The Osterman Umbrella Company, this week’s Blacklister, is a group of relentless assassins-for-hire. Its specialism is killing burned agents on behalf of their former employers: so if the CIA, or MI5, or whoever, has an ex-operative they want rid of because he knows too much, they outsource the wet work to Osterman. Red has word that the next hit is on American soil. Well, Cooper doesn’t like that – the CIA can do what it likes abroad, but a killing in the USA is his business – and he reaches out to an old CIA friend to try to get details by asking nicely. Red, meantime, takes a more direct route, and obtains a name. And while that’s going on, Aram has taken Samar on a romantic getaway to a luxury lodge with no phone reception or internet connection.
I’m ashamed to say that I didn’t spot what was going on until the last possible moment: Samar, of course, has just left the Mossad; her illness, which Aram told Levi about last week, means that she won’t always be able to keep secrets; and the Mossad has hired Osterman to kill Samar. She manages to escape, just about, and plans to go away in order to be safe: Aram insists on going with her, but we kinda sorta know that he’s not going to be able to, even as she assures him that they can go abroad and be together forever.
What it all adds up to is, firstly, a fitting farewell to Mozhan Marnò, who is leaving at her own request as far as one can see; she’ll be missed, but I suppose if the grass isn’t greener she can always return. Secondly – and I know I’m repeating myself – this is yet another ridiculously good episode. Not just because of the action and plotting, but because of the way that the history of the show informs the drama: Samar’s apparently pointless exit interview last week very much had a point, for example; and Aram’s mancrush on/terror of Red has always been a bit of a Blacklist running joke, right up to the point where it suddenly wasn’t, as Aram finds out about the part Red played in the episode’s denouement.