The Blacklist has been a hit for NBC, so it came as no huge surprise when the network announced plans for a spinoff. The Blacklist: Redemption will feature a combination of new characters and familiar faces from the Blacklist cast. One of the familiars joining the spinoff will be Tom Keen, who is set to leave Blacklist despite being a regular on the original series. The big question has been regarding what will drive Tom away from Elizabeth and their daughter. Actor Ryan Eggold has the answer, saying this:
At the end of Season 3, they kind of for a moment…got a glimpse of their dream coming true. And then, it was taken away. What is at stake for their relationship is really their daughter. …Can they be parents? Can they bring a person into this chaotic, criminal world that they have?
The biggest obstacle to Tom leaving The Blacklist has been his relationship with Elizabeth and their new daughter. A strained relationship between Tom and Elizabeth in the beginning of Season 3 could be the perfect way to ease Ryan Eggold out of The Blacklist and into Redemption. The well-being of their daughter could easily be a divisive issue for them. They could each have very different views on what is the best way to keep her safe, especially if they’re questioning whether or not it was right to bring a child into their crazy world. The little girl was already born; all they can do is react to their new reality. For Tom, that new reality will evidently push him away into a spinoff at some point.
Given how close Tom and Elizabeth came to the Blacklist equivalent of a happily-ever-after in Season 3, there’s a real sense of tragedy in the fact that the two new parents will be unable to work things out and form a family. The Blacklist was never going to give them a white picket fence, but there was a brief window during Season 3 that was surprisingly optimistic. They could have had it all… if only they were characters on a different show. Ryan Eggold’s tease to TVGuide is proof that we’ll be in for some bittersweetness before Tom makes the move to the spinoff.
Luckily, it sounds like both Tom and Elizabeth might not have much time to mope about their relationship problems in the near future. The backdoor pilot for The Blacklist: Redemption that aired last May already introduced Tom’s mom Scottie. Their relationship will reportedly develop into a dynamic similar to the one between Red and Liz in Blacklist as Tom’s quest for answers about his past drive him into dark waters. For her part, Liz will have to deal with the ramifications of her decision to fake her death and try to hide her daughter from Red. All in all, they’ll be pretty busy.
The Blacklist: Redemption doesn’t yet have a premiere date, so we shouldn’t expect it to hit the airwaves until midseason. Luckily, The Blacklist will be back well before the spinoff launches. Season 4 debuts on Thursday, September 22 at 10 p.m. ET on NBC. Check out our fall TV premiere schedule to see when your other favorite shows will be back in the near future.