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Person of Interest – The Devil You Know – Review: “Loyalty is the most important thing”

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At the time of publishing, it was exactly one year ago today that Elias and Scarface delivered one of the most badass and superb scenes on the show, during which you could almost hear the entire Person of Interest fandom shout with joy at their television screens as Simmons was garrotted. Last night, it was the complete opposite emotion, as Elias’ right-hand man Scarface Anthony died at the hands of “young lion” Dominic. It was an emotional episode, one that did a fantastic job in developing our favourite mobsters and left you on edge the entire way.

Elias has always been a great character. Though he’s always been an antagonist, he’s always been true to himself and to others. I always go back to ‘God Mode’, and one of my favourite Elias moments. His frustration that “oath-breaker”/”worm” Terney was going to kill him as opposed to his “fair is fair” attitude towards Peter Yogorov killing him is the perfect way to epitomize Elias. He’s loyal to himself and those around him, and especially so to those loyal to him.

So when Anthony’s life was in jeopardy, and Elias was offered a way to save it, he was never going to leave his childhood friend. I think that deep down, Elias knew Dominic was never going to release Anthony. Dominic isn’t like Elias. He has the cunning, the mind that allowed him to get the upper hand on Elias. What he lacks is the honesty, the ability to keep his word. This makes him less respectable than Elias, but at the same time very dangerous.

Enrico Colantoni and David Valcin both stood out in this episode. The final phone call between the two was magnificent. Seeing these two seemingly tough mobsters share one final moment of emotion was a great way of ending things between the two. This scene, combined with the reveal to us that the pair met in a childhood home (even more fittingly, the same place Anthony died) and are almost like family - “a real brotherhood”, as Elias said - made the conclusion to their relationship even more satisfying.

This (along with various other scenes) raises an interesting point. While Elias has now vowed to make Dominic pay for Anthony’s death, if Link were to die, would Dominic even care? “We can always find more soldiers” is the line Dominic delivered towards the end. His gang’s name is quite contradictory in this sense, as a real brotherhood would see its members care about one another, and not just be willing to put their deaths down as an acceptable loss.

I do wonder now if there will soon be a divide between Link and Dominic. After his conversation with Anthony about being the right-hand man, this ‘don’t care’ attitude from Dominic may be the thing that leaves Link wanting out, and at the very least, not willing to do his job to the extent he should. Would he lay down his life for Dominic? I highly doubt it.

The final scene was shot perfectly to contrast with the final scene of ‘Witness’, in which Elias first appeared. Just three years ago, he was surrounded by his men, with little care in the world. Now, he takes to the boardwalk alone. It’s a sad decline in power for Elias, and even away from the power, it's sad to see him all alone.

Considering the cliffhanger last week, not a whole lot happened in the story with Shaw – understandably so, given that the focus was, quite rightly, Elias. It was quite obvious that she was going to avoid being killed by Martine in the store, though she did it in style. I love that she keeps a machine gun hidden beneath her counter.

Shaw’s desire to get in on the action ended up backfiring on her, as Root took a tranquilizer to her neck in order to keep her safe. Clearly, Root’s earlier line that other people who care for her are scared, even if she isn’t, had no effect on Shaw whatsoever. Shaw’s recklessness is going to be her eventual downfall, and it’s frustrating because she seemingly has no regard for her own safety. The next episode will definitely explore Shaw’s anger at being forced to stay underground, something which is almost certainly not going to happen.

They really pushed at the idea of a Root and Shaw pairing again this week. Root’s ‘other people care for you’ line was one of the more obvious instances, while scenes such as the one in the truck as Root holds Shaw was one of the slightly more subtle ones. Shaw even reciprocated a little, albeit in a more sarcastic way, when she threatened to purposefully expose herself if Root didn’t take her to Reese. Whether or not Person of Interest chooses to pursue a relationship between the two is yet to be seen, but they’re certainly building the foundations for it.

Now that Team Samaritan knows that Team Machine are being masked and Samaritan can’t see them, Greer has adopted a much more direct technique – send out a group of mini-Terminators with Martine the Terminator to search for them. And if they care about being covert as little as Martine does, we could be seeing all-out chaos in New York across the next few episodes.

The only other thing left to discuss is Fusco. He’s still yet to discover how the team gets their information, and doesn’t need a cover identity. However, that doesn’t mean he isn’t in danger, as we saw in this episode. Martine tracked him down after he helped facilitate Shaw’s escape at the truck, and Fusco did a great job of throwing her off.

What really interested me was that Finch put Fusco’s wellbeing ahead of Elias’. Granted, the one-man Fusco army probably wouldn’t have been able to do much to stop the Brotherhood, but ‘two heads are better than one’, as the saying goes. Instead, Finch protected Fusco. I think it’s only a matter of time before Fusco is brought in on the secret, which though it’s been a long time coming, it will be a life-changing day for Fusco, and for the team.

Though it doesn’t quite top the year ago episode, ‘The Devil’s Share’ (which is still the show’s number one episode in my book), nor ‘God Mode’, ‘The Devil You Know’ slots nicely into number three on my list of the best Person of Interest episodes. It had a fantastic balance of intense story, emotion and when combined with some brilliant acting, formed an incredible, thrilling episode.

Odds and ends:

  • I didn't mention it above, but that final scene looked beautiful, didn't it? Shooting on location made that scene look so much better.
  • Bear’s sad look towards the end was a change of tone from last week.
  • Fusco getting upset at the camera watching him was funny.
  • As much as I dislike Dominic, I have to credit Winston Duke who is doing a great job in the role. He makes the character feel very intimidating and powerful, just as he should be.
  • Also, everything looks to be converging with Dominic learning more about Team Machine. Is it too much to ask for a three-way army battle between Team Machine, Team Samaritan and the Brotherhood?
  • So many callbacks to ‘Witness’ in this episode. The boardwalk scene, Reese running around protecting Elias, Elias ending the episode with a Latin saying and Elias making Reese regret giving him a gun. I love it when the show does this kind of thing.
  • I love the hat Elias wears during this episode.
  • “Look on the bright side, Sameen. I’m pretty sure you just sold your last tube of luminizer.”
  • “You go through identities like they’re Dixie Cups.”
  • “It’s my building. I bought it.” “To become a slumlord?”
  • “Morior invictus” = death before defeat; “Invictus maneo” = I remain unvanquished
  • I don’t usually mention the ratings, but Person of Interest beat Chicago Fire for the first time this season. Hey, Chicago Fire - Veni, vidi, vici.
  • No new episode next week, or the following week. The next episode is the midseason finale, ‘The Cold War’, and that airs on December 16th.

All that’s left to say is RIP Anthony ‘Scarface’ Marconi.

So, what did you think of the episode? Are you going to miss Scarface? Are you excited for Elias getting revenge on Dominic? What will happen with Shaw? Are you going to be able to cope without POI until December 16th? Leave your thoughts in the comments!

About the Author - Bradley Adams
16 year old in England who works as a writer and reporter for SpoilerTV. I'm a big TV fan, with my range of shows almost exclusively dramas. Some of my all-time favourite shows include 24, LOST, Breaking Bad and Friends. Some of my current favourites include Person of Interest, Arrow and The Walking Dead. I review Person of Interest for Spoiler TV. I also run an Arrow blog, ArrowFansUK, as well as my own tv blog. Aside from TV, I'm a keen cricketer. Get in touch with me via the links below or via email
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