Person of Interest Recap: Panopticon
“Person of Interest” Season 4 Episode 1 “Panopticon” aired last Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014, at 10:00 p.m. on CBS. In this episode, the team tried their best to keep their noses out of trouble as they tried to adjust to their new identities. However, much to John Reese (Jim Caviezel) and Sameen Shaw’s (Sarah Shahi) delight, they received a new number to work on — a number that signals the end of their ordinary lives and back to what they were used to. Read on to learn more about this episode.
The episode began in Budapest, where an American journalist was talking a mysterious woman (Carla Buono). He told her that he had just lost his job and his flight back home. He confided that he had discovered that a powerful Artificial Intelligence had entered the world and that it was eliminating any competition. He felt this because he was just fired, all his sources disappeared and his editor was reassigned. The woman agreed with him that the world had indeed changed and told him that only three other people knew about this. Two would die in fourteen minutes. After she shot him, the Samaritan interface identified that her job was to eliminate the journalist and that her alias was Martine Rosseau.
Back in New York, John Greer (John Nolan), the head of Decima and Samaritan met with Senator Ross Garisson (John Damon). The Senator was impressed with Samaritan but wanted reassurance that they could still have completed deniable plausibility. Annoyed, Greer asked Samaritan if they could already eliminate the Senator, to which Samaritan replied not yet. It also revealed that Harlod Finch (Michael Emerson) and his associates have not yet turned up on its radar, as The Machine gave them new identities to be nonthreats.
At a mall in New York, a very unhappy Sameen Shaw (Sarah Shahi) sprayed perfume on shoppers, as she was a cosmetics sales lady. Root (Amy Acker) turned up at her place of work and told her that she needed a make over for a new job interview. She also reminded her to trust The Machine, to check her calendar, and to check out her Angler application.
Meanwhile, John Reese, now narcotics Detective John Riley (Jim Caviezel) made sure that the drug dealers that he was dealing with were properly arrested — after he had knocked one of the dealers out and had placed two bullets each into the knees of the two other thugs.
Harold Finch, or Professor H. Whistler (Michael Emerson), started his lecture for the beginning of his class on the Ethics of High Frequency Decision-making. However, before he left the lecture room, he was told that his dissertation had several typographical errors, that Bear (his dog) could not stay on campus and that he was getting relocated to a different department. However, before he left the room, he received a calendar alert telling him to go to 1182 Sullivan Street in 60 minutes.
On a rooftop on the Bronx, Detective Lionel Fusco (Kevin Chapman) checked out the scene of what looked like a gang-related shoot out. Because of this, Detective Riley, aka John Reese, showed up, as the dead boy belonged to a gang that he was investigating. It also seemed like the victim had died with a pair of wire crimpers in his hand. Fusco then asked Reese what on earth was happening with them, as it seemed like they weren’t doing what they used to before. Reese then got a calendar alert, telling him to go to 1182 Sullivan Street.
Shaw showed up at 1182 Sullivan Street, and it turned out to be a lecture on “The Power of Positive Thinking.” There, she met Reese. As the two reunited, she complained that he was a cop and could at least afford to “break some heads.” However, both are unhappy with their new jobs, as Reese has to play the rules with the police. Their little reunion was interrupted by a telephone call — it was the Machine, who gave them the number of Egyptian electronics shop owner Ali Hasan.
Reese met Finch and Bear at the park, and asked Finch to help them out. However, Finch refused to go back to working with them and the Machine, as he believed that even though they had saved some people, there were also other people who had died on their watch. He also told John that once they started helping numbers again, it would be easier for Samaritan to hunt them down. He said that it was now a matter of survival and that they now had to stick to their jobs. To this, Reese told him that they did not need jobs; they needed a purpose. Before Finch left, he left Bear with Reese for the time being.
Reese decided to investigate Ali Hasan and cloned his phone. While staking Hasan’s shop out, a thug named Link entered the shop and told Hasan that his network system did not work. He had 48 hours to fix it, or else, something would happen to Hasan’s son. After Link left, Hasan’s son, Ben, asked him to go to the police, but Hasan refused, saying that the police did not help before. Reese then walked into the shop and told him that the wire crimpers from his store were found in a dead boy’s hand. He also left his card, just in case. A few hours he left the shop, Hasan arranged a meet with Link at Times Square that night in order to deliver the cell phones to him.
