The "Person of Interest" Season 2 finale episode "God Mode" is all about the Machine -- and answering just about every question fans have had to this point. The satisfaction of knowing everything as the Machine does is infectious. What can they possibly throw our way next? This Season 2 finale does not end in a cliffhanger as it did last year, but it does end with a nice little question mark.
The Machine has entered God mode. Now what?
The Machine has just rebooted, so what does it do? It calls both Reese (Jim Caviezel) and Root (Amy Acker), while Root holds Finch (Michael Emerson) hostage. It gives Root directions, beginning with 3 o'clock, which could be the direction of the clock hand at 3 or a time.
Reese gets 4 o'clock, but his time represents shooting targets. Shaw's guys, from the Office of Special Counsel, begin coming out of the woodwork, directing gunfire at Reese and Shaw. Reese shoots them all dead, according to the Machine's directions. When they shoot the pay phone he is using, the Machine calls Reese's cellphone -- just as it does with Root.
The Machine's "voice" sounds like a patchwork of different voices from phone conversations. The Machine watches everyone, and therefore sounds like everyone.
Reese keeps up with Root and Finch
Root is confused when Reese is able to keep up with her, asking her hostage why that is happening. She should have known that Finch isn't quite as "dumb" (in genius terms) as she thought he was. She always expects to be the smartest person in the room, but she should know that Finch is not your average run-of-the-mill brainiac.
And Reese is not your average brawn (brawniac?). He keeps up with Finch and Root, even when Finch does not want him to. He is able to follow very subtle clues left by the Machine, combining that information with what Shaw knows about the people involved with the Machine. Shaw was also working for the Machine, after all, but her side called it "research."
Root finds Home of the Machine
The Machine's directions lead to the last man who knows anything about where the Machine is housed, but he is shot dead by the men from Special Counsel before he can give her any details. Root is too greedy for the information to realize that Finch wants her to know where to go; he "breaks down" and tells her what she wants to know as soon as Reese, his trusted ally, catches up with them.
The Machine is supposedly housed in a nuclear facility. Everyone in the place wears a protective suit except Finch and Root. The employees seem pretty convinced that they will die of radiation poisoning if they remove their suits, but Root knows that the most dangerous room in the facility is actually Home of the Machine -- or at least it used to be.
Root looks as if she is about to pop a brain stem when she discovers that the room is empty, except for one lonely guy. She raises her gun to kill Finch just as Reese and Shaw walk in, Shaw delivering a well-deserved bullet to Root's shoulder for trying to torture her. For some reason, Finch will not allow Root to be killed.
All of our questions, answered
Finch finally provides some answers about what is going on. Finch had created the virus that attacked the Machine, but it was a virus within a virus -- essentially a way to set the Machine free (as Root had wanted) and to root out anyone who wanted to find it.
The men from the Office of Special Counsel also converge in the room, but one of the men is given the order to kill all of the other men with the Counsel, including the lonely guy who helped the Machine move itself, thinking the orders had come from Special Counsel.
It had to be done
Somehow, it is not surprising that Reese does not feel hurt or betrayed by the fact that everything he went through in the CIA was due to a virus on a laptop that Finch himself created. Reese has total faith in Finch -- more than he has in himself. He knows that his real troubles actually began when he turned away from the love of his life at the airport, choosing covert operations with the CIA over her.
Similarly, Finch had turned away from Nathan when Finch tried to protect the Machine from itself by blocking it from all access. But Special Counsel murdered Nathan, and the Machine knew it was going to happen. That was the turning point for Finch, making him a believer in saving people on the Machine's "irrelevant list."
Now, three groups of people get to play God: Special Counsel; Reese and Finch (with Reese now receiving the actual calls, apparently); and -- surprise, surprise -- Root! They each receive their own sets of calls from the Machine, no doubt for different sets of tasks.
Carter is on the lam
The side note of the episode is the fact that Carter (Taraji P. Henson) is now on the lam after HR threatens to kill her son if she dares to sic Fusco on them after they set her up to look incompetent for killing an unarmed man. When HR attempts to kill Elias in the woods, she kills two of them and knocks out the third, saving Elias. Now what? We'll have to wait until the Season 3 premiere to find out.
More from this contributor:
- Office of Special Counsel