Recap: Red Gets Burned in ‘The Blacklist’ Season 8 Episode 7 “Chemical Mary”

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If you missed last week’s recap, check it out here.

A team of research doctors are showing a woman and her assistant their latest revelation in a new chemical agent. They test the chemical on a pig in the lab and it succumbs to the effects of the agent (no pigs were harmed in the making of this episode). The woman tells her assistant to call their buyer in Durres.

At Red’s restaurant, Dembe and Red are sitting down for breakfast and they quickly discuss Elizabeth. Dembe says that Red understands her. Red states, “Well, I’m not her father. Maybe if I were, I’d want to understand her even better. Perhaps she wouldn’t be so determined to kill me.”

Suddenly, a knock is heard at the door, and it’s Cooper. He’s there for a case. Dembe informs Cooper that Elizabeth hired an interpreter to contract a bounty hunter. Red thought the bounty hunter was hired to kill him, but instead, Liz hired the bounty hunter to find someone who brokers chemical weapons, Mary Bremmer or “Chemical Mary.” The hunter was unable to locate Mary, but he gave Elizabeth a dossier that Dembe was able to receive a copy of. Cooper is baffled as to why Elizabeth would go to such great lengths, but Red tells him it’s for the same reason she got “The Freelancer” (Alban Veseli) out of prison, and wants to work with “Chemical Mary”: to break and kill Reddington. Reddington tells Cooper that he is going to meet with Scooter Rovenpor. He also states that Veseli has acquired identity paperwork, passports, and he’s gone back to work, as we see Veseli “working” on an airplane. Dembe hands Cooper the dossier for Mary Bremmer as Veseli gets a call from Liz as he puts a thumb drive into the plane’s system. Veseli tells Liz, “But this is it, Agent Keen. Once your target is eliminated, you and I are even.”

At the Post Office, Park is looking at an obituary of Melissa and has flashbacks to her conversation with Reddington about never asking for his help. Aram approaches Park to tell her that they have a case, as he sees Melissa’s obituary. He tells Park he’s sorry and asks if there are any suspects, as Park flashes back to her altercation with Dieterle. She tells Aram that the suspect disappeared, which prompts him to suggest Reddington’s help. Park has a flashback again to Reddington arriving on the scene to help her with Dieterle, as Aram states that if she did ask for Red’s help, she would be in his debt. Park continues to relive her conversation with Reddington and how he may ask for her assistance down the road.

Cooper and Aram help brief Ressler and Park about “Chemical Mary” and about her involvement in monetizing and supplying chemical weapons. In 2013, Bremmer was last seen in the Idlib Province when NATO incepted her convey and her vehicle was turned over, but she escaped and hasn’t been seen since. The only other person to survive was Ismael Aknoz, who was a part of her security detail. Aknoz is currently serving time in Ankara in Turkey. Ressler and Park travel to Turkey to talk to Aknoz, but he’s not willing to help.

Reddington is in Scooter’s office as Scooter walks in, with Dembe right behind him. Scooter is appropriately weary about possible death, but Red tells Scooter he wants his money back that Elizabeth stole from him. Reddington wants Scooter to call Alban Veseli to tell him that his life is in danger and set up a meeting.

Ressler and Park come back from Turkey to say that Aknoz was a dead end, but Aram thinks he revealed more than they thought. After looking at the turned over vehicle, he thinks that there was an incendiary in the IED, which would’ve caused Mary to have significant burns needed medical attention.

The team determines Mary must’ve gone under the radar to receive aid, which Ressler hilariously says, “Dirtbag doctors without borders. Sounds like a job for Reddington.”

Cooper has Ressler and Park reach out to Red to see if he has a contact in the area. Aram tells Cooper that he got the flashdrive back from his friend at the NSA and Cooper asks if he cracked it. Amusingly, Aram says, “Please, He’s not– He’s not that much smarter than me. I mean, sure he knows pi out two more places, but should one quinquadragintillion really determine who has to buy the hot wings on bridge night? I don’t think so.” He continues that his friend was able to use a USB traffic sniffer to discover a signature of a known hacker named “Rakitin.”

Reddington and Dembe pay a visit to a Dr. Grundig, who has a questionable past, and asks him if he knows a doctor who may have provided Mary Bremmer with medical aid for severe burns. Meanwhile, Mary is meeting with a potential buyer who requests a demonstration of the product. She asks if the man has a volunteer to get her briefcase from her trunk, and he selects one of his men to assist. Only a brief moment after he takes her keys, he collapses.

Aram tells the team that thanks to Reddington, they got the name of the doctor who treated Mary Bremmer and were able to access his medical records by working with Turkish Intelligence. Running Mary’s more recent photo through Interpol turned up some new aliases, one of which being Madeleine Toussaint, used recently in Paris. Cooper says tells the team to contact Interpol and get a Red Notice for Bremmer’s arrest on their charges, while getting a team to Paris. Aram immediately volunteers, but Cooper says he’s headed to Capitol Hill to discuss “Rakitin” so he needs Aram to work on the passcode on the thumb drive, so Ressler and Park head to Paris (poor Aram just wanted some croissants).

Cooper meets with a Congressman who chairs the House Intel Committee. At first, the Congressman tries to brush off Cooper and the idea of “Rakitin” but then confesses he isn’t sure about Cooper’s motives. The Congressman reveals that three weeks ago, a hard drive on his committee’s computer was hacked and his top staffer disappeared. He’s concerned that Cooper might be there to get the scoop on what intel he was about “Rakitin.” Cooper gives a card to the Congressman that has a number on it and tells the Congressman to make a call and ask about him to ease the Congressman’s mind.

