Season two of Person of Interest ends with an action packed and revelatory episode that felt about half as long as it was and left the future of the show in a somewhat nebulous state. Not all was perfect, of course, as the breakneck pace of the episode left some plots feeling undeveloped.
The episode earns its title. In fact, while watching the scene where Reese and Shaw come across a hidden safe and are given the combination by the machine, I thought to myself, ‘it’s like they’re using God Mode’. Imagine my satisfaction when I went online afterwards to research the title and found out that it was indeed ‘God Mode’.
IDDQD 4 EVAH!
Okay, nerdgasm over. Back on track. My favorite points from the episode had to be Reese and Shaw’s continued partnership as they tracked Finch and Root, getting into all kinds of fun side-adventures along the way. One highlights was the opening sequence where the machine gives Reese and Shaw the directions of approaching attackers, allowing them to get the drop on them.
Another great scene has the machine send Reese to help a man about to be executed in a cargo container full of handy dandy weapons and a yellow Ferrari that Shaw takes a liking to. She throws Reese an assault shotgun and he asks, ‘What’s this for?”
Her reply: ‘To make you feel less inadequate while I drive this thing.’
Some of if was a bit silly, like Reese’s little drive by on a jilted man holding up his ex-girlfriend’s wedding party (while still in the bright yellow Ferrari, no less), but it was all fun.
My other favorite plot dealt with Finch in a flashback to 2010, where we learn how he came to be estranged from his fiance and how he injured his back. This 2010 arc also gave us a bit of background into the Northern Lights assassin tracking Root and Finch.
The Root and Finch story was strong as well, and had them infiltrating what is believed to be a nuclear facility, but is actually where the Machine used to be physically located. I say used to be because it moved itself.
How did it do that? Apparently by placing an order to do so and then posing as the director of the government agency that controls the Machine to prevent any red flags from going up. Not even Finch knows where the actual physical component of the Machine is anymore, and apparently no one is controlling it. It’s making its own choices about who to send numbers to, and the episode ends with it finally calling Reese and Finch with another number. One caveat, however…it also calls Root, who appears to end the episode in what I’m guessing is a psychiatric hospital.
The one weak link in all of this is Carter’s story, and I attribute that mainly to the fact that there was so much else going on that needed to be covered. It’s not bad, it’s just rushed. As the last couple of episodes have dealt more with the meta-narrative on the history and nature of the machine and those who seek to control it (another criticism I’ll get to in a minute), the story of our intrepid LAPD detectives and the HR conspiracy have taken a back seat. Hell, Fusco, who was such a central figure in ‘In Extremis’, has been missing completely the past two weeks for no other reason than the writers couldn’t find anything for him to do (which, I suppose, is better than them trying to shoe horn him in).
Carter does make a pretty interesting decision, however. When she learns that’s she’s being set up by the detective she thought she could trust last week, and that he’s planning to do away with Elias, one of the show’s recurring baddies, she takes a page from Reese’s book, disguises herself, and interferes in an unofficial capacity. The story ends with Carter and Elias in a car together, their futures unsure for now. It’s a bit abrupt, but should be an interesting thread to pick up next year.
Person of Interest hit its stride this year, building up the mythology while also giving us intriguing number of the week cases that informed each other in interesting ways. The mythology is a bit confusing, however, and so many names are thrown around, (Research, Northern Lights, HR, Decima) that it can be a bit hard to keep track of everything. I was also a bit disappointed that the Julian Sands character introduced earlier in the season didn’t make a comeback at some point, but I’m sure he’ll pop up someplace down the line.
The season also gave us plenty of cameos from Zoe Morgan, and who could forget Bear? If you’d have told me last year that Person of Interest would have an animal side kick, I would have rolled my eyes. Instead they waited a year and gave us one in such a spontaneous and entertaining manner that it was easy to accept. Luckily, the show never became about an ex-CIA spy and his K-9 sidekick that only responds to Dutch commands. Bear was just another recurring character on a show full awesome recurring characters.
The best addition of the season though had to be Shaw. Not only did she show us the government side of the machine, she also gave us one of the best episodes of the show thus far. I’ll have to retroactively review it, once the season releases on Blu-Ray.