When I reviewed last season’s fourth episode, Triggerman, I wrote that we’d have to see if in Season 3 PoI continued their penchant for fairly ambiguous, and ominous, endings to their fourth episode of the season. Well, we’re there. And, it does.
While “Cura Te Ipsum” remains the standard bearer for me in regards to these types of episodes: victim or perpetrator? Outcomes not neatly spelled out. – this was an enjoyable outing for me. Everyone had some ‘skin’ in the game, including the ever delightful Bear! I love that Bear was willing and able to act the part of sick doggie. Of course Boker can do it; but Bear gave it a go as well. His reward: some action and then a chew toy. Later on we got to see Bear simply be Bear. And for him, Reese will still be the guy who saved him from the non-Dutch speaking thugs and who Bear joyously reunited with after the events of “Shadow Box,” “2PiR,” “Prisoner’s Dilemma,” and “Dead Reckoning.” Six weeks or so for viewers, a week perhaps for the characters…darn near a lifetime for a dog! Sorry, Shaw, cool collars and rawhide bones don’t quite win the day. Don’t worry, Bear has love enough for all three of you! Who didn’t love Reese’s little smirk? (Really, who?)
Carter once again gets to show her chops as an interrogator. The scenes with Reese, Finch, and Carter holding a mock trial were great; Carter and Finch in particular shone in those moments. Pairing Fusco and Shaw up to investigate the money trail in CT was great. I do wonder who drove. Yeah, pretty sure it was Shaw, with Fusco hanging on for dear life! Shaw, Shaw, Shaw, your anger issues really need to be addressed. Good thing in next week’s episode the writers do just that. Once again Reese is his dry, droll best as he rises from the back of the car and kidnaps Watkins. Concerned third-party indeed!
There were some easy moments of revelation in this episode. I’m too jaded a viewer to fall for the whole, “I saw his body floating away” – only there’s no body recovered. Yeah, Jeremy being alive didn’t fool me, well, not too long anyway. However, I did go back and forth on whether Vanessa was victim or perpetrator. She had a good story. Not surprising for a veteran ADA, but still, she was convincing. Sad to say, Detective Carter, (demotion notwithstanding) but your partner is in with HR. I think just about all the fandom saw that coming. I do believe there was no win here for the writers. We’re too smart! Either her partner is an HR plant, or he really is this fresh-faced rookie who will soon die a violent death. I think he dies either way, but the HR plant was obvious, so I’m glad that they didn’t drag it out. Again, it was obvious because we’re all looking for it.
I like that Carter and Reese were ‘caught’ by the guy. I like the idea that HR will once again be gunning for the Man in the Suit as well as Carter. I didn’t like how Fusco kept Reese away from helping him last season; although, mostly I think it was because Fusco was so disgusted with the things he had done and didn’t want anyone to ‘see’ those parts of him. Still, I’m hopeful that Reese and Carter will mix it up with HR.
I spend time with episodes like this trying to figure out just what the Machine ‘sees’ that causes it to generate a number. Clearly Vanessa was a victim – of her husband’s double-cross. She was also a perpetrator, as she and her husband were planning to steal the money and disappear. So which was it that the Machine ‘saw’ and tagged? Or, did it see both? I wonder if the Machine, in essence, watches Reese and Finch work the numbers all the while calculating their odds of success. (In which case Shaw isn’t so bad for suggesting they bet on the outcome.) Or, does it simply move on once it has dispatched its number: duty done, on to scan for new threats. Perhaps the Machine’s interactions with Root will shed some light on this; then again, perhaps not.
Reasonable doubt was another solid outing for PoI with little nods to HR, nothing for Root and Elias or Control or the new threat introduced in episode 2. But, PoI is all about the slow build, and then, when the pieces are positioned, they fire off the reveals and the game changers. This was an episode that gave all members of the team a chance to shine; gave Carter some great moments to dig her teeth into; gave Shaw some fun moments where she’s a gun-toting-chardonnay-carrying-friend-of-a-friend one moment and letter-opener-about-to-stab-you-in-the-eye-sociopath the next. (“Pseudo-intellectual, glorified trophy wives”! HAH!)
Reese has gone from shipping off a despicable excuse for a man to a Mexican prison (my belief of what he did with Benton) to killing Riley’s executioner (professional courtesy) to simply letting the “war between the Roses” be fought by the combatants, leaving all others safe from their violent tendencies. He had no one to avenge here, so he didn’t actively participate – well, aside from giving both of them weapons and an arena vacated of all innocents within which to act. Unlike the previous two instances, neither Vanessa nor her husband were particularly worthy of Reese’s assistance, so he employed an option that both he and Finch have both voiced – albeit at different times – and backed away, letting ‘nature’ take its course. (No doubt Shaw would approve.)
Reasonable doubt to be sure: who was right? Was anyone?
As always, thanks for reading. Elle2