Person of Interest: Dead Reckoning

“Welcome to the party.”

This show has me so spoiled. Whenever it’s anything less than magnificent, I end up disappointed. This episode was very good, but it was sadly not magnificent. I’m the first to admit my grading curve for PoI isn’t fair, but it is what it is. Most of the episode (up until Snow and Reese split) was uncharacteristically dull. The final part of the episode, however, was some of the best work PoI’s done all season.

I’m not sure what was wrong with the first part of the episode. I missed seeing our team together and I missed the Reese and Finch banter. There was very little funny in the episode. The scenes between Snow, Stanton, and Reese seemed to drag on and on for me. Annie Parisse and Jim Caviezel have already proven they have good chemistry (“Prisoner’s Dilemma”), so what was off here? Was it Snow? Was it the dull dialogue? I honestly don’t know.

Snow’s last actions puzzled me. He certainly didn’t seem the type to make the self-sacrifice play. He took Stanton out at the expense of his own life. That seems more on par with Reese’s personality, and not Snow’s greedy self-interest. It was probably just vengeance, but why not get Stanton to disarm the bomb? Then they would both survive. He could’ve still killed her eventually. I hate to lose Stanton so early. I was hoping that she somehow survived the explosion, but random FBI guy did say there were two suicide bombers and identified them as Stanton and Snow. It would take an Irina Derevko-esque feat to get her out of that.

Snow has conveniently been identified as ‘The Man in the Suit,’ which ties up the FBI plot nicely. It had been getting old. As one nemesis rides off into the sunset, another enters. Who is Greer? Besides John Nolan, uncle of Christopher and Jonathan. (It’s been a very Nolan-obsessed week here at Doux Reviews.) Who does he represent? How does he know so much?

We still don’t know precisely what was on the laptop Reese and Stanton were tasked to retrieve. According to Greer, Finch was the one who sold it to the Chinese. Not buying it. Finch built the Machine for $1. Why would he then sell the Machine (if the laptop is indeed something to do with the Machine) to the Chinese? So how did Finch’s name get attached to it? Is Greer setting him up or is Finch being framed by someone? Say, Ingram? I think Ingram would have sold out his friend and his country if the price were right.

It was fun seeing Fusco and Carter work together. Since they learned that they both work with Reese and Finch, we haven’t seen them together very much. Finch tends to send them off on separate assignments. I like them together; it’s a new dynamic. Hopefully we’ll see more of the partners actually partnered up.

Carter’s exchange with Reese in the hallway, while very moving, seemed borderline romantic to me. Am I alone here? I really, really, really, really hope they don’t go the romance route for these two. I like Reese and Jessica too much. I know she’s dead and it’s irrational, but I’m quite an irrational person. I also don’t want this to turn into Castle or one of those other ship-centric shows. We have so many of those already, can’t we keep PoI as it is now?

For me, the best part of the episode was Finch and Reese on the roof. It says quite a lot about this show that I was so captivated by Michael Emerson and Jim Caviezel, it didn’t once occur to me that the show wouldn’t kill their two main characters. I was extremely worried they were going to blow up. Now that’s acting, folks.

Bits and Pieces:

Still 2012. Grumble, grumble.

They did an excellent job matching the Cara and Snow flashback to the Reese and Snow flashback.

The score this week as absolutely beautiful.

Bear greeting Reese was so adorable.

Quotes:

“Cara. I thought you were...”
“Dead? I wasn’t very good at it. Of course, neither were you.”

“My dear, if you think I work for the government, I really must fire my tailor.”
This show has more jokes about men’s fashion than any show I’ve ever seen.

“Sorry about the noise, but I had to relocate to a place with better wifi anonymity before hacking the Department of Defense.”
I love the off-handed way Finch cops to treason.

“It’s true what they say. You can’t go home again.”

“John, you don’t have to do this.”
“You know I do, ‘cause you’d do the exact same thing.”

“The only thing I’ve been able to decompile is when it’s set to go live, a little more than five months from now.”
“What happens then?”
May Sweeps, obviously.

two out of four mysterious hard drives for most of the episode
four out of four mysterious hard drives for the last ten minutes or so

22 comments:

celticmarc said...

Big smile on my face : indeed the last minutes were spectacular. P of I at it's best. And the music (always) ! And an happy Bear ! And a free Reese !

With the death of 3 secondary character, my hunch is that we'll see more of Ingram...

Loved the opening scene with the 3 books in Finch's hands : music, an historical view of the Future and the Information ethics. Interesting...I'll let our favourite Librarian give us her opinion on that !

"I've got you both on speed dial."

The bomb timer ending at 00:07 (homage to Goldfinger ?)

"Finch, thank you." "Don't mention it."

And yes, NO shipping please.


percysowner said...

I've heard a couple of people mention that the Carter Reese interaction at the end was a tribute to her military service. She did know how to disarm bombs and she does have the no man left behind mentality. Since I don't want any shipping between those two, I'm sticking with that.

I think Snow knew there wasn't time to disarm the bomb, plus he knew Reese was right, the only thing he had to look forward to was a black hood and the CIA questioning him and killing him, so he decided to take Stanton out with him. If he couldn't live, he was at least going to get his revenge.

horatiofrog said...

