Person of Interest Season Review 4 “Prophets”

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I got the feeling through most of this week’s Person of Interest that Team Machine is starting to get cabin fever. Reese’s weekly kneecapping has finally landed him in the psychologist’s office at work. Finch’s pessimism about Samaritan and the machine explains why he was reluctant to get back into the game. Root reveals that the machine hasn’t been as communicative as she’s led the team to believe. Shaw is the only one who seems to be plodding along.

Let’s first get to Reese’s psychologist. She’s pretty and seems very concerned about Reese’s wellbeing – “seems” may be the key here. Something about her rubs me wrong. I don’t trust her. It was particularly weird when she asked Reese where he was the night before. Why would the police be following Reese at night when he’s off duty? I did like Reese’s speech to her about Carter, though I also think it’s time to let that one go.

Jason Ritter played this week’s person of interest, Simon Lee, and continued the show’s tradition of outstanding guest stars. When Lee figures out the gubernatorial election has been rigged, he gets put on Samaritan’s hit list. Samaritan sends out its Terminator-style hitwoman, Martine. I can’t stand her. I was really hoping that Root would take her out, but no such luck.

After Root’s big confession that the machine isn’t as chatty as before, I thought there might be hope for her to take on a different role with team. This looked a real possibility when Finch graciously referred to her as a “comrade.” The problem is that Root can’t understand that Finch is also trying to warn her. In the flashbacks, we learn that Finch’s ability to control the machine is tenuous. Finch views the machine as something that carries out “objectives” – not something capable of human like emotion or devotion. I think that may be up for debate and the machine probably has some characteristics that Finch can’t appreciate. But, I also think Root is blind to the machine’s limitations. What struck me with the Root storyline was that it felt like she is being set up to be killed. The other not so shocking confession we got from Root is a veiled declaration of her feelings for Shaw. Does Shaw reciprocate? It’s hard to tell.

I enjoyed Finch’s backstory this episode. It provided more context for why Samaritan may be a useful tool for Decima, and also suggested that Samaritan may be something more dangerous than even Decima comprehends. It’s also interesting the way the earlier machines engaged in survival of the fittest behavior. This provides context for Samaritan deciding to go after the machine.

I would like to see more interaction with the machine. It looks like we may get that next week as Finch looks into the camera and says that they need to talk. I assumed that he was talking to the machine and not Samaritan, since Samaritan shouldn’t be able to recognize him with his new identity.