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Old October 17 2013, 08:55 AM   #16
lurok
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Re: The Blacklist

I wonder if this is one of those shows where, rather than cancel the whole thing, they could recast/reformat around Spader. I'm trying to think of examples where that might have happened with a TV series before.
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Old October 17 2013, 02:50 PM   #17
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Re: The Blacklist

I agree with everyone that James Spader makes this show. Without him, I don't know if I would continue to watch. While many have speculated that he is the father of Elizabeth Keen, I don't think so. Especially after seeing last nights episode, the picture he took out of the book of the young woman, I think that was his daughter.

The one thing I really like about this show is that the 'main' story only takes up about a half hour of the whole show. The beginning part and tail part of the episode are devoted to the bigger mystery. It's very refreshing, it's kind of like two shows in one.
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Old October 17 2013, 05:13 PM   #18
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Re: The Blacklist

Cthulurok wrote: View Post
I wonder if this is one of those shows where, rather than cancel the whole thing, they could recast/reformat around Spader. I'm trying to think of examples where they might have happened with a TV series before.
The first thing that came to mind was Facts of Life. The series started out in an all girl dorm with a huge ensemble cast, but then got cut down to just focus on four or five of the girls & the den mother.
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Old October 17 2013, 07:23 PM   #19
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Re: The Blacklist

Yeah, there was no Jo in season one!

Boston Legal was a killing field.

After Boston Legal, it's possible that Spader might have taken provisions against signing up to another charnel house.
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Old October 17 2013, 07:43 PM   #20
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Re: The Blacklist

Spader is the one who makes the show, no doubt. I like the production and pacing okay, and the twisting plots are being handled all right for now too, although that can only continue so long before it gets old.

The latest episode with the cleaner should've felt more menacing, but the female FBI agent seems incapable of truly projecting disgust or fear or any depth of emotion. The cleaner himself was very creepy, but a bit more depth in his back-story would've been appreciated.

Calling the Spader character a monster for killing the cleaner in a Dexteresque moment made me roll my eyes. Are you kidding me?
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Old October 17 2013, 07:54 PM   #21
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Re: The Blacklist

Yeah, that kinda bugged me, too. Killing the "stewmaker" certainly does not make him a "monster," (melodramatic much?) and she didn't even bother to ask him why. Plus, no one bothers to ask about the missing photo from the book.
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Old October 17 2013, 08:20 PM   #22
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Re: The Blacklist

The actress who plays Elizabeth Keen makes Kristen Stewart seam like a thespian.
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Old October 17 2013, 08:53 PM   #23
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Re: The Blacklist

Cthulurok wrote: View Post
JINXED wrote: View Post
F0under wrote: View Post
If it weren't for James Spader, I wouldn't give a damn about this show.
This^
Ditto.

I don't mind the female lead in a blank canvas sort of way. And it's nice to see Parminder Nagra. But yes, show is a mess. And the Tom Noonan/Dollarhyde rip-off/homage was just dull.
I forgot to mention that I love Parminder in this! She is actually really believable to me as a CIA agent. And in last week's episode I really enjoyed watching her kick some ass!
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Old October 17 2013, 08:57 PM   #24
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Re: The Blacklist

Yeah, Megan Boone's character (Elizabeth Keen) needs to step up in the emotions department. I realize she's a professional, but even outside of her job she doesn't really emote.
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Old October 17 2013, 10:45 PM   #25
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Re: The Blacklist

I laugh at Death wrote: View Post
While many have speculated that he is the father of Elizabeth Keen, I don't think so. Especially after seeing last nights episode, the picture he took out of the book of the young woman, I think that was his daughter.
You may be right the episode was hinting that. But Reddington first of all abandoned his real family without a qualm. Why then care about another one? Particularly since the girl's photo was close to the beginning of the stewmaker's album, implying that she was killed years ago. And this would mean she was fathered by Reddington well before his mysterious break into criminality. It is not clear why another daughter's existence would be a dark secret until he took up a life of crime. Nor is it clear how the death of a daughter might lead to taking up a life of crime.

Yes, Elizabeth Keen being his daughter would be pretty saccharine. The question of why she would matter so much more than his ordinary children applies to her as well.

