It was going to be incredibly difficult for “The Blacklist” to top last week’s episode. Part 1 of the “Anslo Garrick” story was non stop intensity, with more blood on the floor than a Purdue factory. People were being shot left and right so often that it felt like the local news. The episode ended with Red still locked inside his cell with a wounded Agent Ressler. Even when Garrick began killing Red’s friends, the door to his clear prison stayed shut.
This week kicked off with Garrick upping the stakes by threatening Lizzy’s life if Red didn’t come out of the indestructible cell. As we all know Red has a serious soft side for Lizzy, in a father/daughter sort of way, and there’s no way he’d let harm come to her. Red spent the previous episode saving Ressler’s life, and now he turns the tables on the agent. He slaps awake the injured Ressler and coerces the password out of him.
Garrick now has custody of Red, and whisks him away to a secret warehouse for torture time. The torture involves injecting Red with a drug that makes the smallest breeze feel like a bad burn. Garrick wants to know what is so special about that agent to get Red to open his cell. Red fights off the drug, and never breaks under the torture. While Red hangs from shackles at the mercy of Garrick, Lizzy and the FBI are hard at work tracking him down.
The FBI is having a hard time finding Red because Garrick’s team removed the tracking chip in his neck while transporting him to their safe house. That scene was one of the best of the week with James Spader’s Red calmly staring into the camera as a nurse dug into his neck like she was stuffing a turkey. After what felt like hours she finally ripped the chip out of his neck, but not before numerous viewers lost their dinners.
Eventually we find out that Garrick isn’t going to kill Red. He was actually hired by someone else who wanted a face to face meeting with Red. Who could be so powerful to order this? Enter TV legend Alan Alda as a mysterious man who needs to get in Red’s face. Watching Alda and Spader together on screen was both great, and a small taste of what is to come from this show. Spader is such a powerful force on screen that he needs a similar actor if his foil is to be believed. Alda is the perfect type of actor for Spader to rally with, and I look forward to their future snarling interactions.
Alda leaves, and then Garrick begins taunting Red with the other torture plans he has in store, but Red of course has a plan. In an escape that had me thinking of Hannibal Lector in “Silence of the Lambs”, Red palms a scissor and then uses it on Garrick when he’s not expecting it. What was Garrick doing that finally pushed Red over the line? Threatening the life and safety of Lizzy of course. If you want Red to do anything then you need to involve his maybe daughter. Garrick is dead, and Red makes his escape.
Speaking of “The Blacklist” paternity issues, the end of the episode once again clouded that prediction. Red has escaped from the warehouse after killing Garrick, and is now at the top of the FBI’s Most Wanted list. He might be on the lamb from the US Government, but Red takes the time to call Lizzy. During this call Lizzy asks what we’ve all been thinking for the entire season, “Are you my Dad”. Red answered “No”, but consider me still in the camp that thinks he’s her Dad. Red agreed to lie after his final talk with Lizzy’s adoptive Dad, and with the danger he’s in now isn’t the time to reveal this shocker to Lizzy.
The final words Red speaks to her brings us back to a problem we’ve been dealing with all season. Red warns her not to trust her husband, and be aware of him. We tried to unravel just what’s up with Tom Keen earlier, but the recent episodes went out of their way to avoid the “is Tom a spy” plot. With the show returning January 13th 2014, we can expect the two major stories to be Red’s life on the run, and the truth behind Lizzy’s way too in shape to be a teacher husband.