‘The Blacklist’ Mid-Season Finale RECAP/REVIEW: Red Gone for a Short While in ‘Anslo Garrick’

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By Anshu Shrivastava | December 3, 2013 5:49 PM EST

"The Blacklist" has once again asserted why it is one of the best, new shows of 2013 fall season. It keeps piling-up the mysteries, with no intention to soon untangle any of it. The mysteries keep the wonder and curiosity meters running, keeping the audience invested and interested.  In the second part of "Anslo Garrick," which is the mid-season finale of "The Blacklist," a new mystery man and his objectives were added to the mix, while the old ones became more complicated to figure out by the laymen (viewers).

In the first part of "Anslo Garrick," Garrick shot down Red's female assistant. Red's bodyguard would have been a dead man, too if Liz had not been captured and brought in front of Garrick. The bodyguard's life is spared and Garrick's gun is ready to put a bullet in Liz's head. For Red, it is a desperate situation and desperate time calls for desperate measures. Red points a loaded gun at Agent Ressler and tells him to reveal the code or he will be dead.  Cooper orders not to give the code. Agent Ressler is amused that a while ago, Red was his saviour and now he wants to kill him. Circumstances have changed and Agent Keen's life is on the line. Agent Ressler disobeys Cooper's order and tells Red that the code is Romeo.

Red steps out of the glass box and says to his old friend: "Angelo what are you doing here?" Though Garrick isn't there for small talks, yet he isn't set to kill Red yet. Garrick and his men take Red and Liz with them using their get-away vehicle, an ambulance. Throughout the commotion, Liz watches the process of taking out the FBI embedded chip from Red's body. Since the last two episodes, Liz has become the tough, quick-thinking, quick killing FBI agent. In this episode, Liz uses a defibrillator to cause mayhem in the ambulance. Before she could succeed in taking over the ambulance and save Red, she is pushed out of the ambulance. The chip is out of Red's body. It is dropped on a different route, which puts Liz and the FBI team on a chase that leads nowhere.

In the ambulance, Red had said to Liz: "The Emissary Hotel, Mr Kaplan." She uses that information to call up but is unable to get in touch with Mr Kaplan. Aram tells Liz about the calls that were made on a number prior to the attack.  The calls were traced down to house number 8123 on the 12th street, which is right across Liz's house. Liz first calls Cooper but soon hangs-up, without giving any information. She calls up Mr Kaplan, again and this time they connect.

After Garrick's attack, Cooper's unit is facing the threat of its operation shutting down. Diane Fowler from the district of justice wants to contain the damage and states it loud and clear that Red is a fugitive at large and Cooper's unit needs to be closed down.

Garrick has taken Red to where all the villains take their victims -- to an abandoned, dilapidated building (which Liz discovers is a Church). Red is hanging from a hook on the ceiling. Like us, Garrick also wants to know what makes Liz so special and why did he trade his life for hers. He has a list of complaints, including Red giving him just the taste of good life and putting a bullet in his face when he wanted more of the good life.

Liz's enters the now abandoned house across the street. She finds the apple and discovers that someone was keeping a close watch on her house through surveillance cameras. She shoots down a man (Is it the apple eating man?) who would have pounced on her from behind. Mr Kaplan arrives and she is actually Ms Kaplan. This middle-aged woman is an employee of Red, as she says that her objective is to protect Liz and find her employer and she intends to do both. She takes out the bullet from the dead man's body, ensuring that this killing does not implicate Liz.

Red is given a shot of a drug, which does the opposite of anaesthesia. Garrick says to Red that it enhances the impulses received by the brain. It is expected to make Red beg for his life but Red has developed super-human resistant power. He does not succumb and isn't showing signs of intense pain. Garrick has captured Red on the orders of someone else. And, we get to see the arrival of another mystery in the form of actor Alan Alda. We do not get to hear his name in the episode but according to the buzz, Alda is going to play the role of Crowley, an old nemesis of Red. He has a multiple-episode arc.    

Mr Mystery Man wants to question Red and both are meeting after a good two decades. The former tells Red that he knows everything and nothing can keep him safe. He wants to know what Red revealed to FBI and he talks about their deal. He cannot kill Red because Red has something and if Red turns out dead, that something will come out in the open. Also, Mr Mystery Man warns Red that he can go nowhere and there is no one he can trust, as proved by the attack on the FBI office to take him out. No secrets are revealed during the conversation and only a new mystery is added to the pile of "The Blacklist" mysteries.  

Garrick wants to finish the story of Red, while the Mr Mystery Man wants to keep Red alive. Garrick says to Red that he is going to torture Liz and get close to him in the hopes of taunting him more whilst drilling fear into him. In the end, he ends-up a dead man. Red killed him using a sharp, pen like object.

Liz and Ms Kaplan use the GPS tracking of the dead man's car to track down where all he went. One of the addresses has the evidence of extensive, long-time surveillance on FBI. The brief footage -- Liz and Red's men were able to save some part before the evidence was completely destroyed -- it also reveals that Diane was included on the watch list. This revelation saves Cooper's unit from shutting down. Diane tells Cooper that they need to find Red and their only target is Red, as he is the one who could help them find the mole in the FBI and shed light on what is happening.

Liz and Meera talk about the mole. They exclude Agent Ressler from the list of suspects, which means everyone else is in the suspect zone. A document leads Liz to one of FBI's black-sites, a church. It is where Red has been held captive but when Liz and the FBI team reach the location, Red is not there and Garrick is dead.

Tom wants Liz to wrap-up her FBI job and move to another location with him, permanently. Agent Ressler gets a visitor called Audrey. It looks like she is his ex who is now engaged to someone else.

Liz is packing-up and gets a call from Red. He tells her that he will be there for her if she ever needs him and that he will be gone for a short while. Liz asks him if he is her father. There is a pause and he replies, "No." And before hanging-up says, "Be careful of your husband" and walks out in the crowd.

The part two of "Anslo Garrick" was not one of the best episodes of "The Blacklist." The episode was an episode to make the audience come back to watch it on January 13, 2015. It laid the foundation for the upcoming episodes. And, the events of the episode made things a little more complicated, which is good for the show as there is enough ammunition to keep it interesting and intriguing for a long time. However, I doubt if over-loading of mysteries is such a good idea. It should now start with why Red ditched his agency and became the most wanted FBI fugitive.   

The episode provided Red his break and put Liz in a fix situation. She wants to trust Tom, but then she has started to get a little close to Red, too. Liz can no longer afford to just think that Red is trying to frame her husband. There must be some reason why he keeps warning her about Tom, and post-these two episodes, Liz will keep Red's words in her mind as well. Will she go with Tom or persuade him to stay back? We all know that Red will be back after a short break and the first person he will seek out is Liz.      

Ritchie Coster as Anslo Garrick gave a terrific performance and it was sad to see that Red killed his character.  I was expecting to see him return in another episode of "The Blacklist." 

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