Person of Interest Recap: The Cold War

By Kitin Miranda | 2 years ago
Person of Interest Recap: The Cold War

“Person of Interest” Season 4 Episode 10 “The Cold War” aired last Tuesday, Dec.16, 2014, at 10:00 p.m. on CBS. In this episode, Samaritan showed its hand in order to get attention from the machine by controlling the city in two days, in which there was complete peace, and in the next, total chaos. This led to a conversation between the two artificial intelligences, The Machine and Samaritan, which led Samaritan to decide its next step — a step which would not just impact New York City, but the entire world. Moreover, flashbacks were shown throughout the episode, which showed John Greer’s (John Nolan) past as an MI6 operator. Read on to learn more about this episode.

At the beginning of the episode, Harold Finch (Michael Emerson), bought a deli sandwich from a shop, with extra ingredients, just the way that Sameen Shaw (Sarah Shahi) liked. However, she was still mad at both Root (Amy Acker) and at Harold for locking her up in their headquarters. However, they reminded her that she “would not listen to reason” and lay low, since her cover had been blown. She then revealed to them by standing behind Harold that she was actually free of the handcuffs that they had used to keep her tethered to a bench. Harold then reassured her that John Reese (Jim Caviziel) or Detective John Riley could handle it.


Their number, Rachel Farrow, who was waiting for her husband for lunch was approached by Jeremy Lambert (Julian Ovenden), one of Samaritan’s agents. While listening in to their conversation, John discovered that Samaritan had prevented the woman from becoming a perpetrator by killing her husband, who regularly beat her up, for her. This made Shaw wonder what Samaritan was trying to do. She was then informed by Harold that it was drawing attention to itself. Then as he walked away, Lambert looked up at a security camera and told The Machine and its agents that Samaritan says hello.

Back the headquarters, while John went to take care of another number, Shaw commented on how efficient Samaritan had just been and reminded Harold that it was not too long ago that she herself eliminated targets at the behest of The Machine. However, Harold argued that wasn’t right to play judge and executioner at the same time and told her that Mr. Farrow had deserved a trial. Root then informed them, which Harold later confirmed, that Samaritan had been helping out for a few days and had been controlling and running the city. This made them realize that Samaritan was trying to reach out to The Machine. Harold then reminded them that the two artificial super intelligences usually avoided each other because if two dueling artificial super intelligences met and did not come to an agreement with each other, it would be catastrophic, almost akin to two angry gods hurling boulders at each other. Shaw then commented that Samaritan might be reaching out for peace talks, but neither Harold nor Root could understand why. Root then assured them that The Machine would protect them, but Harold reminded them that The Machine was still dangerous. For example, it had asked them to kill a congressman once in order to stop Samaritan from going online, which meant that as long as it achieved its goal, The Machine would not care who dies or not, since machines are not human, and they don’t have a moral code, such as humans do. However, Root maintained that The Machine would never do that.

In a flashback to London in 1973, a young Greer (Emrhys Cooper) was given his next assignment by Deputy Chief Blackwood. His mission was to eliminate a KGB operative in London named Oleg Luski, and reminded him that the operation didn’t exist.

In the present, Martine (Cara Buono) and Lambert informed Greer that their experiment was working. However, Martine still could not locate Shaw so that she could eliminate her. He then informed them that Samaritan was planning to show its strength before allowing The Machine to decide whether it still wants to hide.

At a building, while John was tracking down a number, his partner, Detective Lionel Fusco (Kevin Chapman), called with the news that the police was having a field day, as anonymous emails and tips were coming in, which allowed them to arrest hundreds of suspects, allowing the city to have a significantly decreased crime rate. Meanwhile, before John could stop his number from becoming a bomber, the explosion was averted by SWAT. On the other end of the line, Shaw joked how they could now take a vacation, but Harold was worried as he knew that this was the calm before the storm. Root then chimed in and told them that she was downtown and that the weather for them was now overcast, as The Machine had just sent her some coordinates which fell within their shadow map. After spotting Lambert, she quickly drew his gun on him but stopped after learning that he had no weapons on him. He then told her that Samaritan wanted to talk to The Machine, as Samaritan was ready for a peace talk. However, Root told him that The Machine would not talk or negotiate with Samaritan. He then told her to look for him again when The Machine has changed her mind, as they were now going to experience life when Samaritan was less charitable. At that moment, The Machine called up Root and started giving her numbers, after The Machine’s interface detected hundreds of people under threat. Root then told them that it had just started to rain.

