Directed by Kevin Hooks, his first for the series, and written by Melissa Scrivner-Love and Denise Thé, “Most Likely To” is a packed episode where the team split up to take on two different tasks. Finch (Michael Emerson) and Fusco (Kevin Chapman) move the mythology along, which highlights the terrorist group, Vigilance, this time instead of Decima, while Reese (Jim Caviezel) and Shaw (Sarah Shahi) maintain the procedural component by protecting a new number at a high school reunion……everyone’s favorite activity, right? 🙂
Episode opens with Reese and Shaw in a car monitoring their latest number. Shaw says it’s getting harder to tell the tourist from the locals now a days. Seems she doesn’t appreciate their fanny packs. Reese says the packs are pretty handy for concealing grenades (and guns and knives and other incendiary devices).
Their number is Leona Wainwright who appears at the curb hailing a taxi. Shaw tells Finch they have her in sight which is Finch’s cue to tell us all about Leona.
She is a clerical assistant in the Office of Personnel Management which manages everything from background checks to pension benefits. Reese says that’s Federal and realizes she lives in DC. Finch says she is in town to see a Broadway production of Mamma Mia which is why Finch had Reese and Shaw dress up. By this time Leona is inside a cab.
Shaw asks Reese whose turn it is to save the number. Reese’s reply, “Let’s fight for it.” Shaw calls head, flips a quarter and Reese looses to which he seems unhappy. Am I missing something? When did Reese become so nonchalant about helping people? For that matter when did either of them act like saving people was a chore?
Reese gets out of the car and starts walking to the cab. Ah…What happens when the cab starts moving? He runs back to the car to follow? He was behind the wheel.
At this point Shaw reports to Finch the cab hasn’t started moving. (Good, since Reese is walking to it!) She sends the cab number to Finch who looks up the intended driver as a Sanjeev Verma. Reese is close enough now to see the driver doesn’t seem to be of that ethnic group and that he is waving a gun in Leona’s face.
Reese draws his gun telling Shaw he will need her help. Really? Why? He is only a few feet away and still walking. Why isn’t he running or shooting the driver by now. Reese is a highly skilled sniper over great distances; he can’t miss at a few feet.
Shaw runs to Reese as the driver keeps threatening Leona and Reese keeps walking. I still can’t believe what I am seeing here. I keep yelling for Reese to shoot and he keeps walking. Both Leona and the driver turn now and see Reese walking to the car…still. The driver shows Reese some device in his hand, presses it and the cab explodes. Reese is thrown back into a car windshield stunned. As Shaw reaches him, he tells her to pick up the cabby’s smashed phone that is lying in the street. How did he know it belonged to the cabby and not Leona?
As Shaw picks up the phone, Reese climbs down from the car and they both turn to look very sadly at the burning cab. Both Leona and the cabby are dead. They are shocked and so am I. I can only wonder what is going on. Not like Reese to be so negligent about someone’s life.
Back at the library we see Reese apologizing to Finch for loosing the number. All of them are very depresses about it. (Given what we know this team can do, they did blow it.) Finch eases the sorrow by stating they couldn’t have predicted the threat to Leona was so immediate. Ah…it was very apparent how great the threat was when the cabby was openly waving a gun in Leona’s face for minutes while Reese walked and watched. So out of character for him. For that matter why were they waiting for her outside and not inside watching her room like they normally would? This whole operation seemed very careless to me.
Finch reports the cellular phone they retrieved belonged to Jonathon Plowman Jr. Reese guessed that wasn’t the cabby’s real name and he was correct. Finch says the real Jonathon Plowman Jr. was a spy for the Americans in the Revolutionary war. Reese states the obvious, Vigilance killed Lenora. Finch deduces that as Leona worked for the government and Vigilance has issues with the government’s abuse of citizen’s privacy, he feels it’s about his machine.
Finch gets a call on his computer. It’s Fusco who just got to the crime scene. He says the feds are there too. Reese says he is sure Fusco will charm them but nope, Fusco say’s he already tried. They won’t let him within a mile of their investigation.
Now Fusco is approached by FBI Agent Augusta King who shows him her badge….again. In case you don’t remember that’s Root (Amy Acker). She is back in NYC it seems.
