The Blacklisters

Their numbering and status on Red's blacklist.
What is the reason for the ranking order? Are there themes and commonalities among the stories?

* The former Bad Guys page has been merged with this page. Discussion from the Bad Guys prior to S2,Ep 9 - Luther Braxton - can be viewed here.

A very special thank you to our member Eastcoast, for her major contributions to this page. Also big thanks to Tatiana, who started us down this path of listing the main points to each episode.
  • #  7. Tom Keen   (alive) - Tom actually does love Liz, German crime groups, our goveerment sweeps things under the rug to suit them
  • #  8. Berlin   (dead) - revenge for daughter's killing, false information
  • #11. Tom Connolly (dead) - Cabal member, about to frame or kill everyone Liz cared about, Liz recalls her past, Liz shoots and kills Tom Connolly, putting friends ahead of yourself
  • #12. The Decembrist / Alan Fitch (dead) - Cabal/Fitch blaming Red for something he did not do, estranged family
  • #14. Alexander Kirk (active) - billionaire energy mogul/oil oligarch, manipulating politics for personal gain, betrayal, hiding, kidnapper
  • #16. Anslo Garrick  (dead) - terrorists, assassin, kidnapping, knows Red from the past, Red saves Ressler's life
  • #18. Susan Hargrave (at large, running Halcyon Aegis) - past tragedy/mystery involving a son, missing husband, runs company that will commit crimes for various purposes, good and evil
  • #21. Luther Braxton  (dead) - thief, kidnapper, killer, Liz's past is known by someone
  • #22. The Scimitar  (dead) - an eye for an eye type revenge, false identities, revenge for loss of family, Red gains possible favor with Samar
  • #24. The Director (dead) - High ranking Cabal member, no loyalty in Cabal, claims to know Red's connection to Liz
  • #31. Zal Bin Hassan / Shahin Navabi  (turned over/unknown) - Samar's brother, Iranian terrorist, given up by Samar and used by Red for information, tragically deceased parents, unpleasant family dynamics
  • #32. Mr. Solomon (at large) - Ex CIA, ex-Cabal, for hire to highest bidder
  • #38. The Troll Farmer (arrested) - using social media to create false information, false scenarios, incite public action
  • #41. The Artax Network (active) - misuse of technology to track people, gather information, and see people and hunt them down in real time, loss, dealing with loss, bonds between people
  • #42. The Kingmaker  (dead) - grooming people for power, killing those in the way and similar crimes
  • #43. The Djinn (fake at large, real likely arrested) - revenge fantasies, recruiting someone to be the "face" of your business, mistreatment of a child
  • #47. Frederick Barnes  (dead) - chemical attacks, scientist, illegal/criminal actions to attempt to save son.
  • #50. Arioch Cain (Blair) (alive) - revenge for parent's death, using internet for contract killings
  • #52. Pilot / Ranko Zamani  (dead) - General's daughter, kidnapper, terrorist, revenge for killed famliy. missing daughter
  • #55. Karakurt (at large, face makeover, arrested) - Russian tyring to assist Cabal in reigniting Cold War, criminal who manages to be connected to no crimes, son paying for father's life, murdered becuase of who father was, crimes can be faked
  • #57. The Judge  (arrested) - "eye for an eye" justice, connection of Cooper and Tom Connolly
  • #62.  Leonard Caul  (active) - ex CIA, wrote interface/cipher for Fulcrum, involved in creation of Fulcrum, connected to Fitch
  • #64. The Cyprus Agency / Owen Mallory  (arrested) - kidnapping women and having them become breeders of one person's children, adopting them out, adoption, medical manipulation
  • #67. Ruslan Denisov  (alive) - environmental abuse/poisoning pipeline, coverups, bad actions by government, kidnapping
  • #71. The Kenyon Family  (dead) - cult, horrible mistreating/abuse of children, guy with a God complex, objects hidden underground
  • #72. Eli Matchett (arrested) - environmental abuse, money laundering, corporate abuse
  • #73. Madeline Pratt   (whereabouts unknown) - professional thief, Red's ex. Red acquires The Effigy for turning over nuclear bomb locations to FBI.
  • #74. The Front / Maddox Beck  (dead) - biological terrorism, cults
  • #75. The Major  (was alive, now dead) - man who recruits young people to be deep cover agents, criminals, assassins. 
