Last night’s episode “The Debt Collector” was the last before the 2 hour season finale next week. Ressler was out of jail on O.R. (own recognizance) which was a term that I wasn’t familiar with, so I looked it up after the episode last night. It just means that the defendant can be released from jail without posting bail, because the judge has confidence that the defendant will take the responsibility to appear for any mandated court proceedings. Since Ressler is an FBI agent, the judge obviously had high confidence that Ressler would follow procedure and the law. I’m still disappointed that no one came to visit him while he was in jail, but he wasn’t in for very long at all and doesn’t look any worse the wear for it, so I guess it’s ok.
Although he has been released from jail in “The Debt Collector”, Ressler is still suspended from active duty while under investigation. Which means that he doesn’t get to officially work with the task force until he’s cleared. In “The Debt Collector” the solution to this situation came from Cooper, who suggested that he work full time with Julian Gale for now, which so far hasn’t gone too well. Gale’s first lead was Marvin Gerard, Red’s lawyer.
Of course, Ressler and Marvin know each other from working on the task force, but it would be pretty bad if Gale were to find this out, seeing as they are trying to keep the task force a secret, and not let anyone know that they’ve been working with Red. Marvin put Ressler between a rock and a hard place, telling him that he would keep his mouth shut about the task force if Ressler would let him walk. Ressler pretty much had no choice, but this didn’t go over well with Julian, who was starting to become pretty suspicious about how much Ressler knows about Red and his associates.
I love Ressler, but he really didn’t handle this situation well at all. When Julian questioned him, Ressler threw him up against a wall and said “Never doubt me, ever”. Which is really not a great way to make someone believe you aren’t hiding something. Especially Julian, who is a trained detective and knows how to read people. To be fair to Ressler though, Julian hasn’t exactly been working well with him either. When Julian asked where he had been for the past few hours, or days, I’m not quite sure of the timeline, Ressler answered honestly. He told him that he had been brainwashed and made to believe that the President’s national security adviser (A.K.A Lauren Hitchen) had kidnapped a witness to the murder she had committed. In response, Julian laughed at him. Which is really not a nice response when someone has obviously just been through a traumatic experience that’s still affecting them. Julian pushed him on this further, and that’s a large part of the reason why Ressler snapped at him, besides the fact that it’s just a lot of pressure for Ressler to be working with Gale who’s actively trying to uncover the task force while Ressler is trying to keep it a secret.
All of this leads to Julian following Ressler to where Red and Kate are finally having their face to face confrontation. Samar called Ressler and told him that Liz was in danger, she had been captured by The Debt Collector, and of course, completely disregarding his suspension, Ressler goes to help her, because it’s Liz and he would do anything for her.
As a quick side note, with another good plot twist, Red was actually the one who hired The Debt Collector to kidnap Liz, because he wanted a way to lure Kate to him and have Liz be there to see that she can’t be reasoned with. This, again is another really questionable decision made by Red. Liz has already been wary of trusting him lately, for good reason, and kidnapping her and making her think that she was being held hostage by someone intent on hurting her is a really bad strategy for winning back her favor. Not to mention, did he not just tell a story in “Dr. Bogdan Krilov” about how he set up a fake kidnapping of his friend and gave the kidnappers specific orders not to hurt him but they ended up torturing him and killing him anyway? How did he know that the exact same thing wasn’t going to happen to Liz? Seems like a really risky chance to take with someone that we know is basically his sole purpose for living.
So after all this, he finally has a face to face meeting with Kate, where he tells her that he would be able to find a way to co-exist with her, and she refuses. This really shows that Kate is pretty much past the point of no return. She wants to protect Liz, but will stop at nothing to bring Red down for good. She even called Ressler “collateral damage”, which is totally unacceptable and a good sign that Red is right and she has to be stopped. For all of the harsh criticism that I’ve given Red this season, I at least know that he wouldn’t hurt anyone on the task force, so that gives him quite a few more points than Kate in my book.
Also, he is trying to find a way to mend the situation with her without killing her, something that she is unwilling to do. I understand why she doesn’t want to make a deal with him, he did shoot her and that’s unforgivable, but her vendetta against Red is hurting people that shouldn’t be involved. There is a line that shouldn’t be crossed, and Kate has definitely crossed it. Yes, Red has been killing a lot of people that he doesn’t need to, but none of them have been innocent.
To end on a happy note, we did get a small Keenler moment in “The Debt Collector”! When Julian again brought up the possibility that Liz had been working with Red and feeding him intel, Ressler said this:
“This is about Keen helping him. That’s not a story. I mean, that’s a fairy tale.”
No matter how many times Julian suggests it, there is no way that Ressler is ever going to consider it a possibility.
Next week though is the 2 hour season finale, “Mr.Kaplan” and “Mr.Kaplan: Conclusion”. I can’t believe it’s here already! It seems like this season just flew by. Anyway, as in every Blacklist season finale we know there is a lot about to go down. Kate is going to make her final attempts to take Red down, Julian is about to use extreme measures to uncover what the task force has been doing, and we may finally find out if Red is Liz’s father or not. It seems like they actually might be serious about answering that question this time, and I really hope they do because this is something that should have been answered seasons ago. Everyone is tired of this part of the story being teased over and over again. It’s time to answer this question once and for all and move on.
Check out the trailer for the 2 hour season finale below, and I’m sending you all hugs in advance, because there has never been a Blacklist finale that wasn’t catastrophic in some way.
The Blacklist 2 hour season finale airs Thursday at 9/8c on NBC.