling to a locked door after being told to clean his room. Liz goes through the moves of betraying Reed and everyone who cares about her in exchange for (potentially) getting the answer she craves, but let’s face it: her heart really doesn’t seem like it.
I’ll admit that the season 8 premiere was a bit off the beaten track compared to previous premieres (I mean, Liz was shown quietly crying while she was cautiously driving her elderly grandfather around town), but after Season 7 it was cut short due to the quarantine. It’s amazing that we get the first ever blacklisted view. The creators have been very open about the fact that the first three episodes of this season should really have been the last three episodes of Season Seven, and that might stop the flow of the narrative a bit.. But from shows to editing to cinematography, all the way, you’ll never know this season was shot during a pandemic.. I, for example, am grateful to have it . . . (While I continue to quarantine after eight months).
The episode begins about a Russian man awaiting trial for murder inside a hotel, guarded by two U-members. s. Marshals outside the door. A doctor arrives on the floor and noisily tells the mourners that another man in the halls has been reported to have been infected with a contagious virus (Boo, Hesse) and has to enter. Twist – He wasn’t a doctor at all, and it was all a trick to help the Russian guy escape! If the blacklist here is to do one thing, it’s proof that all federal agents are easily tricked like a 4-year-old whose nose was removed from his face recently..
Meeting for the first time this season (and everything seems to be fine), Red tells Liz that this is the work of a man known as Roanoke who has « disappeared » criminals. It has long been assumed that Roanoke is dead, but the Russian escape bears many of his signatures, and Reed knows who the next Roanoke customer is: Maddy Tulliver / Katarina Rostova. At the season 7 premiere, banker Katarina told Red that he had delivered the money the Kazanjian brothers paid Maddy Tulliver directly to this Roanoke man, likely as payment for his vanished services.. . .
But given that Liz informs Katarina and Katarina sends her banker to speak to Red anyway, we can’t deal with this Roanoke progress on the face of it.. And Liz can’t either, but here it is: taking a tip from Red, hiring Roanoke as a next task force blacklist, telling co-workers who didn’t really know, oh, yeah, Maddy Tulliver isn’t dead, and also it’s not Maddy Tulliver, it’s my mom, Katarina Rostova.. Aram’s serious excitement about meeting Liz with her mother after all these years was heartbreaking, given how seriously she was with him in return..
Liz deliberately misleads her entire team about her newfound loyalty to Katrina and Wressler. When Cooper sends them together to investigate a warehouse linked to the Russian man’s escape, Resler asks Liz to confess that she warned Katarina before Reed talks to her banker, which she does by shrugging her shoulders like a vicious teenager.. . « I picked a side, » says Ressler, asking if Liz would pick Katarina over Red, or if she would pick Katharina over everyone else.. Ressler never gets an answer to that question, but we do when Liz pockets evidence from the Roanoke repository without letting Ressler know it..
It turns out to be an image of another repository – specifically, the repository where the Dom. Liz arrives at Catarina’s door and demands to know why Roanoke is watching her grandfather. It is soon revealed that Katarina’s true intent was never to escape, but to lead Reddington to believe that she was using Roanoke to target Dom in his high-security warehouse, so when Red finally decided to move Dom to a different location, she could kidnap him with less interference.. « The only way to be safe is for Dom to tell me everything I need to know, and it won’t happen unless I take him away from Reddington, » Catarina told Liz..
But Reddington isn’t the one who found the Dom… Lizzie repository image. So, now it’s up to her whether or not to pass on this photo in order to reinforce her grandfather’s kidnapping plan.
Liz says the only way to go along with her is for Katarina to tell her everything, although there is absolutely no reason why Liz should trust one word that comes from this woman who constantly misleads her the whole time she knew her. I’m not saying Liz has no reason to be angry at Red either – but it’s also a pity how she sticks to this other parenting character who clearly doesn’t care about her well-being at all.. « All you can see is what I want to do for Dom, » Katarina groans. “What I want you to see is what he did to me. (There has to be some form of the Bechdel test to calculate if there ever was a time when Katarina wouldn’t speak exclusively of herself. )
Liz comments on every word of Katrina telling her that Dom apparently began her spy training when she was fifteen years old, and ordered her to sleep with a young American soldier. Katarina says the only reason she abandoned Liz was to save her from a similar fate. And Liz was safe in America until the awful man who called himself Raymond Reddington entered her life. « I don’t know who Redington is, but I know that he betrayed me with my father and my best friend, » says Katarina.. « The secrets you are looking for – they tried to kill me for burial. Liz asks what secret could be so powerful that a father would try to kill his daughter, and in the tradition of the Great Blacklist, this powerful secret was revealed to be . . . Legendary file folder full of extortion!
