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The Courier - Recap

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Elizabeth and Tom are in bed and Tom is kissing down her torso. He stops when he realizes that she’s feeling uncomfortable. Tom asks what’s wrong and Elizabeth says she needs to ask him about something and she needs to hear the truth. She shows Tom the brochure with Angel Station Hotel on it. She asks him point-blank if he was involved in the murder. Tom stares at her for a few moments before attacking her, pinning her to the bed, and telling her that the people he works for are very powerful and she needs to tell him what she knows. Tom begins choking Elizabeth and as she slips unconscious… she wakes up, safe in bed, alongside a sleeping Tom. It was all a nightmare.

Later, Tom wakes up Elizabeth with her dog, promising that it’s going to be a great day. He tells Elizabeth that they have a doctor’s appointment to see an ultrasound of the baby they’re adopting. Elizabeth is excited and Tom tells her that he understands if her work means she can’t make it to the appointment.

Someone is watching Tom and Elizabeth on one of the many closed-circuit cameras that were secretly planted around her home. The man who was eating an apple when they were installed is watching on several computer monitors, eating another apple.

On a dark road at night a man wearing a mask pulls up behind a parked truck and takes a bound and gagged man out of the back. A recording of the man begging for his life plays over scenes of the masked man dragging him through a junk site. The victim’s name is Seth Nelson. The masked man takes the tape off of Seth’s mouth and places a breathing mask over Seth’s face. The masked man goes to get a newspaper so he can take a photo of Seth with that day’s news—Seth grabs his attacker’s discarded knife and plunges it into the masked man’s chest. The man doesn’t react and merely looks at the blade, sticking into him. Seth asks “What are you?” We see Seth placed into a metal container and the lid is closed as he screams for help.

In Baltimore, Red is talking to a man in a suit. The man tells Red that “The Iranian” is attempting to procure intelligence that Red is seeking. Red asks to have it intercepted, but the suited man tells Red that there is a problem because The Iranian has employed The Courier to send the cargo. Red recalls the lives and resources they lost the last time they attempted to intercept The Courier, in Cairo. Red decides to tip off the FBI about this one.

In the FBI headquarters, Elizabeth is looking over the redacted case files of the Angel Station Hotel murder. Ressler enters and asks her about the ongoing situation with Red. Elizabeth offers her profile on him and Ressler tells her that he doesn’t place any stock in profiling. Then Elizabeth tells Ressler that he only resents her because Red will work exclusively with her. As they talk, Red calls Elizabeth. “Speak of the devil… it’s the devil.”



Elizabeth meets Red at a home in Baltimore, filled with books. Red tells her that the home belonged to a great American writer who was never published. Red bought the house from the man and sometimes stays there, enjoying his manuscripts and drinking the homemade booze stashed through the home. Red tells Elizabeth about The Courier: the perfect middleman. He is next to impossible to intercept; if anyone attempts to stop him, he kills them. Red tells Elizabeth that The Courier is delivering a package worth 20 million dollars to an Iranian spy named Hamid Souroush. Red tells Elizabeth where they can expect the delivery: a farmer’s market in Virginia.

We see The Courier seated naked in a dark room, calmly sewing up the wound on his chest where he was stabbed. The Courier was the masked man who entombed Seth.

In Virginia, Agent Malik is looking for Souroush at the farmer’s market with Elizabeth, with Ressler running surveillance. She spots Souroush and sees a boy hand him a cell phone. The phone rings, Souroush answers, and approaches another man selling produce—it’s the Courier. The Courier spots the agents and suddenly opens fire in the crowd, killing Souroush, and makes his escape. Malik and Elizabeth pursue him in a nearby truck as Ressler calls in air support. A chase ensues and the Courier fires on the agents. Elizabeth tells Malik to hit The Courier’s car at the next intersection. They do, spinning the vehicle around. The Courier exits, bloody and limping, and walks away from the scene as Elizabeth and Malik call for back-up. The Courier ducks behind a corner and rips the stiches out of his chest wound. He then takes a memory card and shoves it into his open wound to hide it. Elizabeth approaches and he opens fire on her; Malik approaches from the other side and catches him. The agents order him to put his hands up—The Courier takes his broken arm with the bone protruding, forces the bone back into place, and lifts it.



In an interrogation room, Ressler is questioning The Courier about what he was supposed to deliver. They inquire about The Iranian and want to know where the package is, but The Courier isn’t saying a single word.

Cooper and Elizabeth are questioning Red about The Courier and what he was delivering. Red claims that he has no idea.

Back in the room, Malik and Ressler are trying to get tough with The Courier and Ressler tries gripping his broken arm. The Courier just smiles.

Outside, Red is watching the interrogation with Elizabeth and notices The Courier’s lack of pain, telling Elizabeth to call a doctor.

Later, a doctor tells Elizabeth, Cooper, and Ressler that The Courier has congenital anhidrosis: he can’t feel pain. Cooper orders the doctor to investigate the wound in The Courier’s chest; the doctor finds the memory card.

The agents watch the video on the card: it’s the recording of Seth Nelson’s abduction and entombment. It’s a proof-of-life video—Seth is alive but his hours are numbered. For whatever reason, Souroush was paying twenty million for Seth’s life. It was a ransom payment.

We see Seth in the locked box, screaming from within his breathing apparatus.

The agents are looking into Seth Nelson; he is a tech support guy who seems completely unremarkable. Cooper orders an ultrasound machine to see if there’s anything else hidden in The Courier. Malik confirms through her NSA source that Nelson is secretly an NSA agent and one of their highest coders; if anyone forced him to work for a terrorist power, the damage could be catastrophic.



