Person of Interest “QSO”/ “Reassortment” Review (5×07/5×08)

24 May



First off, Amy Acker in various outfits will never get old. Second, this episode is all about belief, about committing yourself to what you truly feel and not letting anyone else tell you otherwise. Max Greene sets the tone early on in the episode when he tells his viewers that “the things you believe…they’re coming from somewhere.” Later, when Finch tries to reset things post-case, he’s met with vehement resistance from Greene. “I’m not hiding!” he exclaims angrily, and this conviction ends up getting him killed by Samaritan. What follows is an intriguing discussion about free will versus morals, and it’s a great discussion to have considering the sci-fi themes of the series. Whenever you have a situation in which technology has the potential to usurp humanity, it’s a natural extension of the central debate.

There are also thematic parallels in this episode between Greene, Shaw, and Fusco. Fusco, for instance, has a similar conversation with Finch that Greene has, lamenting being kept in the dark and being told what to do/believe. He has a point, of course; Greene’s a typical person of the week, but Fusco’s been an integral part of the team for a while now. He deserves some answers.

As for Shaw, it’s clear how reality is being blurred by Samaritan, and it’s a scary thought to think of how they’re manipulating her. Throughout the episode, she’s visibly bored by the simulations, but Samaritan intends to inject quite a bit of doubt into the situation. She has free will throughout the episode–relatively speaking, of course, as she’s still captured by Greer–but she at least feels like she can choose to speed up the simulation processes. Then, it all comes crumbling down, and we realize just how caught up in their grasp that she is.


GO SHAW! This episode brings a continuation of the last episode’s themes and storylines–which is a duh thing to say because it’s the episode immediately following–and it’s done very well. We have Fusco continuing to assert his independence and expressing anger at being kept out of the loop, and we also have the exploration of reality going on with Shaw. The most interesting scene of the hour for me, though, is the scene between Elias and Finch at the end. Finch tells Elias that he’d appreciate it if he left Fusco out of it, and here, we have an instance in which Finch is trying to decide things for other people. Although Finch is one of the “heroes” of the show, the writers have a great understanding of the complexities of the situation (I’ve typed this out so many times). This, after all, ties in with what Jeff asks a bit later: “Who gets to decide who stays and who goes: you?” It’s undoubtedly an interesting question to ask. And of course, this Elias quote is even more interesting: “War requires sacrifices…underneath all that intellect, you’re the darkest of us all. It’s always the quiet ones we need to be afraid of.”

But if humans don’t hold power and machines do, what would be different then? It’s all a matter of perspective. Is human fallibility the disease or the cure? Is automation the disease or the cure?

Also, yay! Bear gets in on the action!

GRADE for both: B+

Photo credit: CBS, Person of Interest


3 Responses to “Person of Interest “QSO”/ “Reassortment” Review (5×07/5×08)”

  1. Justin May 25, 2016 at 8:05 am #

    Loved both episodes, partially because together they brought about Shaw’s freedom from Samaritan’s clutches. I look forward to her real reunion with the team. And I enjoyed seeing Lambert get what he deserved, being such a smug bastard.

  2. Hepburn3 May 25, 2016 at 1:36 pm #

    I will so miss this show when it is all over, the writers really tell good tales and make you think and I love that!
    I love seeing Root doing different things but I have to say that I cry foul that she could all of a sudden be a Prima Ballerina and be the lead in Swan Lake, for that is the costume she was wearing. Being a dancer at that level is not something that one can just do at the drop of a hat, even being in the Corps requires great skill and tonnes of practice for many years and I highly doubt that Root would have been at the barre in first position between her hacking and contract killing. I would have sooner believed that Root was an all star B-Girl or a backup dancer for Justin Bieber, other than that it was nifty seeing her as a Colonial woman. 🙂
    I do love this show as I said but I am kind of tired of the Root needs to save Sameen thread, because in truth I think that the focus should not be about them trying to reunite.
    Fusco has left!! I was so sad and angry about that but really what did John and Harold expect? Fusco is a very good detective and he can take care of himself. I found Root saying that she is not Fusco and can take care of herself to be rather smug on her part.
    Elias was right though Harold cannot and should not play ‘favourites’. Lionel deserved to be let in on what was happening and by not telling him they took away his free will and by that metric they were acting like Samaritan does. What Elias said to Harold in the end about being the darkest of them all makes me see that he is right and his fear about the machine being all knowing and seeing is more about him than his AI child.
    I hope that he realizes that because of his reluctance to do what needs to be done and not control things that Joss was murdered, and that Samaritan came into being because he would not do as the Machine asked of them and get rid of that Senator who opened funding for the evil AI.
    So it seems that Shaw is on her way back after all of the damage and mind games Greer put her through I wonder how her side affects will affect team Machine?
    What I liked when Shaw helped the black South African prisoner against those racist jagweeds and how he helped her. Also like that she understood that he had a mission to complete to help his friends and that is why he was staying. I do hope he looks her up like she told him too.
    Also ANYTHING TO DO WITH BEAR IS THE BEST!!! This may sound strange but I wonder what the Machine thinks of Bear in all of this? 🙂
    Both episodes were good!

    • polarbears16 May 25, 2016 at 7:37 pm #

      That’s a good point about Root being a dancer! And thanks for mentioning the Shaw-prisoner bits, forgot to point those out but I liked them.

      Yeah, the Machine Team isn’t all perfect, I’m glad the show is exposing some of their flaws in thinking.

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