Fusco is less then pleased to see her and tells her so. If she’s involved he wants nothing to do with it. She tells him that one of the jobs of Leona’s department was handling security clearances. She doesn’t know what clearances but tells Fusco he needs to be careful. Fusco says, “No problem. I’m getting the hell out of here.” At least Fusco seems like himself. 🙂
The scene shifts now to DC where a man, Senator Ross Garrison (John Doman), walks into the Secretary of Defense department, dismisses the approaching secretary, and barges into Control’s (Camryn Mannheim) office.
He’s there to discuss Wainwright’s murder. Arrogant as ever, Control tells him it was the work of privacy terrorists who call themselves Vigilance. The senator wants to know if they have their names of if the program has been compromised. She says it’s possible, but they won’t know for sure until they get access to Lenora’s office. He is very concerned about what will happen if anyone finds out about this surveillance system. Control assures him they won’t but the senator isn’t convinced being as she lost the system months ago.
She reminds him of the numerous terrorist acts Northern Lights has prevented and what would happen to public opinion if another attack happened on US soil. Her solution: he should do what he has always done, leave things to her. He wants to know if that means she is going to send her ‘goons and their black bags’ into Lenora’s office. He’s not in favor of that as the feds are already involved. Now Control has to go through proper channels because if they are caught, prison will be the least of their worries and he leaves. Now Control doesn’t look so sure of herself any more.
Scene shifts to the team’s safe house where both Reese and Shaw enter in very casual attire. Finch says they have a new number. Matthew Reed (Nestor Carbonell) is a criminal prosecutor in the Manhattan DA’s office. Shaw wants to know how he is connected to Vigilance and Finch says he’s not, as far as he can tell and gives them tickets to Westchester NY. Reese wants to know why Finch is sending them to Westchester if Vigilance is not involved. Finch says because Reed is going there and they are to follow and hands each of them a packet for their covers.
Shaw will be Betty Harris of Queens and Reese will be Frank Mercer of Kenosha WI. Reese wants to know why they are not looking into whatever information Vigilance wanted from Lenora. Finch said he can leave that to him. He doesn’t want to risk losing another number. I read that as Finch being upset at them for Lenora’s death and so did they. That is so out of character for Finch. And Reese and Shaw are standing there like little kids being scolded. That is so out of character for the show.
Finch says he has asked Fusco to go with him. Shaw wants to know if this is a punishment for them. As she asks, Fusco shows up with CDs of AC/DC or Dixie Chicks music and asked Finch which he prefers. Finch says he believes he is the one being punished. That would be funny if the whole premise wasn’t so off kilter. Since when would Reese let Finch go off on a dangerous mission without him, especially when Vigilance is involved. And the pairing of Finch and Fusco, while lending itself to the possibility of some very funny scenes, is a recipe for disaster. Finch is an IT person and while he is not new to danger he is not trained in any kind of military defense tactics. That’s why he hired Reese. Fusco is a great cop, but he is no Reese and Vigilance is no run of the mill bad guy either.
The scene changes to Westchester where we see Reed entering a high school with Reese and Shaw following. Reese postulates Reed might be here on a case until he enters the school and sees it’s a 20th high school reunion.
As they check in, Reed introduces himself to Shaw. Seems he has an interest in ‘Betty’ which Reese notices too. As Shaw blue jacks Reed’s phone, an organizer gives Reese and Shaw the itineraries for the reunion which include the bowling alley event that evening and the dance the following night. She turns to Reese and tells him she hopes he brought his dancing shoes because he was a great swing dancer. She mentions Doug Hemmill (Rob McClure) will be catering which must be of interest later on I’m guessing.