Katarina says there’s a notorious KGB mole known as N13 that created a blackmail file with 13 international Intel packages – Sikorsky Archive – more than 30 years ago. Dom leaked to the KGB that his daughter Catarina was N13, and attempted to kill her before the « truth could be learned. ».
What was the truth? Well, that Dom was N13 . . . Or that Reddington was the N13, and Liz has been using to add more information to the Sikorsky archive since then . . . Or someone from N13 definitely wasn’t this woman who claims to be Liz’s mother.
Despite the fact that weeks ago, Katarina spun off a completely different story of Dom and Elijah’s attempt to kill her in order to protect precious little Elizabeth from the Townsend collective, Liz is now completely intent on believing this new story that Dom tried to kill her to cover up identity The real thing is for N13, and that Red has been using the task force to gather new information for Sikorsky’s archive since then. « One of the parents is trying to manipulate you in the same way my father manipulated me, » said Katarina Liz, manipulatively.. But Liz buys it all, hook, hook, and plunger. She runs straight to Reddington to hand over the photo she found in the Roanoke warehouse and sets out Katarina’s plan to kidnap Dom on the move..
As Katarina and her new servant listen to the task force’s plans to move Dom to a new safe house, the servant asks Katarina how she managed to get the FBI agent to wear a wire.. “A daughter’s need for her mother’s approval is the most powerful force in nature,” Katarina says with self-satisfaction.. And while I really despise this woman and what she’s about to do to my beloved family from the post office, I was relieved to have this little assurance of the audience that she can’t be trusted.
However, Liz ignored all these signs that she was being tampered with, and is currently leading her ailing grandfather in a convoy, sandwiched between Ressler and Park in the front, and Reid and Dempy in the back.. While driving, Reed received word from Heddie that she had tracked down the real Roanoke, but judging from his health, it was unlikely that he was organizing the hijackings.. Call Liz to warn her that this is the setting, and that they need to exit the road at an exit half a mile ahead..
Around this time, Liz pressed a button on the remote control, a box set up on the road shot spikes in front of their cars, popping Ressler tires and then Red tires – but not Liz because we’ve seen her get this truck equipped with « flat tires » Right before take off. She continues to lead Dom toward Catarina, leaving Reed and Ressler to look in horror behind her.
Back at the post office, Cooper tells his persecuted team that they will have to contact a stalker of their own, but behind closed doors he’s less bent on betraying Liz.. He tells Reddington that he is angry with Agent Kane, but that he is angry with Red. “Seven years ago, she was kind, passionate, and respectful . . . Under your guardianship, you became someone I didn’t know, ”Cooper tells Red. Red is less impressed, however, telling Cooper that he might not like them, but both of them realize what this is: « Her destiny.
Everyone seems to have succumbed to Elizabeth Kane’s betrayal . . . Everyone except the poor and loyal Ressler. When Liz textes him that she needs to speak, he shows up without telling anyone. She assured him she wouldn’t let anything bad happen to Dom (lol, okay Liz), but she needed answers. She needs Dom to confirm what she has been told about the Sikorsky and N13 archives, and she needs to know what Redington is hiding from her.. Plus, she needs something else…
“I want you to keep believing in me,” Liz Ressler told me before you tended to kiss him. He brings back feelings for a while, but when he pulls back, Ressler says that even though he’s never going to give them up, he still has to do his job. « I know you do, » said Liz, as she pulled his rifle out of his jacket so that he could not prevent her from escaping into the waiting arms of Katarina..
The Blacklist, NBC, Raymond ‘Red’ Reddington, Elizabeth Keen, Jon Bokenkamp, James Spader, Megan Boone
World News – US – Season 8 Premiere Summary « The Blacklist Dye it black
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