Person of Interest Season 2 Review “Proteus”

The machine is on the fritz. Or so it seems. In an unprecedented move, the machine simultaneously sends out the alert for six persons of interest. Each person of interest is the victim of a serial killer. While Reese is impressed that the machine was able to link the victims together, Finch worries that something has gone terribly wrong; if the machine had been working properly, they would’ve learned about the last victim before he was killed. Regardless, they need to track down the murderer to prevent further deaths.

Finch makes a grim discovery in a basement furnace – ashes and teeth. He suspects that the teeth belonged to one of the persons of interest. If his theory is correct, someone is killing the men in order to assume their identities. Finch rushes to join Reese on the island where Reese has tracked the last person. Reese, Finch, and several of the islanders ride out the storm at the local police station. Reese and Finch think that the killer is among them and has taken on another identity. It could be anyone. This is a familiar scenario that most recently played out on Syfy’s Haven, except on that show the killer could physically assume its victim’s identity. Every show retreads familiar ground, so this is hardly a crime. Just a bit humdrum.

Carter tries to piece together the crimes back at the police station. For some reason, she seems exasperated by Detective Beecher trying to help her. When she stubbornly insists on going to the island in the storm, he goes with her. Turns out Carter blames Beecher for ruining her opportunity to join the FBI. I have always been opposed the Carter in the FBI idea, so that’s not one I’m sorry to see go.

In Agatha Christie fashion, when the lights go out and come back on, one little islander is gone. Of course, it’s only a matter of time before Finch figures out who is behind the crimes. Unsurprisingly, the killer turns out to be the FBI agent working the case with Reese. This was predictable. From the moment Reese walked into the beach house, it was obvious the other person in the house had to be the killer. So the big reveal fizzled, but at least Finch’s confrontation with the killer gave him some of his best dialogue of the season. The tag team put down of the guy by Carter and Detective Beecher was also great. He has to have earned some points in Carter’s book.

Another great guest star, Dan Lauria, made an appearance this week, though he was underused. In fact he made more of a cameo than a guest star appearance. One good thing about this episode is that it took team machine out of the city. This doesn’t happen that frequently, and it seems like a necessary move to keep things interesting. Next week, Reese appears to head to Atlantic City, so there will be more variety of scenery again.

If Stanton’s virus has disrupted the machine, that means Finch is right and trouble is on the horizon. Finch is going to have to become involved at some point in fixing the machine. It would certainly complicate his anonymous lifestyle, but he is undoubtedly the only one qualified to do the work.

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