We’ve had a little bit of a wait since the last episode of The Blacklist, but finally it’s back tonight. Last time we had a major bomb dropped on us when Liz sat down with a woman (Lillian) claiming to be Raymond Reddington’s daughter. The story goes that Reddington was a terrible father to her and Garvey was the one to help her escape Reddington, put her into protective custody and then become a bit of a surrogate father to her over the years. Her name is now Lillian, but was she once Jennifer Reddington? We want answers and hopefully tonight we will get them.
At the start of the episode, though, Reddington received a valuable bit of insight: Garvey has been cut off … or so we thought. It turns out that there are some people willing to betray him (here’s looking at you, Zarak) and the war between these two characters is heating up in ways that it hasn’t to date.
Let’s get back to Liz now, as she’s starting to get to know a woman who just so happens to be Reddington’s daughter. She told Jennifer all about what Ian Garvey did to Tom. The problem that she has is trying to convince her new-found sister to actually team up with her to take Garvey down. He served as a surrogate father to Jennifer for many years and with that, she’s not altogether interested in taking Ian down. Unfortunately, Liz’s attempts to get through to Reddington did not go too much better. He’s still not altogether interested on cluing her in to some of what’s going on with him, including the contents of the duffel bag and his motives.
This leads into the first major surprise of the night: Aram (still going through an unfortunate rough patch with Samar) uncovering a message that made it very clear what Garvey wants to do to Reddington. Liz tries to make it clear that this was going to be a trap, but Reddington was not altogether interested in listening. He did understand, though, that this could be a trap, which is why he then called in Raleigh Sinclair (hey, more John Noble!) in order to help. Watching Reddington collaborate with Sinclair is a thing of beauty — there’s nothing quite like watching a plan come together with these characters, is there?
The series really spent a good bit of time building towards the stand-off between Reddington and Garvey. The latter brought the duffel bag, but in it contained a gun. Reddington knew that was coming, but what he probably didn’t anticipate was “Garvey” shooting Zarak Mosadek and then taking off. After that, he managed to drive his car up into a truck so that he wouldn’t be detected. This was the twist — the Garvey that was out in the field was Sinclair’s creation. Meanwhile, the real Garvey had been captured by Reddington and Dembe so that the trio could have a little bit of a discussion.
Ultimately, the Task Force found themselves doing what they can to figure out precisely what happened at the meet — this was a fantastic showcase of just how effective the FBI are as opposed to how they were at the start of the series. Liz, Aram, and the rest of the team were able to figure out the stunt that Reddington pulled and even got video footage of Sinclair at the scene.
Even with the FBI on his tail it still felt as though everything was going Reddington’s way, or so it seemed Ian figured out a way in which to escape. He crashed Red’s car with him and Dembe inside and then wandered over to Jennifer’s bar. He got some money and with that, wanted to make a grand escape. That proved a little bit tough when Liz was standing right outside the bar.
“You spent a lifetime hiding for no reason.” That’s the quote from Ian Garvey that really caught our eye, given that this was a strong suggestion that there may not be a reason in order to fear Reddington, after all. Liz was ready to arrest Garvey, but if she did that, Ian told her he would never disclose some of what he knew. This created a super-delicate position. Reddington showed up not too long after that, making it clear that he wanted to shoot Garvey before the news came out about the duffel bag.
From her, Liz pointed a gun at Reddington! Basically, this was a stand-off like no other and the only person who shook things up was Jennifer. She told Red who he was in the midst of the showdown, hoping that this would be enough to put down the gun. She pleaded with him to spare Garvey’s life because of everything that he did for her. Dembe removed her but, following that, the bullets started to fly. Garvey and Reddington both got hit with some crossfire but Reddington managed to be okay. Meanwhile, Garvey died before he could disclose any information. He made it to the hospital but not too long after that.
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The Blacklist season 5 episode 19 was brilliant. “Ian Garvey: Conclusion” was one of the best episodes of the season and one with a series of intense showdowns. For now, though, it doesn’t seem as though Liz has any way to figure out about that duffel bag.
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