I continue my exploration of my Top SFF characters of 2013 with a character who isn’t technically part of the SFF genre, James Spader’s brilliant Raymond “Red” Reddington, criminal mastermind and main star of The Blacklist.
RAYMOND “RED” REDDINGTON
Okay, you could argue that I’m technically cheating here by including a character from a non-genre show on this list but I couldn’t really leave him out. James Spader’s criminal mastermind easily excels the entirety of the rest of the cast, delivering a show stealing performance that sees him in strong contention with Kevin Spacey for best TV actor from 2013. The show is ideally suited to get the most out of the character as possible (much like House of Cards with Spacey), and right from the first moment that we see Spader on scene we know something special is going to happen here.
Red is the FBI’s most wanted man, who turns himself over and reveal information about criminals that the FBI don’t know about – on the condition that he works with rookie profiler Elizabeth Keen. In Episode 10 Liz finally asks Red whether he’s her real father or not but Red denies it – however we’re not quite sure if he’s telling the truth or not so their connection still remains a mystery. Over the course of the ten episodes however we’ve seen the show pit Red and Liz against a variety of super-criminals, with the game-changing Episodes of 9 and 10 really giving the show a brand new direction for when we return following the mid-season break. The Blacklist is one of my favourite New Shows of 2013, mainly due to the excellent chemistry between Red and Liz, much as it is Spader himself.
I’m eagerly awaiting the show’s return – if just to see Spader again.