20
May
19

🔴 S6 Unanswered Questions 


 

🔴 Season 6 Unanswered Questions

 
Season 6 Unanswered ?s: ⇊ Page Down ⇊
Season 5 Unanswered ?s: (with comments)
Season 4 Unanswered ?s: (with comments)
Season 3 Unanswered ?s: (original version)
Season 2 Unanswered ?s: (original version)
Season 1 (I did not start watching until Season 2)

Last Updated: 6/15/2019
 

 

Thoughts …

 

I am as flummoxed as anyone by the appearance of the character identified in the IMDb credits as “The Stranger” in the last episode of Season 6. So much depends on how you interpret that conversation, or rather the inflection of the actor. I hate asking, “Is he delivering these lines correctly?” Also, I hate turning to interviews with the writers for insights rather than trusting what I see on the screen, in particular, Jon Bokenkamp’s here: http://bit.ly/2YHbYl4

There have been three episodes total that have been largely set in the past, all without Blacklister numbers: 3:19 Cape May, 4:17 Requiem and 6:19 Rassvet. Cape May is framed as a drug-influenced dream, so I’m ready to accept that is a mix of Red’s memories, fantasies and attempts at reconciliation with the past. Requiem, in contrast, was solid and I took it to be true (“canon”). Rassvet felt like the latter, also “canon.” Until, that is, the writers threw in the wrench of “The Stranger” in the last episode of Season 6 (Robert Diaz), implying that Rassvet was not canon, like Requiem, but fantasy, a story Dom told to Liz so “she could move on.”

Suddenly, one is forced to ask, was Rassvet a dream and not canon? My experience of Rassvet rebels against this. There was too much nuance, too much specificity, too much character development for me to accept this. Ilya is a romantic with a childlike devotion to Katarina. She, in contrast, indulges him but has been trained to be a woman who uses sex as a tool. That this story was an invention of Dom’s is difficult for me to accept as a viewer. Heck, they even found an actor who looked like a young James Spader, cut his hair like his, and had him learn his mannerisms and saunter. I don’t mind writers toying with viewers. I like being surprised. But at a certain point, I can’t help but reject their so blowing up the groundwork as poor writing or toying with the audience.

I’m optimistic they will resolve this in a satisfying way next season. I’m totally looking forward to delving into the contemporary Katarina next season. What a force. Her picking up Red’s fedora and twiddling it was so sexually charged, very powerful. Perfect smile. She ‘owns’ him and she knows it. In a way, Red made the mistake of walking into that trap as Ilya, hopeful and devoted, instead of Red, wary and worldly-wise. That is, if Red was ever Ilya.

Anyhow, because of this ambiguity, I’ve adapted the questions for the multiple scenarios.

Some questions don’t require this. If Red is Ilya, many questions are answered (supposedly), so I’ve written in the answers, some of which raise new questions. Some remaining questions from Seasons 1 or 2 may just have been abandoned (like Liz’s dog and Red’s cat), which is fine. The most gnawing me have to do with Red’s “first family,” referred to by Red (Luther Braxton blind fish story), Diane Fowler (‘Don’t you want to know what happened that night?’), his blowing up the house (“I raised my family here”), and possibly in the story Red told to Madeline Pratt; and what really happened the night of the fire. And, of course, Red’s true identity.

I am also one of the few people, I guess, who still think it’s odd that Cooper got Red’s blood for DNA testing from a 30-year-old shirt, plus, who can forget Red’s severely burned back? Why does Katarina call Red “Raymond” in the last scene of Season 6? So I’m still wondering if Red could somehow be Raymond Reddington (RR), through some incredible “Ah ha!” revelation. Also, why did the memory doctor tell Liz he’d changed her memories again three years ago, if some major revelation is not outstanding?