  • #77. Lady Ambrosia (dead) - parents at odds over differently abled and challenged children, adoption, kidnapping of children and murdering them at 12. 
  • #78. The Caretaker  (dead) - secrets underground, child abuse, kidnapping of child
  • #80. Marvin Gerard (active, with Becky) - Red's lawyer, estranged parents, false charges, powerful people can control outcomes, child tragedy
  • #82. Dr. Linus Creel  (dead) - triggering violence by activating Warrior Gene in subjects, governent experiments manipulating people with genetics
  • #83. Mako Tanida (dead, minus head) - revenge killing, betrayal by a friend
  • #84. Wujing  (arrested) - assassin, average man pulled into deadly circumstances threatening his son, Red's payment was 042983
  • #85. The Courier (dead) - kidnapper, assassin, impervious to pain
  • #86. Sir Crispin Crandall (dead) - kidnapper in the air, planned medical experiments, freezing exceptional people to save the world but hurting it now, guy with a God complex
  • #87. Quon Zhang (arrested) - murderer who changes identies of victims to match a deceased person/create "Chinese Corpse Brides", smuggler of criminals, brings Karakurt to US
  • #88. Ivan / Harrison Lee (arrested) - computer hacker, high school kid posing as someone else
  • #89.  Dr. James Covington  (arrested) - organ harvesting, extortion, helping children, parental estrangement
  • #93.  The Deer Hunter (arrested) - disturbed woman killing abusive men and chomping on their livers, taking over for her dead husband whom she murdered in self-defense, Red helps Liz on a case that has no benefit to him
  • #94.  T. Earl King VI  (dead) - 200 year old family business that deals with auctioning stolen goods and people, bizarre family dynamics, father willing to let one son kill the other to preserve family money
  • #95.  Mr. Gregory Devry (dead) - Ill associate of Red's pretending to be him for Red's gain and his own exit from the world. Red elimates some problems within the crime syndicate.
  • #97.  The Longevity Initiative / Dr. Julius Powell (arrested) - medical experiments to bring back mental functioning of seriously injured person, Roger Hobbs is killed, loss of a loved one
  • #101. The Alchemist  (dead) - changes the identity/DNA of deceased people to fake the death of someone still living
  • #103. Alistair Pitt (dead) - settles issues between warring families with arranged marriages, possibly contributes to the problem, making his own business. Very close relationship to dogs.
  • #104. Lord Baltimore / Nora Mills  (arrested) - data mining, analytics, bounty hunter, tracking people through online tracing, child abuse/split personalities
  • #106. The Good Samaritan  (dead) - vigilante, abusive parents
  • #108. Kings of the Highway  (dead, arrested) - theives from travelers, murderers if need be
  • #109. General Ludd  (arrested) - desire to destroy US financial system, bombing, Red acquires ability to make money printing plates
  • #112. Monarch Douglas Bank/Kaja Tomzak (active) - Polish bank, kidnapping, photographic memory, hiding money, Red acquired Kaja's services
  • #113. Drexel (arrested) - serial killer/bad artist, corporate corruption
  • #114. The Mombasa Cartel  (active) / Geoff Pearl  (dead) - human trafficking, poaching, people being hunted, very odd family dymanics, hiding the true nature of corporations
  • #117.  Vanessa Cruz (at large) - widow revenge killer, Red retains her services, corporate scheming/falsely blaming others
  • #119-122. The Pavlovich Brothers  (dead) - kidnappers of powerful people/kidnappers of Generals, daugther in Episode 1.
  • #123. The Arsonist / Ethan Donovan  (active)  comic book
  • #132. The Vehm (active)/Cardinal Richards (dead) - Former pedophiles thinking they are taking out current pedophiles, who are really elimating money laundering competion for a Cardinal, corruption within religious organizations
  • #135. Milton Bobbit  (dead) - murder/suicide killings, revenge
  • #145. The Freelancer  (arrested) - assassin that Red identifies with, children taken into sex slavery ring, Floriana Campa (dead), hero not what that appear to be
  • #148. The Gambler / Leon Kiklinski  (dead)  comic book
  • #152. Gina Zanetakos  (arrested, escaped prison, last scene killing The Major) - assassin, Tom's ex
  • #161. The Stewmaker  (dead) - chemicals to dissolve people, making people "disappear"


Basil said...

