Blindspot recap: A man from Jane's past haunts the latest tattoo case
This week’s episode of Blindspot begins with a heist: An armored vehicle is robbed in the middle of the day, while transporting a bunch of weapons. The thieves don’t want the whole stash, though — they’re looking for one thing in particular. One of them checks the serial numbers against their instructions, then takes off with a single box. Whatever that one thing is, it must be dangerous.
Before the team finds out about the heist, they have to sit through Rich’s unveiling of a board game he’s made. It’s called Tattoo Squad, and it’s an elaborate, multilevel game in which each of them is a character and they work together to solve complex tattoo cases. Rich has even made molds of every one of them, though Patterson’s is a little melted because he’s still mad she didn’t invite him to one of her game nights. “I’m both impressed and horrified,” says Jane. They don’t get any time to dig into the game, though, as they get called away to a tattoo case.
Before they get there, Patterson tells Jane the FBI has emptied out the Sandstorm hideout that was unlocked by the mysterious key Shepherd left behind for her. She asks Jane if she feels okay going through the stuff. Jane seems worried about Shepherd playing some sort of trick on her from beyond the grave, but Weller insists that she has “no power over them” anymore. That turns out to not be true. When Jane takes stock of the random assortment of things in the room, she’s flooded with memories. Fully formed, not fragments like before. She struggles to cope with all she’s done as Remi. It’s hard to believe that Weller and Patterson would be okay with all this. Jane isn’t too far removed from having her terrorist side emerge yet again. You’d think the team would try to keep her away from potential triggers, especially obvious ones like this.
So, Jane takes some time before joining the team to talk about the new tattoo case. One of Jane’s tattoos contains a serial number that matches the stolen goods from the truck heist, a serial number that’s associated with a military contractor by the name of SilverMark. Normally it would be easy enough for the FBI to track down the goods, but SilverMark is refusing to cooperate, likely because it was hauling something illegal. SilverMark has no interest in implicating itself, so the FBI is on its own. In a very confusing sequence, Rich and Patterson find puzzle pieces layered into the serial number tattoo, which they then use to match up with numbers on the periodic table. Add in some basic math, and suddenly Rich and Patterson have discovered that the stolen case is probably filled with plutonium.
That discovery forces the team to bring in a weapons specialist named Dave Kirkpatrick to help with the case. Unfortunately, Dave is the absolute worst part of the episode. Sure, he knows his bombs, but his character is given way too many comedic moments. Blindspot certainly has a sense of humor, and that’s part of the show’s charm, but Dave is a character whose comedic tone feels out of place in the episode. As the tension ratchets up and the team races to stop a terrorist from building a dirty bomb, Dave continues to pop up with jokes. It’s the weakest part of an otherwise solid episode.
Anyway, as the team determines that the robbery was likely an inside job, one executed by a woman named Greta Smalls, who has infiltrated SilverMark under a different name, Rich finds his way into the corner of the dark web where weapons are bought and sold to the highest bidder. Rich tries to make a deal for the plutonium, but he’s beaten to the punch by someone else. It turns out Greta is looking to buy a device in order to weaponize the plutonium. Rich hacks into that private conversation and figures out where Greta is set to make the deal, and the team rolls out to a hotel with a plan.
That plan is to pose as the sellers. They’ll intercept the device, have Dave disable it, and then sell the dysfunctional bomb to Greta. The first part of the plan goes fine, but then Dave struggles to dismantle the device. On top of that, when Jane and Weller show up to the meeting with a decoy, Jane sees a familiar face. Greta’s working with a man named Cameron Gibbs, who Jane knows from her Sandstorm days. Not only that, he idolizes Jane, saying that Remi saved him many years ago and turned him into what he is today. It’s a lot for Jane to handle. She has to shoulder the burden of continuing with the undercover operation while also personally dealing with the guilt of what she’s done as Remi. “I created a murderer,” she tells Weller, and no words from him are able to cure her of her guilt. (Recap continues on next page)
Eventually, Dave manages to disable the device and switch it out with the decoy, and everything seems fine. Except that the FBI has no way of tracking the plutonium, so Jane improvises and tells Gibbs she wants to come along on whatever this job is. He agrees initially, sending Weller with Greta, but then turns his back on her. He locks her in a storage closet, saying he was supposed to kill whoever sold him the device, something he would never do to Remi.
So Gibbs escapes, and that’s bad news because while the device is disabled, he can still use the plutonium to build a dirty bomb. The team scrambles to determine his target, eventually settling on a military convention that would allow Gibbs to kill a lot of the people who were responsible for discharging him from the military. Of course, Remi was the one truly responsible, but he doesn’t know that. He’s spent his life radicalized after his service, and this is his moment for revenge.
Jane escapes the room and makes her way to the convention center with Weller. She tracks Gibbs to the service hallway, where he’s getting ready to set off the bomb. Because of her guilt. she tries to make amends in this moment. She tells Gibbs the truth about Remi, and about his discharge from the military and recruitment by Sandstorm. “But I made a decision to change, to be better,” she says, hoping he’ll have a similar change of heart. He’s too far gone, though, too devoted to his cause. As he’s about to hit the trigger and blow the whole place up, along with Jane, Weller shows up and shoots him in the back. A crisis averted, but at what cost? Jane now has yet another soul on her conscience. No matter how much she tries to run from her past, she can’t escape. Remi will always be a part of her.
There are a few other disparate story lines in this episode. Namely, Keaton wakes up from his coma and offers to vouch for Zapata with the CIA, but the move will see him take all the blame. Zapata won’t have that, so she’s determined to find another way to clear all their names. That’s all well and good, but Zapata’s trials and tribulations are turning out to be a real drag this season. The mystery of her allegiance was fun for a while, but the aftermath has felt lacking, partly because it’s a story that only gets a few minutes of screen time each week.
Still, this is an episode that moves everything in the right direction. As it comes to an end, the team gets security footage from the Sandstorm hideout, where a hooded figure was seen entering the warehouse the day before the FBI raid. Who could this person be, and what do they have to do with Sandstorm? That’s a question for the next episode.