‘The Blacklist’ 5×15 Review: ‘Pattie Sue Edwards’

This week’s Blacklist, “Pattie Sue Edwards” was a solid episode. Not one of the season’s best, but still enjoyable.

The most shocking moment came at the end of the episode when Detective Singleton was kidnapped and murdered by his boss, Ian Garvey, code name Damascus. Liz and Singleton, with Aram’s help, intercepted the cell phone number that one of Garvey’s henchmen was calling. They tracked the number to a phone inside Singleton’s precinct, and when they called the number again, Singleton found that it was his bosses’s cellphone ringing inside his office. Ian Garvey of course found out that Singleton had discovered this, and threatened the lives of his children to get Singleton to keep quite and cooperate. Liz and Cooper later found Singleton stabbed to death in the street, Garvey had attempted to make it look like a mugging, but Liz knew better. As Garvey is Singleton’s boss, he was at the crime scene demanding to know who had killed one of his officers. Hearing him, Liz recognized his voice from the night that he murdered Tom in their apartment. So Liz knows who Tom’s killer is now, and she’s going to need all the help she can get to bring him down.

“Pattie Sue Edwards” also proved without a doubt that Singleton was a good man, and had no idea that his boss was crooked. He was just trying to do his job as a detective and get to the bottom of Tom’s murder. It’s really a shame that he was killed, because once it was made clear he was a good guy, I was really starting to enjoy his character and hoped he might even become a trusted member of the Task Force. Sadly, the body count surrounding Red’s secret just keeps increasing. We can only hope that this is resolved before more of the characters we love end up dead.

Perhaps my favorite moment of “Pattie Sue Edwards” came from a heated exchange between Red and an IRS agent. It’s rare that the Blacklist wades into politics, but when they do it’s extremely satisfying, and especially fun when the quips are delivered by James Spader:

Red: “Mr. Hepworth. Thomas Dekker.”
Mr. Hepworth: “Mr. Dekker. As you know, the IRS is conducting an audit of Critter Cabin LLC–”
Red: “Let me ask you – How come you get to audit me and I don’t get to audit you?”
Mr. Hepworth: “About the audit–”
Red: “Granted, you use my money for some worthy causes – roads, schools – but building a border wall, prosecuting people for smoking pot, building even more prisons to hold even more young men of color? Why should my money finance that?”

It was a short exchange, but one with a lot of force and meaning behind it. They are clearly and without a doubt calling out Trump’s policies, and even beyond that, the systemic issues embedded in the U.S. government. Red isn’t a character that you would normally see opinions like this from, but long time fans of the show know that Red is actually a pretty progressive and even borderline liberal character. It’s always a treat when we get to see this side of him, opinions delivered with his usual amount of snark and wit, and when the Blacklist offers social commentary.

We also finally got to see the Task Force working together as a cohesive unit again, now that Liz has been reinstated in a temporarily restricted role, and Aram actually got to go out in the field for once. It was a well-balanced episode that focused equal amounts of time on pretty much all the members of the Task Force, and we got to see some of Ressler’s tough side come out again. The Blacklister in this episode had unleashed a deadly virus in order to find a man who was under witness protection, a former soldier who she suspected of killing her husband, who was also a soldier. At the end of “Pattie Sue Edwards” she infected him with an accelerated version of the virus and told him she would give him the antidote if he confessed. He escaped, smashing the antidote in the process. Ressler and Samar tracked them down, and this was when Ressler showed what he was really made of. The man was almost collapsed on the ground, near death, but Ressler wouldn’t allow the medical team standing by to give him the antidote until he confessed, clearing the other soldier’s name. This may seem heartless, but it really showed that Ressler will go to any lengths necessary to find out the truth and make sure justice is served. The man eventually did confess and the antidote was administered to him, so Ressler’s plan worked.

Next week, things are heating up as Liz now knows the identity of Tom’s killer, and Red is at the mercy of Ian Garvey who is in possession of the suitcase of bones. Red will have to make a decision either to keep his secret hidden and strike a deal with Ian Garvey, or to let his secret come out in order to avoid betraying Liz. I think we all know which option he’s going to pick, if it comes down to that. Read the synopsis and check out the trailer for next week’s episode, “The Capricorn Killer” below!

Synopsis:

Liz investigates new details in a cold case from her early work as an FBI profiler. The Task Force takes action to bring down Tom’s killers within the legal system, while Red takes an opposite approach.

The Blacklist airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on NBC.

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