The Blacklist Creator Says Viewers Can 'Trust' Katarina

The Blacklist Laila Robins Katarina Rostova NBC

(Image credit: Will Hart / NBC)

Spoilers for the midseason finale of The Blacklist Season 7 are discussed below!

The Blacklist shocked fans with a midseason finale that brought quite a few jaw-dropping updates into the fray. Among the developments to shake up the series as it headed off for its midseason hiatus was Katarina and Liz squaring off. In the end, Liz helped Katarina make her escape. On her way outta Dodge, Katarina found time to fake her death in front of Red.

As Red watched from a distance, he thought Katarina was killed by assassins. Liz knows the truth. Double cross! In a traditional Blacklist twist, you can hardly ever believe anything you see or hear (in the case of Dom). Where does that leave fans and Katarina? Potentially with a new character to trust – Liz’s mom. The Blacklist’s creator, Jon Bokenkamp, told TheWrap:

So we put it in context of who Katarina is and what she’s looking for. I think her intent is right and she wants answers and justice and it’s an interesting, if not potentially dangerous, relationship for Liz to connect to. But I think we can trust her, as much as we can trust anybody on the show.

Interesting! Katarina certainly earned some points in truthfulness with Liz. For one, she revealed that Red is not Ilya Koslov. I think that is almost assuredly true. The Stranger, a.k.a. Ilya Koslov, has Ilya’s memories. So, it is not as if she is incapable of being honest. Yes, this is the same woman who posed as Liz’s next-door neighbor/nanny for most of Season 7.

The Blacklist’s creator has previously warned of Katarina Rostova as the series’ “most formidable big bad.” Is she coming armed with truths, though? There have been hints that Katarina’s revelations would shake Liz’s trust in Red. Her reveal about Ilya Koslov certainly did not bolster Liz’s faith in him. Is Katarina more honest than Red? Of Katarina’s trustworthiness, Jon Bokenkamp says:

I think we have seen in her sort of an emotional resonance or emotional truth, a level of which she’s invested in this — she’s not just a straight-up bad guy. She’s obviously pained and tortured by what’s happening and wants justice. And I think sometimes people forget that Reddington is a criminal. He’s a murderer. He’s a bad guy. As much as he’s protected Liz and had her best interest at heart, he is still, you know, one of the most wanted men in the world.

Does this mean that Katarina is emotionally truthful at the expense of facts? Not necessarily. The Blacklist confirmed that Dom and Ilya conspired to kill Katarina to “protect” Liz/Masha as she had accused. They ended up killing Katarina’s husband instead. Where was Red when this was getting plotted and, more to the point, carried out? No wonder there is family drama ahead!

Red has proven himself as not being the most reliable narrator. Remember, he went along with his latest fake identity to the point that he referred to himself as Ilya Koslov to Harold Cooper! Now viewers know that is not true, opening the door to a legion of possibilities as to his real identity.

You have to wonder. Is The Blacklist about to flip the script with Katarina being the better person of the two? There seems to be some alluding to it, even if I do not buy it 100%. On that note, it is interesting to read Jon Bokenkamp categorize Red as a “bad guy.”

The Blacklist had been making a point of recognizing the good that Red has been doing. Albeit with a substantial benefit to himself. When you are dealing with a character from the criminal underworld, you have to consider a lack of honesty. Katarina is clearly a good liar. Maddy Tolliver, anyone? That does not mean she is not capable of having some honest things to share.

There is a lot of time to contemplate Katarina's trustworthiness. The Blacklist will be back for more mayhem during the midseason, starting in March 2020. You can catch up on the successful series’ previous seasons on Netflix, which will have a lot of new content join it in 2020.

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.