Person of Interest s4 ep 7; s4 ep 8

Channel 5’s imaginative treatment of Person of Interest has meant four episodes in a week, so I’m a little behind schedule here. We do our best, my dears, we do our best. Anyway, in ‘Honor Among Thieves’ the Number is Tomas Koroa, an international wine dealer – is that a thing, and if so where do you apply? – who has a double life as someone who isn’t an international wine dealer. To be exact, he’s an international jewel thief, which if you think about it is all quite glamorous. And he’s astonishingly good-looking as well, which Shaw spots from the off. Anyway, Tomas and his team have been hired for a job, so Shaw uses her cover as a getaway driver to become involved. Whether she has to do this during a conversation with Tomas in a wine bar, soundtracked by The xx, while the two of them undress each other with their eyes, is open to question.

As well as that, Finch and Root are investigating Jared Wilkins, a software engineer running a mysterious project named OTPS, into which Samaritan’s puppet Governor has funnelled $12 million. They manage to stop it, but on the face of it OTPS is, even if Samaritan-funded, remarkably harmless. “How much wrong”, wonders Finch, “are we willing to do in the name of right?”

More immediate problems for Tomas and Shaw, though: the safe they steal doesn’t hold any jewels; it’s something else entirely, and it’s a something else which suddenly makes Tomas “relevant”. Cue Samaritan, and two operatives given the task of recovering the McGuffin and killing anyone who knows about it. This inevitably means an additional risk of exposure for the Machine Gang; and the finale, in which Shaw is caught on camera, suggests that Samaritan has finally managed to get a foot in that particular door.

It’s all tremendous entertainment of course; and, by Person of Interest standards, it’s also remarkably sexy. The starting point is Shaw’s very evident interest in Tomas, and we get everything from Root’s earpiece-borne running commentary on Shaw’s barroom conversation with Tomas, through to (at least) two allusions to BDSM, with lots of double entendres, flirtiness, fun, and Root playing a “French Mary Poppins Barbie” (nanny with coquettish accent) in between. There’s even a delicious moment towards the end when it looks as if the fans might be getting the Shoot hookup that we (some of us at least) have been waiting for, but no luck. Still, Amy Acker and Sarah Shahi have a ridiculous amount of chemistry, and both play their scenes together with just the right amount of implied-raised-eyebrow.

‘Point of Origin’, by contrast, is one of the serious ones. The Number is Silva – didn’t catch her first name – a NYPD recruit being trained by Reese, as a weapons and tactics instructor. But she’s not actually a rookie: she’s an undercover cop from what NYPD Blue used to call the Rat Squad – Internal Affairs – trying to work out which of the actual new recruits is passing information to The Brotherhood. They, and Dominic, are back this week, with Dominic trying to get intel from inside the NYPD so that he can go after the one gang leader he hasn’t been able to kill or cow into submission: next week’s Number, Elias.

Silva and Reese make a good team, and it should be said that Adria Arjona is excellent as Silva; I haven’t looked for spoilers, but it does occur to me that were Shaw to be written out, temporarily or permanently, as a consequence of Sarah Shahi’s pregnancy, Arjona might well be the ideal replacement. Because it does look as if Samaritan’s noose is starting to tighten around Shaw; she’s been identified from the photo taken at the end of the previous episode, and the female Sam-operative has tracked her down. So with Dominic vs Elias and Blonde vs Shaw on next week’s fight card, there’s plenty to look forward to. This episode, of course, was fantastic, but you know that.

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4 thoughts on “Person of Interest s4 ep 7; s4 ep 8

  1. e March 24, 2016 / 10:50 pm

    I feel obliged not to leave a substantive comment because of how far ahead of you I am. Great recaps though. PoI is remarkable in how good it got once it was allowed to be something other than a normal procedural.

    • Jed Bartlet March 24, 2016 / 11:36 pm

      Thank you! And I agree, although even when it was a normal procedural I thought it was excellent.

  2. Tim March 25, 2016 / 12:46 am

    ‘Imaginative’. Heh.

    I’m impressed by the consistently high standard of this season so far. The Shoot relationship (most fitting portmanteau shipping name ever?) has been one of the biggest delights and the looming sense of doom in both the Team Samaritan/Team Machine and Elias/Brotherhood storylines gives the stories a real double-edged urgency. I love the way pretty much every episode so far has delicately balanced two concurrent stories-within-the-story. It makes Five’s decision to double-bag the episodes almost tolerable.

    • Jed Bartlet March 25, 2016 / 8:12 am

      I’ve also seen “Raw”, which has its attractions…

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