Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1 Review: I Came to Sleigh

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Wow. Blindspot Season 4 ended with a bang, and Blindspot Season 5 started with a bang.

It was almost enough to make viewers forget that it took almost a year to air Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1.

Of course, once a network has made the decision to cancel a series, where's the incentive to air its final season in a timely manner?

New Mission -- Tall - Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1

Better that viewers ponder "Is that still on the air? I thought it got cancelled."

Sorry. It's a pet peeve. CBS did the same thing last spring with Elementary.

In Shock - Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1

Actually, that was a worse offense, since that show's creators had sewn things up effectively with Elementary Season 6, just to have to develop a second final season when CBS renewed the series for one more truncated season just before Elementary Season 6 began airing.

Surely, everyone can come up with a favorite show's final season that a network badly mishandled.

Regardless, Blindspot got off to a blazing start in its final season.

Anyone who still watches network TV in a linear manner already knew that one team member wouldn't survive, thanks to the relentless NBC promos.

It was a simple process of elimination to figure out who would be written off.

Essential Text - Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1

It wouldn't be Weller because he and Jane are the lead characters.

Patterson would have been expendable, except for the fact she was needed to track down where Rich Dotcom (one of the greatest character names) was being held.

If it had been Rich in the cabin instead, his death would have been a no-brainer.

So that left Reade and Zapata. One of them had to die.

They finally let loose the feelings they had for each other right before the drone hit, giving their romance that doomed feel.

Secret Hideout - Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1

Through the years, Reade was marginally the more interesting of the two characters. But what was left for him beyond playing devil's advocate for Kurt?

On the other hand, Zapata has been coming back from the dark side (i.e., the CIA). So she's primed for a redemption storyline in this final season. 

Plus, after losing Reade, Tasha's going to have more of a edge, wanting to get vengeance for him.

Also TPTB gave Reade a heroic death scene, as he saved the love of his life, giving himself up instead. It was apparent early on that he was gone, but not how he died.

How the team largely managed to escape the drone strike was pretty predictable.

Tech Spy - Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1

Afreen, who was sympathetic to the fugitives, cracked Rich's phone and discovered the number for the burner Kurt was using.

She handed this info off to Weitz, and he called to warn them, just in time for them to use the tunnels which had been mentioned in passing on Blindspot Season 4 Episode 22.

Here's hoping we see more of Afreen, who has appeared in a half-dozen episodes over the past three seasons.

She would make a much more effective mole inside Madeline's operation than the weaselly Weitz, who operates largely on self-interest.

Maybe Weitz will grow a pair, but for now, Afreen has an impotent ally.

Tough Spot - Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1

The big question, which promises to be a season-long storyline, is who projected that big bird resembling Jane's neck tattoo on the Times Square billboards.

So far, everyone on the good guys' side has been eliminated: the fugitives, Weitz, Afreen.

That leaves either someone working with or for Madeline or a new player on the series. 

I'm betting on the latter, or maybe someone from earlier in the series who has been long forgotten.

At first, the bird appeared to be from an unfriendly, setting up a trap for the fugitives using Rich as bait.

FBI Moles - Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1

Why else would Pierce have injected a tracker into Rich, if he was just going to be turned over to the North Koreans?

It wasn't cool that Zapata knew where Rich was being held but didn't mention it to anybody. Rich may be an acquired taste but he's a team member all the same.

One staple of final seasons is that favorite recurring characters get brought back. Let's hope Blindspot continues to do that.

Up first was the colorful Shohid Akhtar, last seen on Blindspot Season 4 Episode 20.

Shoh was a gloating dick but he did give them the blueprints they needed in order to efficiently invade The Boat.

New Director - Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1

Was their takeover of The Boat way too easy? Of course it was. It was fun to watch Kurt, and especially Zapata, kick ass.

And Kurt's "That's not a knife. This is a knife" moment was hilarious as he threatened to remove Rich's tracker with that sword before opting for a taser.

Using Pierce's hand as proof of death for Shoh was an effective, if gruesome, move. It beat the alternative for the torturer, who deserved worse.

False Lead - Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1

An intriguing change of pace will be having Jane in charge, since she's the one who accustomed to living on the run.

That Cold War bunker makes for a stark if sturdy hideout.

That team of mercenaries that Madeline brought in promises to be trouble not just for the fugitives, but for Weitz and Afreen on the home front, as well.

To revisit Madeline's reign of terror, watch Blindspot online.

Were you sorry to see Reade go?

How much help will Weitz and Afreen be?

How can the fugitives turn the tables on Madeline?

Comment below.

I Came to Sleigh Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (16 Votes)

Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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Blindspot Season 5 Episode 1 Quotes

I want them found, all of them.

Madeline [to Weitz]

Afreen: Can I trust you?
Weitz: Yes, of course.