Person of Interest Review: Breaking Good

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Get your running shoes out - because this episode of Person of Interest was on the move. Was anyone else tired from all of the sprinting and dodging bullets?

Interestingly enough, "Triggerman" called in a moral dilemma when the number that came up belonged to a stone cold killer for the Irish mob named Riley. To save or not to save, that was the question.

Reese Confronts a Mob Enforcer

Played by Jonathan Tucker, who already had a bit of experience acting in the Irish Mob in the canceled series The Black Donnellys, his dark and dangerous side was apparent from the get-go. Riley was not someone to be messed with.

That personality worked nicely in clashing with Reese and straight up shooting him, while even giving him something of a challenge when the two went into hand-to-hand combat.

Although I have to say ,Reese's fight in the alley and saying "Wrong way, guys" was the more hilarious of the two.

At the same time, because Riley was a professional, he was a help in not only protecting Annie, but working with Reese in taking down the mob boss. I did predict that he wouldn't make it it out alive, in a way almost wanting to sacrifice himself for the girl he loved, but I thought it would simply be the boss that took him out.

And what worked well, apart from the fast-paced action, was how the episode took some time to slow down for some great character scenes.

Riley had a chance to be more than just the "bad guy" that Reese had to protect and it was good to see him show off a more emotional and caring side on the roof top. His story was rather tragic (and reminded me of a bit of the movie The Town) but captured the general idea of people being able to change.

Finch even got some time out of the office and sat down with the still fantastically menacing Elias. I love those callbacks and his short screen time worked perfectly with the mob based story. The way he enunciated his words and smiled behind those glasses established that even locked up, his presence remains vigilant and strong.

But bottom line, after the action, drama and humor that surrounds the story, this show knows how to nail those endings.

Of course Reese saved the day, but rehashing Root and her idea that people are bad code was a nice touch to the overall theme of the episode. Clearly, Finch hasn't completely gotten over his kidnapping experience, but it's obvious he's learning to grow from it and recognize that people aren't black and white. They can have the chance to change. Look at Reese for the most foremost proof. Look at Riley.

I still question if Elias falls under that category, but it was great seeing his demand simply be a battle of the minds in a game of chess. He may have complied with Finch's request, but I still don't trust him and am waiting for him to bust out of prison or something.

And, finally, Reese standing at the door of the bounty hunter with that slick grin and saying, "I'm not here for the money." Bam! Cut to black.

What a way to close everything up.

This was definitely a fun episode that continued to keep the show running on all gears. And obviously having Fusco spend his time switching drinks with the drunk next to him was another one of those small moments in a show full of big ones, that added to the enjoyment of the hour.

In the end, it's that solid pacing and story, while giving the characters a chance to grow that keeps Person of Interest going and me looking forward to whatever is in store for next week.


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0 (166 Votes)

Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

Sarah silva

This was a pretty good episode. I like Jonathan Tucker and it was nice to see him on this episode. I had a feeling he would not make it until the end of the episode. They can not save everyone, everytime and I sadly knew his says were numbered. Yes he was a bad guy but I did symapthize with him.
Poor Finch was still having a hard time leaving his house/office, but he managed to do so and he seemed to be okay with it once he was out. I say it every week but I love Reese! Once again Fusco and Carter were great too and the four of them make such a great team, they can almost be called the Avengers without superpowers!


Loved the Elias presence. Enrico Colantoni is amazing, he lights up the screen. Overall great episode as always.


Great episode as always. Love to see Jonathan Tucker (Riley). He's such a good actor and always brings out everything to his role. Fab ep.

Sp mckenna

@joker573- I didn't even think that but I totally see it. I did think of The Departed though when they were trying to avoid the bad guys on the rooftop. @DeAnn - It's true. We never did find out who won. I know technically it didn't matter, but now I'm curious too.

Sp mckenna

@Mary - Thanks! I'm really enjoying this season so far @Rai - I love that his character isn't being overused either. He's a formidable foe for Reese and Finch

Beverly brooks

Ah, one of my favorite shows.


I agree with the reviewer and the comments, in that every week POI is like sitting down and watching a masterpiece being made...when TV is good, it is like a work of art, it moves you and makes you feel varying emotions during the course of the narrative. I never cease to be amazed by Jim C's sly-and-dry delivery of Reese's lines, and Finches subtle bon mots inserted where you least expect them are bracing.
Even the villans are nuanced, with Elias showing such glee behind his killer's eyes, that if you didn't know that the man was a mafia don who had many people murdered, you'd think he was just a regular guy, probably a bit more bookish and introverted than some, but the kind of guy who works as a CPA and whom few people notice as he goes by....the quiet neighbor who keeps to himself who pops up in every crime drama. But here, he's a brutal killer who just wants a good game of chess with someone as smart as he is. Enter Finch. I really wish they'd have let us see who won the game!


Say it ain't so....the lame commercial networks can actually create a very good show's nice not to be chased away with their usual Dimwit dramas ...or worse, dramadies ....


I loved the last scene. Brought back memories of the scene in The Departed where Mark Wahlberg showed up at Matt Damon's apartment and finished putting his groceries away for him. :-)


Getting better every week - can't wait to watch it

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Person of Interest Season 2 Episode 4 Quotes

She just became his next target... and he just became mine.


Reese: I'm going in.
Finch: Something happening?
Reese: Yeah, lunch.