Red (James Spader) and Liz (Megan Boone) have been on the run for a long time in Season 3 of NBC's "The Blacklist." The pair's fugitive status has spread the show all over the globe, as Red and Liz chase down Cabal insiders, Ressler (Diego Klattenhoff) and the FBI chase them, and Tom (Ryan Eggold), well, does what Tom does. However, those many paths converge in episode 7, "Zal Bin Hassan," as Red looks to turn the tables on the CIA director (David Strathairn) and the Cabal.
This week's blacklister also pulls Samar (Mozhan Marno) into the mix in a major way. Red needs an infamous Iranian assassin, Zal Bin Hasaan, to use as bargaining chip to get a mysterious meeting to further his takedown of the Cabal. Through Samar, Red gets the FBI involved. Hasaan was the assassin who bombed a meeting between student activists and government officials and killed her brother, Shahin. For her, it's personal. They begin searching for a group of kidnapped engineers Red says are being held hostage by Hasaan.
Meanwhile, Tom shows up at Cooper's (Harry Lennix) house and pops his trunk to reveal Karakurt (Andrew Divoff). The only problem is he is awake, so Tom has to hold him down while Cooper smacks him in the head with a wrench. Then, the duo try to shut the trunk again before Mrs. Cooper walks in the garage -- Is this a scene from "Fargo"? Tom ties up Karakurt and starts to "convince" him to confess and clear Liz's name. Then, he calls Liz. He wants to meet.
"Well, that's not a good idea," the hilariously dry Red quips.
Elsewhere, the FBI crashes Hasaan's kidnapping party, but the assassin gets away. However, Samar is shocked to find that one of the hostages is Shahin (Sammy Sheik) -- yes, the dead brother! She cannot believe it. He says he ran away after the bombing because the regime was chasing him.
Liz meets with Tom -- in their favorite restaurant! -- and Tom has high hopes of using Karakurt to exonerate Liz.
"You're going to have a normal life -- kids, everything you always wanted -- all of it," he tells her.
He says he should have never left on that boat. She says he had a dream and she still wants him to follow it.
"That's what I'm trying to tell you, Liz," Tom says. "I am following it."
Cue all of the Tom and Liz shippers swooning in unison!
The romantic reunion is interrupted when Ressler storms in with a small army of FBI agents. He had been tipped off about the meeting after finding out the CIA had tapped Tom's phone -- Mr. Solomon (Edi Gathegi) did some snooping around the restaurant and smooth talked Tom's favorite waitress to get the number. Tom and Liz sneak away, but Ressler nabs Mr. Solomon. He takes him back to the FBI and interrogates him and, while the sneak CIA director is able conceal his connections to the Cabal assassin, the violation of the CIA tapping Tom's phone is enough for Ressler to finally convince the Justice Department to pull the CIA out of the FBI's headquarters and off his back.
Unfortunately, Samar is not having such an easy time. You see, the reason her brother was not killed in the bombing years before was because, well, he was the bomber. Shahin is Hasaan and he sets off a bomb at Mossad's U.S. headquarters where Samar is catching up with an old Mossad flame who joined to help with the search for Hasaan. Samar burns the list of Mossad agents and their identities before her brother can get them, but when he finds her he takes her hostage and makes toward a getaway boat. Ressler is on their tail, but he is too late. Luckily, Red is waiting at the boat -- he may have shaken down Hasaan's smuggler earlier. Red leaves it up to Samar to decide if she will leave Shahin for the FBI or let Red take him to help Liz. She chooses Liz. Her brother reminds her that she swore to protect him when their parents were murdered.
"I swore to protect by brother. He died."
Afterward, Ressler pays a visit to Cooper's house where he ends up in a fistfight with Tom over what to do about Liz. Meanwhile, Liz sits in the restaurant again, dreaming of family.
However, Samar gets the episode's final moments. Aram (Amir Arison) is crying tears of joy to see Samar back safely, but it is Samar and Ressler who get to share an intense scene where the pressure of chasing Liz is wearing on Ressler and the now freshly opened wounds of losing her brother are getting to Samar.
— The Blacklist (@NBCBlacklist) November 13, 2015
They have been through a lot together and are both feeling pretty vulnerable -- Klattenhoff and Marno are flat-out killing it in this scene, by the way -- and soon they are back at Ressler's apartment getting hot and heavy in the dark to the sounds of Lapalux's "Without You." Aram is going to be pretty bummed if he finds out.
Listen to "Without You" by Lapalux below:
Oh, and Red turned in Hasaan/Shahin and will have his meeting. So the battle between him and the Cabal is primed for an epic conclusion in next week's fall finale.
"The Blacklist" airs Thursdays at 8 p.m. EDT on NBC. Get a preview of next week's episode HERE.