Shaw picks up a year book to look up photos of the real Frank and Betty. While Reese actually looks like Mercer, Betty is another story. Shaw is annoyed that Finch would think Betty looked anything like her and tells him so over their ear pieces. Finch answers as he is getting out of a car at a gas station caring a bunch of Styrofoam containers to the trash. Ii is funny to imagine what must have been going on in the car. Wonder what Finch picked, AC/DC or Dixie Chicks? 🙂
Finch said Betty didn’t look like her to him at first but it did to the facial symmetry algorithm he used to find the closest match to both of them. He says if you discard some of Betty’s more dislikable features, he does believer she and Betty look a great deal alike. That just makes Shaw madder. Finch continues that Harris despised high school. She blogged numerous reasons why she wouldn’t be at her 20th reunion so it was a good assumption that she wouldn’t show. Shaw was a bit turned off when she thought she was a professional blogger. Finch assures her that was Betty’s side project. She is a dental hygienist by trade. That didn’t make Shaw feel any better but was a surprise. I would have thought that would have been in the packet Finch gave her.
Reese chimes in and asked if Finch knew Frank was a great swing dancer. Finch did and also knows Frank is the mattress king of Kenosha Wisconsin. And to keep Frank from showing up at the reunion, Finch sent the real Frank on an all expenses paid vacation to Aruba so both their covers should be good.
We leave Finch at the gas station and change places, and times, to evening at the bowling alley. Reese and Shaw are renting bowling shoes and remarking they see no sign of Reed. Really? Since when do they ever let a number out of their sight? As they have no idea what the issue is with any of their numbers, they usually track them 24/7.
To make matters worse, Reese decides to ask a pretty brunette if she has seen Reed. She doesn’t answer but promptly slaps his face. Reese jokingly asks if it was something he said. 🙂
Reese and Shaw are greeted by Jack Tanner (Joe Coots) who recognized both of them as their cover IDs. He is a local police officer now and tries to impress Shaw with his gun saying some people are gun shy. I know that was supposed to be funny, but it didn’t do much for me.
Tanner also thinks Frank is holding up well after all his divorces, which from the look on Reese’ face he didn’t know about at all. Reese asks him if he has seen Reed. Again I don’t know why they don’t know where he is, which is so inconsistent with what the series has done in the past, but at least this allows us to get the back-story on Reed.
Tanner was surprised Reed showed up at all. He hasn’t been back since graduation because of the death of his girlfriend, Claire Klein. The night of the senior prom police found her body in Reed’s car and most people thought Reed had something to do with her death. Seems news to Reese and Shaw. I would think with as good a hacker as Finch is and with the seemingly difficult information he can pull up at times, he would turn up a suspicious death in a background check associated with a new number.
Tanner leaves to go say hi to Doug whom we see talking to another person about his hot dog catering service just as Reese and Shaw spot Reed giving another alumni, Toke (James McMenamin), legal advice on marijuana charges. Glad they finally found him.
Toke sees Reese and says he looks the same as always, and gives Reese a big hug. He wants to know if Reese wants to get lit. Reese says maybe after dinner to which Toke gives him another big hug.
In the background, we see Reed walking around when Doug deliberately bumps into him telling Reed he should have stayed home. That gets everyone’s attention. As the confrontation ends, Reed continues past Reese who says Reed has at least one enemy. Here a redhead walks up to Reese. He politely smiles at her and she slaps his face.
The scene shifts to DC and the offices of OPM. Fusco introduces himself as a NYPD detective and wants to look at Lenora’s office with his forensic photographer who turns out to be Finch. The receptionist wants to know if he is with the ‘other men.’ They are the FBI agents Fusco met in NY, sans Root, who are just leaving with the entire contents of Lenora’s office including her safe which Finch snaps a photo of as it passes by. Guess Control didn’t send her ‘goons with the black bags’ after all.
Fusco wants to know why the feds are all over this case. Finch says it has to do with Root’s information. Doing security clearances, Wainwright would have the names of government officials, from accountants to senators, who could access her department’s confidential information. The physical copies would have been in the safe, which the feds just confiscated, but the electronic copies would be on OPM’s secure network which Finch thinks he can hack but it will take some time.
Fusco realizes this just became an overnight trip and says the NYPD only allows $85 a night, but knows a place that usually rents by the hour they can stay at. Of course that would not be suited to Finch’s taste so he asks Fusco if he can bolster his per diem to stay at a better place. Now that’s funny! :-). At least the Finch/Fusco fans will like the episode.
