The Blacklist Season 2 Episode 22 Review: “Tom Connolly (No. 11)”

The Blacklist

What an exciting thrill ride the second season of NBC’s The Blacklist has been. It’s been such a fun show to write about, and the finale ended with quite a bang. This episode was a culmination of multiple seasons of plot, intrigue, and non-stop action, and was arguably The Blacklist’s best hour yet. It was certainly a game-changer.

This week on The Blacklist: Tom Connolly demands the arrest of Elizabeth, claiming her responsible for the spread of the virus from last week’s episode. Reddington, Dembe, and Cooper work together to try and save Elizabeth. Details come to light about Tom Connolly’s power, Liz’s parents, and Cooper’s illness. A new director of the task force is named.

Wow. Any expectations I had for the final episode of this season were absolutely blown out of the water by this episode. It was action-packed, revealed lots of plot, and managed to do all of that while keeping a tight reign on my attention, never wavering. I cannot praise the direction of the show or its characters enough. I was surprised, but since I’m pretty good at predictions, I love it when a show keeps me on my toes. I don’t think there’s anything they could’ve done to get me more interested in Season 3.

Megan Boone has been wonderful all season, and I’ve not been shy about saying so. She was never bad, but at the beginning, the show was about James Spader and no one else. Boone has really owned and transformed the character of Elizabeth Keen into someone you can relate with, and who can handle every tough situation she is thrown into. As details come out about Agent (well, I guess not any more) Keen’s past, the more that Boone embodies those traits in her nuanced but powerful portrayal. Many people believed (and some still do) that Reddington is Liz’s father, but from what the show has shown me so far, the past for the two of them is a much more complicated matter. Either way, I’m excited to find out.

Of course, you really can’t talk about a finale without touching the main character, and James Spader is always deserving of the praise that everyone (myself included) gives him. He has a certain level of gravitas that is untouched by those around him, and his performances are always so powerful. This episode, he was even relegated to a supporting role around Harold and Liz, and he did so gracefully, without letting us forget that the show is about him. This week, his brilliance happened to be in reminding us that there are other people on this show, but either way he didn’t go unnoticed.

Normally, when I nitpick about this show, it’s because some fantastic supporting players (like Diego Klattenhoff’s Donald Ressler) did not get enough screen time. There is a lot of focus on Reddington, Keen, and (this season) Tom. This episode, however, gave a little bit of extra trime to the supporting cast, particularly Ressler. Of course, Harold Cooper has played an integral role in this season’s development, but Ressler has often found himself on the back burner. Ressler, at one time, was in charge of hunting Reddington. Now he has to hunt Keen. I’m absolutely beside myself with excitement that he not only had a bigger role in the finale, but will most definitely have a bigger role next season.

This episode has to be in the five best The Blacklist has ever done. It has everything you could want, and perfectly set up a game-changed new season. Hopefully, all of our favorite characters return so we can see how things continue to develop. It has been an absolute pleasure bringing reviews of The Blacklist this season, and I will, of course, be right back here when it starts up this fall. Until then, fellow Blacklisters!

What did you guys think? Were you satisfied with the finale, or the season as a whole? Let us know!

New episodes of The Blacklist will air Thursdays at 9/8c on NBC in the fall.

[Photo via NBC]

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