Rules in Defiance
Francois Arnaud as Oscar, Jaimie Alexander as Jane.
So far, Blindspot has been pretty prudish about sex. Lips have brushed, innuendos made, and dreams had, but nobody — with the exception of Patterson — has been getting any. That all changes in “Rules in Defiance,” as Weller and Reade are now navigating new relationships. Hopefully, it will make them both less dour.
But before we get to that, this episode’s case revolves around a missing woman linked to a sex-trafficking ring. Tipped off by an anonymous email that reads, “medida por medida” or “measure for measure,” Patterson puts together a series of Jane’s tattoos that point the FBI to a street in Queens. This leads them to a mural that memorializes a woman who was allegedly killed by her boyfriend, who is now sitting on death row and slated for execution the next day. When the team looks further into the crime, they discover that the woman was actually disappeared by a corrupt immigration cop who has lured hundreds of women into a hidden proto-brothel.
To infiltrate the ring, Zapata goes undercover and is thrown in harm’s way when she’s drugged and dumped in a basement with a large, lurking security guard. After attempting to kick his ass, the brothel operators realize she’s not a mere immigrant and decide to burn the house, along with dozens of women inside, to incinerate their trail of evidence. Of course, Weller’s team gets to them before anyone is hurt, and the guy on death row is saved. However, the big question is unanswered: Who is the sicko operating the brothel and when will he pop back up to burden Weller’s team again?
And though this week’s top-line case is tragic and diverting, it’s what goes on behind the scenes that drives Blindspot’s main arc forward.
For starters, Reade is simultaneously having shower sex with Weller’s sister Sarah and prying for what she knows about Jane; too bad Sarah’s only interested in sex. On top of that, Weller is sleeping with his ex, Allison, waking up hungover in her apartment and wooing her with basketball tickets. In both cases, it’s clear that the men are hiding feelings and motives, whether they know it or not. I have a hard time believing either is in it for the long haul. Also, Reade is attacked after spotting Oscar in a traffic camera, which will probably set Weller on an even stauncher path against his sister dating a fellow agent.
Poor Zapata is still dealing with the fallout of her involvement in the gambling ring. This time, she’s approached by a federal prosecutor who wants to figure out the connection between Mayfair and Carter, and is blackmailing her to help feel out the dark pieces of the puzzle. It seems this double life is part of the reason Zapata is so willing to put herself in the line of fire at the brothel. She’s feeling guilty enough that self-destruction may be her method of coping. It’ll all come out at some point; above all, Zapata is loyal and will protect her team when push comes to shove.
Most important, Jane spends the episode caught in a web of guilt, self-reflection, and questioning. All within a day, she calls in sick, tells Borden (the staff psychologist) she wants to quit the FBI, doubles back when she realizes she wants to help save Zapata, tells Oscar she refuses to be an asset/leader anymore, and realizes she has no choice. If she refuses to cooperate, the collateral will be Weller. Talk about a busy day.
- A lion is on one of Jane’s calves.
- A bull is on the left side of her waist.
- Add the two together with their translated Spanish inscriptions, and you’ve got a Shakespeare quote from Measure for Measure: “Some rise by sin and some by virtue fall.”
- Also add something about trigonometry in there, and somehow three points of a triangle become relevant, one of which leads them to a street in Queens.
- On that street in Queens is a mural made in memoriam of a neighborhood girl who was killed years earlier. A logo on the mural matches one on Jane’s left arm.
- This week’s episode anagram translates to “find a secure line.” Toss that one onto the pile: “In case of emergency,” “follow these instructions,” and “stay where you are.”
- The dialogue between Allison and Weller is not much better than what we get between him and Jane. The chemistry is definitely less awkward, though.
- Jaimie Alexander is pretty good at pull-ups.
- Jane and Oscar have zero chemistry. If they were engaged, wouldn’t she have some lingering, physical memory of him? Or at least a connection after having had a sex dream about him?
- Was that Oscar who attacked Reade? I’d assume yes, but it could be a blatant mislead.