1. There is a methodology and we may obtain “some larger truths about the names on the Blacklist” before first season’s end. (so says Bokenkamp). He also says we won’t get anything on # 1 yet..big surprise there!

2. According to the Black List is not (and I concur):
Based on the order in which Red met them
Based on how well Red knows them
Comprised only of Red’s aquantances
Comprised only of individuals

3. In the pilot, Red introduces the Black List as his “wish list”. He notes that these criminals are not small fish like Zamani. Red says these are the big whales and he is Ahab. Why does he call it his wish list? What is his wish?
4. I see no evidence, althought it seems probable, that it is Red who assigns numbers to those on the Black List.

A look at some theories other than those listed above:
Not a straight up hierarchy (Rori). Interesting and a possibility, although Bokenkamp refers to number one on the list as the ultimate baddie….so…hmmmm.
The order Red figures out who they are (Rori). I don’t think this one works. The third highest so far is Ruth Kipling (The Judge) and Red said that even he thought she was a myth. Also, he knew about the Stewmaker and the Stewmaker is pretty far down the list.

In order of how dangerous or threatening the Blacklister is. Troubles with this too. Why is Ruth Kipling so high on the list? She doesn’t seem the most dangerous or threatening.
List with numbers as of this episode:
16 Anslo Garrick
47 Frederick Barnes (Red: “quite literally, the most dangerous man in the world”)
57 Ruth Kipling (The Judge)
64 Cyprus Agency
73 Madeleine Pratt
83 Mako Tanida
84 Wujing
85 Tommy Phelps (The Courier)
88 Ivan
101 Eric Trettel (The Alchemist)
106 Karl Hoffman (The Good Samaritan)
109 Nathaniel Wolff (aka Bradley Holland…General Ludd)
135 Milton Bobbit
145 The Freelancer (contract killer Red hired to Kill Floriana Camp)
152 Gina Zanatakis
161 Stanley Kornish (The Stewmaker)
119-122 Pavlovich Bros

Basil said...

Here is my theory about the Blacklist rankings. Definitely a work in progress.
I don’t think the numbers are assigned by Red, I think they are assigned by the writers. And I don’t think they refer to the Blacklisters themselves but to the whole story presented around each Blacklister, ie: the whole episode.
I think the list is historical. The themes mirror Red’s history and future in criminality (where he’s been and where he’s going). Interspersed in this history are stories reflective of Liz’s development (leaving behind her naivete and learning about and becoming who she truly is). Thus, the ranked list can almost be seen as a trajectory of the life of the show. The lower on the list, the more historical. The higher on the list points to Red’s ultimate long plan.
This would explain the Stewmaker at the bottom of the list. It would also explain Madeleine Pratt. She was a puzzle to me. Why is she even on the list at all? She’s not nefarious or mysterious. Red knows her, adores her and the FBI doesn’t apprehend her. I think she represent the time in Red’s life where he considered getting out of the biz. I have more supporting evidence, but it would make for a long post in an already long comment section.
Now Basil is taking a rest or else she may very well need to be repotted.

fangirl said...

I love Olga's "code" theory... at least I think that's what she meant when she typed the Russian word "encrypt" (thank you Google Translate) ... I took her post to mean that the numbers assigned to the bad guys (and girls) on Red's list have nothing to do with how threatening or dangerous or important they are, or when they met Red, or anything like that.

I took her post to mean that it's the numbers themselves that we should be paying attention to, ignoring the bad guys entirely ... a code, but if Berlin is some kind of cipher "key" (there's that "key" motif again), the German alphabet doesn't really work, because it's only got 26 letters (according to Wikipedia).

So if the numbers actually are a code, and they're supposed to spell out a word or a message, then it's not a simple 1-to-1 corresponding code ... 1 = A, 2= B, that sort of thing.