Back at the bowling alley, Shaw watches Reed, while Reese buys Toke a beer and talks to him about Doug and Reed’s earlier altercation. Toke explains that while Claire with Reed’s girlfriend, Doug was Claire’s best platonic friend who never had a chance with her. Toke says Reed was never the same after Claire’s death but he doesn’t believe there was any foul play. Reed didn’t kill Claire, she overdosed. Reese excuses himself and as he walks away, Toke starts talking to Phil (Timothy Devlin), whom he doesn’t recognize at all. That has to have some bearing on the story.
Reese asks Fusco if he can get the police reports on the case as a blonde walks up to Reese. He already knows what is going to happen and sure enough he is slapped again. Shaw sees what happened and has the scoop on why Frank is so populate with the ladies. Seems Frank gave the brunette a promise ring then slept with her best friend the redhead before having a fling with the blond. Reese doesn’t think that is too bad, until Shaw finishes the story. Seems Frank also seduced the blonds’ mother. Frank had some wild high school years!
Now the lights in the place dim and photo of a crime scene appear on all the monitors with the message “A Night to Remember.” The photos change to shots of Claire’s body in Reed’s car. As everyone turns to look at Reed, he promptly walks out.
Reed thanks Shaw giving her the opportunity to bring the conversation around to Doug. She says Doug doesn’t seem to want him here and Reed says he’s not the only one. Shaw asks if he wants to talk about it but he declines. Reed mentions they are standing in front of his room to which she replies she’s right next door. Um…not really since we see her jimmy the door open with a credit card. I was wondering how she could have a room right next door to him and earlier not know where he was. And how can Finch know Reed was going to Westchester and not turn up his hotel reservation let alone not make one for Reese and Shaw at the same hotel?
She gets inside and tells the occupant there is an emergency evacuation due to bed bugs. Shortly there is a knock on the door. It’s Reese. Glad he showed up!
Shaw tells him to get his own room, but he can’t. Seems there is no vacancy due to a bed bug scare. After an exchange designed to only appeal to the male audience, including shots of Shaw in her underclothes, Reese says he has been keeping an eye on Doug and blue jacked his phone. After a few more comments for the male audience, the two unpack before setting up surveillance. In both cases, under their clothes, the suitcases are full of weapons and surveillance equipment. At least they came prepared.
When the computer is booted up, we see a new email from Fusco. He has sent the police report on Claire. Her death was ruled an accidental hydrocodone overdose. The report also included interviews with Doug, who saw Claire leave the prom with Matthew, and Reed, who said they had a fight that night, she left in his car and he never saw her again. Reese believes Doug doesn’t buy Reed’s story and according to Reed others don’t either. Reese wonders out loud who else is out for revenge.
We now join Finch and Fusco in DC and its morning. Fusco steps out of a very expensive bedroom through French doors wearing a hotel bathrobe and silk eye mask claiming he hasn’t felt this rested in along time. Finch, who has been hard at work hacking the OPM network, says he should hope so as its past one in the afternoon.
Finch says he has already hacked the system and all information pertaining to Lenora has been wiped clean and he doesn’t think it was the feds, but high ranking government officials. Fusco notices a portable package X-ray machine. When he asks what it is for, Finch says he can use it to see the safes internal gears while he turns the dial. Seems Finch now wants to get into Lenora’s safe for the evidence which means breaking into the FBI evidence locker first, then crack the safe, much to Fusco amazement. But Fusco is on-board with the whole thing. Good for him.
Now we return to the reunion and it time for the dance. Reese and Shaw show up in dressy attire. Reese notices Doug talking to Phil, the mysterious man that Toke can’t recognize. Reese leaves to make sure Doug stays away from Matthew, while Shaw dances with Reed.
After Reed throws Shaw a few compliments, he tells her he knows she’s not Betty and wants to know who she is. Shaw tells him she is the only one here who thinks he is innocent. She thinks he cared for Claire but she also thinks he’s hiding something.
Now the decoration balloons fall to the gym floor along with a mannequin with Claire’s name-tag. As all eyes fall on Matthew who leaves the gym. Reese standing at the bar says someone is trying to drive Matthew to the brink and Doug, still with Phil, hasn’t moved an inch all night. Reese walks to Toke and ask if he has seen anyone acting weird. No he hasn’t except for Phil, who grew a foot and put on a lot of muscle. Seems Phil played Tiny Tim is a school play.
