Tonight on The Blacklist season 6 episode 10, we were introduced very early on to the latest Big Bad — someone who has a tendency to stir up all sorts of trouble. His name is the Cryptobanker and, as you would imagine, he uses cryptocurrency in order to get precisely what he wants. He blackmails his targets and uses Bitcoin and the like to fuel some of his power. He’s also in town — hence, why Reddington is handing out some information on him to Liz and the Task Force.
If there’s one thing we know about Reddington, it’s that he never does anything without his own personal motive. Such is the case here. He’s fine to give Liz and the Task Force a substantial carrot when it comes to the Cryptobanker, but he’s got his own methodology for the other side — which is not something that he is particularly inclined to bring to the table.
Coming into the episode, we’ll admit — the idea of a cryptocurrency god was not exciting. We find most people who obsess over Bitcoin to be incredibly irritating. Yet, this actually proved entertaining! This guy proved to be not only dangerous, but resourceful. His target was the head of a pacemaker company named Pearson Diagnostic — at first, he tried to blackmail the company using the founder’s daughter. From there, he tried to blackmail them using countless people with the pacemaker all over the world.
Then, the most surprising thing happened — the chief hacker at the center of the case died. It didn’t even happen at the halfway point of the episode! It was easy to confuse this guy for the Cryptobanker himself, in between his fancy computer setup and being the one who directly issued most of the threats. Yet, he was just a pawn, and when he was no longer useful, he was killed off.
Thanks to Aram (who really ran point for most of this mission), eventually the Task Force was able to track the guy down and arrest him in the closing minutes. Once he was found, Aram still had to enter the proper password in order to save the lives of everyone with the pacemaker. We felt for the guy — this was one of the most high-pressure situations of his entire career and he pulled it off. He had to shoot the Cryptobanker (he wasn’t dead), and then make sure the day was saved.
The state of Reddington’s trial … and escape plan
While the Task Force tried to take down the Cryptobanker, Raymond knew that he had a court date — one with a prosecution that was ready to destroy him and the immunity agreement that he had. When he learned that the Task Force was going to be outed in front of the jury, he decided to just accept the guilty verdict and move on with his life … and prepare to die.
Or, that’s at least the impression Reddington wanting to give everyone. The reality here was a little bit different. He was just trying to set the stage in order to eventually escape. With that plan in place, he just had to wait things out and sit in court, listening to all of the different law-enforcement agents come and testify for his sentencing.
This is where Elizabeth Keen stepped in — she wanted to speak to the court on Reddington’s behalf, and despite his initial protests, she still decided to do that. She went there and delivered a pretty powerful message — one that was about love. She detailed how that defined Reddington just as much, if not more, than some of his criminal acts. She made it clear that Reddington took the guilty plea in order to fall on his own sword. (This scene with Liz on the stand has to be one of Megan Boone’s finer scenes in quite some time.)
Reddington got what he wanted — a path to his death sentence. He just wanted it to happen quickly enough so he could get back to prison and execute his plan. It’s one that involved him donning a disguise of the warden Jim and then using that in order to escape. This was almost brilliant in its simplicity. All Reddington needed was to divert attention from him long enough to make it to Dembe and he was almost able to do that. Ironically, it was Liz arriving to see him that seemed to expedite Jim being found. If she hadn’t done that, he probably would’ve had those valuable thirty seconds he needed.
The aftermath of everything
Liz was looking for the identity of a man in Cairo — this was what Reddington wanted from the Cryptobanker, and this is all he wanted after his escape plan did not work. Unfortunately, the banker didn’t know the Man in Cairo’s identity, or any of his other clients, for that matter.
Meanwhile, Reddington was officially sentenced to death — he expected that would’ve happened, had he been in court to see it. He just didn’t think he would be.
Reddington loves to craft a brilliant plan; unfortunately, this is one that just didn’t work out for him. This was yet another brilliant episode, anchored by some powerful performances and a haunting end where Reddington may not have much of a future at all.
What did you think about The Blacklist season 6 episode 10?
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