Saturday, January 19, 2019

Blindspot 4x10 Review: "The Big Reveal" (Good Me, Bad Me) [Contributor: Jen]

"The Big Reveal"
Original Airdate: January 18, 2019

After coming off such an incredibly strong episode last week, Blindspot's "The Big Reveal" is a big letdown.


Jane is officially Jane again, only now she's whole. She remembers everything from her life as Remi and even as Alice. This is fantastic news of course, but unfortunately she is still dying from Zip poisoning. Shepherd told Remi the last time she spoke to Roman, he said he was looking into someone named Kallisto.

Patterson and Rich get cracking! In Greek mythology Jupiter transformed Kallisto into a bear and, just before she was about to be killed, Zeus placed her into the heavens — thus forming the constellation Ursa Major. This constellation is part of the Big Dipper, and another name for the Big Dipper is The Plow. And that's the password to open Roman's final data cache. The mental gymnastics Blindspot uses to create these passwords and solve the tattoos will never make complete sense to me, but I've let that dream go.

The cache unveils the creator of Zip — Dr. Nora Lee Roga, who died two years ago. Dead end right? Nope, because Dr. Roga is played by Patricia Richardson (who was Jill Taylor on Home Improvement). Blindspot wouldn't cast Jill Taylor if she's playing a dead character. That's just fact.

Of course Nora Roga is alive. Zip began as a treatment for Alzheimer's and other neurological disorders, but when Nora discovered it was killing people, she demanded the project be terminated. Her employer, Christian Kearns, assured Nora all supplies were destroyed. Instead, Christian sold it to Sandstorm.

Kearns Pharmaceutical put a hit out on Nora and her partner after she found a document confirming the sale. Roman found Dr. Roga after her partner was killed, helped fake her own death and set her up with a lab so she could continue to find a cure for Zip. Roman was a seriously busy dude. The mind reels with all the travel, saving lives, murdering, hiding, buying lab supplies, mastering a double life to woo pretty girls, creating super complicated caches and puzzles to solve all while he's actively trying destroy his sister's life, while simultaneously trying to save it. I'm tired just thinking about it.

Of course, Dr. Roga has the cure for Zip because even if this is the last season, Blindspot isn't killing Jane. Nora had the cure for a while. It was ready to go; she was just waiting to hear from Roman... who was busy getting shot by his girlfriend and dying. Poor guy.

Nora's super secret hiding spot is blown by her son, who is understandably excited to hear his mother is alive, when he makes a phone call to his wife. Kearns had his phone tapped. If you are wondering how he brought a cell phone into the FBI AND MADE A PHONE CALL, then trust me you are not alone. How did the FBI not know his calls were being recorded?! See this is what happens when you start asking logical questions about Blindspot episodes.

Thus a great gun battle erupts and destroys the stem cells, which are the crucial ingredient to the Zip cure and extremely difficult to procure. Relax, kids. Jane still isn't dying. Team Blindspot will find the impossible to find stem cells in the nick of time.


Zapata, you got some splainin' to do! Tasha gets perp walked right through the FBI and for about five minutes I was genuinely interested in hearing her explanation for all her shady and nefarious activities during season four.

... Right until the part when Blindspot started using flashbacks to explain everything away.

I hate when they do this. The flashback is a serious writing crutch on Blindspot. It's pretty much an epidemic. The writers are constantly filling in the plot holes with never before seen scenes which magically give all the answers and erase any responsibility for a character's actions. I don't know why I was expecting different, but I was.

I'm not even going to get into all the scenes that explain how Zapata is really a good guy pretending to be a bad all along. It's just so... boring. I was way more interested in Zapata actually choosing the dark side. Tasha Zapata is one of those characters who will cross any line if she believes the ends justify the means. This whole deep cover with the CIA really eliminates any shades of grey. She was just following orders. Heck, she even tried to wiggle out of it a couple times. Tasha wanted to loop in her team, particularly Reade, but was instructed not to by Blindspot's forever fall guy, Keaton.