And I'm too stupid to figure out something more complicated than that. So, I was Googling around for some cryptology experts and sent the list of numbers to them. Hope to get a response! I would be thrilled!!!

Basil said...

**********************************************SPOILER ALERT******************************************
From one of the spoilers in the spoilers thread:

"it looks like Red's entire Blacklist plan has been entirely devoted to discovering his ultimate opponent's identity"

So while it isn't directly about the numbering of the Blacklisters, I thought it relevant to put this post here. Feel free to edit, remove or change to another thread!

On some levels this seems almost obvious. But when I look at it by Blacklister it is harder for me to see. Madeline Pratt leads him to Berlin?

Chompstick said...

Fascinating! I haven't ventured into this topic yet. It will probably be mid summer before my brain slows down enough to join this discussion.

Chompstick said...

Berlin needs to be added as #8.

Basil said...

I noticed that, Chomps. Number 8. I was wondering where it might be on the list and was suspecting it would be somewhere in the 1-10 range...towards the middle of that range.

Meets with the theory that the numbering reflects a trajectory of the this episode really moves us closer to the ultimate answers at #1.

The number one episode, you know...the episode that ties it all together....a cloned, alchemized transgendered Red marries Lizzie with Mr. Kaplan as both the maid of honor and best man. LOL!!!!

JBiltz said...

Berlin is 8. I thought he would be lower. 4 or 5 maybe. Figure the big bad family killing Liz burning Blacklister is going to be 1. I would not be surprised if Fitch turns out to be 2 or 3. You just know Red is going to take Fitch down.

Fluffy said...

Just a reminder that while we can refer to spoilers as being in the Spoilers Thread, the spoilers, themselves, can only appear there.

We are still learning as we go here, but perhaps they can be referred to by their date/time.

Hopefully that will work for everyone.

The Great Fluffball

Fluffy said...

I find it fascinating that “quite literally, the most dangerous man in the world” (Frederick Barnes) only warrants a 47.

If we look only at the psychopathic/contract murders:

101 Eric Trettel (The Alchemist)
106 Karl Hoffman (The Good Samaritan)
109 Nathaniel Wolff (aka Bradley Holland…General Ludd)
135 Milton Bobbit
145 The Freelancer
152 Gina Zanatakis,

their numbers are all over one hundred! So if a blacklisters' number is not based on their danger to the general public, what is it base upon?

My theory is that the fist one hundred are (somehow) dangers to Liz and those over one hundred are (somehow) dangers to the public.

What I find most interesting is that Tommy Boy is nowhere on the list, though for all we know he could be #1 because of his emotional connection with Liz.

What we need is someone for whom advanced calculus was a "easy A" to give us a hand. ::cough:: :)

Charmed said...

Fluffy, re your last sentence. I do recall someone "bragging???" about taking advanced calculus for the "easy A". Do you suppose that person might still be hanging around, or possibly "lurking" on another site by now?

Btw, I think your idea for the numbering has a lot of merit.
I certainly didn't think of that option.

James said...

How was Ranko Zamani's number determined?

misssissy said...

I believe Red is THE NUMBER ! BLACKLISTER...

Oh, how I have missed Y'all!

Charmed said...

Misssissy- I was wondering where you've been, are you okay? Come comment with us.

James- I apologize as I didn't see your comment earlier. We believe the lower the number, the higher danger to Red and others. But somewhere in recent comments, it has been explained much better than I can. Welcome.

Marie said...

Blacklister chart

Chompstick said...

James - I'm sorry I did not see your post, either. I frankly cannot remember where I found that number but I'll go search for it.

Sissy!! Yay, glad you're back!

Chompstick said...

It's going to drive me crazy trying to figure out where I got #52 for Zamani. I didn't make it up - I swear, lol - but I'll have to keep searching.

Basil said...

I think I can help out on he Zamani number....

52 for Zamani was confirmed in a post season video special:

Chompstick said...

YES! Exactly! That's where I got it. That was a neat video. Thank you for keeping me from going nuts.

Harry said...

