‘The Blacklist’ season 2: Five ways to make NBC’s his truly great again
Back during the first season of “The Blacklist,” we were quick to praise the James Spader / Megan Boone series as one of the greatest gifts on network TV. It was complex, well-acted, and it never felt by-the-numbers.
That has changed in season 2, at times pretty drastically. The writing has gotten from one standpoint overly complicated, and the story suddenly thinks that it is way smarter than it really is. Liz Keen has become disconnected as a leading lady, and we feel like the show is suffering from the “how do we top it?” mentalist that many shows get into during their second season.
We don’t want to sit here and be overly negative, since this is a show that can easily turn things around. As a matter of fact, we’ve even come up with some suggestions
1. Fewer characters – Get rid of the Mossad agent, some of the other random people at the FBI, and actually focus more on the characters we know and care about. We don’t like all the distractions.
2. Transparency from Liz – We’ve grown accustomed to Reddington having secrets, but Liz Keen was our window into this world. With the whole Tom Keen secret, that means we no longer have a trustworthy point of view on the show. We’d like to see that change, since we want to have someone to relate to.
3. Better promotional strategy – Rather than trying to sell one or two shockers, to the point that they become predictable, sell your characters and your story! These are all very good, and do not need to be overshadowed.
4. Make supporting characters interesting – Cooper and Aram could be really great, but to be honest, we don’t know if we would even know their names if we were not a professional TV columnist. These are people the show needs, but they need to take a page from the “Castle” playbook and given them a spotlight here or there.
5. More original villains – Too many characters this season, from James Covington to Linus Creel, are modified versions of criminals we’ve seen on other shows. We did not notice this so much on the first season.
(Photo via NBC.)
November 17, 2014 @ 1:20 am
I’ll be back for the next episode. I grant you that this season had lower energy early on, but an old rule in scriptwriting is you want to bore the audience a little bit before a REALLY big kaboom. They delivered.
Really loved connecting Berlin to his daughter then his farewell party, the reveal of even more complexity in Liz’s husband, and of course the end of the Decemberist.
I’ve got no problem with the number of characters including the Mossad agent. Every character is perfectly interesting to me so I disagree with the proposition of cutting their number and making the survivors more interesting.
If anything I hope they bring back more minor transitory characters for further minor transitory cameos, liike the “cleaner” lady or better yet, expand them to major characters for an episode or three.
November 11, 2014 @ 1:49 pm
I just watched this finale and I realized I am done with this show. It is too full of itself. Also all your points are valid and I just have not enjoyed it this season at all.