It’s one part conspiracy theorist heaven, one part crime procedural, one part ethical drama, one part meta commentary on the entire world, and one part romcom. Person of Interest is the short of show you have to tell people “Not only does it get better, but it gets amazing.” One of the few shows that doesn’t collapse under the weight of it’s own mythos, PoI was neglected and confusingly under promoted by CBS.
Person of Interest centers around a reclusive billionaire genius computer programmer named Harold Finch, who develops a superintelligent AI computer system known as “The Machine.” It monitors all people and their activity and is capable of predicting and identifying people planning deadly crimes. The Machine identifies these people by issuing numbers that can be decoded to reveal Social Security numbers. The catch is The Machine can’t determine if the person is the perpetrator or victim of the crime.
Harold recruits a team to prevent these crimes from happening including a former CIA agent, police detectives, a genius hacker named Samantha “Sam” Groves (aka Root) and an assassin named Sameen Shaw. The love for this show is mostly due to Root and Shaw and their amazing sexual tension and eventual relationship of sorts.
Queer Plotline Timeline
The first season is mostly centered around Harold & John with some detective Joss Carter (the fabulous Taraji P. Henson) thrown in. To be honest, it is not as interesting as later seasons because of the lack of women characters, but still worth watching to get a foundation for the rest of the series. Halfway through the first season you are introduced to Root, but only via a text chat she has with Harold as a hacker. At the end of season 1 her identity is revealed. 16 episodes into season 2 Shaw is introduced and from her first scene with Root the hate-flirting is very obvious and amazing. It continues on for the rest of the show.
Notable Queer-Centric Episodes
- Season 2 Episode 16 “Relevance” – The episode shifts its focus to center around Shaw as she makes her first appearance on the show. The first time her and Root meet, Root tries to get information out of her by threatening her with an iron and it’s pretty hot.
- Season 4 Episode 11 “If-Then-Else” – Team Machine (minus Shaw) gets captured by Samaritan while trying to prevent the stock market from being taken down. To escape they turn to The Machine who runs millions of possible scenarios to figure out the best strategy. The episode plays out of few of those scenarios and in each one Root flirts with Shaw on the phone who is riding the subway to come rescue them. In the real one Root tells Shaw that some day she will realize they should be together. Right before escaping Shaw kisses Root and then gets shot several times.
Annoyed attempt to deflect subtext. Overt Come-on. Mildly embarrassed offensiveness bordering on hostility. Playfully witty signoff.
- Season 5 Episode 4 “6,741” – Since getting shot in season 4, Shaw has been held by Samaritan who subjects her to thousands of electrochemical simulations while unconscious. In simulation 6,741 she escapes, reconnects with Team Machine and her and Root have sex.