BLINDSPOT REVIEW “FIRE AND BRIMSTONE”
BY PAULINE PERENACK
Here Comes Ice Cream
Last week on Blindspot, while Zapata and Patterson did surgery on Jane to remove a bullet, Weller was fighting for his mind as Ivy tortured him for information on the whereabouts of the team.
Fortunately, Jane survived her patchwork surgery, and Weller was able to escape from Ivy, but Rich managed to bring unwanted visitors to the bunker. After securing much-needed blood for Jane, Rich’s blood guy tipped off Ice Cream and his guys, who were looking for Rich, since he still owes them the Gardner paintings he promised for safe protection of the team in Iceland.
The Ultimate Scavenger Hunt
Tonight’s episode, “Fire & Brimstone” begins where last week’s episode left off, with Ice Cream and his team coming out of the elevator. He tells them that he wants the Gardner paintings he was promised by Rich, but as Jane points out, he was to get the paintings in exchange for protecting the team, but his phones are what led to the bombing of their safe house, and the death of Reade. Conceding that point, Ice Cream then says he has intel on Madeline he’ll trade for the paintings. He has a backdoor access to an app she uses to talk to Ivy with, since he’s the one who designed the app. And, he still needs the paintings because he owes them to Russian mob enforcer, Ilya Mikhailov.
Weller, Zapata and Rich don’t think this mission is a good idea, but Patterson convinces them to do it so they can get their hands on what Madeline is up to.
Weitz meanwhile, is called into Madeline’s office, and instead finds her lawyer, Richard Shirley. Richard tells Weitz that Weitz has 24 hours to remove Susan Shah from the VP short list, and he needs to get it done any way possible. Weitz leaves the office to find Afreen, and tells her to wire money from one account to another. She tells him there’s no way to do it without being traced, and he tells her he’s ok with that. He then brings in Shah to scare her off her career aspirations, but he’s thrown by her interest in his personal philanthropic efforts, and accepts her invitation to help with her charity.
At the bunker, the team is trying to figure out where the Gardner paintings could be. After walking through the various times the paintings had been stolen, sold and re-stolen by Boston, Rich determines that an underworld art restorer named Irving Sutton has to have them. Patterson finds that he lives in Lucca, Italy, so Ice Cream gets a plane for Jane and Weller to go to Italy.
Once there, Irving shoots at Jane who easily ducks, but Weller shoots back, killing Irving before they can get any information about the paintings. Frustrated, the team in the bunker look at Irving’s website that Ice Cream tells them about. On it, Irving has just posted a video, which sends everyone watching on a scavenger hunt for the Gardner paintings, with the first clue being in the video.
They all watch the video over and over, and soon realize they need to avoid the obvious things in the video, and focus on the music, which Patterson turns into a GPS coordinate to Croatia.
Jane and Weller divert their plane, and end up in a small apartment. Behind a painting, Weller finds a safe that Jane works to crack. She gets it open, and inside is a geode, and a bible, but before they’re able to make any sense of the items, two people with guns come into the room, tie Weller and Jane up, and leave with the next clue, but not before tripping the security alarm.
At the bunker, Ice Cream is not happy about the situation, and points out that even if the team manages to get out of this, and get his paintings, they still owe him his “TBD” that they had promised months ago when they first arrived in Iceland. Patterson meanwhile, is able to hack into the security company’s main system, and overloads it, so that it turns off, giving Jane and Weller more time to try to untie themselves. As they do, Weller notices words inscribed on the inside of the safe, and they all realize those words are the next clue – not the objects that were taken.
Rich thinks the inscribed words are talking about one of the Gardner paintings, so Patterson inputs the name of the painting in the search bar of Irving’s website, and they’re greeted with the next clue, and a 30 minute head start on the clue before it’s released to the dark web. Since it’s a complex math problem, Patterson has everyone work on it so they can get as much done as quickly as possible. Once they have their answers, they input them into a CAD drawing, which creates an image of a Monastery in Ireland. Knowing they need to get there immediately, and don’t have time for Jane and Weller to return from Croatia on Ice Cream’s plane, Zapata forces Ice Cream’s hand to get another plane.
At the Monastery, Rich and Patterson follow a few more clues that lead them to a hidden room, where they find all of the Gardner paintings. Unfortunately, they’re followed by Mikhailov, who managed to solve all of the clues himself. With a gun to her head, Patterson packs up the paintings, and hands them off to Mikhailov, much to the dismay of Rich. When Mikhailov leaves however, Patterson points out to Rich that those were fake – the real paintings were actually hidden within one of the picture frames.
Back at the bunker, Ice Cream is elated to have the paintings in his hands, and the team convinces him to turn the paintings in – and in exchange, he’d likely get on the cover of Time magazine, a book deal, and maybe even a movie deal, with Paul Rudd staring as Ice Cream. With that, Ice Cream hands off the access to the app so the team can spy on Madeline.
Back in New York, chaos is reigning. Afreen confronts Weitz about why she stole money out of Susan Shah’s bank account. Soon after, Shah is found dead in her home, after news broke that she paid off an intern she had allegedly had a relationship with. Weitz confronts Richard about it, who points out that if Weitz had scared off Shah, this wouldn’t have happened. Afreen then confronts Weitz, who says they need to lay low, but Afreen has other ideas.
As the episode closes, Patterson and Rich brief the team about an academic article they came across. It was written by a Brian Mudkeele, which is an anagram of Madeline Burke, so they think it’s from the person sending them the tattoos. When they decode the article, they find the chemical formula for Zip, and the team realizes that Madeline isn’t trying to kill everyone – she’s trying to erase them.
Goonies Never Say Die!
I loved this episode. Once again, it had that great balance of action and humor, and it worked perfectly. Sure, some aspects of the scavenger hunt made no sense (did Patterson drop the book and bookmark outside the open secret door for Mikhailov to find?) and there was once again very little forward movement of the Madeline story arc. And even that seemed confusing. Has she shifted to Zip now that the team took all of her chemicals? That seems like such an abrupt change in course, but I can roll with that.
Overall though, the episode was fun. We had Patterson showing real worry about her inability to protect her own family, so she’s becoming very overprotective of Zapata. Ice Cream pointing out that Paul Rudd should play him in a movie was spot on, because the actor, David Rogers, does look shockingly like Paul Rudd. And we had a quote from The Goonies. So, what else could you ask for? Until next week!