As we begin the episode, the plane is down with lots of surviors who are roaming around like The Night of The Living Dead. Didn’t the entire last episode happen at the end of the day? Early evening? Why is Matt Lauer reporting the shooting on The Today Show? The FBI has several of the surviving criminals in custody and they are all telling the same story, someone in a hoodie cuts off someone’s hand, the pilot was shooting people. They really don’t know much more than that.
As we all expected Red spent like four seconds in custody before the was allowed to escape to help the task force deal with the disaster. Great scene between Alda and Spader. Berlin also escaped the crash scene by chopping off the hand of the guard he was handcuffed to heading to some apartment. Soon Tom shows up with a list of the targets, Liz, Ressler, Cooper, Malik, and my favorite middle easterny guy, Aram comprise the list. If they kill Aram I will lose my mind.
Red alerts Liz to the fact that the entire task force is on the kill list and Liz immediately tries to pull Ressler and Malik off a minor investigation in a club looking for some scary Russian dude. Liz arrives to late and Malik gets her throat slit and dies. One down, four to go.
Liz goes to Red to find out what the hell is going on. She says that Tom must have given Berlin the names of the task force. Red says that all the prisoners on the plane are somehow related to Berlin’s plan. They need to find out who they are. From reading Tom’s code book, Liz realizes that her adoptive father Sam is somehow involved. Red says that is another story for another time and she should focus on the fact that Sam was only trying to protect her.
Red pays a visit to the Russian ambassador and it seems like he is going to cut his little dog’s throat. But Red is an animal lover, at least of the furry four-legged variety and stabs the dude instead. The ambassador coughs up the passenger list for the plane.
Based on the passenger list of all the prisoners, the task force narrows the suspect list to three men. They go to hospital to interview the security guard from the plane. The guard tells them that none of the three men are Berlin. He says Berlin was a KGB agent who had a daughter who fell in love with a government detractor and was sent to prison. Berlin was able to bust his kid out of prison and he somehow managed to get exiled to a Siberian detention center in the process. Hid enemies abducted his daughter and mailed him her body piece by piece while he was in jail. He busted out of prison and went to avenge his daughter’s death. He says that Berlin’s name in not on the manifest. Based on the fact this guy is a popular actor, we can assume he is in fact Berlin. Did Reddington kill his daughter? Was he the person she fell in love with? It seems that Berlin holds Reddington responsible for his daughter’s death.
Cooper meets with his idiot boss man. The guy that Red punched out during the escape. He tells Cooper that they may as well get the task force back together. Cooper doesn’t think this guy is making any sense. When Reddington gets back into his car, his driver is dead and he is attacked. A nearby Russian dude marks Cooper’s name off the hit list.
Ressler says he is a different man now that his fiancé has died. He doesn’t play by the rules anymore. He attempts to strangle on of the criminals he is interrogating. The criminal gives up the guy who is marking off the names on the list as Berlin. Red and Alan Alda have another meeting in the dark library. Red tells Alda to find the Berlin dude. He gives him the information from Ressler. Cooper is in the hospital holding on for dear life.
Liz and Red meet and once again Liz presses Red for information about her father’s involvement. Red says, “The way Sam tells it, an old friend showed up at his house one night saying he had to leave town because he was in danger and that he needed someone to care for a little girl, that her father had died that night in a fire. So Sam raised her as his own, sheltering her from the truth about his biological father.” Liz says the only memory she has about her father was that he pulled her out of the fire and saved her life. She wants to know who he is. Red says that killing Sam was the hardest thing he has ever done, and he had to do it to keep Liz from learning her real father’s identity, so he is certainly not going to tell her now.
Red gets a call from Alan Alda telling him where to find Berlin. Red lies to Liz about where he is going and heads over to the apartment where Berlin is staying. He straps Berlin to a chair, and begins one of his fascinating monologues. “”You want to know what the key to finding your enemies is? Remembering everyone’s name. It’s critical to my survival. Anyone knows the head of some drug cartel in Colombia, some politician in Paris… but I know their wives, their girlfriends, their children, their enemies, their friends, I know their favorite bartender, their butcher. I remember the name of the baker I stole the raspberry bismarck from when I was 11 years old and his wife, Trudy Zapota. But you, I have no idea who in the Sam Hill you are. I have not a clue what I’ve done to you, what I’ve taken from you! Yet of all the people I’ve hurt none of them have come after me with half as much vim and vigor as you. I don’t even recognize your face, yet here we are ” Berlin says he found him through his weakness, Elizabeth Keen.
Red begins his interrogation and the dude spit on him. So Red shoot him in the hand, and then in the hip. He gives a little explanation for the sort of pain he is experiencing. Berlin gives an explanation of “Berlin 2010” as the reason he is coming for Red.
About that time Tom Keen and his lovely wife arrive on the scene. Red and Tom are at a standoff. Red shoots Berlin to as he says “simplify things.” Tom shoots at Red but only grazes him. Why? We all know Tom knows how to use a gun. Liz twists around and somehow manages to shoot Tom twice with his own gun. How? We all know Tom has much more combat training than Liz. Nevertheless, Tom slumps to the floor, Red wants to finish him but Liz sends him out so she can bring her own sort of closure to her marriage. Tom says he is sorry then whispers something in her ear and sort of dies. When they FBI shows up, Tom’s body is nowhere to be found.
A body is identified as the guard the task force assumed was Berlin. They realize that the guy in the hospital is actually Berlin and not the guard. Berlin did not cut the guards hand off, he cut his own hand off. He escaped the hospital by killing some nurses . Liz goes to tell Red but Red already knew. The fake Berlin said his beef with Reddington began in Beirut in 2010 but Red knew it began well before that. Red says he wants Berlin to believe that Red and the task force believe he is dead. It will give him an advantage. Red says now it is up to Liz to make a decision. Does she want to continue to hunt for Berlin with him, or does she want to fly away and begin a new life. She initially chooses to leave but eventually decides to stay with Red, because what the fuck choice does she really have at this point?
In the closing montage, Ressler is by Cooper’s bedside in the hospital. He moves his hand. Looks like he will live to see season two. Also, Berlin shaves his beard and fingers a locket with a picture of his dead daughter in it.
When Liz shows up to leave with Red, you can see the relief on his face. Liz tells Red that Tom whispered to her before he died that her father is still alive. Red says that her father died in that fire, there is no uncertainty. (I think this is a metaphorical death he is talking about.) Later we see Red take his shirt off to dress his gunshot wound and his back is covered in burn marks. Clearly, he is the one who save Liz from the fire.
So, um…. is Red is or is Red ain’t Lizzies father?