However, as to the monstrousness of killing the stewmaker, that depends on what you deem his motive. We know what he said for Lizzie, but what he did was silence the last witness to the criminals who ordered the crimes the stewmaker merely abetted. After all, the dialogue made it clear that Lizzie was supposed to be his first kill. Even the Old Testament says a life for a life. The stewmaker didn't kill anyone.

Many murderers got away because of Reddington's intervention. At best, the photos may help confirm the deaths of missing persons. As fun as some viewers may have found Reddington killing a man for felony tampering with evidence, in truth, Reddington committed murder to protect murderers, even if he said he a bunch of satisfying BS. In all probability, Lizzie's "melodramatic" monster was based solely on the disproportion of the punishment for attempted murder, based on the lex talionis principle, without thinking of the protecting murderers angle.

That would be necessary plot-wise, because the FBI would know Reddington killed the guy, but they can't highlight the protecting murderers angle, because it would highlight the scripted incompetence of the FBI (designed to make Reddington look good.) Also it would detract from the pleasure of the murder for that part of the audience that likes that aspect of the show. Ressler's aside was meant to assure us that Reddington would kill Lorca, the drug dealer, at some point for his own personal pleasure.

Tom Keene is not bland, but is positively angelic. Thus far, it can only be assumed that Lizzie is not just a fool, or why should anyone care about her, not just Reddington, but us? But either a villain has manipulated her throughout her marriage, or she hasn't realized that Reddington set the mad bomber on her husband. Lizzie can't be a dramatic agent if she's too clueless to know there's a dramatic choice to make. I don't know if it's possible to write anything but a deer in the headlights with this kind of story.

The points above about the longevity of the anti-hero trend and the desperate need for willing suspension of disbelief for this show are both correct.
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Old October 19 2013, 04:42 AM   #26
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Re: The Blacklist

I've seen all of the episodes now and have to admit it's pretty entertaining. Spader is awesome; I agree that Megan Boone isn't as strong as she should be but hopefully she'll get better. Despite under-emoting, there is something likable about her. I really hope Lizzy's husband isn't evil because I like him and he's hot! I hope there's more to the story. I wonder if he could be working for the CIA or something like that? I give the writers kudos for advancing the story each week. I thought she'd sit on it for like half a season before it came up again.

The producers keep saying Lizzy isn't Red's daughter. I wonder if he's responsible for her parents' death or something like that, and feels bad about it? Another reason I doubt the husband is evil: it seems like Red would do something about it.

This is probably the new series I've watched most consistently so far. I've let others build up here and there but I'm always eager to watch a new episode of The Blacklist. So that says something to me!
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Old October 19 2013, 04:57 AM   #27
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Re: The Blacklist

It seems that Lizzy is important to Red because of her husband. I'm guessing the husband is evil and behind what happened to Red's family/daughter, the dead girl in the picture.
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Old October 19 2013, 07:39 AM   #28
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Re: The Blacklist

The husband looks like he could be Spader's son. The have some similar like looks that it's possible.
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Old October 19 2013, 06:14 PM   #29
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Re: The Blacklist

This is the only new drama that I'm watching and I'm really enjoying it.
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Old October 27 2013, 10:01 PM   #30
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Re: The Blacklist

Sorry to resurrect a dead thread, but tomorrow seems to offer a few real answers to the husband storyline.

First, I do have to repeat: James Spader selling this guy for the time he's on screen is truly amazing. That said, I'm having trouble finding the entertainment value in watching even this bravura performance when the payoff is so often Reddington killing someone, or abetting a criminal.

Which is why the husband storyline is so interesting (so far.) Reddington's statement to his valet or whatever about playing the long game seemed to be in reference to Tom, implying I think that Reddington is taking a chance on Tom either being more than just another criminal or that at least letting Elizabeth play it out will put him in more solid with her. The part about finding out who their enemy is suggests that Elizabeth's connection may be with that person (her real, criminal father? but Reddington knows who that is...)

And a question for people with much sharper eyes: The symbol that Isabella Rossellini's Eberhardt put on Reddington's bodyguard seemed in my memory to be the same symbol etched into the box under the floor at the Keen's house*? Or are my eyes and memory playing me false?

*Strictly speaking, the Keen's ability to keep a house while losing Tom's income and paying their share of his medical bills is a red flag for chicanery. Particularly since elementary school teachers are not especially well paid. (I have my doubts about low level FBI agents too.) But in all probability it's just Hollywood's idea of the ordinary lifestyle.
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