What's Next For The Blacklist After Katarina's New Ilya Koslov Reveal?

The Blacklist Raymond Red Reddington James Spader NBC
(Image credit: Virginia Sherwood / NBC)

Spoilers for the November 15 episode of The Blacklist Season 7 entitled, “Hannah Hayes” are discussed below.

What’s next for The Blacklist after Katarina’s new Ilya Koslov reveal? That is another big question after the latest episode ended with Katarina supposedly locating Ilya Koslov. Who answered the door? Well, it was not Red. It was none other than the mysterious stranger (Brett Cullen), who Red has now identified as Frank.

This is the same guy that fans initially suspected could be the real Ilya Koslov when he showed up in The Blacklist’s previous season finale. After Katarina acted like she never heard of Ilya Koslov before, it seemed to be a return to square one. Remember, according to the story told by Katarina’s dad, Red is supposedly Ilya Koslov, and Katarina knew him.

While Katarina has seemed unaware of who Ilya Koslov is, when The Blacklist’s latest episode ended, she believed she had found him. The thing is, she should recognize Frank/Maybe-Ilya. He is the guy that told Red where to locate her. I got the impression he was in contact with her.

Regardless, this may be another “Red” rabbit hole. Could Red have sent Frank there to pose as Ilya? Certainly. If so, what is next? Frank is now in the custody of Katarina, and she has proven ruthless when it comes to getting what she wants. Will he give up any answers? The Blacklist has teased he will provide some.

Red made Katarina believe he had killed the young man she worked so hard to save in this episode. That is one part of the medical mystery solved. Thanks to Dembe, Red did not really kill him. Katarina does not know that, though. Will she go so far as to kill Frank in retribution?

The Blacklist has set up that Red and this guy’s friendship goes back to childhood, so their bond matters to Red. If Katarina were to kill Frank, then you would think there would be an all-out war between them. Not that it has not gotten there yet.

The Blacklist did seem to clarify Red’s relationship with Frank. When they initially met, the hint of their relationship trending back to childhood made me think he was Red’s brother. It turns out, they may only be friends. So, there go a lot of potential options when it comes to the question of who Red is if he is not Ilya.

Did anyone else notice how Frank looked at Liz when she showed up at the RV park? He seemed to know or be familiar with her. At least, a bit wistful at seeing her. A lot was going on there, so it was tough to read his exact reaction. Nevertheless, his response kind of fell in that range.

I still cannot help thinking that casting Gabriel Mann as Ilya Koslov had a purpose and could be a clue. The spot on casting of Mann as a flashback-era character later played by James Spader makes me think The Blacklist really did show viewers the previous someone Red used to be.

What is The Blacklist going to do now? I think Frank actually being Ilya is too easy at this point. Of course, I have been wrong before. The puzzle pieces feel like they are all there, but there is not enough info to put them together yet. How is this going to play out?

Tune in and see when new episodes of The Blacklist air this fall! The action happens on Fridays, at 8 p.m. ET, on NBC. To refresh your memory on past Ilya Koslov reveals, you can stream previous seasons of The Blacklist on Netflix, along with lots of upcoming content.

Britt Lawrence

Like a contented Hallmark movie character, Britt happily lives in the same city she grew up in. Along with movies and television, she is passionate about competitive figure skating. She has been writing about entertainment for 5 years, and as you may suspect, still finds it as entertaining to do as when she began.