Person of Interest s3 ep 12

At the start of the episode almost everyone is accounted for. Finch, Shaw, and Claypool are being held by Control and Hersh, who are about to start killing them unless one of them reveals the whereabouts of Samaritan; Reese and Fusco, as a result of their brawl, are locked up in a police cell thousands of miles away, and unable to help. Root, though, still has her two guns, and comes busting in; everyone gets away, but Root herself is captured, and thereafter interrogated by Control, who wants access to The Machine. What Control doesn’t realise is that Root herself is the interface.

And meantime Claypool – occasionally playing up the mental confusion caused by his brain tumour – has taken Finch and Shaw to a bank, where the Samaritan discs are stored in a vault. But Vigilance is after them, and the FBI – led by Hersh – is after them. This leaves Shaw with the apparently impossible task of getting Finch, Shaw, Claypool, and the Samaritan discs, out of the vault past two hostile groups. Finch counsels her that the situation calls for subtlety: “I urge you to consider what Mr Reese would do”. “Brood?”, replies Shaw, who is also unimpressed by Finch comparing her and Reese to, respectively, a hammer and a scalpel. “There’s a time for a scalpel and a time for a hammer. It’s hammer time.” And indeed it is: Shaw finds a way in, by which time Claypool has destroyed the discs to stop them from falling into the wrong hands. (Although the Samaritan story by no means ends there.)

As well as the usual examination of the surveillance society, this episode returns to one of Person of Interest’s recurring themes, with a fair amount of philosophical debate about The Machine. To Claypool, The Machine is more or less human (and male), and he tries to convince Finch that he is essentially his, Finch’s, child. For Root, though, something even more transcendent is going on; eyes shining beatifically, she describes The Machine (which of course she regards as female) as “my power, my friend, my reason for being”. And later, The Machine will speak through her. This can only be regarded as theological. It may be that Person of Interest is trying to say something about our future – indeed, our present – relationship with technology, perhaps wondering whether an increasingly secular society will create new gods. Or whether these gods will create themselves.

Needless to say, whatever interpretation you choose to put on it, this is pretty ambitious stuff for a network show. Fortunately, lots of people get shot as well, making ‘Aletheia’ another triumph on every level.

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5 thoughts on “Person of Interest s3 ep 12

  1. Kay20 August 2, 2016 / 7:20 am

    This episode illustrated something for me: the scenes with Lionel and Fusco, and with Shaw, Finch and Claypool were wonderful and played well together…while the scenes with Root felt dark, jarring and disjointed from the rest of the show. Not sure if that’s on purpose.

    The team dynamic between the regular players was tight, interesting, philosophical, and a nice comparison to the sad flashbacks to Harold’s father. It was the right line of sadness, while still having some uplifting moments. The humor interjected in between the crisis moments (“Brood?”) was fun, and a reminder of how much the team means to one another. These humor moments are needed to bring some levity to what would otherwise be some bloated philosophy within dire situations.

    Interjected into this was Root and Control. It is well known that I really don’t like this character, so take this with a grain of salt. These scenes felt like they were in another TV show entirely. Zero humor, just darkness, and a bit of a mwahahahaha about Root that grates on the nerves and gets old. YES, she’s the interface. YES, she believes the Machine is a God. I GET IT, SHOW. I didn’t learn anything new out of her scenes. Literally nothing. And I want her smugness to get knocked down a peg or two at this point. She feels like she’s extraneous to the rest of the cast, and I just want her scenes to be over. She just makes me miss Carter so, so badly.

    The heart of this show is indeed that: the heart. The relationships between the main players as they try to find answers about this technological entity/God/being/whatever it is. I’m tired of Root lording over all of that. I know she’s a series regular now, so at this point I’m reduced to hoping Shaw smacks her upside the head and gives her a new personality. (And Amy Acker, it would help if you just differentiated your voice from the same grating tone every single dingle week on this show.)

    I’ve grown to heart Shaw by the way. I loved Sarah Shahi in Life and I love her in this. She’s not the normal bombshell that appears in shows like these which I heart so much. I’m thankful she’s there, because without that, I don’t know if I could have continued watching with Root making me want to claw my eyeballs out.

    Thanks for reading! (I had a rant coming for this episode).

  2. Jed Bartlet August 2, 2016 / 7:01 pm

    Think you could have written this, CJ…

    • Kay20 August 3, 2016 / 1:42 am

      She and I think alike on this one! 🙂

      • CJ Cregg August 21, 2016 / 9:43 pm

        *returns from summer hiatus to hi-five Kay*

        • Kay20 August 22, 2016 / 9:35 pm

          YEAH!!!

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