Person of Interest: A More Perfect Union

"None of us are ever gonna have a happy,
normal relationship." 
"We're doomed."
"Even I appreciate a fairytale ending, Harry. Family politics, overcooked meat, monogamy. What's not to love?"

It's a nice day for a white wedding, it's a nice day to start again.

The A-plot was another disposable number of the week case that did nothing to advance the main storyline, but it was at least a fun one. I laughed out loud so much that I am willing to forgive the episode's many flaws. Like the idiot assassins who waltz in and out of rooms full of people with their guns hanging out for all to see. Or the insanity of the bad guy's scheme. Or Finch doing enough research to find an estranged relative who just so happens to look a little bit like him but not enough to learn the groom's father was dead.

I can overlook all of that because we got a terrified Reese at a hen party, Finch as the singing Irish uncle, Lionel and Bear having an adventure together, Root swooping in on horseback to save the day, and her and Finch having that sweet father-daughter dance at the reception. There was always something in this episode to keep me entertained while the familiar "what is the real threat?" storyline played out.

It is still somewhat odd seeing Reese and Finch working so closely with Root. It wasn't so long ago that these people were enemies with Root as the Joker to Reese's Batman. What a difference an evil super computer bent on world domination makes. Now Root is part of their little makeshift family and it just feels so... right. A lot of shows try to turn adversaries into allies and don't always manage to pull it off, but this show has done it beautifully.

Yeah, they are a family, but they are not a happy family. It was heartbreaking seeing them watch all those happy people at the wedding and realise they were glimpsing a life none of them are ever likely to have again. They may be together, but each of them is missing someone. All their loved ones are either dead, missing, or believed to be dead. I'm so tired of seeing our heroes looking so sad. Why must they be trapped in a cycle of perpetual misery? Isn't it long past time that they had a victory? I don't mean saving this week's number, I mean a personal victory, something that will have meaning for them.

Getting Shaw back would certainly fit the bill. But with things as they are that would probably end up being a hollow victory. I wasn't fooled in '6,741', but I was fooled this time. I didn't think for a second that what we were watching was another simulation. How is Samaritan able to do that without the VR goggles? Did they really put a chip in her head or is what Shaw thinks is the real world actually just another simulation within another simulation and so on? Is Samaritan's ultimate plan to break her, to completely shatter her perception of reality so she will never know what is real or what isn't again? That is Brazil-level depressing.

Samaritan made a compelling argument, but it was one built on the false pretext that it actually cares about people. Samaritan is no different from those greedy, rich white men. It may not do what it does for personal wealth, but it still sees human beings as irrelevant and ultimately disposable. While it was trying to convince Shaw it is a force for good in this world it was using disused tunnels around the city as mass graves. Yes, mass graves. Samaritan has officially graduated to Stalin-levels of evil. At this stage I fear that there is no way to defeat this thing without it feeling like a complete Deus Ex Machina. I hope the writers are going to prove me wrong.

Notes and Quotes

--I wish they had gone with someone else as Samaritan's avatar. That kid's line delivery just annoys me.

--I hope Bear comes back to save Lionel and he finally learns the truth about everything.

--7053! That means Shaw has been through another 312 simulations since we last saw her.

--Did Root perfect her culinary skills because she knows how much Shaw loves food?

Reese: "Finch better sing louder because we got some serious ass to kick."
Root: "Silly me. I bought a knife to a gunfight."

Root: "I wasn’t scared."
Finch: "You were lonely."

Fusco: "I know what a plus one is. I'm just trying to picture you at a wedding."
Root: "Please, I left a guy at the altar just last year."

Three out four killer carrot soups crème fraîche.
Mark Greig is played by Tatiana Maslany. More Mark Greig


Mallena said...

Can we please hurry up and get Shaw back on the team? I'd never really watched POI, though I'd heard good things about it. Knowing that it was being given a short season 5 to wrap it up, I decided to catch up on Netflix, so I could watch the final season live. Finch and Bear are great, Reese is okay, Root is an entertaining character, but Shaw, she's the best. She is tiny, intense and hysterical at the same time. I could watch her eat a sandwich or spray perfume all day. I'd never even heard of Sarah Shahi before. Now I'm watching "Life" on Netflix just because she is in it. Now that "Nancy Drew" has been scrapped, someone get her a new show, stat!

migmit said...

I did suspect it was again "just a dream". I didn't have proof, but it seemed... suitable.

Is it really impossible to put Amy Acker on the horse? They never showed us both her (at least in such a way that we can be sure it's her) and the horse at the same time.

Greer promised to show Sameen that Team Machine are killers, and never delivered. Sloppy.

Mallena said...

Amy Acker tweeted that she had to take lessons so that she could ride the horse. The long shot that shows the horse galloping might not have been her, though. I love Amy, she makes this show a lot of fun. I'll never forgive "Angel" for what they did to her character after she and Wes finally got it together.

Billie Doux said...

Excellent review, Mark. I enjoyed this one too because the wedding was such a great opportunity not just for truly funny and enjoyable character moments, but to show how our heroes have no lives of their own, much like the family photographer who was the center of the plot. And yet, our heroes still have each other. And all of this carrying on with VR and Shaw has to mean that she'll be an important part of the finale. Maybe we'll get a Shoot wedding. Wouldn't that be lovely?

I keep going back and forth with (1) irritation that they're stripping the last episodes of this series, meaning they're not giving it the attention it deserves, and (2) happiness that at least we're getting a meaningful, planned series finale. At least (2) outweighs (1).