Reese realizes Phil is an imposter and starts walking toward him. When Phil notices Reese, he takes off. Reese follows drawing his gun as they enter the kitchen. There Phil attacks Reese from behind with a gun of his own. When both guns fall to the floor, they engage in hand-to-hand combat. Phil makes a comment that he was told Reese was fast, and of course Reese wants to know by whom. It quickly becomes apparent Phil is no match for Reese. Phil attacks with a cleaver and Reese deflects the blow with a can of Sloppy Joe’s. FUNNY!
Reese starts to use the cleaver as a weapon of his own when Toke walks in. He followed Reese and Phil now grabs him. He tells Reese to drop the cleaver of he will break Phil’s neck. And of course Reese does. This is the first time all episode the show seemed to be normal and Reese was back to being Reese.
As Reese puts down the cleaver he quickly picked up a plate sending it flying into Toke’s leg. Toke falls down breaking Phil’s hold on him and Reese follows through throwing the Sloppy Joe can at Phil knocking him out. Reese retort, “How’s that for fast!” LOVE IT!!! Now THAT is what the show is supposed to be about!
When Reese searches through Phil’s pockets, he finds a photo of him and Shaw. Phil comes too, Reese asked him who sent him and why he was at the reunion. Phil smiles and eats a cyanide tablet. Vigilance is here. Reese tells Toke, Phil was a domestic terrorist who killed himself to avoid giving Reese information about his underground operations. Reese contacts Shaw, still at the dance, tells her Vigilance is here and they are not after Reed, they are after them.
Reese puts Phil on ice as Shaw asks how Vigilance found them. Reese has no idea but Phil was here to see how Reese and Shaw operate until Reese forced his hand. He also realizes there could be a lot more of them.
Back at the dance, Shaw has lost Reed. On top of that, all the gift bags have been filled with empty prescription bottles of hydrocodone with Claire’s name on them.
Reese says they need to get to the bottom of Claire’s death before the reunion becomes all about revenge. At this point Shaw reads a message from Doug’s cloned phone. He has received a text from the dead woman Claire Klein asking Doug to meet her in the chem lab. Interesting since Shaw cloned Reed’s phone not Doug’s. Reese cloned Doug’s so he should have gotten the message.
When Shaw informs Reese of the text, Reese realizes they had it wrong all along. Reed isn’t the one being terrorized, Doug is. Doug heads to the lab as do Reese and Shaw.
In the lab Doug finds a handwritten suicide note with his name on it acknowledging he had killed Claire. Reed appears behind Doug with a gun. Doug realizes Matthew had done the photos at the bowling alley, Claire’s dummy and the gift bags. When he asks why, Matthew tells Doug that he knows he was the one who killed Claire. Doug asks why he would kill her. He was her best friend. He was always there when Matthew made her cry. Matthew says Doug was always there because he was trying to ‘get in her pants.’ She ran to him anytime she was upset and prom night was no exception. Claire ran to him after their fight. Doug claims he never saw her after she left with Reed. But Reed trips him up. He is a prosecuting attorney after all.
Doug admits to slipping the drug into her drink, thinking it would help her relax and like him more but he gave her too much and she died. He made it look like an overdose, and left her in Matthew’s car.
Reed says for two decades he believed he had pushed Claire over the edge causing her to OD and then he started thinking like a prosecution attorney instead of a boyfriend. He says he thinks killing Doug is justice and takes aim to shoot but Reese stops him. He has his own gun aimed at Reed.
At the moment, automatic weapons begin firing at the group and everyone takes cover. It’s Vigilance and they are here for Reese and Shaw but everyone is fair game for them. Reese and Shaw return fire and Reese kills one just before he shoots Shaw who doesn’t think they will get out of the lab alive.
Doug tries to make a run for it and is shot. Reese pulls him to cover telling him to stay down and shout up.
Now Shaw gets call from Root. She is aware of their situation and has called to apologize. Root says Vigilance keeps changing their method of communication so she had to leak some sensitive information to find there latest method which happens to be coded radio messages. So she told them where Reese and Shaw were and in her defense she knew they could handle themselves. And now she just intercepted another coded message. Harold is about to be in trouble, so she has to go. Seems she is in DC right now. I would think she could have found different sensitive information to leak that something that would but Reese and Shaw in danger. And right now, Reese should be with Finch not Fusco or Root.
