Skip to main content

The Blacklist Season 8 finale “Konets” sent shockwaves through the airwaves when former FBI agent Liz Keen (Megan Boone) is shot. The final moments of the episode reveal a montage of memories that may (or may not) hint at Raymond “Red” Reddington’s (James Spader) true identity. The suggestion of Liz’s death changes the scope of the series as it prepares for season 9 — if it sticks.

Liz faked her death in season 3 of ‘The Blacklist’

Megan Boone as Liz Keen looks out of the FBI prison box.
Megan Boone as Liz Keen | Will Hart/NBC

In 2016, The Blacklist tried to pull the wool over fans’ eyes when Boone temporarily left the show to give birth in real life. The storyline quickly jumped to Liz faking her death to escape Red after the birth of Agnes. Having her character die suddenly came as a shock but when viewers discovered it wasn’t true. Some felt tricked, leaving everything to follow lacking credibility.

Along the same lines, nearly every main star from the cast has come close to death at some point, then pulled through. Such was the case with Samar Navabi (Mozhan Marnò) who all but died by drowning until she was rescued. She suffered some brain damage but ultimately seemed to recover before she left the task force team.

Likewise, Mr. Kaplan/Kathryn Nemec (Susan Bloammaert) was shot and believed to be dead only to return with a vengeance. She’s dramatically killed by jumping off a bridge in season 4, but we don’t ever receive the definitive burden of proof she’s really gone. In another instance, Mr. Kaplan shot Red’s former henchmen, Baz (Bazzel Baz) but his death or non-death is never addressed and he’s never seen or heard from again.

‘Konets’ ends without another definitive answer

The end of “Konets” may have felt like poetic justice for some, but others aren’t buying it. Townsend’s death in “Nachalo” led to one of his men shooting Liz in the finale. Red, of course, shot and killed him in a moment of rage. But even with Liz bleeding out on the sidewalk, fans think it’s another fakeout.

“I’ve been reading some threads here and it seems everyone has just sort of accepted Liz is dead. I think it is because (a) we see her get shot (with a lot of blood!) and (b) she is not returning to the cast in S9. Is there some other piece of evidence I am missing? Otherwise, I am really not convinced she was killed in the finale,” one fan wrote on Reddit.

“In this universe it’s possible. She knew the dude from working with Townsend. She could have made a deal with him when she realized she was not going to follow through with the plan to kill Red. He has nothing to lose with Townsend dead and in a way, it fulfills Townsend’s wish of red seeing Liz die,” another said.

Without a funeral, a burial — something that proves Liz is dead — anything goes in this world. It’s happened so many times before. We know she’s injured, but she was injured in the previous episode “Nachalo” as well. The final flash of memories in her supposed final moments could happen upon her demise, or she could fall into shock or a coma. The possibilities, truly, are many as we can’t take what we see at face value on this show.

‘The Blacklist’ loves a good red herring


‘The Blacklist’ Guest Director Kurt Kuenne Once Detailed What It Takes to Shoot an Episode and It’s Bananas

While many would love to take Liz’s death at face value, there’s a good reason why it’s not so simple. The Blacklist writers have a long history — eight years’ worth — of throwing fans off the trail or prolonging real, credible answers. Whether it’s Tom’s (Ryan Eggold) first faked death, or the presence of the pretend Katarina Rostova (Laila Robins), you could say we have trust issues.

It’s true that Boone’s exit from the show has something to do with the “death.” But, as fans stated, it could still be explained in some way in season 9. It’s also not out of the question to wonder if even that announcement is another red herring as stars come and go all the time.

We don’t yet know what season 9 will bring — how they’ll handle Liz’s death (if it sticks) — but you can bet we’ll be right there with you waiting for answers.