The Blacklist Season 9: Did Episode 4 Drop a Hint About Red’s Identity?

For many years, The Blacklist centered around the question of Raymond “Red” Reddington’s true identity. For some fans, the season 8 finale “Konets” confirmed a popular theory. This theory states that Red is actually Liz’s mother Katarina (also called the Redarina theory). However, plenty of fans are not convinced by this theory going into The Blacklist Season 9. Still, something Red said in episode 4 makes a lot of sense if Red is Liz’s mother.

Diany Rodriguez as Weecha Xiu and James Spader as Red in The Blacklist Season 9. Weecha stands behind Red, who is wearing a dark coat and hat.
Diany Rodriguez as Weecha Xiu and James Spader as Red | Will Hart/NBC

What is Red’s true identity?

When Red first entered Liz’s life, it became apparent that she meant a lot to him. However, after nine seasons it’s still not clear exactly why. Earlier seasons led fans to believe that Red is Liz’s father. Now a more popular theory has emerged.

Many fans believe that Red is actually Liz’s biological mother, Katarina Rostova. The theory explains that Katarina underwent facial reconstructive surgery and other operations to assume this new identity. This way, Katarina could protect Liz from afar without putting her in danger.

Many fans believe that the season 8 finale “Konets” all but confirmed the Redarina theory. After Liz is shot by one of Townsend’s men, a montage of her life flashes across the screen.

Viewers saw sweet moments between Liz and Red, as well as an image of a mother holding a baby, thought to be Katarina and Red. Many fans believe that this scene was meant to confirm that Red is Katarina. The Blacklist Season 9 has yet to directly address the question of Red’s identity. However, perhaps the new season has been dropping hints.

Did this scene in ‘The Blacklist’ Season 9 Episode 4 reference Red’s identity?

Episode 4 introduces a new blacklister criminal named Michael aka The Avenging Angel. Michael is determined to right certain wrongs through extreme methods. When Michael was young, she became pregnant and was sent to a convent in Rome where she was basically kept as a prisoner until she gave birth and was forced to give up her baby for adoption.

Now, Michael takes revenge on the rich for the poor. At the end of the episode, Red confronts Michael and she tries to defend her actions. Red seems to understand Michael’s pain, but in the end, he kills her anyway.

Annabella Sciorra as Michael in The Blacklist Season 9 Episode 4 "The Avenging Angel." Michael looks surprised to face Red.
Annabella Sciorra as Michael in “The Avenging Angel” | Will Hart/NBC

The hosts of The Blacklist Exposed podcast pointed out the deeper significance of this scene, assuming Red is Katarina. Michael and Red are both mothers torn up over the loss of their children.

In this scene, Red says, “My guess would be that you had something important taken from you, more important than anything else.” Podcaster Aaron Peterson points out that this is “another established connection between the fact that Red lost Liz, his child, and also that he relates [to Michael].”

Will ‘The Blacklist’ Season 9 address Red’s identity?

Although The Blacklist Season 9 has returned, it has yet to directly address the question of Red’s identity. Some fans are fine with that, and would prefer for the storyline of Red’s identity to stay in the past. Others feel that the Red is Katarina theory has already been confirmed.

However, not everyone is convinced and some viewers are still hoping for answers in The Blacklist Season 9. If the new season gives a solid answer, then this mystery can finally be put to bed.

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