Person of Interest s5 ep 7

Person of Interest is still doing its very best to keep its structure intact even as it reaches the end of its run. So there’s a Number, and this week it belongs to mild-mannered talk radio host Max Greene (30 Rock’s Scott Adsit), who has a show called Mysterious Transmissions which covers conspiracy theories, the paranormal, and the like. Max is “more paranoid than we are”, muses Finch. Root turns up as his producer, having already cycled through this week’s helping of fan service: cop, dancer, “colonial re-enactor”. I hope Amy Acker is having as much fun as she seems to be.

Samaritan is using the radio station’s network to broadcast to its operatives using a code which sounds like static to listeners. Root tries to use this network to get a message out to Shaw; meantime, Max is in danger, as he has become aware that there’s a pattern to the static. The conclusion of Max’s story will once again emphasise that the Machine ultimately allows for the possibility of free will, even at the expense of the safety of the individual, in a way that Samaritan does not.

Shaw, meantime, is on another Samaritan-led field trip, during which she’s prompted to kill a scientist working on bringing the thylacine back to life (if, that is, it needs to be…), because Samaritan has seen that the consequences would be catastrophic. Everyone talks so much about this being another simulation that it’s reasonably obvious that it’s not; Shaw decides that she’d sooner be dead, but just as she’s about to commit suicide Root’s message gets through to her.

And poor Fusco, who just about survived last week’s tunnel demolition, is getting pissed off with Finch and Reese keeping things from him; it’s ostensibly for his own protection, but that doesn’t really seem to be working, does it? So he hands back his Team Machine phone and announces that he’s out. It’s a bit like the cop slamming his badge down on the boss’s table. It’s another brilliantly cerebral yet entertaining episode. There’s really nothing quite like this show.

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