We join Fusco and Finch at the evidence room asking for information from the Wainwright case. When the guard walks away, Fusco steals the guard’s keys and lets Finch into the back so he can try to crack the safe while Fusco keeps the guards occupied.
Back at the lab the fight continues. Reese can’t get a clear shot and Shaw is out of ammo. She finds some chemicals that just happen to be in the drawers she is hiding behind. Reed mixes them together. Shaw throws it at the last terrorist forcing him out of hiding so Reese can get a clean shot. His last bullet finds its mark. Battle over.
In the evidence locker, Finch finds the safe. Fusco is still stalling the guard when they see armed men on the security monitor. It’s Collier (Leslie Odom Jr.) and his goons. Collier attaches a bomb to the door and blows them just as Finch, using the x-ray machine, cracks the safe. He removes the contents, scans it to make sure it’s about Northern Lights, and closes the safe door only to find Collier behind it. Where is Fusco? My first thought was that Fusco was dead and that Reese should be with Finch. Fusco and Shaw could have handled the reunion.
Collier tells Finch he has been studying Finch’s team for some time. He knows about all of them including Fusco who had to surrender or they would have killed the guard. At least he’s alive.
Finch starts to threaten Collier if he harms Fusco but Collier stops him. He says he knows Finch is not a man of violence so threats are meaningless. Collier knows Finch and his group help people who are about to be in a lot of trouble. Crouger, Sloan, Claypool, Wainwright.
Collier continues that Finch knew they were going to be in trouble before it even happened, proving the government has a secret surveillance system that spies on citizens every hour of every day. He knows Finch is not part of the government but knows he is protecting the system. He orders Finch, at gunpoint, to hand over the documents he found in the safe, which he does. Finch has no choice. So now Vigilance knows about the machine as well as Samaritan.
Finch says he sympathizes with Colliers cause but not his methods and if Collier jeopardizes the system, he will be placing the country at risk.
Collier has been looking at the documents as Finch talked. He says risk isn’t even an issue. They are already at war. Collier starts taking Finch away to discuss this more, when Finch says he won’t be joining him. Gunshots are heard as Root enters the locker both guns blazing. That gives Fusco time to disarm his own guard and join Root but Collier escapes out the back with the documents. As real FBI shots up, Root flashes her badge and sends them after Collier. She tells Finch she has good news, Reese and Shaw survived and he should talk to them. Fusco takes up a position to protect Finch telling him Root is one scary chick. Yes she is! Reese should have been there.
Finch does call ‘them’ and gets Shaw. Reese is no where to be seen. Why? Finch says Fusco and he will live to fight another day.
We stay at the reunion now and see Doug being taken away on a stretcher under police guard saying he wasn’t trying to kill Claire. It was an accident. Reed and Shaw share some parting words. Reed believes he may serve some time for trying to kill Doug. I would say so. But thinks he and Shaw should get together after. Really?
Back in DC, Root tells Finch that Collier has disappeared; neither the FBI nor the machine can locate him. Fusco asks what was in the safe to which Finch replies it was a black budget report about a massive surveillance system that is in Collier’s hands now. Root corrects him. Unfortunately, Collier just sent out another coded message containing only one word, disseminate. Finch realizes Collier has passed the information to the public.
The machine traces the press releases about the system. Reporters are confronting Senator Garrison who claims no surveillance system that spies on citizens exists and he has no knowledge about a project called Northern Lights. Next scene, Garrison is entering Control’s office saying they have a problem. She says her ‘goons and their black bags’ could have stopped all of this. Garrison doesn’t have time for finger pointing. The public is very close to learning what the government has been doing and orders her to terminate the program. She says she would sooner have him terminated than leave the country unprotected. Garrison says the country will be protected, just not be her machine and right now she should be worried about who is going to protect her.
As he leaves the room and she places a phone calls, ordering the project stopped. “Deactivate the program. We are no longer operational. Shut it down.” She then shreds a file on Collier she has on her desk. Seems its information the machine has sent to her. Why did the machine wait so long to do that?
