The Blacklist takes no time to jump into the action with this first episode. The first five minutes starts with a bank robbery, as mentioned in an article before. The robbery is stopped by Raymond Reddington, who grants the robbers an escape, but before he leaves he grabs a safety deposit box. They escape through a tunnel, and a truck is waiting for their departure. The robbers begin shooting at the cops at the realization they are being followed by the police and Reddington releases them from the back of the truck to be arrested.
We then find Elizabeth Keen and her newly found sister Jennifer as they discover that their father is Raymond Reddington but not the Raymond we have seen on screen. Elizabeth decides that they need to get to the bottom of what happened to their real father and begins with bringing a box out of storage from the night she was involved in a house fire when she was four years old that may have clues as to what happened. Suddenly Keen’s phone rings and it’s Raymond with a case for her. She answers and agrees to meet. Jennifer asks how Keen can keep up the game, and she replies that “for 5 years I’ve performed at the feet of the master, now it’s my turn to outperform him.”
Raymond and Dembe (his protector and friend) are doing yoga in the park when Elizabeth meets up with them and is given a case. Dr. Hans Koehler is a plastic surgeon that criminals call to give them a new case. Elizabeth briefs the Task Force on his cases and the team decides to begin their investigation. Harold Cooper, the director of the Task Force, pulls Keen aside to make sure that she is protecting herself and willing to pay the price after everything Raymond has put her through and that is causing tension between the Task Force.
Agent Samar Navabi is getting a checkup to determine if she is able to return to work after nearly dying last season; she is cleared to go back to work. Next, Keen and Agent Donald Ressler are at a bakery where the FBI has been searching for any signs of a procedure done by Koehler. They do find trace blood evidence from a drain of a former patient named Basil Vladakis.
The scene changes to Koehler and his patient as his team performs another facial change on this criminal. We then find Raymond and Dembe at a restaurant and bar where a horse race is being shown and they find Vladakis, where Raymond demands money that he is owed and asks Basil to contact the doctor. Meanwhile, Jennifer and Elizabeth meet in a car, and Elizabeth suspects the case is too suspicious and Reddington might want to change his face. Jennifer reveals that she found information about the house fire, and they decide to take a road trip the to house in near Dover, Delaware.
Soon, the contact, a nurse, shows up and says that Koehler is in France. Raymond suspects that something is wrong and thinks that Koehler is actually in trouble and needs saving. Reddington contacts Agent Aram Mojtabai to have him trace the phone number. We see Koehler again with his most recent patient and are shown that Koehler and his team are indeed being held against their will.
Elizabeth and Jennifer arrive at the house and Keen remembers some moments about that night, and when she shot their father. She explains that she was four years old and her parents were fighting. Elizabeth picked up the gun and shot him. She does not remember much as Reddington had someone erase her memories to “protect her.” Suddenly, a stranger shows up that happens to be the sheriff who worked the case the night of the fire. They said they have not seen him in 30 years and want to know who was there that night. They request any hospital records from that night for hope they might find burn victims or any other information. Keen receives a call from Aram where he says he has found a location for Koehler, but already gave Reddington the location.
Dr. Koehler is shown next, pleading with his patient to let him and his team go now that they have done everything he has asked. The patient agrees and unchains his prisoners. Agent Keen, Ressler, and Navabi show up to the building as Dembe and Raymond are already inside. Koehler and his team are about to leave when the patient decides there is one more thing to be done, and suddenly shoots everyone, including Koehler. Before the patient can give the final kill shot, Raymond and Dembe come through the door, guns blazing. Keen and her team rush in to try and help where they can. Dembe quickly congratulates Navabi on her engagement to Aram, since she has been out of work. The team finds the plastic surgeon team dead and Keen finds Raymond over Koehler, asking him “Where is it?” We just see his mouth moving and do not hear a reply from Koehler as he dies.
— The Blacklist (@NBCBlacklist) January 4, 2019
Keen confronts Reddington and says that she thought he was done with “alternate agendas.” He says he does not have alternate agendas, just secrets. Keen then asks about what Koehler whispered right before he died, yet Reddington avoids the question. He says that if she wants to know what Koehler said, and to know all of his secrets, that she would have to do the same. Raymond then says that “studies show that at any given moment, the average a person is keeping 13 secrets.” Navabi and Ressler catch up with Keen, Raymond, and Dembe where Raymond reveals that Hans Koehler was actually a friend, and that he failed to save him. They discover that the most recent patient is The Corsican, a.k.a Bastien Moreau.
After escaping the shootout, we see Moreau and his associates at the airport, where the associates are shot and killed-no surprise there. He heads inside in a wheelchair. The Task Force tries to decide who Bastien’s next target is, as he is “one of the world’s most deadly assassin.” The Task Force heads to the airport and calls for it to be locked down and all passengers held. The worker helping Bastien was attacked in the bathroom and stripped of his clothes. Now posing as an airport employee, Moreau finds a car and, unfortunately, escapes.
Raymond visits the wife of Koehler and gives his sympathies for her loss. He exclaims that he is there for the ‘Picasso.’ He tells the wife that her husband worked on criminals, including Raymond! When inside, we see a dog that has been stuffed, and in his collar is a USB drive that Koehler had about all of his patients. Raymond gives the wife a way to change her name as a way to protect her. Hans was Raymond’s friend, and he is determined to make sure his friend’s wife is taken care of.
Elizabeth and the Task Force reconvene as they discover that Bastien escaped. Agent Cooper addresses Elizabeth and asks her again if she is willing to pay the price for the relationship with Reddington. She replies that she wants to know “how the Reddington they could trust, became the Reddington they couldn’t.” Ending the episode, we see Keen and Raymond on a park bench where Raymond says that he meant what he said about their symbiotic relationship and hands her the USB drive with one missing file, his.
— The Blacklist (@NBCBlacklist) January 4, 2019
What will happen tomorrow for the second episode in this two-part season premiere? Here is the trailer:
The next episode of The Blacklist airs tomorrow, January 4th at 9pm EST on NBC.