‘The Blacklist’s Harry Lennix on the ‘Cause & Effect’ of Cooper & Red
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Season 7, Episode 4 of The Blacklist, “Kuwait.”]
The Blacklist delves into Cooper’s past and goes back to Kuwait in Friday’s episode, and in doing so, he crosses paths with someone he thought was dead.
And while he struggles with that — and seeing what that man became — Cooper is also faced with what he’s going to do now that he knows Red Reddington (James Spader) is actually Ilya Koslov. He plans to tell Main Justice, but in the end, he keeps that information to himself.
“Everything that happens in the show changes Cooper and every other character,” Harry Lennix told TV Insider. “It provides knowledge. We know more than we thought we knew before. For example, I know now that in spite of the fact this is Ilya Koslov and not a person I thought was Red Reddington, this person is still willing to behave in the way he has been with regard to the task force.”
While Cooper does remain consistent in the fact that he’s always trying to do the right thing, that doesn’t mean there won’t be a change in him moving forward. “He realizes more and more, it’s complicated as long as he’s associated with Reddington,” the actor said.
“At a certain level, good and bad, right and wrong, these kinds of philosophical things start to look alike,” he continued. “What really changes in Cooper is he sees without Red Reddington, he cannot be Cooper. Without Cooper, there could be no Red Reddington. I think the cause and effect thing is becoming clearer as time goes on.”
“Kuwait” also saw Katarina (Laila Robins) continuing to insert herself into Liz’s (Megan Boone) life, this time interfering with Liz’s search for a nanny. Will we see Ms. Rostova cross paths with Cooper? Lennix hopes so. “We are certainly dancing around each other,” he noted. “I’m as much waiting and anticipating if and how Cooper and Rostova will meet, but we’re certainly going to be affecting each other, even right now.”
And Katarina also has an effect on the Blacklisters this season. “The most important one we know about is how they relate to Katarina Rostova,” Lennix teased. “Most of the Blacklisters have some impact on what this central relationship is between Red Reddington/Ilya Koslov and Katarina Rostova because that’s really the center of our universe this season. You will see they revolve around that.”
The Blacklist, Fridays, 8/7c, NBC