When the Machine produces the social security number of a judge renowned for his tough sentencing, Reese and Finch have the added challenge of investigating a POI who wants nothing to do with their brand of vigilante justice.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Judge Samuel Gates
Jarek Koska
Monica Ramirez
Christina Rojas
Angela Markham
Samuel Gates Jr.
Onestate Tech Mitch


The next case for Reese and Finch is that of Judge Samuel Gates, a recent widower with a son, Sam Gates Jr. whose nanny, Christina, has been a valued member of the family since Judge Gates' wife took ill just before her death. As Reese starts to trail the judge, he believes that the machine could be wrong in that the intended target is not the judge but rather Sam Jr. Although Finch states that the machine is never wrong, Sam Jr. is indeed kidnapped, which is all part of the larger picture of what will happen to the judge. Reese takes the unusual step of making himself and his goal of finding Sam Jr. known to the judge, who isn't sure what to believe about this mysterious man. Reese and Finch are able to ID one of the kidnappers, who is a member of an Eastern European gang. The kidnappers do contact Judge Gates, they who are not after money, but rather the acquittal of a defendant in one of the judge's case, that of Angela Markham, who is obviously guilty of the relatively minor DWI ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis





Release Date:

20 October 2011 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?


When we see a close up of Koska's phone at the end of the episode, one of the company names is "Plohoi robot ZAO" or "Bad Robot Company" in Russian. See more »


At time mark 37", John is walking in the rain towards the Russian kidnappers. His hair goes from neat, to very wet and all on his forehead, back to being neatly styled again after Finch's text. See more »


John Reese: I can't be there on time if I'm getting bad information.
Harold Finch: The machine did not send us the wrong number. If it says that judge Gates is in danger, then he is.
John Reese: Well, tell that to his son.
Harold Finch: The kidnapping must connect. It could be the first step in a larger plot that ends with the judge dead. We can still put a stop to it, all of it. But we need a plan.
John Reese: I have a plan. Find Sam. The man just lost his wife. I won't let him wind up alone.
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Holding On
Performed by The Parlor Mob
Written by Mark Melicia, David James Rosen
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User Reviews

The "defining" episode
29 March 2014 | by (North America) – See all my reviews

A "defining" episode in a successful series is always a special treat for the viewer, and this is the defining episode for this series, in many ways an extension of the pilot. All the ingredients are there. On the one hand, you have what looks and feels like the "typical" story for the series, someone (or here, two someones) are in danger, and the hero has to act. But on closer examination the writing is so much richer and more textured. As the action progresses (and there is more action here than in the prior three episodes) we realize that the "bad guys" are bigger and better funded than we suspected. This merely forces our hero to raise the stakes in finding a way to take them down, which he does, in a nice "reveal" just minutes away from the close. Meanwhile, for backstory, we have a lot of loose ends regarding the "involuntary" help from a corrupt cop getting tied up. And -- trust me -- it is no coincidence that, even though this is 5 episodes deep into the season, the very last shot has Caviezel's character thanking Emerson's character for "giving me a job" and then Emerson's character responds by revealing he is a regular at the restaurant they are in, something which at the top of the story he had declined to do (thereby showing trust). Plus, a small child is saved, and a criminal judge becomes grateful. Lots happening here. Superb writing, great entertainment.

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