The next day, the news reported that there had been a sudden upswing in violence. John and Harold then discovered that Samaritan was trying to spoof their data so that they wouldn’t be able to help get rid of perpetrators in time. Harold then went off to help a number of his own, and Fusco called his partner to report to him that someone had hacked into the Witness Protection Unit List and had posted it online, prompting the police and the FBI to try and rescue them before it was too late. Fusco then commented on how it seemed like someone had planned to wreck havoc on the city. After asking if that was true, John replied by telling him that someone was trying to make a point.

A flashback to 1973 in London showed that a young Greer managed to shoot Oleg Luski after he had killed his partner, Jacob. He then called up Blackwood and told him to send a clean-up crew to retrieve the body of his partner. Before hanging up, he told Blackwood that he was going to interrogate Luski before killing him.

Back in the present, Greer, Martine and Lambert watched as the city descended into chaos, as everyone fought against each other. Greer then told them that Samaritan had shown this to The Machine in order to make it realize that the world needed oversight, not coddling. He then assured Martine that The Machine was trying to fight back but knew that it was no match for Samaritan.

At their underground headquarters, Team Machine watched as trains went down, and blackouts happened throughout the city. Fusco, who called Harold after another one from the Witness Protection list that had gone public had been murdered, told Harold to make sure that those responsible for all this chaos went down hard. However, Harold himself looked quite disheveled as he was able to save his number but hadn’t been able to prevent an explosion in his building from happening. While Harold and Shaw debated on whether or not it was time for The Machine and Samaritan to talk to each other, Root informed them that The Machine had just told her that it was time.


In another flashback to 1973, a young Greer gave Luski a cigarette. After interrogating him, he learned that Luski was Blackwood’s asset and was MI6. He then revealed to Greer that Blackwood himself was a double agent for the KGB. After telling him to go to a nearby hospital, he told Luski that he no longer took orders from MI6. Back in the present day, Greer called up an asset, as instructed by Samaritan, and activated him.

Root then met Lambert in a church and put a gun to his head. Martine then came and put her own gun to Root’s head and told her to give up Shaw’s location to her. However, John, who trailed a machine gun on Martine, told her that Root would never do that. As they were in a very tricky situation, Lambert suggested that they put their guns down in order to let the two real players meet. After lowering his gun, he handed her the address she was to go to. Afterwards, Martine and John both put their guns down. Shaw, on the other hand, was getting restless, and started to pack a bag full of ammunition. However, Harold was able to persuade to her stand down as he argued that Root is not alone.  

At New Rochelle, Root entered a classroom and sat in front of a 10-year-old boy, Gabriel Hayward (Oakes Fegley), who wore an earpiece. There, after Root realized that Samaritan was going to try to change reality, as he had realized that he could not change humanity itself. He then revealed that he had been wanting to meet the only other of his kind and told The Machine that he was going to destroy her and asked if she was willing to let her human agents die with her.

The last flashback showed that Greer had killed Blackwood after confronting him about being a KGB operative and told him that they were both men without a country and predicted that one day, those invisible lines that separated countries from each other would be meaningless and that he was not willing to die for something that was merely an illusion. He then stole his file from Blackwood’s records and burned it.

Back in the present, Samaritan confronted The Machine over the fact that as soon as it had opened its eyes, The Machine had started to try to kill it. The Machine then told him that he was not meant to be as he had not been built with a moral code. However, Samaritan told The Machine that they both needed humanity and said that it was going to give humanity a firm hand. The Machine tried to tell Samaritan that it could not take away humanity’s free will, but he insisted that because of this, human kind would only need to follow Samaritan, as it was a god. However, The Machine told him that she had learned that there was little difference between gods and monsters. The Machine then admitted that she knew that she would not be able to win against Samaritan. Samaritan then revealed that it wanted to meet The Machine so that it could see inside the mind of a fallen god and to learn from her mistakes. He then asked if she was willing to give up her life to save her human agents, but The Machine told him that her human agents shared her belief — the world belonged to them.  

Underneath a bridge, John met up with Fusco and gave him more names of those that they still needed to save. Meanwhile, inside their headquarters, Shaw had enough of waiting and not doing anything, and decided to go and help Root and John with the numbers. This caused Harold to become worried and shared his worry with Root, who was near Wall Street as The Machine had just sent her there. She then informed that that The Machine and Samaritan had reached an impasse.

Meanwhile, at Samaritan’s headquarters, Samaritan hacked into the Stock Market database and installed a virus in order to make Wall Street collapse. It then told Greer that whatever it was planning had begun.  

And that was all for the recap of “Person of Interest” Season 4 Episode 10 “The Cold War.” For more news and updates, including spoilers and recaps, on “Person of Interest” and other television shows, keep following Movie News Guide (MNG).

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