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Reddington and Dembe meet with a man named Rogelio, who tracked down Alban Veseli and provided his wherabouts to Reddington. Next, Dembe and Red turn up at the “youth hostel” (as Red calls it) and look for Veseli. They find his room, but no Veseli. Suddenly, Veseli comes out of the shower in a towel and sees Reddington and Dembe lurking. He tries to make a quick run for it but Red tells Veseli, “Running in a towel never ends well.”

Back at Capitol Hill, Cooper and the Congressman meet again, once the Congressman got the all clear from Cynthia Panabaker about Cooper. The two talk about what intel the Congressman and his committee have gathered about Rakitin, and it isn’t much. Although they do know that Rakitin is getting intel on the identities of CIA assets, as well as other confidential information. The Congressman tells Cooper his theory: Rakitin is providing this intel to N-13. Cooper reveals that he recently came into possession of a thumb drive that he believes Rakitin was going to deliver to N-13, and all their sources believe it was intended for someone on the FBI’s Most Wanted list.

Reddington is interrogating Alban in his dorm-like room, as Dembe takes a look around. Red says that he is surprised Alban took the job but believes it’s because Alban blames him for going to prison. Red tells him that now because of Elizabeth Keen, he is out. Red proceeds to say that Alban agreed to do a job for Keen due to his resentment, and their motives align in wanting Red dead. Raymond wants to know where Keen is, but Alban maintains he doesn’t know. Dembe finds a plastic bag that contains a plane ticket from Paris. Alban says he was setting up the job, but Red is confused on how Alban planned to kill him. Newsflash: the contract isn’t on Reddington.

Ressler and Park are in Paris at Madeleine Toussaint’s residence with some local police to arrest Madeleine/Mary. Her assistant answers the door and tells them that Madeleine/Mary is out of the country. The police, Park, and Ressler come inside to look around and ask some questions, but the assistant says she’ll get her phone out of her purse to call Madeleine/Mary. Instead, she pulls a gun and shoots the local police, before being gunned down by Park and Ressler. Concurrently, Reddington calls Cooper to tell him that Veseli confirmed Elizabeth was the one to help release him from jail, but his contract was to kill Mary Bremmer (Remember: Veseli disguises kills as mass tragedies, so he’s targeting Mary’s plane). Cooper says Ressler’s at her residence in Paris, and that she’s flying back from Albania today, as we see Mary at the airport.

Cooper and Aram are back at the Post Office as Ressler and Park are headed to the airport where Mary’s plane is scheduled to land in Paris. Aram tells Cooper that Bremmer was on the boarded-passenger manifest, as Cooper orders Park and Ressler to prepare for the worst. Aram gets ahold of air traffic control and Cooper tells a man named Stephan that there’s a credible threat to one of their planes. Stephan gets ahold of the pilots of the plane in question, but they state that they are operating normally. Aram tells Cooper that Veseli was shown on security footage entering the plane, and this prompts Aram to remember how Veseli made a passenger train crash by disguising it’s speed, so Stephan instructs the pilots to look for any tampering of controls. One of the pilots finds a thumb drive in the Data Loader, and it’s masking the status of the aircraft to the Tower, so Aram directs Stephan to tell the pilots to take out the drive! The pilot takes out the thumb drive, as the air traffic control center gets accurate data from the plane saying they are too low and are about to crash into another plane! Thankfully, the pilot quickly takes a right turn, safely out of it’s imminent collision route. Ressler and Park are waiting for de-boarding of the plane, but no Mary. The pilot is the last to come off, so Mary was never on the flight.

Cooper shows Reddington the video of Mary being abducted at the airport, as well video of someone (presumably Keen), putting Mary’s ticket into an unsuspecting passenger’s purse, making Bremmer’s name appear on the manifest. The two share a drink as they discuss Elizabeth’s motives. Cooper tells Red that they tore apart Bremmer’s house in Paris and found a number of associates, who we see arrested. Red leaves Alban Veseli’s location as a parting gift to Cooper. Next, we see Ressler and Park, along with SWAT, bust into Veseli’s room to find him tied up and being watched by a guitar-playing man. We also see Mary being held in a guarded room, demanding to speak to “the woman.”

NBC/Sony Pictures Television

Red and Dembe meet with Rogelio and a maid, Angela, to ask how she got the intel on Veseli. She says it was a woman, and as Keen’s picture is displayed by Dembe, Angela says Liz knew she was looking for Veseli. Dembe and Reddington recap Liz’s elaborate plan, as Red tells Dembe they need to pay their friend in Moscow a visit.

NBC/Sony Pictures Television

Aram comes into Cooper’s office to tell him that he’s discovered a way to crack the passcode. He believes the passcode is biometric and hands Cooper a device that can help. As Red meets with Sikorsky in Moscow, Cooper eyes Reddington’s cup with his fingerprint on it. He asks Red about the drive, but Red’s still searching. Cooper lifts the fingerprint off the cup, and places it on the device. Suddenly, the drive unlocks. Sikorksy says that Elizabeth Keen may be untouchable, but Harold Cooper is not. If Cooper gets into the drive, Red must eliminate him.

Thanks for reading!

Check out the promo for next week’s episode below!

The Blacklist airs Fridays at 8 p.m. EST, only on NBC.

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By Kailey
Kailey has been a writer for Nerds and Beyond since 2018. She received her bachelors degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders in May of 2020. Some of her favorite TV shows are The Blacklist, Supernatural, and Prodigal Son, to name a few. She also loves all things Disney! You can check her out on social media @kaileygross.
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