 

Season 6 Unanswered Questions: Top

  Key: 🔴 Major   ⭕ Minor
🔴 What is “The Townsend Directive”?
🔴 Who is “The Stranger” introduced in Episode 6:22 Robert Diaz?
🔴 What is Red’s relationship to Dom?
🔴 Who is Liz’s father? (Still a few questions)
⭕ Whose death was Katarina referring to in Cape May? Why did Katarina call Red “Raymond”?
⭕ What was Red’s relationship to RR?
🔴 What was Red’s relationship to Katarina? What will it be like now?
🔴 In Rassvet, what happened after Ilya and Katarina kissed on the bed?
🔴 What has Katarina’s life been since she was last seen by Red?
🔴 What did Red ‘do to Katarina’ that Dembe thinks Liz would never understand?
🔴 What did Red whisper to Kirk that so disarmed him?
⭕ What is the story behind Red’s “weird little apartment”?
🔴 Are Liz’s memories still being manipulated?
🔴 Is there an existential threat remaining out there from which Red needs to protect Liz?
⭕ Does Red love Liz? Or rather, how does Red love Liz?
⭕ Who was Seaduke?
⭕ How much of what Red told Lilly/Jennifer is true? (Did he know or surmise it?)
🔴 Is there a third ‘family?’ (Not RR/Carla and Lilly/Jennifer or RR/Katarina and Liz/Masha)
⭕ Was the tale Red told to Madeline just a tale he told to Madeline?
🔴 What happened the night of the fire? (Still foggy)
⭕ What was the meaning of the date on the Swan Lake program?
⭕ What happened with the Cabal? Will they be back?
⭕ What has Red been injecting himself with?
⭕ Liz’s scar behaves weirdly. What happened to Red’s badly burned back?
🔴 If Red is not Raymond Reddington (or Ilya Koslov), who the hell is he?

 

Detailed Discussion

✅ Resolved 🔴Major ⭕ Minor

 
🔴 What is “The Townsend Directive”?
 
🔴 Who is “The Stranger” introduced in Episode 6:22 Robert Diaz? ~ He and Red knew each other as children. The Stanger looks eerily like an older Ilya Koslov. He knows Dom, Katarina. He has the skill set to track her down. He is clearly a trusted intimate of Red’s.
 
🔴 What is Red’s relationship to Dom? Was Red an agent or a double agent?
If Red is Ilya: Worked at USSR/Russian Embassy in DC; childhood friend of Katarina, deferent to Dom; Liz says Katarina and Ilya ‘were in the Cabal together’; possibly Dom trained both Ilya and Katarina; per Rassvet, Dom is retired and hiding in upstate New York
If Red is RR: Raymond Reddington (RR) was a US naval intelligence officer seduced by Katarina. Dom intended Katarina to ‘turn Reddington, not to have his child’
If Red is someone else: Whoever Red is, he is deferential to Dom, has turned to him repeatedly at times of high stress; they share many secrets; Dom is a father figure to Red.
 
🔴 Who is Liz’s father? Red or RR? Use of an old shirt from evidence for DNA raise and Red’s burned back raise questions.
If Red is Ilya (story is true): Raymond Reddington is Liz’s father, not Ilya/Red; detailed story-telling in Rassvet would not be fake.
If Red is RR: Red has severe burn scars on his back, arguing in favor of his being RR. But then why would he need to hide his plastic surgery records from Dr Koehler’s files and say he was someone else to Liz and Dembe?
If Red is someone else: Possibly the Ilya story is true, except for his name. It would help to know if there was a real Ilya Koslov. This might explain both Dom’s detailed story-telling in Rassvet and still be a “story” as per Red’s talk with “The Stranger.” Or he could be someone completely different (but who has a burned back).
 
Whose death was Katarina referring to in Cape May when she said, “It’s not that he died. … ” RR? Why did Katarina call Red “Raymond” in that episode? ~ She is likely referring to RR, but why would this be Red’s dream?
 
Why didn’t they go public with the bones? What is the “whole truth” Garvey wanted? Garvey already knew Red was an imposter. ~ Red said doesn’t know either. Likely Garvey wanted to blackmail Red for the “whole truth” about his identity, not just who he wasn’t but who he was.
 
Why did Red have RR’s body/bones to bury?
If Red is Ilya: He would have helped Katarina pull RR from the fire to try to save him but he died, so they disposed of the body and Red took on RR’s identity. But if it were Ilya, he would have been badly burned; would he have been capable?
If Red is RR: He didn’t die; would explain his scarred back; no body to bury.
If Red is someone else: He could have been someone else burned in the fire, but would he have be able to help bury the bones? Maybe much later.
 
Why did Mr Kaplan say to Red, “You’ll find your wife” if Naomi was RR’s wife, not Red’s, and Kaplan knew it? ~ Unexplained, but maybe just how they referred to her; or a mistake.
 
