On Thursday's episode of The Blacklist, Aram (Amir Arison) gets another shot at going undercover. We all know how well that worked out for him last time, when his girlfriend Elise (Annie Heise) was exposed as a spy. But this assignment is more in Aram's comfort zone: He's tasked with infiltrating a hacker convention to get to a Blacklister nicknamed The Architect (guest star Brent Spiner) once Cooper (Harry Lennix) realizes that he's the only member of the task force with the necessary qualifications.
"He's just as surprised, bewildered and scared as anyone to be asked to go back out to the field, considering how badly [last time], went in his eyes," Arison tells TVGuide.com. "He got completely embarrassed because his girlfriend absolutely wiped the floor with him. ... He's definitely scarred from the last time. There's no question. But ... I feel like he's a little braver than he even realizes. He steps up more than I think he even is aware that he's capable of."
Once he gets to the convention, however, Aram is forced to improvise after he has a very unexpected and very unwelcome reunion. That's right - Elise is back! How is that possible?
"It's like, every time the guy goes undercover, she's gotta be there," Arison says. "She's supposed to be in jail for a very long time because she was part of the Thrushes, and we caught her and identified her as an enormous mole. So, that is what is going through his head. Not to mention all the personal things it brings up by just seeing her. It's like a giant WTF."
And of course, Elise isn't the only woman on Amar's mind. The undercover assignment will produce some meaningful moments between him and Samar (Mozhan Marno) as well.
"I feel like Aram is almost an infant in understanding how to go about this relationship," Arison says. "With something as big as Aram going undercover and risking his life, and then Elise, Aram's spy ex-girlfriend showing up, obviously that's going to bring out more stuff. It wouldn't be The Blacklist if we didn't have a teeny bit of Samar/Aram to come out as a result of this. But ... more is coming regarding that storyline."
Getting to work with Spiner - aka Data from Star Trek - was another perk of the episode for Arison. "I got to have a lot of scenes with him, and I normally don't get to have scenes with the Blacklister, so it was a real treat," he says. "We were just geeking out together about the work."
But maybe the most exciting thing for Arison was getting Aram out of the suit he typically wears in the post office.
"I just want to give a shoutout to Christine Bean, our costume designer, [who] came up with Aram's hacker convention undercover outfit, based on Aram's clothing," Arison says. "He had to be himself, and he had to be undercover. ... It helped me feel comfortable but uncomfortable because I've never dressed like that in the role."
"We're in the middle of our fourth season, and when I get to do anything different or stretch in any way as an actor, or put Aram in situations that he's never been in before, that is fun," he adds. "I actually think in acting in general, any time you take a character out of his comfort zone is when the real character is revealed. ... I got a lot of that this week, so it was challenging and fun."
Check out the exclusive clip to see Aram learn about his assignment.
The Blacklist airs Thursdays at 10/9c; however, the Feb. 23 winter finale will air at 9/8c ahead of the premiere of The Blacklist: Redemption.