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Why James Spader's 'Blacklist' Character 'Raymond Reddington,' Is So Addictive

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By Lacretia Roberts

The Blacklist has the world enticed, to say the least. The award winning show currently boasts a whopping rating of 91% on Rotten Tomatoes and an 8/10 on IMDB.

With critics calling the show, "witty, emotional and addictive" there is plenty of room for it to persist in it's upward trajectory.

Having just been renewed for an eighth season, newcomers may wonder what makes the show so riveting.

Having multi award winning actor James Spader, playing the lead character, Raymond Reddington is one of the primary reasons this show claims so many viewers' high praise as he is a rather complex character.

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His Humor and Irony


The series is packed with unexpected moments of complete hilarity at the hands of Reddington's banter.

Witty remarks and a near condescending tone are Reddington's way of life. He waltzes around the F.B.I. as if it is his own personal militia. He easily manipulates his counter parts as if they are mindless puppets, at play for his amusement.

This makes it difficult for high ranking, FBI assistant director Harold Cooper to understand clearly that Reddington owns him and his task force.

A longtime FBI most wanted fugitive, Reddington is so intelligent that he devised an immunity agreement that allows him to literally use the force of the FBI to take out his enemies, simply by making a deal with them that they couldn't refuse.

His Blatant Crime and Mystery

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Raymond is criminally competent but also smart enough to often be 100 steps ahead of the FBI, who is often struggling to catch up to and understand his motives or plans surrounding the revelation of a new Blacklister.

Often times the criminals he exposes are so foul that the FBI simply can't resist. Reddington knows just how to bait them and also how to keep them all distracted while he gets away with theft, information, loot and even murder.

Viewers may remember how Reddington pushed blacklister, the stew maker into his own tub of a lethal chemical solution after he kidnapped, tortured and planned to kill Liz, a homicide which goes completely unacknowledged by the FBI.

His Surprises

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Reddington is full of surprises that keep the FBI on their toes and constantly guessing. Sometimes he also likes to throw them a few curve balls just to make sure they're still paying attention to the mere fact that he is basically a genius.

Somehow they usually aren't privy to Raymond's schemes. Consider the time that Reddington took out his revenge against Floriana Campo by making it appear as if he wanted to protect her from the Freelancer. Raymond was able to get Floriana isolated and alone with ease to exact his plan and no one could touch him.

His Love For Liz

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There is one other enigmatic issue at the forefront of Reddington's character, that drives viewers wild.

It is clear that he loves Elizabeth Keen and we have no idea why.

The dynamic between Agent Keen and Reddington is like a delicious bad habit that viewers just can't quit. All the questions and wonder over whether he is her father, loom on with each season, building the anticipation of a much needed revelation.

We see highly emotional and sincere moments from Reddington with concern for Agent Keen and we witness just how vast his range of crazy truly goes especially with regard to her.

Jam packed with thrilling anticipation, intelligence, intrigue and action, this series is one viewers will want to watch again and again.

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