When I first heard that this week’s episode of “The Blacklist” was titled “The Freelancer” I had visions of James Spader revealing an associate producer who was claiming too much overtime or an editor who keeps on asking when he is going to get a chance at benefits. That to me is the horrors of freelancing. Sadly this episode had nothing to do with benefit free work.
The freelancer here was a deadly assassin who kills his targets in indirect and public ways. He’s the type of guy who crashes an entire airplane to kill just one person. Not cool. Raymond Redding, played by Spader, reveals to the FBI that the Freelancer is going to kill a prominent human rights activist. The catch of course is that he is the only one who has seen the killers face before. Redding uses that as leverage in order to get what he wants from the FBI. What he wants is a hand picked team around him and of course FBI Agent Elizabeth Keen.
Last we left Keen she was dealing with the pine box (speaking of pine boxes how great is Breaking Bad and Jessie’s finale daydream) she found hidden in her house. The box contains the basic spy tools long established by movies and TV. There are fake passports, different currencies, and a gun. But Keen’s husband is such a pacifist and stuff. How could he possibly be bad? There is a funky “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” smell to this plot line.
Redding and Keen get to discuss that and much more over a lovely dinner at a French bistro. During the meal the show once again teases that Redding could be Keen’s long lost father. She must have taken after her mother. Keen is also convinced to not confront her husband over the pine box’s contents, and to monitor him before taking action.
The FBI then agrees to Redding’s request and gives him the team he wants. There is bodyguard named Denke and an Asian who hates cops. The real sparks fly when guest star Isabella Rossellini appears on screen as the human rights activist whose life is in danger. She purrs around a dock while being warned by Redding and Keen. She obviously refuses to cancel the party over a threat. She’s GD Isabella Rossellini.
Anyhow the party goes off and the Freelancer is posing as a waiter who poisons Rossellini’s champagne. Very novel approach. I guess the Butler costume was being washed. Red fingers the guy to Keen and there is a chase scene with lots of running and yelling, but that’s nothing. We soon find Redding and Rossellini in a face off over the true nature of her human rights business. She in fact is not a protector of woman, but a trafficker herself. Luckily we find this out before her death by poison because that makes it far easier to digest. Spader as Redding lords over Rossellini as she gasps and finally admits she is a bad person.
Another week down, and another bad guy stopped by Redding and Keen. They are the new dynamic duo of NBC. The key to the show continues to be Spader. We get just enough of his eye rolling and sarcastic barbs per week to keep the show interesting. We ended with Elizabeth back home with her might be a spy husband. Those two are this close to adopting. Shouldn’t the adoption agency be aware of the whole spy box thingy? We will have to see next week on “The Blacklist”.