Why was there a “K” on the tree at Tansi Farms if the bones were RR’s? Why did Kaplan say “Sorry, Katarina”? ~ Since, they’re not Katarina’s bones, implies spot was dear to “K”; or as @miller2275 on Twitter pointed out, the word for “red” starts with “K” in Russian.
 
What was Red’s relationship to RR? Colleagues? Rivals? Relatives?
If Red is Ilya: Rivals for Katarina’s affection; Ilya cares for Katarina enough to vow to care for Liz/Masha, RR’s child.
If Red is RR: If so, why would Red say RR ‘was probably the only man your mother really loved’?
If Red is someone else: Would have had to be someone at the fire because of burned back.
 
🔴 What was Red’s relationship to Katarina? ~ Who did Katarina love, if anyone? What will there relationship be like now?
If Red is Ilya: They were childhood friends who ‘pledged their lives’ (at age 6) a romantic notion that Ilya insisted on over Katarina’s bemusement (see next question)
If Red is RR: ~ He was seduced by Katarina as an assignment (given to her by her father Dom), but she wrote in her diary that she had fallen in love with him, which angered Dom.
If Red is someone else: He had to have been in the fire.
 
🔴 In Rassvet, what happened after Ilya and Katarina kissed on the bed? ~ Did they have sex? How did they collaborate afterwards? When is the last they saw each other and what was their understanding when they last parted? And how does this inform how fully Red trusted her in the last minutes of Season 6?
 
🔴 What has Katarina’s life been since she was last seen by Red prior to the end of Season 6? ~ Is she still associated with the Cabal? Is she still involved in Russian Intelligence or fleeing from them? Was she tipped off? Was it she who sent the Russians? What kind of person has she evolved into?
 
🔴 What did Red ‘do to Katarina’ that Dembe thinks Liz would “never understand”? (Mr Kaplan, Pt 2) ~ What Red ‘did to Katarina’ remains a question. Is this related to Red’s “Hobson’s choice”?
 
🔴 What did Red whisper to Kirk that so disarmed him? That he wasn’t RR?
~ This supports the idea that he was either Ilya or someone else, but it must have been persuasive (thinking Red was RR, Kirk was going to kill him). Red and Kirk clearly both knew Katarina and missed her; perhaps he was else someone Kirk knew, possibly Ilya, and Red could persuade him of it.
 
What is the story behind Red’s “weird little apartment”? ~ The Russian books and photo of General Zhukov and it’s being frozen in time imply it was Katarina’s – or Ilya’s, especially if Ilya is Red. It’s odd Red the fugitive keeps this one permanent location.
 
🔴 Are Liz’s memories still being manipulated?. Has Liz forgotten she shot her father? Did she actually shoot her father? ~ Liz remembers she shot her father and believes she killed him; if the Ilya story is correct, he didn’t die immediately but only after they pulled him outside. Dr Krilov told Liz he had again manipulated her memories around the time of Luther Braxton.
 
Has Red been in Liz’s life just to keep his secret from being revealed? She seems to think so. ~ No. His “secret” (of the bones) has been revealed and he’s still in her life
If Red is Ilya: He promised Katarina he would care for Liz ‘like she we’re my own.’
If Red is RR: He’s in her life because he’s her father.
If Red is someone else: Red’s devotion to Liz implies a close relationship with Katarina or some unexplained love or obsession.
 
🔴 Is there an existential threat remaining out there from which Red needs to protect Liz? ~ Red has told her Cabal is a threat to her. The Russians who become aware that Ressler was searching for Dom propelled Red to contact Katarina. Her injecting/drugging Red when he reached out to her indicates Katarina herself might be a threat.
 
Does Red love Liz? Or rather, how does Red love Liz? ~ I’m not touching this hot button.
 
Can Liz’s “theatrics” fool Red for long? He reads people well. If he doesn’t, will Dembe?
~ Liz’s determination to find out who Red really is led to her (and Jennifer) turning him in to law enforcement and comprised much of Season 6; he DID read her well and suspected it was she who had turned him in; Dembe tracked Liz down, then kept her secret which led to the fall-out between Red and Dembe (resolved in the finale).
 
