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See The Blacklist's Red Reddington Like Never Before in This Exclusive Sneak Peek

Red... the romantic?

Tim Surette

You know Red Reddington (James Spader) as the absent father, the globe-trotting criminal mastermind, and the duplicitous man of mystery, but do you know Red Reddington the... romantic? You'll meet a totally different side to Red in Friday's episode of The Blacklist, appropriately titled "Anne," and we've got a sneak peek of it right here. 

In the scene, Red is having a heart-to-heart with Anne (Tony winner LaChanze), the quiet and sweet birdwatcher that Red encountered earlier this season. And it's apparent that this isn't the first time the two have met since those earlier episodes.

"Out there my life is so complicated, and here, it's not," Red says to Anne, as they hold hands. Aww! 

"James has often said, 'The great thing about Reddington is that the moment you think you know him, you realize you don't know him at all' -- this is a great example of that," showrunner Jon Bokenkamp told TV Guide via email. "We randomly met Anne earlier this season, and a few episodes later, she and Red spent a lovely day together in New York. It appeared that was that, a wistful romance that might have been." 

"The truth is, Reddington has been carrying on a secret relationship with Anne and has become part of her very quiet life in middle America. We've talked about this story in the writers' room for years, mostly because it dramatizes how -- now more than ever -- there's a small part of Reddington that wishes he could shed his criminal identity, a part of him that wishes he could vanish into the tapestry of everyday life. Well, this is that story, and I think it shows us a side of Reddington that we've never really seen before." 

Red? Content to settle down? I'd say that is indeed a different side. Is Anne Red's way out of this life?

The Blacklist airs Friday night at 8/7c on NBC. 

James Spader, The Blacklist

James Spader, The Blacklist

Will Hart/NBC