The Blacklist – The Architect (No. 107)
By: MaryBeth McMahon
Lonnie Perkins (Michael Markiewicz), a prison inmate in Greenville, Virginia enjoys his final meal on death row. He opens a Bible left behind by a priest and inside he finds a map of the correctional facility. Meanwhile, a transport carrying an unidentified weapon is shot at and the guards on board are killed.
Reddington (James Spader) interrogates Isabella Stone (Melora Hardin). He warns her that the cold is typically a person’s fear when being kept inside a freezer; he corrects that statement and tells her that people need to fear the supply of oxygen. He threatens that “she will suffocate long before” she freezes to death. He doesn’t get much out of her and receives a volatile phone call from Harold (Harry Lennix) who wants Red to return Isabella Stone into his custody. For the troubles Red puts him through, Harold demands the name of a blacklister. Red supplies and the name given is “The Architect.”
The Architect is able to plan and execute “the perfect crime” and is a seemingly impossible man to go up against. Aram (Amir Arison) sends Ressler (Diego Klattenhoff) and Elizabeth (Megan Boone) on a journey to Philadelphia where they believe the Architect is located. In the car, Elizabeth receives a phone call from Tom (Ryan Eggold) who decides to visit the mother of the man who was accused of killing Tom as a child. He is seeking answers to figure out why someone wanted him dead. The call ends and Ressler and Elizabeth locate an SD chip with information that will lead them to the Architect.
The team decides to send Aram to the meeting point they found on the chip. He is fearful of going undercover while Samar (Mozhan Marnò) has faith in Aram and reminds him that he has gone undercover once before. However, he is insecure about how that turned out. Harold urges that he is their only hope, considering Aram has the computer skills for this job.
We find out that the Architect (Brent Spiner) was behind the theft of the unidentified weapon. He and his crew test the weapon, a large gun that shoots explosives, and take down a large silo. He clearly has plans for this dangerous tool.
Reddington continues to question Stone and strikes an emotional chord when they talk about her husband. He informs her that her husband has since re-married and his location will not be revealed to her. Stone tells Reddington about a package she received with information about Red’s operation and can find what he needs inside her apartment.
Aram is picked up at the suspicious meeting point and is taken away in a van. Samar and the crew lose contact with Aram after connection to his radio/mic is lost.
Tom pays a visit to Lucy Game (Lois Smith), the mother of the man accused of killing Tom as a child. Tom pretends to be an advocate who believed her son went to jail for a crime he did not commit. She gives details about all of the horrific murders her son committed in their household. She says Richard, her son, never belonged in any place except prison and supported what happened to her deceased son.
While undercover, Aram does his best to keep his composure. He can barely keep his cool when he has a run-in with the woman we can technically call his ex-girlfriend: Elise (Annie Heise). Elise, the hacker hired by Alexander Kirk to take advantage of Aram in finding information on the FBI, is in the building and Aram confronts her. He engages in and wins a hacking competition taking place there, bringing unwanted attention his way. Gunfire echoes through the room and The Architect searches for the winner. Elise takes Aram out of the room, warns him that he will be killed if they find out he’s government and tells him that she’s working for the NSA. Impressed with Aram’s hacking speed, the Architect kills the contest host (Sathya Sridharan) for not knowing where Aram is.
Samara, Ressler, Elizabeth and Harold tirelessly try to locate Aram. Reddington does not have information to offer them on Aram’s whereabouts, but does tell Harold where he can find Stone. He informs Harold that he still does not have the name of the person who hired her, but now knows that this person shares the same bank as Red. Reddington chooses not to assist the team as he has his own things to worry about. He also tells them how foolish it was to send Aram, of all people, after The Architect.
Aram and Elise continue to remain hidden from The Architect. Aram works with Elise to take a radio from one of The Architect’s men. He escapes to the roof and earns himself just enough time to transmit his location to the FBI. The Architect’s men find Aram and deliver him back to the competition room. Bravely, Aram tells the man that he will not help him commit a crime, even with a gun pointed at his head. Ressler and Samar storm the room, but lose sight of Aram when The Architect steals him away and escapes the building.
Reddington meets with a man named David Levine (Brian Stokes Mitchell) who has the power to tell Red who the depositor was that sent Stone the money. Reddington is urgent and seemingly desperate in his “life and death” plea for help. David wants Reddington to leave his house because he is not willing to give him the confidential information and is also preoccupied with having his portrait painted. Out of character, Reddington skips his stories and smooth talk and proceeds to exit upon David’s order.
Elizabeth provides Tom with information that makes him realize Mrs. Game lied to him about Richard. He returns to the woman’s home and admits to being Christopher Hargrave. He pulls a gun on her and asks who paid her to take advantage of her son’s crime history and make it seem as though he murdered Tom as a child. She received one hundred thousand dollars and a script of things Richard had to say to make it seem as though he killed the boy. She hands it over to Tom.
Ressler tells Harold that the Architect has plans involving the Greenville Correctional Facility, home to Lonnie Perkins. Lonnie, a cop killer and president of the Arian Revolutionary Council, is scheduled for execution. They believe The Architect will try to break him out. While Ressler explains this to Harold, we see The Architect carrying out this plan using his new weapon. He begins by taking out one of the guard towers, which helps him coax the warden (Sal Rendino) into freeing Lonnie.
Aram signals his location to Harold using a device given to him by Elise. Ressler and Samar follow his S.O.S. and locate him and The Architect. Meanwhile, Lonnie walks right out of the locked-down prison and into a van that takes him away from the area. The Architect tries to escape in a vehicle, but Aram surprisingly stops him. Aram, desperate not to let The Architect escape and kill more people, grabs hold of the powerful gun and destroys the mans escape vehicle with him inside.
David is surprised to return home and find Red in his house. Dembe (Hisham Tawfiq) and Reddington convince David’s artist to paint a portrait of Red instead. Red threatens to kill David’s coveted artist if he doesn’t tell him the information they need. He agrees to look into the deposit.
Aram feels guilty for killing a man and preventing the FBI from interrogating him and getting information on his other clients and plans. Samar puts aside her distaste towards Janet (a/k/a Elise) and credits her for Aram’s rescue. Janet genuinely apologizes for her deceit and getting him to have unrequited feelings towards her.
Tom tells Elizabeth that Mrs. Game does not know who gave her the money, but the script is a start. The level of details in the script surprises him and Elizabeth urges him to tell his mother about it. He wants answers, but is skeptical of his mother’s ability to provide answers considering Reddington told him that his mother can’t be trusted.
Reddington pays a visit to Harold and tries to find common ground with him and offers support for him and his ailing daughter. Harold accuses Reddington of being selfish and incapable of paying attention to the needs of others. After Harold hastily exits his office, Reddington receives a phone call from David. He informs Reddington that the funds came straight out of one of Reddington’s accounts; he has been compromised.