Although Blindspot as a show is about as realistic as the possibility of me suddenly finding out I’m the secret heir to the throne of a small European monarchy (yes, this is the plot of both the romance novel I’m currently reading and The Princess Diaries), I suppose we need to be realistic in our expectations of it and accept that few, if any, episodes are ever going to measure up to last week’s Quantico Affair. So although a fair chunk of this week’s is set in Patterson’s lab, it’s not the same. Having said that, I do enjoy a mystery contagion / lockdown episode and this was a good, solid, eminently watchable one, made significantly better by my beloved PatDotCom, as usual. Rich even gets a bit of character development, bless him; not only is he very sweet to both poor doomed Laurel and heartsick Reade, but he even contracts a Secret Pain which, ordinarily, would make me a bit wary – the last thing Blindspot needs is more angst – but the wonderful Ennis Esmer brings the lightest, rightest touch to it, as ever, so if it means more screen time for him, bring it on.
Outside the lab meanwhile, Allie’s back and kind and supportive of Kurt in a refreshingly non-tv-ex-like kind of way (unless you’re watching 911 which also has a kind, supportive ex/ new love set-up l really like – if all this niceness and generosity is going to be the new normal for tv exes, l’m all for it). NotJane is running her own secret op, causing a stampede and fighting with Imaginary Roman (Fauxman?) because even death cannot stop that guy from being a complete pain in the everything. And Zapata has competition for Madeleine’s affections in the form of the singularly, startlingly charmless Claudia, who seems unlikely to hang about for long, but then effing Roman’s still here, so what do I know? Anyway, I’m losing patience with whatever the hell Zapata thinks she’s up to, and after this week’s ending, I would think Reade is too. We’ll see what next week brings.
This utter delight of an episode begins with a neat little sidestep away from last week’s cliffhanger: we know the Remy/ Kurt confrontation is coming eventually, but not today. Today’s all about Patterson, Rich and the Quantico recruits back at the office, and it is just glorious.
Patterson’s love life shenanigans. Rich’s super-speedy briefings. “Little Face-timesy” videos. Team Tat covered in paint and feathers (“He also had chickens.”) – if there was any part of “The Quantico Affair” that wasn’t ace, I don’t remember it. And at the centre of it all, the unpopcult dream team of PatDotcom (“Ride or die”, you guys!) and a riotously funny, joyously entertaining script delivered with so much fun and flair it made my month. “Eh, they just wanna kick down doors, they don’t care about the stuff we do in here”- au contraire, Rich, mon frère. I love Ennis Esmer. I love Ashley Johnson. And I absolutely loved this. Magnificent.
No no no no no no no no no no NO.
For a show so unabashedly, joyously silly, Blindspot has proved surprisingly willing to sidestep certain storytelling cliches – (while wholeheartedly embracing others, of course). So while it’s not exactly a shock, it’s still something of a disappointment that this first ep back after the hiatus has Jane doing exactly what you’d expect a character in a tv show to do: keeping what happened to her and what she found out in ep 10 a secret from Kurt et al, and going along with Tree Tat Man’s Tree Tat Plan. Aw, JANE. Things were going so well(er)! And now you’ve stood Kurt up and he’s going to be so hurt (up) and so growly and you’re going to push him away and what are you trying to do to me, huh?
Just as well the rest of the episode was such great fun or I might be in something of a mood. Team Tat going to a deserted – but not! – Turkish island! Finding a lost – but not! – passenger plane hidden there! Rescuing its horde of presumed dead – but not! – passengers! And foiling a mad plot to use the plane to….. oh, who even cares? Even by Blindspot standards, this was knowingly, winningly insane and completely fabulous with it.
We had all the excited running and shooting you could ask for: FBI, passengers, everybody taking a turn. We had loads of tortured, frustrated romance and meaningful looks: “If something happened to you…. Make it back.” (SQUEE) We had plenty of knowing, wink-at-the-audience humour: thumbs-up in particular to the sensitive psychologist’s “the last time we spoke, we discussed setting clearer boundaries with Agent Weller – how’s that been going?” (HEE) And we had Patterson being the greatest character on network television. (OMG) That stupid boyfriend of hers was clearly just holding her back from realising her full potential. That sequence where she saved the WORLD by doing sums “in (her) head, where math is done” and slapped down the slimy OPR guy in the process deserves all the fist-bumps and hi-fives in the world. I love Patterson. I love people landing planes in crazy ways. I LOVE BLINDSPOT.