“Sorry Mr. Reese but I had to make sure you attend that wedding,” says Harold Finch (Michael Emerson) to a displeased John Reese (Jim Caviezel) who’s posing as security for a male stripper at a bachelorette party in season five episode six of CBS’ crime action series, Person of Interest. It seems the Machine has given Finch a number to the wedding of a young lady, Phoebe Turner, who’s engaged to marry public defender Will O’Brien. (Phoebe’s also set to inherit a horse empire from her father.) To infiltrate the wedding, Finch poses as Will’s long-lost Irish uncle and Reese gets invited by one of Phoebe’s sisters to be her date.
The two professional meddlers make their way to the estate for the wedding, leaving a lonely Root – yes, she genuinely seems to miss Finch and Reese when she’s away from them for any real length of time – to watch Bear the dog and monitor the Machine should any new numbers come up. A number does come up and Root (Amy Acker) gives it to Fusco (Kevin Chapman) and Bear, telling Fusco she has to be Harold’s plus one at a wedding. The number belongs to Howard Carpenter, a civil planner who’s in charge of the city’s underground construction. Fusco follows him to a meeting he has with Elias’ friend, Bruce, where he records as best he can the conversation. After Carpenter has left, Fusco confronts Bruce about the conversation. Bruce tells the detective that Howard had a work permit that didn’t come from his or any of the five families so there must be another player involved. Can anyone say Samaritan?
Back at the wedding ceremony, Finch and Reese see two men who look like assassins hovering nearby but they don’t act and the happy couple get married. Reese and Finch decide to try to get the camera away from the wedding photographer so they might be able to look at her photos and see if she got a shot of the hitmen. This is when Root shows up with the unconscious photographer saying she’s fine and will wake up in 20 minutes. Finch asks her what she’s doing at the wedding and Root says she’s filling in for the caterer. The photographer, unfortunately, did not get a photo of the two gunman.
Later at the reception Reese and Root see the two hitmen again and take them on in different empty rooms while Finch, posing as Will’s uncle, keeps the attention on him by singing “We’re Not Going to Take It” by Twisted Sister. After taking down the two thugs, Reese and Root realize the target is not the bride or the groom but Maggie the photographer. It seems she’s on the prosecution’s witness list to testify against Phoebe’s sister, Karen, who’s been doping horses. Working together Reese and Root are able to stop the two hit men (who recovered way too quickly from the first fight by the way) from executing Maggie, taking her sister prisoner and keeping it all very hush hush so the reception can continue.
Fusco listens to the recording and gets the address of the demolition site. He decides to go check on it with Bear. When he finds the tunnel Fusco discovers to his surprise the bodies of all the people who have gone missing including Carpenter and sadly Elias’ friend, Bruce. It seems this is the spot Samaritan has been dumping the bodies of those it saw as a threat. The demolition begins before Fusco can get clear and he’s knocked off his feet while Bear makes a run for it.
Meanwhile, Greer (John Nolan) is still running simulations on Shaw (Sarah Shahi) trying to convince her to switch sides, betray her friends, and work for Samaritan. Samaritan even approaches Shaw in a simulation as the image of the same little boy it used with Root to tell her that mankind will cause the apocalypse if Samaritan doesn’t control them.
Team Machine returns to the reception and sits at a table together, and Root even asks Finch to dance. Root tells Finch while they’re dancing that she knows Harold is lying to her about the Machine being able to beat Samaritan and that he’s trying to protect her. She tells Harold they need to give the Machine the tools and determination to be able to go up against Samaritan. Finch is worried about giving the Machine – and themselves – too much power, but Root encourages Finch by saying they will never know if they can handle it or not if they don’t try. Root admits to Finch in a sweet moment that the real reason she crashed the wedding and joined him and Reese is because she is lonely without them.
Review of Person of Interest season 5 episode 6:
More tongue-in-cheek than usual, season five episode six titled “A More Perfect Union” had more humor and a lighter tone than usual for the action crime series. It went back to the basic routine of following the number given to them by the Machine and striving to save the potential victim from harm. It also put Chapman’s character Fusco in danger by having him stumble across Samaritan’s dirty work but not realizing it because he’s still in the dark about what’s really going on and what he and Team Machine are up against. At this point, Finch, John, and Root really need to bring Fusco into the fold. They’re putting him in more danger by trying to protect him from Samaritan. Ignorance is not bliss nor is it a safety net.
The stand-out performance in this episode goes to Amy Acker as Root who shows sensitivity and a real bond with Finch and John. She’s no longer able to go it alone, and more importantly she doesn’t want to. Acker shows subtly just how much Finch and Reese have come to mean to Root; they’re now her family. She steals every scene she’s in with both actors which is quite a feat. Plus, the scene where she tells Finch she’s lonely without him and John is sweet without being overly emotional.
With Samaritan doing its best to turn Shaw to its side and Fusco in a bad way, here’s hoping Finch and Root give the Machine the tools she needs to get ready to take on Samaritan and bring it down.