This show keeps firing on all cylinders.  High Road is a slower, calmer episode perhaps in an effort to embrace where it is set, the ‘burbs.  Zoe and Reese were both out of their element, despite Zoe’s recognition of a doorbell as non-threatening; Bear on the other paw seemed completely in his element the all-too-brief moments we saw him.  I wish there would be a bit more of his presence at times.  It’s inconceivable that he would not have barked at the doorbell or appeared to greet the neighbors; and a shot of him snoozing on his rug while Zoe and Reese played poker would have rounded out his presence a bit.  Granted, that’s pretty much my only complaint and it’s minor (mostly because I have a 100 pound German Shepherd; no doorbell rings unanswered, no guests arrive ungreeted.)

Carter was much more relaxed this episode as well; maybe the suburbs have an ‘urban effect’ by proxy?  Don’t know.  I really like that she was John’s foil when he wanted to go straight in and confront the guys threatening Graham.  Rather than concede to her more appropriate approach he simply gets out of her car and drops a burner phone in the back of the thugs’ truck.  He is a man of few words.  At least he explained himself as he got back into his own car.

Carter has settled nicely into her role of helper to Finch and Reese but I do believe sooner or later there will be some questions about her appearances at certain places just at the right moment; after all, isn’t she on a homicide task force…tracking a gang of robbers isn’t really in her assignment.  I think she will have some questions from upper management.  Like her snarky and yet accepting comment about going almost 24 hours without breaking the law.

As for Fusco, I dearly missed him for Kevin Chapman is a joy to watch.  However, his presence was well-handled with Zoe helping as well as the friendliness of suburban life.  Fusco wasn’t needed to trail anybody.  Also, Kevin tweeted (yes, I check his twitter account…he is quite funny!) that he needed the episode off in order to finish another project he was on.  He was thankful that his PoI bosses were so accommodating.  He mentioned in an interview a little while ago that Fusco has a pretty big episode coming up.  I do believe he mentioned it was Episode 7 so we’ve less than a week to go for that.

The flashbacks have returned and this time regarding Nathan and Grace.  Brett Cullen is excellent to watch and I am eager to see his character develop over time.  He is a mix of the philanthropic and judgmental; believes he has Finch all figured out.  Too bad he never (?) knew how much he didn’t know…or perhaps he did.  We’ll watch that play out over the next several seasons (hoping).  

I am eager to know about Finch and his paranoia, what caused him to become paranoid and hide himself in plain sight from perhaps early teenage years.  The journey is interesting.  Sometimes it’s what we don’t see that is intriguing.  Granted we still know very little but often things are revealed in reverse; Finch does seem to know people very well despite being an introvert for the Machine clearly is functioning at a high level as early as 2004 when it first identified Grace as a match.

I like a slow reveal; if everything is given at once, it’s all over.  We got a whole season of learning about Reese and Jessica and that was satisfying.  Originally it was all to be revealed in the Pilot.  Fortunately Greg Plageman had the television experience that Jonathan Nolan did not, and when they had to edit extensively (wish CBS had given it either a two-hour premier or a 90-minute one), they cut all that out and saved it for the slow reveal throughout the season; much more satisfying.  It’s also fun because it gives Jim Caviezel this season to bring Reese more to life.  Already we’ve seen Reese go all in for Finch in the first to episodes and, once Finch was returned, settle capably back into his role as protector and he’s gotten quite close to his charges; even dating them.

This season we’re learning a lot about how the Machine works and realize that it is intuitive.  We are experiencing different dimensions of Finch as we see him interact with Reese, Nathan, Grace and the Machine.  Michael Emerson is always a joy to watch; his subtle choices as he portrays Finch both past and present are worth multiple viewings.

Final points:

Reese may be a smooth talker in many ways, but he can’t get out of a ticket.

I love that the woman for Reese now is someone who is more a partner than a lover.  Zoe matches him in every way.  Reese with Jessica is not the Reese of today.  Settling down with a wife or even a lover is not in the cards; however, a strong friendship with someone who is as driven as he is; perfect, which is why Zoe works as well as Carter and why Reese continues to come out of his shell week in and week out.

Reese’s subtle speaking is showcased here as he carries on a conversation with Finch while wearing a mask and standing within five to ten feet of three armed gunmen.  You barely see Jim Caviezel’s lips move; utterly believable.

Reese rappelling down a building – Thank you!

The shot of him reflected in the glass just before he takes out the one gunman – Gorgeous!

Zoe teaching Connie Wyler how to make a Manhattan up (and not knowing that you should wash a bowl before you return it) – Fun!

Finch starting to warn Reese about the donut and then shutting up when it was too late…and never owning up to the problem – Priceless!

Reese’s well-timed punch to the face followed by… “A better man.” – Awesome!

Thanks for reading!

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