Who was Seaduke? Did Dom (Oleander) know him? ~ Possibly unimportant, though it relates to the torture scene which was the source of the shirt Cooper used to get RR’s blood for DNA.
 
How much of what Red told Lilly/Jennifer is true? How much did he know versus surmise? ~ Red’s lack of interest in Jennifer argues he is not the real RR.
 
✅ Seeing as Garvey killed Tom (and Nik and Pete and Lena) and Liz killed both Garvey and RR, how can Liz and Lilly/Jennifer possibly work together? ~ Common goals, common “enemy,” (dumb question?)
 
What did Ian Garvey mean when he told Lilly/Jennifer “Everything you believed for the last 30 years has been a lie. You’ve spent a lifetime hiding for no reason.”? ~ Red isn’t her father and her father wasn’t a traitor; still, someone shot Naomi, so it’s not clear Lilly/Jennifer is entirely safe.
 
🔴 Is there a ‘third’ family? That is not RR/Carla and Lilly/Jennifer or RR/Katarina and Liz/Masha). ~ Clues: the house Red blew up (“I raised my family here”), the blind fish story (“play dates”), the Red story told to Madeline, Diane Fowler claiming to know what happened to Red’s family “that night.”
 
🔴 What happened the night of the fire? ~ RR kidhapped Masha/Liz (“he thinks’s she’s his”), took her to America, along with the “Fulcrum” (or a piece of it) that he could use to blackmail the Cabal; Katarina followed him, broke into his house with a group of men (possibly including Ilya) to get Liz/Masha and the Fulcrum; Liz shot him to stop the arguing. But …
If Red is Ilya: He could have been one of the men who stormed the house with Katarina searching for Masha and the Fulcrum, then helped Katarina get RR out and bury.
If Red is RR: He survived, explaining Red’s burned back.
If Red is someone else: He could have been one of the men who stormed the house with Katarina searching for Masha and the Fulcrum.

So many questions remain unanswered. We’ve had accounts, flashbacks, distorted recalled memories, and some extended scenes, but much remains unclear. Who was the man on the floor? Who sewed the Fulcrum Interface Unit into the bunny. Who led Liz/Masha out of the closet? Was Ilya one of the men who came with Katarina? Who left RR’s car on the roadside on Christmas Eve? Was the story Red told Madeline related to this? The sound during Liz’s recalled memory sequence was barely audible, even when electronically amplified. Much closure would come from having this scene acted out.
 
What was the meaning of the date on the Swan Lake program? ~ Liz has not been associated with dancing, but her mother was, by both Red and Alexander Kirk; Red may romantically associate the story of Swan Lake with himself and Katarina.
 
What happened with the Cabal? Will they be back? ~ They hover.
 
What has Red been injecting himself with? ~ Red has been supporting the research of a pharmacological researcher named Spalding Stark. He has been taking meds Stark provided and has been giving himself injections and drinking a green health concoction. Is he sick?
 
Who stole Tom (Christopher Hargrave) from the beach when he was little? Why? ~ Didn’t someone pay to have him kidnapped? (I haven’t watched the spin-off)
 
Is Katarina still alive? ~ Yes, it appears Katarina is still alive, judging by the last three minutes of Season 6, and she seems … formidable.
 
Who killed Naomi Hyland/Carla Reddington? ~ Some enemy of Red’s, according to Lilli/Jennifer
 
Why does Red never speak up for himself? Why did Red stop telling stories? ~ Red doesn’t make excuses for himself; his stories have increasingly become more integrated into the episodes.
 
Will Red ever find love? Despite his numerous purported flings, he still seems guided by his promise to Katarina to watch over Liz, invoking his devotion to Katarina that was apparent in 6:19 Rassvet (assuming Red is Ilya). What happens to this devotion and promise if Katarina turns out to be just another “Big Bad”?
 
Liz’s scar behaves weirdly. … Red’s scarred back made a single but prominent appearance and has not been seen or heard from since. ~ Liz’s scar appeared carved into the covers of two go boxes (tied to Tom and/or Red) and a manila envelope (left by Tom) in the early seasons. Whut up? Still a question.
 
🔴 Lastly, if Red is not Raymond Reddington (or Ilya), who the hell is he? ~ Still THE question.
 
⬆ go to top

 
 

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