Elizabeth visits Red at the writer’s house where Red is with a scantily-clad woman. Elizabeth presses Red for information about The Courier and Red asks her what she found out about Tom. Elizabeth says that she learned the murder occurred in Boston while she and Tom were there. Red seems satisfied and tells Elizabeth that he knows The Courier has a weakness for old-fashioned opium dens. Red has a friend who may be able to track The Courier through the opium use. Before Elizabeth leaves, Red thanks her for being honest about Tom.

The agents raid The Courier’s safe house and find a name: Tommy Phelps. Elizabeth finds a camera with days’ worth of surveillance on The Iranian. The Courier was so careful that he followed his buyer for days.

The doctor uses the ultrasound and finds five objects hidden inside The Courier, covered in scar tissue. The Courier tells Cooper that he can tell them where Seth is hidden before he dies in exchange for immunity. Cooper declines. Elizabeth brings The Courier a photo of him with his brother when they were younger and says they’re bringing him in.

Elizabeth questions The Courier’s brother who seems to know all about Tommy’s business. The brother tells Elizabeth about how their father used to beat them but Tommy didn’t mind. So the father began hosting dog fights… where the dog would fight Tommy. Local men would come and watch the dog maul Tommy when he was only eleven years old. “Tommy’s broken,” his brother says.

Red is with the agents telling them about a woman named Laurence Dechambeau, former French intelligence who sells secrets. Red believes that she’s the seller of Seth Nelson to The Iranian. The Courier would now want her dead, as his deal went sideways. The agents decide to send someone in as The Courier to try to trick her. Red says that it’s too risky and that he should meet with her. Ressler objects because Red keeps killing people.

“You’ve killed three people!” Ressler says.
“I’m not perfect!” Red retorts.

It’s decided that Ressler will pose as The Courier and meet with Dechambeau. Suddenly Tom calls Elizabeth in a panic. He demands that she come home, telling her he canceled the doctor’s appointment and they need to talk. Elizabeth says she is too busy and an angry Tom hangs up. We see Tom standing over the hole in the floor where the box used to be, but the hole is now empty.

At a club, Ressler enters to see Dechambeau and the bouncer stops him. Ressler beats up the bouncer and enters the club. “That was hot,” Malik says. A man in the club comes and grabs Ressler, bringing him to see Dechambeau in her office. She asks Ressler why he has forced his way into the club. Ressler tells her he’s The Courier and says he killed Souroush. Dechambeau said she didn’t trust Souroush and that’s why she hired The Courier. Dechambeau asks how she knows if it’s really him? Prove that he can’t feel pain. Ressler breaks a glass and gashes himself without reacting. Dechambeau says that it’s impressive but she knows it isn’t him because the real Courier would have killed her too. Her men attack Ressler as he flees and the FBI save him and arrest Dechambeau.

The agents are thinking of ways to get The Courier to talk. Elizabeth mentions that his brother, who is in jail, is the only thing The Courier cares about.

The Courier is being transported for his planned surgery. He regurgitates a tool and uses it to rip his forearm open, where he has a penknife stashed in his body. He uses the knife to escape his bonds.

Seth remains in the locked box, crying, unable to escape.

The Agents speak with Red about The Courier’s escape. The Courier killed the guards transporting him and drove to Virginia, where they found the vehicle abandoned. Red tells Cooper to let Dechambeau go—the FBI won’t be able to prosecute her anyhow. Red says he will make her talk.

“How?” asks Elizabeth.
“You don’t want me to answer that,” says Red.

Cooper agrees and releases Dechambeau.

Back at her club, a rattled Dechambeau pours a drink. Red arrives and greets her. Red asks where the NSA agent is; she says she doesn’t know. Red says The Iranian is dead and she’s next. Red says he will get her out of the country on his private jet, if she gives Red the location of where she left Seth in the truck. Red tells her that The Courier knows her and she has a day and a half before he kills her, tops. Dechambeau cracks and agrees to Red’s offer.

Ressler and Malik find the stolen vehicle in Virginia and The Courier opens fire on them with automatic weapons. Ressler rushes the trailer but The Courier escaped out the back. He is moving slowly due to his broken bones. Finally, The Courier falls down—he was shot in the firefight. The Courier is dead and he’s the only one who knew where Seth was hidden.



Red is with Elizabeth showing her on the map where Dechambeau left Seth in the back of a truck. The proof of life video was recorded a mere 30 minutes later so that narrows the search. They find a junkyard with dozens of old abandoned refrigerators. Red finds fresh earth and they uncover another refrigerator with Seth inside. He’s not breathing. Dembe performs CPR and Seth begins to breathe again. They take Seth to the hospital and Red suggests he’ll think of a way for Seth to repay him.

Ressler tells Elizabeth she did good work.

Elizabeth is in her office on the computer when a man brings her a delivery. It’s a file with a note from Red that says “the answers you seek.” Contained is all of the classified and redacted information Elizabeth was seeking about the Angel Station Hotel murder of a man named Victor Folken. In the file is a photo of the male suspect being sought in the murder: the suspect is Elizabeth’s husband, Tom.

The suited man from earlier is talking to Red about the fact that Seth allowed Red access to the NSA classified database for any one thing Red needed. The suited man asks Red why he didn’t use it to find their “adversary.” He wonders why Red used it to get the information for Elizabeth about the murder. Red says that he’s betting on the future.

Elizabeth comes to visit Red, crying. Red hands her a drink. Red says that he loves the writer’s house because of the view from the sofa. Elizabeth says she doesn’t know why she came. She drinks with Red.

Back at Elizabeth’s house, she is again being watched on the hidden camera. She calls out to Tom. The apple-eating man is telling his associate to watch. They watch as Elizabeth enters and finds Tom sitting in silence, unmoving. Elizabeth says they need to talk. Tom pulls out the box with the money, passports and gun. The two of them stare at each other over the box.