Since our beloved Joss Carter is no more, I thought I’d do an article highlighting my favorite moments between these two.  I actually made a list with Finch and Reese first, and then did this list.  Since it is Joss that we’ve lost right now, I’ll go with this list right now.  I may present my favorite Reese and Finch scene during the next three-weak break.  At least I know the next list will still be a work in progress as Finch and Reese survive until the end of this season, although one never knows with Jonah and Greg though…

So, with that preamble done, on to my favorite Carter and Reese moments:

The Pilot:

It all starts here:  Joss Carter and John Reese meet face to face.  John is distant, mysterious, and slightly menacing in this scene.  Carter doesn’t back down as she tries to elicit information and manages to snag his fingerprints.  This scene is short, and the two actors don’t share a scene for eight more episodes; however, it all starts here.

Mission Creep:

They’re not face to face; however, the dialogue is interesting, and prophetic.  Carter makes it clear that she’ll continue to hunt for The Man in the Suit.  She doesn’t think he’s a killer, but she can’t let him keep doing what he’s doing, and she is pretty sure she knows how it will end:  either arresting Reese or finding him bleeding out in the streets.  Seven episodes later we see that she does catch up to Reese, and he is, in fact, bleeding out.  But here it’s just a cat and mouse game, and Reese is enjoying the hunt.

Get Carter:

Reese kills Bottle Cap and tells Joss that she’s not alone.  The beauty and the tragedy of this moment will come fully into focus two seasons later in The Crossing.  Keep reading.

Number Crunch:

Carter thanks the Man in the Suit for saving her life.  He tells her where to find some bad guys.  She returns the favor by calling Mark Snow and we are all treated with the wonderful scene of Reese, gut shot, staggering his way down the parking garage stairwell and out into the street where Finch has arrived to rescue him, but, escape isn’t that easy.  Carter has followed his bloody trail and arrives just in time to put it all together:  Finch – who she only knows as Burdett, is partners with Reese.  The moment of decision has arrived,
arrest him or let him go.  We all know what Carter does, and the partnership is born.


Carter finally sees Reese face to face and begins her work with the team.  While their conversation at the beginning of the episode is fun:  Carter apologizes for getting him shot, Reese tells her that her moral compass is pointed in the right direct; it’s the scene about midway through the episode that is actually my favorite here.  Carter and Reese meet at the Lyric Diner a second time to discuss the current case.  Carter’s detective skills shine bright and Reese compliments her in his dry manner.  Carter’s response sums up their current relationship as she tells him it’s her job and, “I didn’t even have to shoot anybody to do it.”  Snap!

Blue Code:

Reese is missing, beaten, shot and currently burning in a torched car.  He frees himself from the trunk, rolls out to safety and there stands Carter.  He tells her it’s his lucky day and her retort is:  “Your lucky day is being beaten, shot, and set on fire.”  Moments later, Reese realizes Carter is a woman after his own heart as he asks her for a gun and she opens her trunk and displays a mini arsenal.  Ah, friendship.

Many Happy Returns:

We waited twenty episodes to find out how Jessica died and what led John Reese to the suicidal homeless man seen in the Pilot.  I have so many favorite scenes from this episode that it’s hard to pick one, so I don’t.  Some of my favorite scenes only have Carter in them as she’s learning about Reese:  the moment Carter finds the photo of John and Jessica in happier times and the end, when she’s reading his military file and then carefully and deliberately shreds it, while keeping the photo – all after learning that he didn’t kill Jennings.   The one scene the two do share is on the lonely stretch of highway as Carter tries to stop Reese from doing to Jennings what she is certain he did to Peter Arndt.  He’s the monster, she’s the moral compass.  It wasn’t until the end of the episode that she realizes she underestimated him.  Here, at the side of the road, it’s a great scene of intense control by John Reese while Carter applies restrained pressure to stop him.  Carter learned an awful lot about who John Reese is in this episode.


“I got bored waiting in the car, and it took you longer than four minutes.”  Hah!  There are times that Carter gets the best lines.  She also managed to knee cap a guy in this episode as well as T-bone a vehicle.  Reese has definitely made an impression.


Carter and Reese in the diner as she reveals that she’s had contact with Mark Snow and that he wanted her to pass a warning on to Reese.  She reminds Reese that she’s a detective and she won’t stop looking for answers.  He makes it clear that the dangers are real in her pursuit.  He tells her that he’s lost everything and everyone who ever cared about him.  He makes it clear that his life is over, but hers isn’t.  He won’t stop her from investigating, but he makes it clear that the cost will be very, very high.

Prisoner’s Dilemma:

Every Carter and Reese scene.  Just go watch the episode.   Seriously, go!
The Crossing:

I enjoy the ‘scar scene’ in the morgue.  Carter and Reese aren’t trying to one-up each other as to who has the worst scar.  Instead, they’re two good friends, in the midst of the most dangerous night of their lives, sharing their past.  But it’s the final scene that is heartbreakingly beautiful and gives full voice to the echoes from Season 1 when Reese tells Joss she’s not alone as well as the echo from earlier in the episode when Fusco tells Peterson that the best anyone can hope for is someone to hold their hand while they die.  Here, with Reese and Carter both shot and lying on the sidewalk, Reese drags himself to Carter and tells her that he’s there.  She tries to get him to promise not to let this do to him what Jessica’s death did before, but she dies without getting it all out, all while Reese is holding her.  It’s beautiful.  It’s haunting.  It evokes real emotions. 

Rest in Peace, Joss Carter.  I may wish for Carter to be alive – and that picture of her at the funeral in The Devil’s Share was a punch to the gut, but I enjoyed getting to know her.  Thanks for the memories.

Feel free to share your own favorite moments!

Until next week – “Lethe” airs on Tuesday, December 17, 2013.

Thanks for reading, Elle2

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