Season 1 Awards: Best Blacklister Nominee

My (probably surprising) choice for favorite Blacklister of Season 1 is The Good Samaritan Killer (Frank Whaley), in part because of his matter-of-fact announcements to his captives (~ "let's get started, shall we?"), and because there was an element of justice to his actions, ie, letting abusers feel the pain of their victims. By the end, I was almost rooting for him to be able to whack his mother before the task force could stop him!

For similar reasons, my #2 nominee would be The Judge (Diane Wiest): dispensing eye-for-an-eye justice.

If any posters are still out there, please feel free to nominate candidates.

Harry said...

I thought the actor who played Ruslan Denisov ( Faran Tahir) looked familiar. I'm also a fan of Elementary. He played "Mattoo" in the episode "The Diabolical Kind" with Natalie Dormer.

Red said...

So might Liz be #1?

Tabasko said...

Tatiana was cool enough to type out the list of Active/Incarcerated Blacklisters from the list in the back of the comic book picture I posted, and then added short descriptions. Very useful!

Tom Keen - Liz's husband
Karakurt - Russian Assassin
Leonard Caul - brilliant in early technology, skilled spy
Ruslan Denisov - Leader of Free Uzbekistan Group; Oil Pipeline
Madeline Pratt - Brilliant thief, chiefly of fine art
The Major - Cultivator of superior spies
Ivan - brilliant techie - very young (but are they referring to the Russian Ivan who is creating the KEY)?
Monarch Douglas Bank (what was her name?)- Savant; photographic memory
Vanessa Cruz - Seductress/murderer of men in high positions; collector of their DNA
Gina Zanetakos - corporate espionage; terrorism (tom's lover?)

The Judge - Judge especially against those who've wrongly accused an innocent
The Cypress Agency - Mallory; was rejected by his foster parents, genetic father to all the genetically "superior" offspring.
Dr. James Covington - Organ transplant surgeon; pediatric and adult
The Deer Hunter - Killer of women abusers
Lord Baltimore (Rowan) - assassin triggered through mind control triggered by a specific song
General Ludd - pilot, thief of large sums of money
The Freelancer - assassin for hire by anyone

Seems like a very handy reference. Tatiana made an interesting point that perhaps Red has more than a few of these people on "standby" for his future plans. I agree, especially on Ruslan Denisov, Gina Z, Vanessa Cruz and the like. I would love it if Madeline Pratt would come back (for more than the 7.5 seconds she got in T. Earl King, LOL.)

Thanks, TT!

Tabasko said...

Current list of Blacklisters since the Comic Book inside back cover was kind enough to print them out for us:

#7. Tom Keen - ACTIVE
#8. Berlin - DECEASED
#11. Tom Connolly - DECEASED
#12. The Decembrist - DECEASED
#16. Anslo Garrick - DECEASED
#21. Luther Braxton - DECEASED
#22. The Scimitar - DECEASED
#42. The Kingmaker - DECEASED
#47. Frederick Barnes - DECEASED
#52. Ranko Zamani - DECEASED
#55. Karakurt - ACTIVE
#57. The Judge - INCARCERATED
#62. Leonard Caul - ACTIVE
#64. The Cypress Agency - INCARCERATED
#67. Ruslan Denisov - ACTIVE
#71. The Kenyon Family - DECEASED (I'll say!)
#73. Madeline Pratt - ACTIVE
#74. The Front - DECEASED
#75. The Major - ACTIVE
#82. Dr. Lines Creel - DECEASED
#83. Mako Tanida - DECEASED (and decapitated!)
#84. Wujing - INCARCERATED
#85. The Courier - DECEASED
#87. Quon Zhang - INCARCERATED
#88. Ivan - ACTIVE
#90. Dr. James Covington - INCARCERATED
#93. The Deer Hunter - INCARCERATED
#94. T. Earl King VI - DECEASED
#97. The Longevity Initiative - DECEASED (kinda ironic)
#101. The Alchemist - DECEASED
#104. Lord Baltimore - INCARCERATED
#106. The Good Samaritan - DECEASED
#109. General Ludd - INCARCERATED
#112. Monarch Douglas Bank - ACTIVE
#114. The Mombasa Cartel - DECEASED
#117. Vanessa Cruz - ACTIVE
#119. The Pavlovich Brothers - DECEASED
#120. The Pavlovich Brothers - DECEASED
#121. The Pavlovich Brothers - DECEASED
#122. The Pavlovich Brothers - DECEASED
#135, Milton Bobbit - DECEASED
#145. The Freelancer - INCARCERATED
#152 Gina Zanetakos - ACTIVE
#161. The Stewmaker - DECEASED

Tabasko said...