Loved Finch's cavalier comment on hacking the DoD, but its even funnier when we get Carter and Fusco's reaction. Bet Fusco is now vaguely remembering Finch's "wanna hack the Pentagon?" comment from when the latter was stoned last season!

I too am glad to see the FBI line drop. Donnelly was getting too annoying, and it was killing an otherwise good character, even if his wild theories reminded me of Charlie Brown and the football at times.

PlatinumRosebud said...

The bomb trigger on speed dial is a very Nikita thing. :)

It's fun and heartwarming to see
Reese play with Bear who missed him
so much.
Bear has grown so much that he was
able to topple Reese on the floor. :)

And seeing Harold's name on a
page of Stanton's notebook maybe
a lot of things.
He maybe the one who ordered the
double cross, which would be an
intriguing thing.
Because we know that he sought
Reese before he started his numbers
crusade.
Another is that Finch maybe the
person Stanton could've sought to
help her find who did the bad job.

So, PoI did it again!
It's like Mama Spider weaving her
web of intrigue within our Numbers
Team in a very intricate way.
Boy! Can't wait what kind of design
she will create and how it will
affect out team members.

For me, it was a bit sad for Stanton's character to go.
She had so much layer that it
would have been interesting to find
out more about her.

Btw, I miss Zoe so much.
PoI writers, more of her, please!
Would be better if Elias comes in, too. :)

Again, Sunbunny, you have completed
my weekly PoI fix with your nice
review.
Have a great weekend.

Josie Kafka said...

"[W]hat was off here? Was it Snow? Was it the dull dialogue? I honestly don’t know."

Maybe it was the relative lack of peril in the first half of the episode. I knew Reese wouldn't die; that made me rather unafraid. And most of Reese's appeal is his superhumanness (throwing folks out of windows and such); taking that away lessens his appeal for me.

But--like you, Sunbunny--I was genuinely nervous in the last few minutes. I started to be convinced they were going to kill off someone. Michael Emerson and JC really sold the sadness and fear on the rooftop.

(Although I am perverse enough that Finch going to unbutton Reese's shirt made me laugh. What a strange couple to ship!

"It's my process, John," says Finch breathlessly as he slowly unbuttons the starched shirt of his beloved.

"Process me, Harold," says John in a throaty whisper, attempting to restrain himself from grabbing Harold's tie and pushing him to the rooftop in fervent desire. "Decode me. Hack me. Love me," he breathes.)

I don't think the show is heading towards a Reese/Carter pairing. I like percysowner's military explanation. That Carter was in the car crash with Reese might have something to do with it, too.

But now I have to admit I'm confused. I didn't realize how confused I was until after I'd deleted the episode from my DVR, so I can't go back and check. These are my questions:

1. Why does Kara Stanton care so much about who bought (or sold?) the laptop that got her sent to China in the first place? Of all the people to get vengeance on, why that person?

[1b. Did she want that info just so we would know it was Finch?]

2. Why would Finch do such a thing? (Not a question we could answer yet.)

3. The Chinese laptop is completely different from the internet-breaking virus that Kara uploaded, right? Because surely Finch could crack his own encryption code. Or, perhaps not--the way I sometimes can't untie my shoelaces if I got too creative tying them up.

4. Is this confirmation that "Harold Finch" is his real name?

I like you Ingram idea, Sunbunny. I don't want Finch to be secretly evil.

celticmarc said...

Josie

Arrgghhh

("What a strange couple to ship!")

Remind me to pull your ear next time our paths cross.

(YES, eyes rolling)

CrazyCris said...

Please NO romance between Reese and Carter! Doesn't feel right...

I was pretty sure Finch's name was going to be on that paper, otherwise why so much hullabaloo about it? But I have no idea what it means...

Glad we've gotten rid of Stanton, Snow and the FBI search. Maybe now we can get back to the good stuff: ROOT!!! I want more Amy Acker please! ;o)

I can just imagine the team having to join up with her to defuse that virus in 5 months... :p

leslie atkinson said...

Why are so many afraid of a Carter Reese romance. From carter and reese met Nolan has been hinting at a romance between the two. i only hope it's not because she is black. they have great chemistry and i loved the way Reese flirts with her. They are growing closer to each other so brace yourselves for Careese.

Billie Doux said...

Actually, I'm into the possibility of a Reese/Carter romance. I like her tremendously -- actually, a lot more than I like him, although that might just be the single parent in me. I think I've been deliberately not thinking about the possibility, though, because I've heard that Caviezel refuses to do love scenes because of his faith.

CrazyCris said...

For me the central relationship is between Reese and Finch (and Bear of course!), so I don't want to see the distracted from that with a romantic entanglement with Carter. In fact I like that there's an interesting show out there that isn't based on a romantic relationship! Feels more "real" somehow!

sunbunny said...

CrazyCris - YES on Root having to help them stop the virus thing. That would be amazing.

Josie - LOL on the mini fan fic. I don't want Finch to be evil either, because I like his character, but I love evil Michael Emerson. Maybe Finch should have an evil twin? Named Ben, of course.