What is Reade even mad about now? Tasha lied to him. Okay, well she was doing her job. Get over it. It's a little difficult to listen to Reade defend the moral high ground. Keaton wanted someone on the inside to deal with whoever took Crawford's place. He made Tasha burn all her bridges so Madeline would buy her story. SHE. WAS. LITERALLY. FOLLOWING. ORDERS.

Don't get me wrong: I would much prefer rogue!Zapata to undercover!Zapata. Then at least it makes Reade's anger more clean cut and his forgiveness a little more complicated. But now? Eh. He'll fume for a few episodes, Tasha will do something heroic or almost die or something to that effect, Reade will realize he still loves her, and TA-DA! Happy ending.

I'm not unhappy about a Reade and Tasha happy ending. I was just hoping the road getting there was slightly more interesting. Jamming an episode full of five or six scenes which conveniently fix all the problems is just lazy though. Hard pass. Tasha's entire storyline feels like a waste of time.


Jane is feeling bad about being evil, particularly since Zapata was arrested for her nefarious activities while Jane got off scot-free. I mean... you aren't wrong, Jane! Kurt, however, explains all the hypocrisy away with, "Zapata chose her own path. You didn't."

Also true. The Jane side of her brain was benched while Remi wreaked havoc. Had the Jane side of her brain been active, like it is now, her conscience would have stopped the Remi side of her brain. Zapata doesn't have a split personality, which comes and goes because of a magic memory-erasing drug. Darn, Zip is handy at times.

I feel like "I was following orders" equates to "I became Remi again," and once the rest of the team gets the full story they will probably forgive Tasha just like Jane. At least Patterson, Rich, and Kurt will. Edgar is too busy moping over being a temporary one night stand.

However, Kurt's need to erase all of Remi's actions grates on me a little. Both Kurt and Patterson are adamant Jane is not Remi in "The Big Reveal." This is one of the few times I disagree with my faves. That was the entire point of "Check Your Ed." All of Jane's memories are back. She is as much Remi as she is Jane. The difference between then and now is Jane can make a fully informed choice with her free will. We all have a darker side to us, and Jane is no different. Hers is just magnified because she was raised by a terrorist. Remi isn't erased simply because Jane chooses to be good.

The only person who seems to understand this, and the struggle Jane is having with juggling all these returning memories, is Rich Dotcom: "You know, it's like you. I have certain things in my past that haunt me. I don't even have the 'good me, bad me' excuse to fall back on."

Rich acknowledges his past behavior, as much as Rich can, while also acknowledging he's been reformed with the help of the team. He even believes Remi could have been reformed if she'd stuck around long enough. I agree, but what is truly important in this exchange is Rich's willingness to acknowledge Remi as a part of Jane — a part who still exists to Jane more than ever before, because she can remember everything Remi said or did.

Unconditional love is not obstinately ignoring the less than pleasant aspects of our partner. Unconditional love is acknowledging the good and the bad. We don't have to accept the bad behavior. We can challenge our loved ones to be better, like the team has done for Rich, without being completely blind to their faults.

Kurt's blind spots with Jane change every season, but right now he's too focused on embracing all the good in Jane while willfully being blind to the bad. It's unfortunately because Kurt and Jane's love is more than simply all their positive aspects or all the good they've accomplished. They've had to claw their way back from a lot of bad, which includes choices each has made when supposedly being their best self.

Memory doesn't make us who we are; our free will does. Now that Jane has all her faculties back, she can focus on the one choice that separates good people and bad. It's why Rich's advice resonates so much with her. He's making the choice to be good every day just like Jane will — just like any of us do.

Stray Thoughts:

  • Remories. HAHAHA.
  • "Your fire is one of the things I love about you, but you need to control it." Kurt and Jane talking about what they love most in one another is like shipper catnip. We've been starved for so long.
  • Rich as the stenographer is hilarious.
  • "You can think whatever you want, but that was real." Did any of us really think Tasha didn't love Reade when she slept with him? No, but it was still nice to hear.
  • Rich yelling at Jane to get out of the van and "do some good" was really freaking awesome.
  • "It's easier to make good choices when you surround yourself with good people." This is true.
  • "You will never get close to me again." Sure, Jan.


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