This page needed a visit, so here is an interview with the man who played the Troll Farmer. It comet a little whole ago, but I have been behind on sharing them.

It has a few interesting things on the characters' history and he mentions The Troll Farmer could come back someday.

Tabasko said...

Brief interview

With Fisher Stevens/Marvin Gerard

Marie said...

Tabs-thanks for the interview. I just watched it.
I guess I don't jump around the different topics much. LOL

Tabasko said...

Hey, Marie. I know you don't LOL. Glad you found it, though.

eastcoast said...

Just trying to browse around some more, so much here to read while I have been suffering with these headaches!!!:-)

The Director is #24

Tabasko said...

eastcoast #29: I am sorry about your headaches!!!!! You poor thing. Did you say it was sinus related?

Thank you for that!

Our upcoming plan is to get everyone's input on the nature or purpose of each Blacklister, as Tatiana did in #23 on this page, and include her great stuff along with anyone else's.

Anyone who wants to start, feel free! I think we might learn a few things about our show themes.

One Paul said...

Ranko Zamani-Pilot
Kidnapped daughter, revenge for death of one's family, ballet

Kodiak said...

One Paul #31 - Good one! And living up to you name of "One" lol.

I might say "missing daughter" for that, since just in my view that's the theme. What do you think?

Lady Ambrosia - couple who abducted children rejected by 1 parent - missing daughter/missing children.

Lord Baltimore - woman with hidden past/hidden personality, using technology to expose someone.

One Paul said...

That's right, Kodiak #32!
One thing per day is my max. Lol.

Yes, missing daughter is better.

eastcoast said...

Tabasko, I am sending you an email.

Tabasko said...

eastcoast #34: I got it. Thanks so much.

eastcoast sent a really complete, full list of the Blacklisters and their plots.
Can't wait to post it tomorrow!

Great job, east!

Charmed said...

Tabsasko #35
Hey Tabs and eastcoast, I'm looking forward to seeing the complete list tomorrow. Thanks eastcoast!
p.s. I have an email too and it just started working again. ;))

Tabasko said...

I have a lot of it added, more to come. Enjoy, and thanks, eastcoast!!!

Eastcoast said...

I was happy to send it! 😉

lara1 said...

Tabs - I need to catch up with all the posts the last few days, but thought I'd share this. I read somewhere (I can't now recall) that something like 85% of episodes had either a children theme or medical/science theme, some repetitive. And I bet many have both. I have not checked this but I'm starting to think there are two main themes: children and the medical/scientific (for the latter,eg DNA, mind/memory control). You may have all come to that conclusion already....How the two themes intersect I'm not yet sure, but both themes would seem to feed up into the overarching series theme of family (biological or not) and family values.

So for #64, I would add medical/biological, whichever term you'd like to stick to - as the whole "baby production" process was extremely creepy. Just my thought.

Tabasko said...

lara1 #39: Thank you! That is a good add in your 2nd paragraph. That one did creep me out pretty good.

That is an interesting statistic about the themes. I definitely noticed all the episodes that featured children and families, and children being raised by others. Once I finish updating the top, or as I am going, we can see how much this comes up and see if we arrive at the same numbers. Interesting. We'll see how we can organize it.

Tabasko said...

More adds have been made, primarily Eastcoast's. A few more to come.

lara1 said...

Hi Tabs. I finished my re-watch of Season 2 and made a list of all the common themes, and then applied them to each episode, using the same phrases for consistency. It would be interesting to plot these on a spreadsheet but I don't have that program on my computer.

I would like to send a list of each episode and the themes. Is it easiest for me to just list the themes for each episode as a post here or email them to you at your email address so that you can review them? Some you may have already captured but to be honest I didn't look (!) as I wanted to come to my own conclusions on each…..

Hope you are enjoying the weekend.