Fusco and Reese staked out Time Square in order to have eyes on Hasan. Hasan met up with Link and gave him a phone and an extra battery pack. He told Link to try the phone when he was five blocks east. They discovered that Hasan was tracking down Link via GPS. As Reese followed Link, Hasan texted a number on his phone. However, the number that was texted was a detonation code — the battery pack Hasan had given Link was a bomb, which Reese then saved him from. At the station, Hasan revealed that he had gone to the police with information on ‘The Brotherhood,” a local gang run by someone called Dominic, but the police had done nothing about the information given. After they learned that Hasan’s son was in danger, the trio rushed to the store. However, when they got there, they found that it was trashed and that Ben had gotten kidnapped. A little bit later, Hasan received a phone call from Link, who gave him until midnight to have the new communications network up and running.
Reese then decided to take matters into his own hands and to liberate the son the way that he used to. He asked for help from Shaw, but she refused, as they had to maintain a low profile given their situation. Reese, however, ignored all of that and came in guns blazing with a grenade launcher. However, he could not find Link or Ben anywhere. He was finally able to get one of the men their to talk, who told him that Link was dealing with something called “The Whale” that night. However, he was knocked unconscious by Shaw.
While Finch was looking at the typographical errors in his dissertation, Root entered, saying that “in her defense, she had to work quickly.” She informed him that the “Mayhem Twins,” Reese and Shaw, were up and about. If they were not careful, they could all get killed. She also told him that he should get involved so that nothing bad would happen to the two. This was important as in the war against Samaritan, as they only had five people on their side, while Samaritan has countless resources. However, Finch continued to refuse to go back to helping save numbers. She also reminded him that the Machine had helped save him, as she was the one who had provided identities for all of them. However, he did not see what good it would do if one or two more lives were saved. She then told him that she had learned from him that everyone, that every life is worth saving and that he at least owed it to his friends to get them out of their predicament.
Because of this, Finch decided to join Reese at Hasan’s shop in order to help him set up the network, while Reese decided to find a way to get back Ben. Before he left, Finch reminded him that since he was now a police detective, he had to play by the rules. In order to do this, Reese visited Carl Elias (Enrico Colantoni) a mob leader whom they had dealt with before and has great respect for Finch. Reese then procured some information from Elias and hired his services for a job. It turned out that “The Whale” was a large shipment of heroin that came into the city once a year and was delivered to a house, where the product would be cut and packaged.
Meanwhile, while helping Hasan, Finch realized that Hasan’s network was ingenious. Hasan had set up routers on rooftops and had connected it to television aerial antennas on rooftops — technology that not many people use anymore. This way, they were able to make the network go across all five burroughs. Finch was able to fix the network and made it operational way ahead of schedule.
Meanwhile, Link revealed to his henchmen that after everything was done, Hasan and his son were going to be killed.
Reese and Shaw took their positions, Reese stood by at a nearby street, while Shaw positioned herself with a sniper rifle in the opposite house. Before anything happened, Shaw reminded Reese that he had to stay within the parameters of the law, to which he agreed.
All of a sudden, a black SUV carrying product from the house they were staking out was rammed into by a truck. Scarface (David Valcin), one of Elias’ lieutenants, then hopped down and took one of the special cell phones from one of the thugs, telling him that “Elias says hello.” Afterwards, Reese told Shaw that since the SUV in the traffic accident came from the house they were staking out, it gave him probable cause to enter and search the house.
Shaw got rid of the thugs that ran out of the house, clearing a pathway for Reese to enter. Once inside, he looked for Ben, but he was nowhere to be found. Luckily, Shaw saw Link bring Ben outside of the house through the backdoor and into a car, which Reese intercepted. Shaw escaped, and Reese used his badge to get credit for the take down of the drug ring.
However, a mysterious woman named Meg Watkins (Carla Buono) from Homeland Security came by, inquiring what had happened. As she walked away, the Samaritan interface revealed that she had many aliases.
After everything, Finch realized that in helping Hasan, the Machine was actually letting Hasan help them. Because the communications network Hasan had made could not be tapped by the police, the team now had a way to comminicate with each other without being afraid of Samaritan overhearing them.
At the 8th Precinct, Fusco was shocked to see an IT guy fixing the computer on the desk that used to belong to his late partner, Joss Carter ( Taraji Henson), who was also one of Reese’s allies. It turned out that Reese was going to be his newest partner.
Meanwhile, Root visited Shaw once more at the department store and told her to check her calendar and her Angler application. once again. She agreed to meet with Romeo, who kept on trying to ask her out. However, he was late. As she walked out of the restaurant a van drove up with Romeo in it. He told her that he had heard that she needed a job and that they needed a wheel man, to which she agreed.
Meanwhile, Finch realized that the typographical errors in his dissertation were deliberately placed there by the Machine. This led him to an abandoned IRT subway station that would be perfect to be their newest hiding spot and base of operations, like the library.
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Catch “Person of Interest” every Tuesday at 10:00 p.m. on CBS.