Monday, May 16, 2016

What I’m Watching: Person of Interest (Season Premiere)

Person of Interest: Season 5, Episode 1 “B.S.O.D.” (B+)

There are a few things I need to say before I tackle this episode. On the one hand, I can’t understand why this show wasn’t on CBS’ fall or midseason schedule and had to be unceremoniously pushed to just before the summer, ended before its creative forces felt it needed to be, and set to air twice a week on different nights of the week. On the other hand, this season will see the one hundredth episode of the show air, which means it did live a good, long life, and having this show twice a week, while not entirely desirable, is still exciting since it means there’s so much of it to look forward to in a short time. I like the way that this premiere started with Root narrating how they failed while the camera focused in on the abandoned subway car, and this episode was all about a return to normalcy for our friends and the little rebellion they’re trying to keep alive against Samaritan and its total domination of New York City. That they’re all identified as potential threats by Samaritan before their new identities cancel out that suspicion keeps the danger level elevated, and with Elias gone, they seem to be even more marooned than before. Finch in particular is stuck in the past, haunted by recollections of deciding to wipe the machine’s memories every night at midnight to purposely deprive it of a human existence that he didn’t think would be appropriate. What was best about this hour is the way that it firmly established three of its characters and their roles. Fusco still doesn’t have a clear purpose, but I like that Reese admitted his technological incompetence but came through with brute force and smart thinking to cool down the machine, which, so fantastically, is back. There’s a lot of this season in the near future, and while I’m sad there’s only a short season left, I couldn’t be more pumped.

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