“Person of Interest”: Bad Code Review

Last week I had a lot of open-ended questions about the season.  Even though it was the premiere, I was curious how long Reese and Finch would stay apart.  By the episode’s end, the two main things I wanted to happen (the other involving Root) did happen, so I can’t complain too much about “Bad Code.”  “Person of Interest,” gave us some great backstory on The Machine while supplanting us in Texas (with plenty of stereotypes) for almost the entire episode.  Oh and guess what?  There was no number this week, that’s surely different.

Right away, we hear a phone call about a missing person named Hannah (who turns out to be fully named Hannah Frey), which I assumed was our new number.  But no, this Hannah phone call was the basis of Carter and Reese’s exploration to Texas.  Fusco, on the other hand, got to stay in NYC and keep his eyes on HR.

When in Texas, Reese does the bulk of the detective work – mostly because Carter is stonewalled – which slowly exposes what happened to the 14-year-old Hannah.  They immediately try to prove she is actually Root, which really seemed too obvious.

Meanwhile, Finch continued to be restrained and slowly interrogated by Root.  He’s got all the information about The Machine, but he’s not one to give up details.  At the end of the last episode, Root tricked and bound an investor who she believes has information about The Machine.  In an elaborate ploy (something Root has proven to be good at), she lets herself be overtaken just to prove to Finch that she’s keeping him alive.  She tries to use this tactic as a way to get information out of Finch…who still isn’t buying it.

By looking through the paper trail, Carter and Reese realize that Trent, Barbara’s (the last person to see her alive) husband, is most likely responsible for Hannah’s disappearance.  When he himself dies, they again figure it has to do with Root’s revenge.

It turns out, though, that Carter and Reese got the details just a bit off because Hannah actually did die – she was buried in Trent’s (and Barbara’s) backyard.  Root is actually a 12-year-old blonde girl named Sam, who nobody believed when Hannah originally disappeared.  After the incident, she skipped town, and has been vowing for revenge ever since.

Again, Reese shows off his detective skills and is able to close in on Root’s location, but she’s still a step ahead of him, skipping town just in time.  Of course, Finch keenly leaves a coded message, leading him to a train station.  In the crowded train station, Reese shows up just in time to save Finch, but Root again escapes.

I was hoping that Root was around for awhile.  Last year, Elias seemed like a pretty formidable villain, so I was hoping Root would step into this role.  I didn’t particularly like how Elias went down, so I was hoping the same wouldn’t happen for Root.  It appears, since she escaped, we’ll be seeing her sporadically throughout the season.  Also, it was nice that Reese and Finch are back together.  They’ll likely stay teamed up and return to Season 1 fashion for the next few episodes, but how has this ordeal changed Finch’s mind about The Machine’s power?  It seems think now would be a good time to destroy the thing altogether.  Reese will advocate for protecting it, but I can see the show going this route for awhile…or at least until Root resurfaces.

“Bad Code” served as a concluding episode for last year’s cliffhanger.  While there are still loose ends, even outside of Root still being alive, the show sort of has a fresh start now.  Next episode will be the first time all four major players (Reese, Finch, Carter, and Fusco) can all work together while knowing everything.  This team is as powerful as ever, but as cognisant as ever, too.

Rating: B+

Notables

*The ending this week wasn’t quite as “cliffhanger”-y as normal, but I liked how Root showed she had an emotional side.  Even though Reese legitimately doesn’t want to see her again, I think he appreciates the support because who else is thanking him?

*The military dog (Bear) was back again…but I didn’t really care at all.

*I mentioned it above, but why does every TV show have to portray Texas the same way?  If I was from Texas, I’d surely be pissed.

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