What Is ‘The Blacklist?’

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What is “The Blacklist?” “The Blacklist” is a new fall 2013 TV show on NBC starring James Spader as Raymond “Red” Reddington, one of the FBI’s 10 most wanted criminals. Reddington voluntarily turns himself in and agrees to help the feds catch deadly terrorist Ranko Zamani, provided he be allowed to only work with Elizabeth “Liz” Keen, an FBI agent played by Megan Boone. “The Blacklist” of the title refers to a list of bad guys James Spader’s character promises to help apprehend, so long as he can continue working with Keen. “The Blacklist” is among the most anticipated fall 2013 TV shows, and it’s set to premiere on Sept. 23.

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“What is ‘The Blacklist?’” is a question you might answer like this “’Silence of the Lambs’ meets ‘The Following.’” That’s how the Huffington Post chose to describe the new fall 2013 TV series, which is written and executive produced by Jon Bokenkamp, known for his work on “Taking Lives.”  Ask him “What is ‘The Blacklist?’” as some folks did, more or less, at Comi-Con 2013, and he’ll explain how the capture of Boston mobster Whitely Bolger was the inspiration behind the NBC hour drama. At the same panel, James Spader said he was drawn to “The Blacklist” because he saw in Red Reddington “a character that [would] sustain and go on for a while.” Spader also “saw an opportunity for humor with this guy [who] is such a strange mix of dangerous and scary.”

What is “The Blacklist?” For Megan Boone, who plays Liz Keen, the new fall 2013 series is a chance at breakout success. Boone took the role seriously and studied up on FBI profilers before going toe-to-toe with Spader, who she says has been unbelievable. “It’s a mystery,” Boone told the Huffington Post. “Television develops at a very slow pace and your character develops with it, so you kind of have to go with the flow and discover.”

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What is “The Blacklist?” Might it be a show about a father and daughter (Red and Keen), or perhaps two former lovers? Viewers will have to tune in to NBC on Sept. 23 to begin to unravel the mystery.

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