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Recap / Person Of Interest S 04 E 16

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Season 4, Episode 16


Reese: I gotta say, it's quite invigorating being around all these idealistic young minds. You must be enjoying your day job, professor.
Finch: As near as I can tell, college has become an overpriced Bacchanalia full of entitled, oversexed binge drinkers.
Reese: Well, somebody's gotta pay your salary.

The latest Number, Harper Rose, appears to be a college student who works at a medical marijuana dispensary, but she's actually a skilled con artist playing a dangerous double game with Dominic and one of the Latin American drug cartels.


Root returns from Sri Lanka and sets about trying to "recruit" additional assets to help in the fight against Samaritan, starting with a former Number.


  • Accidental Pervert: Two college girls returning from the showers aren't impressed when they see a middle-aged guy in a trenchcoat and cameraphone lurking around the girl's dorm.
  • Batman Gambit: Finch knew Harper would steal his watch, so he stole her ring.
  • Breather Episode: Is a mostly lighthearted episode after several tense weeks.
  • Call-Back:
  • The Bus Came Back: Caleb Phipps, the teen computer genius from "2-Pi-R," now has his own software company.
  • The Chessmaster:
    • Harper, in spades.
    • More specifically, Dominic and "Harper" both manipulated the cartel and each other just to arrange a meeting.
  • Advertisement:
  • Con Artist: Harper.
  • Continuity Nod: Finch is able to get Reese a prescription for medical marijuana from Dr. Tillman.
  • Drugs Are Bad
  • Double Speak: Finch can't bring himself to say Shaw's name or that she's "dead" (even though she isn't, but he doesn't know that).
  • In-Series Nickname: "Harper" calls Reese "Kush pops" (after his purchase at the dispensary) and "Detective Laconic."
  • Minor Crime Reveals Major Plot: An apparent college student working in a dispensary ends up uncovering the Brotherhood's marijuana operation and taking down part of a cartel's operations.
  • Mistaken for Gay: Harper confuses what Harold means when he calls himself and "Detective Riley" partners. Finch and Reese don't bother to correct her.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • How does Finch know so much about pot and how to obtain it? He won't say.
      • Fridge: Harold mentions "back pain" is always a good reason for a marijuana prescription. Something he'd know given his own injuries.
    • Advertisement:
    • What was Root doing in Sri Lanka?
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: The recent snowstorms in the Northeast clearly affected the outdoor shooting.
  • Seen It All: Fusco is utterly unfazed by "Harper"'s threats.
  • Sherlock Scan: Harper is rather good at this; she quickly figures out Reese is former special forces "playing cop," and that he and Finch help people on a regular basis. Justified because you have to be able to figure people out before you can play them.
  • Shout-Out: the diner confrontation between Dominic and Reese is an homage to Heat.
  • Shown Their Work:
    • Finch's description of the legal status of pot dispensaries—permitted by the state, but still a violation of federal controlled substances laws—is accurate.
    • The Brotherhood uses "gold farming," a real-world practice, to launder money through online games.
  • The Stoner: Harper's boyfriend Trey.
  • Stoners Are Funny: Trey's drug-induced nonchalance when Dominic's enforcer Floyd is holding him at gunpoint, casually offering her ice cream. He later acts casual when Reese rappels down from the skylight and has him hoisted out the roof, then stares at the flashing police lights in amazement.
  • Take a Third Option: Instead of continuing on their present stalemate with Samaritan, or going on the offense with just the three of them, Root and the Machine have started to try to recruit new people to assist them.
  • Taser Tag Weakness: "Harper" is stopped in her tracks ... by Fusco and his Taser.
  • Theme Naming/Running Gag: When Root is discussing software apps with Caleb's company, she goes by the name "Shannon," a reference to Claude Shannon, the father of information theory.
  • Xanatos Gambit: Dominic isn't bothered by his losses, as it gives him a chance to contact Harper, whom he wants to recruit.

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