We join Finch and Root walking in DC. She asks why Finch didn’t return to NY with Fusco. He says if Vigilance is operation in DC that so is he. Ah….Vigilance is everywhere, Finch. Hope the rest of the team joins him there.
Suddenly we see Root stop walking and become very intent on what the machine is sending her. Seems with the relevant numbers operation shut down, it has transferred all that information to her. She tells Finch that her “Dance Card” just got full, and leaves.
“Most Likely To” was a good episode, though not likely to become one of my favorites. It moved the mythology along but in a very complex way and in the process damaged a lot of the characters’ traits and appeal. For me the addition of a second number, Reed, make the episode to complicated and wasn’t necessary for the points they were trying to bring out. They tried to put too much into one hour which led to a whole lot of inconsistencies in both stories.
I would have preferred to see each story told in a separate episode or just have the death of Wainwright lead the whole team to DC to confront Vigilance then to attempt a second storyline. Bring in a new number diluted both story-lines leaving plot holes and loss characters traits.
Reese and Shaw acting like it was chore to save a number. Finch not doing a complete analysis of the number and acting like Reese and Shaw were no more than his employees when they have always been shown to be partners in their pursuits. Reese and Shaw not knowing vital information about the people they were impersonating and a random clerk at OPM keeping proof of a black budget operation regarding a secret government program in her office safe. Wouldn’t she have given that to her superiors? How did Vigilance know about Lenora and why wait till she was in NY before approaching her about information she had back in her DC office? And why didn’t the machine give Finch her number sooner? I could go on but you get the picture.
If the series wanted to show Vigilance was watching all members of the team, they should have done it in an episode where the whole hour could be devoted to it. They do have 23 episodes for the season after all. Why wait till so far into the season to do all this.
The episode did have some very humorous scenes. Fusco is always a treasure. But while Reese being slapped repeatedly is somewhat amusing, I didn’t enjoy seeing him be the butt of that many jokes nor a punching bag for Shaw.
And if they had to tell two stories at once, for me, the pairing of partners should have been different. Reese would never have been okay with Finch going off to DC without him when Vigilance might be around, at least not the Reese of old. Fusco is a good cop but he’s no Reese.
Reese has always been concerned with Finch’s safety. The interaction and chemistry of the main characters has been a big part of what made the series a hit in the first place. In case the writer’s forgot, the show is about an enigmatic billionaire computer programmer, Finch, who joins forces with a former CIA operative, Reese, to stop violent crimes that happen to ordinary people. No reason there can’t be new characters, but let’s not forget the old ones and all the traits that made them popular. I’d rather see the series keep the core of the show the same and build on that, than change all its past cannon for cliff-hangers and new characters.
It seems since Reese’s’ arc with Carter ended, so did his prominence in the series. That is sad for all us Reese fans who enjoy his personality, intelligence and professional abilities. Now, except for an occasional kick ass scene with the baddies, Reese hasn’t been the usual factor in the show. That is sorely missed.
For me, Fusco and Shaw should have been sent on the reunion case and Reese and Finch to DC. The outcome of both missions could have been the same to move the mythology along, but the characters would have been more effective and normal. It would have much more interesting to see Reese battle Collier over the documents, saving Finch in the process. Root could have saved Shaw instead of just calling her since she is the one who puts them in danger in the first place. Root could have still gotten Vigilance’s new code and Collier could have still gotten out the back with the documents.
Speaking of bad guys, Vigilance has developed into a seriously convincing evil that has gone from being justifiable to ethically deplorable. Their cause initially was a worthwhile, protecting civil liberties and people’s right to privacy, but when they started taking innocent lives, they crossed the line. As Finch said “I agree with your principles, but not your method”. And in all honesty the machine does violate those rights, but it saves many lives in the process.
Still right or wrong, Vigilance has made an impact now. It forced the government operation to shut down changing the way the machine operates. It now sends all of its relevant numbers to Root . I would have thought it would have been better to send it to Finch as the machine’s admin. At least Finch has a team to support him as the machine well knows. How can Root handle all that information herself? Anyway, it’ll be interesting to see what Root and Vigilance do next.