Leslie - Careese is an awesome couple name. BUT I still don't want them together. I like them as friends and coworkers with a common mission. I agree with CrazyCris, Careese would pull too much focus from Freese (Rinch?).

Josie Kafka said...

I don't think Reese is ready for a relationship. He's way to willing to die (sometimes seems to long for it), and it's only been a little bit since his true love died. That's a lot of baggage to bring into a relationship with Carter, especially since she's clearly conflicted about what they're doing and what it means for her life. I'd rather see her settle down with someone normal.

celticmarc said...

So fun that shipping brings so many divergent opinions. Some couple work great with a distance between the partners; some with no distance at all. Matter of chemistry I guess. (I should know, I have 20 girl friends at the office LOL) (I said 50 the other time, but I was exaggerating; NOT about the 20)

Josie has a good point : character wise, non of them are ready for that, at least, not now. To be continued...

leslie atkinson said...

Reese is not ready for a relationship, i agree, at this time. Finch and Bear love Reese as a person only Carter can meet his physical and emotional needs. Both have deep scars still to be explored that is why they are being drawn together. Especially since they are both military. With all the mystery surrounding POI the writers i believe are skillyfully painting a love story between these two. in the episode "wolf and cub" the kid told Reese not to worry but that one day he would have a family. I believe that is with Carter and her son Taylor.

There are still many pieces to this puzzle. in the interrogation carter asked Reese if he ever killed anyone and he told her about breaking some guys neck. i believe that Reese and Carter's husband or Taylor's father crossed paths and Reese may have killed him. Or Reese may have tried to save Carters husband in battle and before he died he may have told Reese he had a son and a very special lady but may have not given Reese any names. And has faith would have it Reese ends up in Carter's life. Off the charts--maybe. But food for thought.

About Caviezel's faith, he does not object to romance but he refuses to do explicit love scenes like we see in the tv show Scandal. You can show two people in love without the heavy love scenes. in fact Reese in an interview says he's open to a love relationship with Carter. Also i have seen Caviezel in love scenes with Jennifer Lopez and Ashley Judd and other movies.

Nolan wii put Reese and Carter i believe in the final episode.

Billie Doux said...

I didn't know that, Leslie. Thanks.

I might have gotten Caviezel a little confused with Patrick McGoohan. I reviewed the entire run of The Prisoner last year, and McGoohan wouldn't even kiss onscreen because of his faith. It was the reason he turned down the role of James Bond. Caviezel did the remake of The Prisoner, too, which is an interesting coincidence.

If they do go in the Reese/Carter direction, I'm on board.

sunbunny said...

Wow! Interesting theories, Leslie. It's amazing how different people can see the same show in such different ways. I'm on board with a some random, Lostian connection between Reese and Carter (or her potential husband). I love their close relationship, but I think of it as more familial than romantic.

Selena said...

In the "Person of Interest" pilot, Jim Caviezel had a scene in bed with Jessica. He had his shirt off, and they were kissing heavily. So, yes, he is willing to do love-making scenes just not explicit ones.

Some viewers say that Reese and Carter have a brother-sister vibe, but if so, then they are incestuous. Brothers should not flirt with their sisters.

Billie Doux said...

Selena, have you watched this past season of Dexter?

J.D. Balthazar said...

I think the only thing about this episode I didn't care for is Stanton dying. I guess I can see why, since the plot line was finished and her character might've become redundant. I just wonder if maybe they jumped the gun a little.

Great review though, I don't disagree that the banter wasn't quite up to snuff, I think that was Snow's fault honestly, I've never like him much.

Carter/Reese would be a fascinating couple, but not for a long time to come. He's still emotionally fragmented, and I don't think he trusts himself enough to love anyone more than with simple compassion yet.

He clearly cares for his team, and is absolutely growing as a person. The level of morality he shows in this episode, when no one is really watching him is kind of remarkable as a testament to what Finch has helped him become.

Perhaps Finch isn't a good guy in the long run, but he may have created a true hero in Reese by the end. I also have no doubt that Reese and Carter will get there, I just hope they don't force it too soon.

Anonymous said...

I like the relationship between Reese and Carter as it is: two friends who clearly respect each other and what they do. Not to mention their common link to the military. Romance between the two would be too predictable.

And the reunion between Reese and Bear was awesome. First real smile you see on the guy.

Anonymous said...

I definitely want to see a romantic relationship between Carter and Reese.

ChrisB said...

My problem with this episode is that I loathe the type of character that Parisse was playing. Whenever a woman character has a bit of power and begins treating the men around her in that flirty, sexual way, I get wildly irritated. It is a way to negate the woman's power (yes, I'm holding a phone that can kill you and many others, but the only way I can speak to you is like a teenaged girl with a crush). Not surprisingly, most of these characters are written by men -- as this one was. AARRGH!

I cheered at the car blowing up and the neat wrap up of the The Man in the Suit. That's been going on long enough. The final scene was wonderful. These two men really play off each other beautifully.

All the different opinions about a Careese (agree that is an awesome couple name!) are interesting. I don't really see it. I see it as two people who care about each other, but both are too deeply conflicted right now to truly care about someone else.