David Giesbrecht/NBC
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TV Show
S2 E19
April 24, 2015 at 11:07 AM EDT

It quickly becomes clear that the Director was the one who put out the hit on Red. I had my suspicions that Red may have been faking his own death to trigger the release of the Fulcrum, etc., but this one is pretty cut and dry. The Cabal figured out that Red wasn’t actually in possession of the Fulcrum, so it was time for him to meet his end. But they’re going to have to get through Mr. Kaplan, Dembe, Lizzie, and the support of the Post Office crew to get to him. Liz calls Cooper to tell him the warehouse they’re headed to and he sends a protective detail her way while the medical Avengers Mr. Kaplan has assembled get to work operating on Red. Three agents from the protective detail arrive and when Lizzie goes to greet them—boom, boom, boom—Mr. Kaplan shoots them all.

Because they weren’t FBI agents at all, Mr. Kaplan could tell by their non-government issued guns. Because absolutely everyone is a better profiler than Elizabeth Keen. And while Keen’s achievements may never equal the greatness that has been thrust upon her, she is still important—more important than Red, really, just much less informed. After all, she’s the one in possession of the Fulcrum; she’s the one giving pep talks to junior doctors when they have to figure out how to do an operation in half the time it takes because their location has been compromised and more of the Director’s assassins will be on their way, and the head surgeon was shot by the last ones; and she’s the one being tasked by Red with his last conscious, bloody breaths to track down Leonard Caul.

Who is Leonard Caul? Well, he’s the guy we keep seeing track Liz and Red’s every movement. He’s clearly a master or technology and tracking and we know this because his main move is to open a brand new laptop, hack traffic cameras to find how Red got away from the scene of the shooting, trace the car’s plates, and then destroy the laptop with some sort of magnet. It’s a high price to pay to track down someone who is actively looking for you, but when you’re the inventor of the Fulcrum, I guess perception—excuse me, I’m getting ahead of myself.

You see, Liz put the Post Office gang on the task of tracking down Leonard Caul while she tries to figure out where to transport Red. They find out through the call that Red secretly had Aram trace (the one from the St. Petersburg safe phone number) a while back that it was Caul’s blood that Red later found on the floor of the apartment Aram found the address to. Apparently, Caul was a former CIA agent known for his skills in blending in, but now he’s on the run. Through yet another favor from Tom “Skeeze” Connolly, Cooper gets Caul’s former supervisor to tell them that Caul came to her recently to say that he was scared about some business he’d gotten mixed up in with Raymond Reddington. Because Raymond Reddington devours lives—he makes them and he breaks them.

And while that’s all interesting information, we soon find out that trying to find Caul is pretty futile; he’ll reveal himself when the right people are looking and he’s ready to be found. Certainly not the most dramatic moment of a particularly bloody episode, but decidedly the most profound comes the way so many of The Blacklist’s better subtle moments do: through Dembe. While an old boyfriend of Liz’s is trying to get an exploding bullet out of Red (see last page or recap for details), Dembe pulls Elizabeth aside. He tells her that there is an apartment is Bethesda that contains a desk; that desk has a middle drawer with a false front; behind that false front there is a silver case and a key. She needs to find that case and key, and find Leonard Caul, and get them all back to Reddington in order for the Fulcrum to be deciphered. Oh, and one more thing: Red can’t ever know she was in that apartment. Never. Ever. Take me to this apartment!

NEXT: It has central heat and air, laundry in the basement, oh, and a lot of childhood pics of Lizzie…

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James Spader returns as Raymond ‘Red’ Reddington, a mastermind criminal who teams up with the FBI.
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