‘Person of Interest’ has managed to do it again! Create one of the best episodes ever! And this one wasn’t action packed or full of surprises. It went back to its roots, to a set up that is more in tune with the first and second seasons of the shows; back to a time when things weren’t as complicated as they are now. And it was great to watch.
The episode started off with John and Harold at a diner, something we haven’t seen in a long time. They’re discussing the disappearance of Root in addition to the backlog in numbers. This is interesting because I myself have been wondering if The Machine has been giving them numbers this whole time but they haven’t been able to work them, and the answer to that question is yes, it has. John and Harold also seem worn out by all the loss. Shaw’s loss has hit John particularly hard, and even the loss of Root, which will obviously be short lived, has brought up some hurt so they decide that it’s best to no longer rely on Fusco to help them, in an effort to protect him and not lose him as well.
John has gone through all the numbers and he’s come up with three missing persons that he believes he can work on. Harold can’t help though because he has jury duty. He, of course, tries to get out of it but accidentally selects himself to be called for a jury. Of course, in ‘Person of Interest’ there are no mistakes and clearly this is the work of The Machine. Harold doesn’t catch on to this little fact though right away. They cut to the jury selection phase and the judge asks questions, some give excuses that are not worthy of being excused. Harold decides to launch into a speech about government surveillance and a machine that watches ever move we make. It gets him excused off the main jury and put on as an alternate instead. Of course The Machine needs Harold on the jury so it manages to get one of the main jurors kicked off which results in Harold filling in.
The interesting part of the jury selection is that Harold does give a very truthful answer about what’s happening in the world and people looked at him as if he’s crazy. Even though it was revealed that a super computer was watching everyone’s every move, people still see it as crazy and don’t believe it. I believe this reflects today’s beliefs among people. While we may not have a super computer watching our every move, we do have an agency that actively spies on citizens and we’ve been told it does so and most people have just blown it off and aren’t concerned or even think those who are, are paranoid and a little not right in the head. I think this is commentary on how if it isn’t directly affecting someone they often don’t care, but perhaps they should?
Next they cut to John at the therapist’s office once again. He obviously hasn’t seen her in a while with all that’s going on and we find out how he managed to do all that he did without getting fired from his job, he took a Leave of Absence. He mentions a loss in the family, which happened, but he doesn’t want to talk about it. While this scene is short it has a few things that I think were important.
This time John didn’t fall apart and run off at the death of someone he obviously loved very much. Shaw was family to him. And her loss has hit him pretty hard, but he’s handling it differently than his previous losses. I think the last few episodes have been about living. This episode gave a glimpse into his feelings, that he’s hurting and struggling, but luckily dealing with it differently than he has previously; this time he seems to want to stay with Harold but also protect the rest of his “family” (Fusco) by no longer putting Fusco in danger.
Fusco obviously hasn’t been included in the thought process behind putting him on the back burner for a while and he finds the three missing persons files on John’s desk. John tells him not to worry about it, but we know Fusco, that won’t stop him.
John then receives a call from The Machine giving him a new number. It was nice to go back to the way The Machine gave numbers, especially seeing it give numbers to John again. While it doesn’t fully talk with John, it does communicate with John and I think that may have been lost some in these last few episodes. John is as important as Harold or Root to The Machine.
It turns out that the new number is Emma, the retired school teacher, that is on the jury with Harold. Now they have to figure out why Harold is on the jury and why Emma is in danger.
While investigating the number John gets a call from Fusco who has managed to find some information on those missing persons, mainly that they were all part of Elias’s crew. Obviously Dominic and the Brotherhood are doing some clean up, and we’ll be returning back to that storyline in the future. John though is not happy about Fusco involving himself and tells him so. Obviously it’s pretty clear though that Fusco isn’t going to let John and Harold randomly cut him off.
John, though, seems to have a revelation that perhaps therapy was working and instead of not seeing the therapist anymore, since she cleared him, he figures he’ll keep going. I don’t know if this is more of him realizing that therapy can be helpful or the fact that he might just have some feelings for the therapist. Honestly I hope it’s just that he realized that dealing with his feelings of loss with a therapist is healthier than getting drunk all the time and running away from things. Honestly if they decide to have these two get romantically involved it will just be wrong on so many levels, because she would be breaking all kinds of ethical rules in doing so. She does know though that he isn’t a real police officer and she tells him so. Honestly, I don’t trust her at all.
