Friday, March 21, 2014

Person of Interest 3.17: "/"

“Do you really want to see what it looks like when two gods go to war?”
- Root

This week is a very Root-centric episode (as evidenced by the fact that she and Finch split the narration of the opening credits). We start in Michigan where she breaks a car thief out of police custody so that she can use him to get mail for a German banker. It seems that since last we saw her, she’s been recruiting people to help her with whatever she and the Machine are up to. Not even she knows what she’s really doing. She’s got a lot of faith in the Machine and what it tells her. We get some nice continuity though because she’s deaf in the ear that the head of Northern Lights did to her. After she gets what she needs with the car thief, she’s back to New York for the next phase of the plan which now involves a night janitor named Cyrus.

While taking Cyrus to breakfast, she is stumped that he’s not asking the usual questions. It would seem he is rather laid back about life. Actually, he seems a little OCD when he says he needs to go for a walk in the park before going home to bed. She accompanies him and we get a rather cute scene with Root and Finch. Finch has far more information on Cyrus than she does and it would seem her disregard for his importance comes back to haunt her later. Reese and Shaw keep tabs on Root and Cyrus while Finch goes back to the Library to try and decode an ad Root sent to him. Oh and it seems that Root and the Machine are trying to stop Decima (run by the Brit who recruited Reese’s partner) from building and unleashing Samaritan.

Of course things have to get more complicated when Vigilance (the privacy terrorists) show up to take out Cyrus. Cyrus starts to freak out a little when Root says they have to go and then a sniper starts shooting at him. Shaw takes the sniper out while Reese handles the guys from Vigilance. The reason Cyrus has become a target is because his name was mentioned in a secret communication from Decima. That might explain why he fell off the Wall Street grid back in 2009 despite his millions and his MBA. Team Machine is in for one hell of a fight.

Root gets Cyrus arrested for egging a cop car so that he’ll at least be safe for a little while. After Reese handles the Vigilance guys, the Decima folks disappear for a while. But they’ve lost communication with Shaw. She’s trying to interrogate the sniper when the head of Vigilance, Collier, shows up saying she is their new target. He spouts off a bunch of fairly accurate yet generic factoids about Shaw and offers her the chance for revenge if she gives up all she knows about Decima and Samaritan. She’s not interested. Down at the precinct, Root goes to collect Cyrus before Reese can meet up with Lionel for a hand off. Apparently she joined the FBI and has real credentials and a federal warrant to take custody of Cyrus. Lionel has a rather funny line about the way he refers to Root and Reese. It’s typical Lionel in his sarcasm. Reese is not so sure that Root can protect Cyrus but she says he should be more focused on why both groups want Cyrus in the first place. She takes him back to the diner he likes where he shares the sad story of why he disappeared from the face of the planet. He started a real estate company with his college friends and when they played it safe during the market crash, someone got angry and a shooter came in a killed his friends and injured him and four others. After spending 10 weeks in the ICU, his outlook on life changed. Our heroes may have a lead when Finch finds that the janitorial company Cyrus works for recently ran a background check on him. Very strange!

The pieces start to fall into place. Root unfortunately loses Cyrus to Decima but Reese takes out some more of the guys. Shaw takes out more of Vigilance but Collier gets away after she declines his offer of a job. He really shouldn’t have thought appealing to Shaw’s better nature would actually work seeing as she doesn’t have one. Root pops by the library after she leases Cyrus because she needs Finch’s help. The Machine got disconnected temporarily thanks to Decima and we also learn that Cyrus is on a list of people whose retinal scan opens the door on the 19th floor to the building he worked in as a janitor. Someone recently created a chip powerful enough to run Samaritan. So now the team needs to rush to get to Cyrus before Decima uses Cyrus for what they need and then discard him. We also get a rather uncharacteristically emotional scene with Root when she realizes that the murder of his friends was her fault. She was the one who hired the killer and she doesn’t understand why the Machine keeps telling her to save Cyrus. She blames Finch breaking the Machine but he says that what he did made it better and allows the Machine to care about people and help them. And he wants to help Root if she’ll let him.

Decima gets to the building and uses Cyrus to get in to the chip. Reese and Lionel show up to provide some back up but it only scares Cyrus off. Root makes a trip to an ear doctor and gets a device put in her ear so that she’s got a direct contact to the Machine and she can out of her bum ear again. So the next time Decima tries to pull their signal jam trick, she’s unaffected and takes out the guys on the ground floor. Unfortunately, Decima makes off with the chip so the emergence of Samaritan is a real threat. I have a feeling that the two systems will be battling it out in the finale in May. Cyrus gets a new life (without the knowledge that Root played a role in his past) and the Machine sends Root off to South America on a mission. But she and Finch come to an agreement that they need to work together to face the looming threat of their own demise.

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