This character, of course, is none other than the the titular Susan Hargrave (Famke Janssen). A smooth, darkly-beautiful operater, Hargrave is in the middle of reassuring an apprehensive client when a message is violently delivered to several of her employees: Raymond Reddington (James Spader) wants a meeting with her. The subject of the meeting is, as you may have guessed, the killing of Elizabeth Keen (Megan Boone).
Believing Hargrave to be responsible for the attempted kidnapping and subsequent death of Liz, the task force coordinates with Red as he pursues the suspected perpetrator. It goes without saying that this isn’t easy: Aram’s (Amir Arison) attempt to remotely seize one of her minion’s computer files (Sarah Hunt) in a coffee shop fails, forcing a conflicted Tom Keen (Ryan Eggold) to feign interest in her long enough to retrieve them himself. He accomplishes this with ease, a little too much ease in fact, as Aram disapprovingly observes and Tom guiltily admits. The whole sequence is handled exceptionally well, with an appropriate amount of tension developed as Tom switches from heart-broken widow and stealthy hacker once his mark exits the room and leaves her laptop ripe for the taking. The conflicting emotions he experiences – natural attraction to the woman he is trying to steal from and the residual loyalty he feels towards Liz – are made palpable to audiences, and the payoff feels worth it once the deed is done and Aram confronts him about his emotions. Despite Aram’s and his own misgivings about the matter, the information Tom obtains serves the FBI well as they put the pieces together regarding Hargrave.
Things seem to go their way when she agrees to Red’s request for a meeting, although the task force discovers that Hargrave plans to have him killed and desperately tries to warn him. They are unable to reach him, but Red quickly puts two and two together and turns the tables on Hargrave and her men. She fesses up to ordering the abduction of Liz, but is adamant that she didn’t try to kill her. Red believes her, but is not willing to completely let her off the hook: keeping his gun trained on her, he demands that she help him in his search for Liz’s killer. Who exactly that is will hopefully be answered in the next installment of The Blacklist.
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