Back at jury duty, neither Harold nor John really know why Emma is the number but she soon starts texting with someone, which reveals that she’s there to make sure the jury goes a certain way and she’s not doing it by choice. Suddenly another juror has an allergic reaction to what she has eaten and has to be taken to the hospital, which allows an alternate to come in. This is where John and Harold realize that whoever is doing this is willing to kill someone in order to get the verdict they need.
And this is when a blast from our past shows up. Zoe Morgan is back! We’ve wanted to see some of our recurring cast from early in the show start showing back up. Of course Harold isn’t very pleased that John has allowed her to help out. I doubt John could have stopped her, or wanted to at that. They figure based on how things typically go that Emma’s been instructed to make the jury vote not guilty and train Harold on how to convince the jury that they should vote guilty instead. It’s a very interesting scene with Harold practicing with some light moments – it really throws back to how things used to be with this show.
Once they finish, Zoe and John are discussing what they are doing the rest of the night and John basically turns Zoe down which surprises her. I tend to think she’s a bit jealous. She thinks she knows John and the fact that he’s found someone else he loves made her really jealous. I don’t know that he found someone romantically to love, but rather has decided to not use Zoe to help him emotionally. Instead, he’s going to stick with therapy to get through all this. Zoe launches into a speech about how they aren’t normal and will never be – to which I say she’s completely wrong.
BThe scene with the therapist had me crying through most of it. I’m a sap. I admit it.But I’ve always been one to cry when John is in real emotional pain. And let me say, we’ve seen very little emotion out of him in the last few episodes so this was bound to make me cry. This is the first time we’ve ever really heard anything about John’s background though. When he was 8, he managed to drive a car into the neighbors home which resulted in a lawsuit happening. We already knew his father was dead but we know it happened pretty early on in John’s life (although I think that could have been assumed in general). John goes on to explain that he’s lost a lot of people, and it’s obvious that this has affected him greatly and it’s easier to just not talk about it. The therapist suggests that perhaps it’s time to start dealing with this loss in a different way, that perhaps what he has done in the past hasn’t worked, so it’s time for something new.
Meanwhile back at Jury Duty, the jury has gone into deliberations and Harold starts in on his practiced convincing of the defendant being guilty only to find that Emma agrees with him, which means they got this thing all wrong and he must be innocent. So now Harold has to stall while John and Zoe figure out why someone would want to frame an innocent man. Harold manages to stall a few hours before the person who is manipulating the jury leaks some information to the press, which results in the jury being sequestered. Before Harold is cut off from the team, they learn that the new technology that the victim had produced was actually very dangerous and she was going to not let it continue causing the company to lose millions in revenue. Obviously this means someone within the company killed the victim, rather than her husband, but they framed her husband instead..
John has to communicate via Morse Code with Harold, using his sniper rifle which lead to some frankly hilarious interactions between the two. Harold (still after everything) is not very fond of John’s weapons, especially when they are pointed at him.
Emma though has decided she can’t do it anymore and that it would be better for her to die rather than anyone else be put in danger. Harold manages to talk her off the ledge and he lets her know he knows what’s happening and that she had no choice in the matter.
John finds the place where the hired “fixer” was staying and realizes it’s one of the jurors and that Emma and Harold are in trouble. This results in a minor action scene where both Harold and John get to do some ass kicking. In the end, everything works out and the husband is cleared of any wrongdoing.
Fusco is there to make the arrest of the co-worker that did kill the victim and this results in another scene that made me cry last night. Fusco tells John that he has chosen to do what he does, to be a part of the team and he is willing to die doing so and that they can’t cut him off without his permission. Fusco is all in.
So John and Harold decide that no new people will be brought into Team Machine; instead they’ll work with whom they have instead.
I just have to say that I really enjoyed this episode. It’s one of the better ones in my opinion. I enjoyed going back to the basics of this show; working numbers rather than dealing with a larger issue of Samaritan. I think it gives us, the viewers, a little break and some time to heal ourselves from all of the loss as well.
I’m glad for it though too. I’m glad that they showed some real emotion from John. He’s been so much like a robot, just doing what needed to be done with no reactions really. I think it’s nice to see that he is human, that he is hurting, and that he is struggling. I think he tries to be strong, especially for Harold, and he’s doing that, but he also needs some help, someone to talk to as well.
I do wonder what Harold would think of John still going to the therapist. I know he’s already told John to be careful when seeing her, but I can’t imagine he’ll be fond of knowing he’s seeing her voluntarily. In the end, though, Harold has no choice in that matter.
The preview for next week shows us that we’re getting right back into the Samaritan storyline but there is a return of a ‘POI’ from early in the season, which should be interesting. I’m very interested to see what comes from all of this and also find out what Root has been doing, because she will be back.