The Blacklist 2.02 Review: Money is the Root of All Evil

by Mel BiJeaux / September 30, 2014

If ever you needed a reason to believe that Red Reddington is a ruthless as Berlin, you needn’t go further than the first 5 minutes of this episode of The Blacklist. Whenever you see Mister Kaplan, you know Red needs to clean up some bodies. Apparently, he’s been laying waste to a lot of informants, if Kaplan’s comments about him calling her a lot lately are anything to go by. Watching Red blow away the poor guy unlucky enough to still be kicking was brutal.

But, you can argue that Red’s choices are limited when he’s dealing with Berlin, who has been sending his ex wife back to him in pieces. First a finger, now a tooth. Miraculously, Naomi is still coherent enough to make a pretty elaborate and crafty escape attempt. She’s a smart cookie, no wonder Red loved her. She actually reminds me of Liz – but that is a whole can of fish I don’t want to open.

The case seems unrelated at first, a bank in Warsaw Poland getting robbed as a cover for an actual kidnapping. Of course, by the time Liz and Ressler get over there, they discover that everyone involved is crooked and there is a bigger conspiracy going on. And of course Red had money in that bank, as well as Berlin. The one thing that never fails to amaze me with this show is how many steps ahead Red seems to be. More on that in a moment.

The kidnapping centered around a woman with amazing photographic memory, the bank’s living computer system. She knows who’s money is where, and how to get to it. Which is why Red is so keen on capturing her alive and well, much to Liz and Ressler’s dismay.

And how about Ressler, with is pill addiction starting to muck up his job. Liz nearly gets beaten to death and shot three feet from him and he sits there blinking like a deer in headlights before jumping to her aid. Get off the pills, Donny-boy, before you get your partner killed! I wish they would spend a little more time on Liz and Ressler’s partnership development, since he seems to want to tell Liz about his problems, he’s just too chicken to actually do it.

Okay, speaking of Red being so far ahead of the game it’s scary, remember that photo of the dead girl he took from the Stewmaker’s photo album? That, presumably, was Berlin’s daughter. And someone is going to a lot of trouble to make Berlin think Red butchered his kid. So all the way back in season 1, Red was preparing to deal with Berlin? Did he know then that someone was going to sic Berlin on him? See, these are answers I need.

I very much hope they bring back Peter Stormare because seeing him and Spader play off each other was absolutely brilliant. Since Berlin is still kicking, I’m thinking it’s a possibility that Red isn’t done with him yet.

I also love that Red had to rely on Liz bailing his ass out of the fire in the last second with those bank codes and the money. I think Red is having to reevaluate just how far he can push Liz before she pushes back, and whether she’ll do as he wants in the end or hang him out to dry. Liz needs Red because he has all the answers though, but it’s nice to see the all powerful tactician sweat a little.

This episode was very interesting, and I’m glad to see the bad ass Mossad lady is going to be a regular, taking Meera Malik’s place. Now Red will have a mole on the team, it seems. But why her and why now? All more questions in the seemingly endless line of questions for this series.

The Blacklist returns Monday October 6th at 10/9c on CBS

   
Mel is a writer, blogger and TV fanatic whose work and celebrity interviews have been seen on Popstar.com and 50Undercover.com. She fears no fandom or social media platform and you can follow her on Twitter @Melapaloosa.