The Blacklist
The Judge

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A+ | 54 USERS: A
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To Mr. Goodbar, With Love

So Rifkin was a bad guy who -- if anybody does -- deserved the death penalty, but because of this black-books aspect of the situation, nobody could ever know that. The beating was just expediency: Not around the law like it seems, but alongside it. Since he couldn't ever confess to what really happened, he needed to confess to something that didn't. Which means that Ruth's law doesn't come into play, and Cooper doesn't need to die.

Ruth: "I am crazy as all get out! How do you know which way I would go with this?"
Red: "Because you let Mark Hastings go. Even though it might come back on you, like it has, you kept yourself to the letter of your code. You wanted to be about justice, not revenge. That was a beautiful thing, and a true thing, and you can't diminish that by falling back on it now. Situational ethics are for people less strong than you and I."

Well, he's right, and everybody gets out in a slow-mo action of Ressler getting to do things and all the monster dickfaces in her kennels going free. The cutest part, though, is when they let Connelly out and Red's already gone, so Cooper gets to be smug about how Tom still doesn't know what the secret weapon really is. He was right there under your nose! Guess you have to make me Director of the FBI, then. You tool.

Which is funny and shows you how much Cooper thinks about the system and his place in it: He's not a blind rule-follower, although sometimes he can seem that way. But it also tells you an interesting thing about Cooper with Red, which is that while he's still interested in nailing Red for Diane Fowler -- who is the Rifkin in this scenario, if you think about it; a bad guy who died for the wrong reasons, which makes them right -- and chomping at the bit that the Bureau won't let him, and overall very ambivalent about the plea-bargainy situation at the heart of this show, he's still able to acknowledge that a Red is a very nice pet to have sometimes. Something Liz could have told him ages ago, not that either of them would ever admit it.

POST OFFICE

Liz: "Dude there were five prosecutors, a federal judge, two cops... Ten total in that Cracker Barrel! That's insane."
Cooper: "What are you handing me?"
Liz: "The rest of The Judge's pleas Frank was researching. Should we..."
Cooper: "-- Just give them to the DOJ, okay? Due diligence at least. Oh, and Keen. You know I feel shitty about beating that dude, right? So if you want to tell on me..."

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The Blacklist

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