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THE BLACKLIST “Drexel” Review: Red Chases a Murderous Banksy

BY The Screen Spy Team

Published 8 years ago


By Kai Greenwell

Last night’s episode of The Blacklist was all things drama when Red meets Liz and informs her about an underground “artist,” and this week’s blacklister, Drexel, who stages murderous tableaus as a form of unsubtle political art.

Red is the one leading the investigation this week, tracking down Drexel through an underground reporter who interviews the dangerous or criminal. The team meanwhile follow the investigation through more regular channels and are one step behind Drexel the whole way, as he is watching them through any networked camera he wants. Their investigation is essentially led by Drexel to make them uncover an illegal surveillance operation and shut it down.

Meanwhile, following his near fatal shooting last week, Tom recovers, but is probed by the police. They bring in the jeweller Tom robbed in order to identify him, but are disappointed when the man claims Tom in fact works for him. The doctor, an old friend of Liz’s who is begrudgingly on Reddington’s payroll, informs them Red learned of Tom’s situation and intervened. After realizing how much she cares for Tom, Liz decides to keep their baby.

Red uses the reporter as bait to catch Drexel. Claiming that he has been employed by one his enemies to make a painting, Red pressures Drexel into giving up any information he has. The information takes him to an art dealer who shows Red the painting – a picture of Liz standing over a grave marked Reddington


It’s standard procedure to expect the next couple of episodes after a premiere to be disappointing. A first episode always comes in with double or triple portions of flair and returning to the usual formula feels like falling back to earth after flying. Maybe that is why these last couple of episodes have felt flatter than usual, with the highflying finale still far in the distance, these formulaic episodes and their clunky and forced topics aren’t enough in the meantime.

With the clock ticking down to the end of the season, each episode really is ticking off something. This week we get to find out how everyone feels about Liz’s choice to adopt. Similar to the abrupt nature of Ressler’s outburst last week, after the second person had voiced their opinion on the matter, the issue started to feel somewhat forced. From a story perspective it made sense, but it still felt like a barrage of exposition regardless.

Liz’s choice to keep the baby was inevitable, especially after the events of last week. With an episode in which we came to care more about the baby, and (this week) to Liz’s decision to keep it, the stakes are officially set for a Liz-gets-kidnapped episode. It will be good to get it out the way and then maybe the theme of children can be just a little less demanding for the rest of the season.

The Blacklist continues Thursdays on NBC.

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