This season of The Blacklist has been a bit of a reboot now that the Liz-Red secret is out in the open, but that mystery has been replaced by another one: Whose bones are in that suitcase (and now duffel bag)?
We've been given squat about the details of the bones, other than knowing that if Liz (Megan Boone) ever found out who they belonged to, it would threaten to blow up her relationship with Red (James Spader), and Red is willing to do just about anything to keep the secret from his daughter.
The search for the identity of the bones' owner has already gotten several people killed, and this week's fall finale finally saw a character — Tom (Ryan Eggold) — figure out who those bones belonged to! So of course the show killed Tom off minutes later, keeping the secret exactly that for a little bit longer.
Once again, we're back to square one with no idea who the bones belong to. Let's go over three popular theories and discuss!
1. The bones belong to Liz's Mother, Katarina Rostova
This has been the early frontrunner since we knew the bones existed. Liz's mother supposedly went a little nuts and walked into the ocean following the death of her husband (maybe, the details of the story are unclear and part of the mystery) at the hands of Liz, but her body was never found, and that's always a red flag on television. When I asked Jon Bokenkamp if the bones belonged to Liz's mom, all he said was, "That's a good guess."
But here's the big question: Why would it be shocking if the bones were Katarina's? We all know she's dead (supposedly). Tom's face at seeing the DNA results implied something pretty big. "Liz, the bones belong to your dead mom!" is more of a "Annnnd?" than a "OMFG!" We need to think about more than just the who in this case, we need to think why these bones are so important. One thing that adds some spice to the Liz's mom theory? Perhaps the bones tell a different story about how she died; is it possible that Liz didn't shoot her father, but instead shot and killed her mom and the bones could prove that's how she died? Or that Red actually killed her mother? Hmmm...
2. The bones belong to the Real Red Reddington!
Another theory gaining steam, and one that's been around for a while, is the bones belong to the real Red Reddington and the Red we know is an impostor. Dembe repeatedly asked Red why he continued to lie to Liz; is it possible that the lie is that he isn't actually Red and that the real Red died a long time ago? Maybe Liz didn't shoot Katarina, maybe she shot the real Red. The bones apparently could also affect Red's business, and nothing would ruin his reputation in the criminal underworld more than not actually being the man everyone thought he was.
This would also help explain Tom's shock at seeing the name on the DNA test. So would Red be lying about being Liz's father, or is he only lying about being Red and he is still Liz's father? I think I just heard something in my brain pop. This is confusing.
3. The bones belong to the Real Elizabeth Keen!?
Now we're just talking crazy here, or just crazy enough that it works. Let's rewind back to the night of the fire when Liz was a kid: Perhaps Red, looking to care for his daughter — Masha, which is Liz's real name — in the wake of his big fight with Katarina, faked the death of Masha in order to keep Katarina from taking her away. The body he used to fake Masha's death? The real Elizabeth Keen. Honestly, I don't understand how this theory actually works and it's a real stretch, but it's just crazy enough to be true. But it might not provide any shock since Liz recently found out that she was actually Masha. At this point, I'm thinking the bones might actually be mine from the future after spending too much trying to figure out whose bones they are.
Who do you think the bones belong to?
The Blacklist returns Wednesday, Jan. 3 at 8/7c on NBC.