“Now that’s a Brotherhood.”
In the Devil You Know, Link gets a glimpse into what loyalty and friendship is all about. It’s clear that he does not find the same level of loyalty with Dominic: Mr. We can always find more soldiers. Loyalty is something that is often discussed on Person of Interest. Loyalty comes in many shapes and sizes, from governments protecting their citizens, or at least purporting to, to smaller groups, such as the NYPD, and its criminal subset HR, to even smaller groups such as Finch, Reese, Shaw, Root, and Fusco. We saw loyalty displayed amongst all of them in “The Devil You Know” as Finch sought to keep Shaw safe through Root and kept Fusco from being identified as an ally after Martine questioned him about the moving truck stop. We saw Finch desperate to save Elias, as well as assist John. Shaw was eager to get into the mix, and for her it is part loyalty to their cause and no doubt deeply driven by her desire to simply stay in the action at all times, as well as deflect from the fact that her cover, one and done, is now well and truly done. Reese’s loyalty remains true to his core, protect, protect, protect. Despite Elias’s sacrifice to save him, Reese went back into the line of fire to save, once again, Elias. No doubt, he truly did regret not being able to save Anthony. (RIP Scarface!)—More on that below.
While the stories of Elias going face to face with the Brotherhood and Samaritan closing in on Team Machine seem to be separate, at the very end Dominic neatly connects them as he continues to prove himself a complex thinker putting together the game within the game going on around him. Dominic, you’ll have your hands full with a vengeful and patient man like Elias, but that will seem like nothing compared to you coming up against Samaritan, which is a power he no doubt will hunger for once he catches wind.
Person of Interest is clearly a show that puts a lot of thought into the season as a whole and then how each individual episode fits into the season, for each episode this season has in some way built upon the other, and The Brotherhood’s rise to power and awareness of John, Samheen and now its hunt for Harold is meant to coincide right with Team Samaritan’s uncovering of Samheen Shaw’s identity, putting them very close to unraveling all the team’s identities. It makes much more sense now why the writers crafted Shaw’s identity in such an innocuous job and then gave her a very dangerous and potentially exposed outlet of wheelman for a gang of thieves. The Machine, perhaps, intuited that Shaw would need an outlet for her energies after such a mundane day job, and that outlet certainly gave the team the necessary funds to then acquire much bigger resources, but it also kept Shaw deep in the shadows and with no link whatsoever to Harold or John or even Fusco.
Fusco remains just outside the know regarding the Machine’s and Samaritan’s existence, and that is a very safe place for him to be. He quite deftly deflects Martine, posting as a DEA agent, because he knows that whatever Root and Shaw and the others are up to, is dangerous and the less he knows, the better. He knows enough not to ask further questions, because he remembers what he told Carter in Masquerade: Whatever level these guys are playing at, we ain’t there. What he does know is that Shaw saved his son’s life, that John’s and Finch’s adventures helped him find his purpose as a cop again, and that John’s interventions – at first unpleasant – were the reason he stopped drinking and cleaned up his life. Fusco is loyal because he’s seen the results of what Finch and Company do, and he gets to be a good guy again. He is no longer blindly loyal as when he was a part of HR, but now chooses loyalty because his moral compass gets to point in the right direction.
While Person of Interest loves to play in the big universe of crime families and criminal organizations within the police force, as well as the larger governmental conspiracies that eventually span the globe, it never misses the small, intimate moments that all the other things into perspective, and here, the relationship between David Valcin’s Anthony, a/k/a Scarface, and Enrico Colantoni’s Elias stole the show. David Valcin saved his best for last, and he always brought his A game to begin with. We saw every range of Scarface here, his cocky self-assurance as John tells them Elias is in danger, his determination to protect, not only Elias but John, after all, he could have pushed the close button on the elevator and whisked him and Elias to the penthouse leaving John in the hands of The Brotherhood. We saw his utter loyalty as he held his ground against the intruders, trusting John to get Elias to safety, and then again his absolute steadfastness as he withstood the beating and then Link’s softer approach as he attempted to lure the information from Scarface by manipulation, and promises of something greater.
David Valcin, in just a few episodes, transformed this seemingly small character, often in the background with few and at times no words, from a stereotypical right-hand man of a crime boss, to a devoted and trustworthy man of great depth and integrity. His every facial expression conveyed an emotion, a thought, and I enjoyed every one of his appearances. He brought charisma and venom to the role, there was presence and humor when he was in a scene. At times he was foreboding and dangerous, at times watchful and careful, and in the end Valcin peeled away all the layers and showed us a man who understood what Reese has often said, “In the end we’re all alone, and no one is coming to save you.” Whereas Reese has said that with an air of cynicism, Scarface understood that it was the natural ending to the life he had chosen, and the question he had already asked himself: Was he ready and willing to die for Elias?
The final shot of Elias walking down the boardwalk alone is a haunting echo from Witness. There, Elias is bigger than life, surrounded by his men, and the music was large and alive. This time, it is a very subdued Elias, a lonely man, and the music reflected that. He’ll be back, and he’ll have revenge in store for Dominic, but for now, he is grieving, licking his wounds and planning.
The table for Season 4 has been set; it was set at the end of last week, now it’s time to move the pieces forward at a speed that at times will astound. Elias will disappear to plan his move; Martine comes to the forefront with her new team. Shaw will adjust to life underground and the team will slowly become aware that they are being hunted not just by Samaritan, but also by The Brotherhood.
We’re not quite halfway through the season, but it’s full steam ahead.
Until next time, thanks for reading, Elle2