Will Hart / NBC

The Blacklist Joins A Harem

Liz infiltrates a group of female thieves known as The Harem. And not just to do shots like a bunch of suburban moms.

A group of ladies pull a heist on a random group of thugs, stealing their SUV, because there are diamonds hidden in the headrest. Red fills Liz in that $10 million in diamonds were stolen by a heist crew known as The Harem, our Blacklist-er of the week. The Harem is an elite group of female thieves who only steal from other criminals. Red claims The Harem's next heist will be of a list of Witness Protection names that has gone missing. Seems totally plausible that there's, like, a binder or whatever that compiles the names of people in Witness Protection. I'm sure that checks out.

Red admits that Liz will never catch The Harem in the act of stealing but has a plan that involves Liz infiltrating the group. So, Liz poses as a hotel staffer who has come to check the minibar in Margot the Harem leader's room. Margot totally buys that lame ploy, because she's a really smart criminal. Also, Liz easily finds the bag of diamonds in her suitcase and takes it. This is also the result of Margot being a really smart criminal.

There is some "tension" about whether or not The Harem will accept Liz into their midst. But a minute later she's inducted into The Harem. Thank goodness there was no actual drama! They do shots to celebrate. Slow-motion shots. It's only thirty percent more embarrassing to watch than it sounds. While drunk and off-screen, sadly, Liz gets a little too chatty with one of the other Harem-ettes, who gets suspicious of her motives as a result. Turns out, the suspicious Harem-ette, Emma, is former MI6 and currently in Red's pocket. So that's all cool. Cool enough for The Harem to go out partying again. Which, this time, rises to forty-five percent more embarrassing to watch than it was to write it just now. Liz ducks out to the bathroom where Margot corners her and tries to make out with her. You know, to prove her loyalty. They get interrupted by Emma, who is obviously Margot's main girlfriend in The Harem. Because OF COURSE they're not just a group of female thieves, OF COURSE there's also an abusive lesbian vibe. #Empowerment

The person who has the Witness Protection list is a famous hacker named Haldrich who's currently living in a high-tech high rise penthouse "fortress" in Hong Kong. Haldrich has a chip implanted in his hand that runs all the security for his penthouse. The chip also contains the Witness Protection list. But it's tied to his heart rate, so if there's no heartbeat for twenty seconds, the chip self-destructs. It's basically Speed meets Fantastic Voyage. The Harem will infiltrate a party at Haldrich's place and then steal the chip out of his hand, attaching it to a fake heartbeat. Like you do.

The plan goes sideways and Emma double-crosses everyone, stealing the list. What are the odds she takes it right to Red? Hundred percent? Higher? I'm close. Red finds her and offers her a chance to get out and start over, in exchange for the list. Red has so many lists now! Red gives the list to Liz, because Mr. Kaplan's sister is in Witness Protection and he feels like he needs to protect her, out of guilt over killing Mr. Kaplan.

So how Blacklist-y is this episode of The Blacklist anyway?

Blacklist-y Element Present?
Stupid government agents! Always ruining everything! Things didn't work out so well for that guy Ressler and Samar pressured to vouch for Liz so she could get into The Harem. Thanks for your service, guy! Sorry about the bullet in your chest!
Red is one step ahead of everyone at all times! Red already had a mole in The Harem. It would be great to discover that every member of The Harem was a mole. But sadly that's not the twist this week.
This Blacklist-er should totally be on Red's list! I don't know that I'd say "totally," but they feel List-worthy enough not to argue the point.
That's totally a thing people do! The leader of the Harem stabs the diamond-filled headrest with her big knife, spilling the diamonds out of the headrest and onto the seat. And then she lifts up a handful of them and lets them fall through her fingers back onto the seat. Don't worry. You couldn't possibly lose some of your diamonds that way.
Plot is immaterial! Does it serve the plot to make Margot a weird controlling lesbian? Not really. But it was on several of the writers' Dream Boards!
Red's hat symbolizes his cool mastery of his surroundings Is it possible I didn't see his hat at all this episode? Oh no, are they fighting?
Dialog by ClicheBot 3000 "She'll smell a lie on me a mile away," says the jewel thief. "We'll go over our story until we forget it's a lie," says Liz. "You're still going to have to prove yourself," he says.
Something deadly/dangerous is given a name equally suited to an improv theater or troupe Effective immediately, the ironically named all-male improv troupe The Harem will suspend their residency at the Westport Brewing Company's performance space, after repeated accusations of sexual harassment of the female staff.
We get one more crumb about Red's obsession with Liz Nope. But we do discover that Red has a relationship with Mi6, and his mole in the Harem is sort of a pre-Liz Liz.
7 / 9
Final Score
78%
The Blacklist
22%
Crossing Jordan fanfic circa 2004
Readers liked this episode
What did you think?