Person of Interest: Wolf and Cub

“So what are you then?”
“One of these days, I’ll have to come up with a good answer for that one.”

My opinion of this episode changed so many times, I really don’t know where to begin this one. What a rollercoaster. In contrast to last week’s snoozefest, this episode had a ton going on. It was almost too much, but the show handled it well.

Let’s start with the number of the week: Darren McGrady. I think the writers did a really good job with his character. The tendency for writing young characters seems to be this: make them adorable and give them one specific interest (drawing, trumpet playing, OR samurais, not all three). At 14, Darren wasn’t an adorable child, but he was still young enough to break my heart holding that gun.

His relationship with Reese was...well, complicated. At first, I found it completely adorable that Reese was so dedicated to this kid. He really doesn’t let anyone in, but he was sharing things with Darren. He was mentoring him, teaching him how to be a...hmm...wait, maybe Reese’s skills weren’t the best things to share with a pissed off 14-year-old. We already know that he knows where to get a gun.

When Reese was talking to Darren and describing the violence as “the fun part” of all this, I was legitimately creeped out. Especially by the smile. We’ve been told that Reese does what he does out of a sense of responsibility and honor, and not because he enjoyed it. Later when they cut to Reese holding a blowtorch in front of an immobilized murderer, I freaked out a little bit. I’m not sure you can have one of your main characters torture someone onscreen and still maintain their likability. Unless they’re Jack Bristow, of course. Mercifully (and brilliantly), he used the blowtorch to burn the money. And I breathed a HUGE sigh of relief. Reese is not a sociopath. Everything is fine.

Moving right along, apparently every criminal in New York is working for Elias. The second Andre/Mr. Wilcox said Brighton Beach, I knew where this was going. So Andre worked for Captain Lynch, who works for Elias as we learned back in "Get Carter". Are there no independent criminals left in NYC? Also, is Captain Womack in on it? The conversation where Lynch convinced him to release Brick seemed really short. They were only in Womack’s office for like ten seconds.

Finch’s backstory continues to be revealed in minute doses. Will tracks down Alicia Corwin, who (like Uncle Harold) lies to him about the Machine. We learn a bit more about her as well. A year ago, right after Ingram’s death, she quit the government and moved to the middle of nowhere. She seemed really spooked when he mentioned Harold’s name. Is she afraid of Finch? Does she have a reason to be?

Reese and Finch keep growing farther and farther apart. Last week I noticed Reese had stopped calling him “Harold” and just used “Finch.” Now he describes him to Darren as “tech support.” He’s more than that, Reese. Stop being stupid.

Bits and Pieces:

Hurray! They’re back in the library!

I think I figured out why Finch said he’d never lie to Reese. He’s really, really bad at it. Watching him talk to Will was almost painful. Clearly, Finch needs lying lessons from Ben Linus.

Reese’s way of doing things doesn’t involve killing. At least for this week.

Ahh, The Art of War. I know it well. You know, from that episode of Firefly.

I have to say, I was really bummed when the benevolent comic book store owner turned out to be the big bad. It just seemed wrong that someone who would give out comic books to needy children ended up being a criminal.

Fusco got shot in the ass. Fusco got shot. In the ass. I really have nothing else to say about this.

Harold has many aliases, apparently. So far we know Harold Finch and Harold Wren. What’s coming next, Harold Sparrow, Harold Red-Breasted Nuthatch?

Quotes:

“Being a superhero is not about a cape or a cowl. It’s about protecting your fellow man, looking out for him when no one else will.”
...Says the evil crime boss.

“This is Detective Fusco. He’s a f-friend.”
Oh Reese, just stop fighting it.

“The higher up you go, the harder it gets to tell the good guys from the bad.”
Veiled reference to Finch, perhaps?

“I suppose, yes, in a way, he was crushed by the Machine.”
I want to know what happened! You know, when the show first started I was more curious about Reese’s backstory, but in recent weeks, Finch’s has become much more interesting.

“In other words, the idea of letting a 14-year-old hire you to avenge his brother has backfired?”

“Someday, you’ll find a home too.”
So sweet.

Three out of four blowtorches
---
sunbunny

5 comments:

zob said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sunbunny said...

Thanks zob! The only thing I could come up with was that it was a Rocky & Bullwinkle reference. You know, Moose and Squirrel? Somehow, I didn't think that was right...

ChrisB said...

Any kid who has read The Art of War you just know is going to be fun to watch. I always like it when writers make kids smart, not just cute.

One thing this show is doing really well is setting up threats to what Reese and Finch are doing. Root, who may be better than Finch; Reese and Finch’s instinctive distrust of each other; now, Will and all of his questions. While none of these is the Big Bad, taken as a whole, they make for wonderfully adversarial moments.

Am I the only one who suspects that Will is not actually on his way to the Sudan? Or, maybe, I’m just cynical.

celticmarc said...

Wow

This episode has affected you LOL.


After reading your review and the comments, my opinion about this one has changed. They're building an interesting mythology. And I badly want to know the missing pieces of the Machine story. What the heck happened ?! The mystery is part of the fun, right ?

I greatly enjoyed Malik Yoba's performance in Defying Gravity.

Iceman said...

"Wolf and Cub" is an interesting but not entirely successful episode. The main problem is that the story is just too flat. It's a linear path from point A to point B. Person of Interest doesn't really do too well with those. I like my Person of Interest stuffed with twists upon twists, various factions all with different motives vying for success. "Wolf and Cub"'s main plot works just fine, but it feels like it should be much more than that-it's just not enough to sustain it for the whole hour.

2.5 out of 4.