Man, oh, man. Are you done yelling at your TV? Did you throw it out the window? Were those screams of joy or anger? I watched the season finale yesterday and I still don’t think I’ve recovered—and I definitely can’t figure out how I feel about it. But that’s why we’re all here. Let’s process this whole crazy thing together, and boy, is there a lot to process.
Before we get to the craziness of the final few minutes of “In Memory,” let’s recap everything else leading up to it. For the most part, it’s a pretty standard episode of Blindspot. It’s fun and thrilling and nicely ties up a lot of the season’s overarching stories…and then blows a lot of things up in the last few minutes. Depending on your capacity for accepting very random swerves, you either hated the final stretch or loved it. Either way, “In Memory” certainly goes all out in making an impact.
As the episode begins, Roman is basking in the sun, making a phone call to someone. “It was all leading to this,” he says, cryptically. Does this mean he had his showdown with Jane? Did Crawford catch up to him? We have to wait to find out, as the episode flashes back a few hours. It’s the morning after Reade and Zapata’s first night together, and things are a little awkward. Not because of the sex, but because Reade learns of a break in the tattoo cases and he can’t talk to Zapata about it because she’s no longer a government agent.
Heading into work, Rich and Patterson have all their material prepared for Reade and the rest of the team. They’ve dissected Roman’s video clue and determined that he’s quoting The Count of Monte Cristo. After a hilarious “who’s on first?” situation involving a misunderstanding about a clue in the words “what three words,” the team finds a website that includes a map of the entire world divided up into 3×3 squares. Punch in a set of three words and you get a corresponding part on the map. It looks like Roman is pointing them to a location, perhaps Crawford’s. They just need to know what three words from the book Roman is talking about to punch into the map.
While Crawford traces a call from Roman, baiting and switching the FBI as he gets himself to the airport to go find the man who’s betrayed him, the team finds some hidden numbers in two of Jane’s tattoos that likely point to page and word numbers in The Count of Monte Cristo. The problem is that they need a rare first edition of the original French book. It turns out it’s not much of a problem for Rich, who finds a copy on the Dark Web and refuses to tell Reade how much the government had to pay to obtain it.
The three words end up being “Thousand Life King,” which corresponds to Cape Town, South Africa on the map. That’s where Roman and Jane grew up, and suddenly everything is coming full circle. The team heads to Cape Town, while Rich mopes about never getting to go on the fun trips, searching for some sign of Roman or Crawford. They find both of them, as Roman has once again flipped sides, turning on Crawford and bringing him to the orphanage in Cape Town where his trauma, and Jane’s, first began.
You see, it was Crawford who built the orphanage. It was a test run of sorts for his plan to build an army of soldiers that weren’t loyal to any country. Of course, all that lead to was abuse and torture and a man disguised as Tom Jakeman wanting him dead. Roman has him tied to a chair, and he runs through all of Crawford’s horrible misdeeds. Crawford tries to manipulate the situation, telling Roman to go finish what he started, this time with Blake and the truth out in the open. They don’t have much time to discuss the details though, as the FBI shows up. Roman narrowly escapes, and makes his way to Blake, while Jane gets her moment of vindication. She shoots Crawford in the chest, killing the man she didn’t know was responsible for so much of the pain in her life.
With Crawford out of the way, Blindspot is all set to start delivering the big twists. It starts when Roman meets up with Blake on a remote hillside in Cape Town. He wants to explain everything to her, but he struggles to find the words. He barely gets started when the episode’s first massive surprise happens: Blake shoots him. She’s known for some time that he was lying about being Tom Jakeman, but it’s unclear how much she knows. All she cares about is that her father is dead and that Roman ruined her family. So, she shoots him and leaves him to die on that hillside.
He doesn’t die alone though. Jane catches up with him and, somewhat surprisingly, gives him a tender exit. She sits by his side, points out that this is a beautiful place to die, and he slips away. It’s a weirdly sentimental ending for a character that’s done some truly horrible things all season long, but it does achieve the goal of driving home just how messed up Jane and Roman are because of what they went through as kids. Jane managed to find a way out, but Roman never did.
With any other show, that scene might serve as the fitting end to a season that was all about a brother and sister doing battle from opposite sides of the law. This is Blindspot though, and after that scene the show still has 10 minutes to fill, and it certainly doesn’t waste a single second. Back in New York, Weller understands that all of this is tough for Jane. Roman may have been their enemy, but he was also her brother, and that makes his death bittersweet. Add in the fact that Jane’s been getting headaches and feeling tired, all sure signs of her being pregnant, and suddenly there’s a lot for the two of them to deal with.
Before Roman died, he gave Jane a thumb drive, which the team accesses back at the FBI headquarters. It’s a cache of all of the tattoos in the database, along with most of the clues and answers. They could realistically solve every tattoo case with this information, and that would mean Jane would finally get to start a new life without all that baggage. It looks like we have our plan for season five!
Not so fast though, because there are other forces working against Jane. First, there’s the episode’s biggest, and perhaps most disappointing and frustrating, surprise: as Blake sits on a private jet, she asks her flying companion what they can do next now that Crawford and Roman are dead. The camera pans across to reveal Zapata as her partner, and reader, I don’t know how to feel. How long has she been working with Blake? Has her inclusion on the Crawford case been part of her plan all along? Why is the lovely, wonderful Zapata suddenly a villain who says things like “this is how we take back the power”? I have so many feelings about this. I’m mad that a lovable character is seemingly breaking bad, and yet excited at what this could mean for next season. Damn you, Blindspot!
But wait, there’s more. Patterson determines that Jane isn’t pregnant. Rather, the material that was used to wipe her memory is resulting in some sort of poisoning that’s wreaking havoc on her system. Roman has left a number of clues about a cure, but for now Jane is in the hospital and things aren’t looking good.
Jane wakes up in the hospital. She seems confused. She looks at her FBI badge and then makes a phone call. She calls herself Remi and says that while she’s still undercover with the FBI, she’s having trouble remembering things. She learns that Weller is out of surgery after some complications from the gunshot wound he received in South Africa. She seems to barely register who Weller is.
She visits his room, hugging Patterson and taking a seat next to Weller why Reade and Rich look on. There’s no recognition on her face, but she plays it cool. The episode splices in flashbacks to Jane as Remi with Shepherd. They have a plan for her to infiltrate the FBI, gain their trust, and then take them down from the inside. Now, it looks like Jane/Remi is ready to execute that plan. It would seem that the poisoning has wiped her memory again, acting as a reset on her system. All we know for sure is that the season ends with Jane/Remi smiling maniacally, straight into the camera, promising a whole lot of chaos next season.