Last week, cracks started showing in Team Tattoo; this week, things start coming undone! And it's only barely a month since they came back. Spoilers ahead for Blindspot (S0204) "If Beth"...
Roman takes Jane to see a lake "halfway to Canada" where the government covered up an ongoing chemical contamination issue that ruined hundreds of families in the area by killing a large percentage of the people who lived around it. She's confused, because that's her current default condition, but he says that he wants her to be mad, he wants her to remember why they're doing what they're doing. "We're not attacking the country," he says, "we're saving it."
It's a pretty good argument.
Meanwhile, one of Jane's tattoos--the honeycomb on her hand--is a binary code that gives them the ID of a government employee and the name of a notorious hacker, outing him as using his gov cred to attack said gov. They track him down, stop him from burning up his servers, and stop Reade from beating the guy to death. He does manage to fracture his eye-bone, though, and it means everyone is worried he's breaking down.
This week, it's Nas who wants someone to sit it out, and it's Reade she wants to bench, but Weller insists he's fine, going all papa bear on her for saying his team isn't up to it. Which, you know, coming a week after he was the one who wanted to bench Jane for less, seems a little two-faced, don'tcha think? Jane always was his particular blindspot tho. (get it? blindspot?) But he does go and confront Reade later, after he goes off on someone else, and makes him talk to Borden.
His fear and upset over these missing memories is getting to him and making him unstable.
Meanwhile, Patterson, being awesome, uncovers what the hacker has been doing: he takes popular shooter games and retools the levels to make them identical to actual places in the world, right down to number of exits, security cameras, and other such stuff people in the real world might need to carry off heists. Several of them already worked, but Patterson IDs one that's coming up soon and hasn't happened yet: a local art gallery show.
Undercover time! And this time, the whole team gets to glam up.
Weller helps Jane zip up her dress, which we all know is TV shorthand for "I love you", and for a second she thinks they're going to be going as a married couple again and looks sweet and hopeful. He doesn't quite shoot her down, but it has the same effect, and later she calls him her brother when they're talking to the guy who's running the event, which gets a nice annoyed-wounded-WTF look out of him.
They really need to just hug and make up already. But, you know, that'd require them to actually get half a minute to talk about something.
Anyway, the event is to raise money for clean water, which is interesting since this all goes back to a polluted lake, you know? But they discover that it's not that their attacker is after--or anything else in the displays. She's killing specific people in the audience at the party.
One lockdown, awesome fight in fancy dresses that destroys a lot of priceless art, and escape later, they figure out that the woman is an African terrorist and trick her into an ambush...where she reveals that she's actually CIA!
The CIA is nothing but trouble on this show, and apparently, they are even to their own people. She was deep undercover to bring down the terrorists, discovered corruption in her own ranks and tried to expose it, but her handler exposed her, burned her and purged every hint of her records instead. He even went so far as to have her family killed so she'd have nowhere to go. She wasn't acting as a terrorist, she was half getting revenge and half getting rid of her corrupt former-cohorts who were using the party as a way to move stuff around illegally.
So she's maybe not a badguy. But her handler is.
They track him down and find out that the daughter the agent thought he'd had killed was actually still alive: HER daughter was actually HIS daughter, not her husband's because they'd had an affair as agent-and-handler fifteen years ago, and he was kidnapping her back. The daughter had been told her mom was dead. He used the same trick on both of them.
So they get him, and he winds up shot in the process, but the daughter pulls a gun and Jane has to talk her down by doing one of her double-talk speeches: you can lie to people and still love them, she says, all while looking at Weller, since she still hasn't had a chance to tell him that she was being lied to and used and she was trying to save his life. She sort of said that, but no one got to process it before other important things came out, and they certainly haven't talked it over.
The daughter backs down, they reunite her with her mom, and they set her up for a better life with her grandmother.
Weller talks about how hard it must be for her to not ever be able to trust anyone, since the people she cared about the most lied to her. Jane jumps on that as a poke at her, and says she's exhausted being stuck in the middle. Weller tries to protest that he didn't mean that, but she gets a beep from Roman as if he's specifically trying to keep them from talking anything out and getting back on good terms.
Which, actually, wouldn't be surprising.
When she arrives where they're meeting, Shepherd tells her that the lake Roman showed her was where she grew up. She lost both parents and a brother to the poisoning, and she survived, but they had to take both her ovaries to do it, so she could never have kids of her own. "When I found you two, I thought I was saving you, but you saved me" she says. Really hard to fight your mom when she says stuff like that.
The whole of Sandstorm started because she wanted someone to pay for what happened to her family when she was a kid. And she says it's going to end soon. Jane doesn't know about the enormous amount of C4 that Roman brought in early in the episode, but even that amount was half of what Shepherd ordered, so whatever they're planning, this is going to be a huge deal; will it be the mideason break or the season finale when they get moving, though? The speed this season seems to be going at, it wouldn't be surprising if they start earlier than that and have a more drawn-out attack plan, though!
While all this is going on, Zapata is getting meddle-y with Reade's life. Freddie was crashing at his place for a while, and Zapata made him leave because she was sure he was up to something; he left without a fight, but he's so broken down that it probably won't be a good move for him. Then, after everything is wrapped up, she goes to see the beat-up hacker in the hispital and hires him for something!
The last few minutes of every episode are where everything always gets turned sideways, and this week, it's sideways for Weller. Nas shares a drink with him, looking like she's making friends after they were fighting over Jane as if she wasn't standing in the room with them, and then once they're nice and loose, she drops a bomb on him. The last bit of info they got from their informant inside Sandstorm is that they were watching Weller as far back as his graduation from the military academy, twenty years ago. But why???
Four episodes into a full-length season, and everyone is hitting the ends of their ropes. Jane doesn't want to be trapped between the FBI and Sandstorm (not to mention the threat of going back to the CIA), Weller just decided to be part of his kid's life and then found out he's a bigger part of the mystery than ever, Reade is cracking up under the pressure of his missing past, and Zapata is keeping secrets and moving around behind people's backs again. Patterson almost got garotted this week. Nas is still hard to read and shifty in her motives. Everything is bad.
But it could also be an opportunity. Jane and Reade both have missing memories; maybe that can bring them together. Weller is softening at the thought of family; maybe that can help him pull his team back into one. He's also potentially another pawn of Sandstorm; maybe that'll finally reconcile him to Jane's point of view. If they go wrong, though, and keep being so mistrustful and horrible to Jane, they're going to lose her right back to Sandstorm where she came from, and right back to the terrible person she was before she was Jane--then she's really lost to them. Jane only exists because her mind was wiped and her new personality was created by her interactions with Team Tattoo; without them, her only influences are the people who want her to be who she was before. And right now, Sandstorm is giving her more reason to join their side than the FBI is, and is seeming less corrupt, even if they're more violent about it.
Another bonkers-crazy episode of our show! It's hard to predict how any of these tangled plot points are going to go, and that's why the show is both so tense and so exciting--you can't call everything before it happens!
More notes on Blindspot 2.4 "If Beth":
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