• The Hollywood Reporter on LinkedIn
  • Follow THR on Pinterest
OCT
7
12 MOS

'The Blacklist' Recap: 'Wujing' Focuses on Government Secrets for Sale

Red continues to work his blacklist, but leaves Liz -- and viewers -- in the dark about his motivations and connection to her.

The Blacklist Wujng Episodic - H 2013
NBC

Episode Synopsis: Liz poses as a hacker so that she and Red can prevent notorious Chinese spy killer Wujing from taking out any more CIA operatives. Meanwhile, Liz also sets up her own investigation regarding her husband Tom's multiple identities and potential criminal past. 

Episode Highlights: Liz is developing a distinctive personality that is starting to include some humor, like when she called Red out on speaking frankly about government secrets in front of his haberdasher. She also showed why her partnership with Red is so important when it come to justice -- though he tells her (and us) that not all of the people on the blacklist will be apprehended, she makes sure that Wujing was by tagging his car. The show also continued with its whirlwind intensity, which sets it apart from other procedurals. 

PHOTOS: NBC's 2013-14 Season

Criticism: The central "Why me?" mystery is growing tiresome, especially since Red doesn't seem to have a good reason for avoiding Liz's questions. The subplot mystery regarding Tom is progressing, slowly, but the show really needs to throw viewers a bone with a big reveal soon. It also wouldn't be a bad idea to develop some of Liz's co-workers further so that viewers become more interested in (and distracted by) their personalities instead festering on the puzzle aspect. Also (unrelated) for someone so paranoid about security, Wujing was particularly lax about letting Liz and Red out randomly in the street, wasn't he? (which ultimately led to his downfall). 

Biometrics, Pros and Cons: Pro - better security. Con - criminals remove your entire hand to unlock your phone/tablet/laptop. 

Gray Matter: Sad to see Wujing's guy whom Liz accidentally set up take the blame for her messages. But it echoed the show's overarching theme by having Liz be party to something Red routinely does -- that is, to do something bad in the service of something good (or for self preservation). But if Red isn't expecting to have each of these criminals apprehended, what is his endgame? Another mystery … 

Big Brother Is Watching: Neat trick with the surveillance crew hiding when the friend came through the house, though that sudden surveillance setup has been seen recently on both Homeland and Scandal. It's becoming so frequent, in fact, it hardly makes one bat an eye. "Of course the painters are about to bug your entire house! That's what they do."

Product Placement: Ford spot that started one commercial break had a couple looking for Chinese food. 

Quote of the Night: "I like to play by myself. In private." -- Red 

Bottom Line: Another fun week of suave talk from Red and plenty of action from the villains versus the FBI, but the show needs to start delivering some answers to any of its many mysteries -- or at least give viewers a plausible reason why we, and Liz, can't know more.