Fanart by wampragos
I just finished all 5 seasons of Person of Interest and I have one question: Why on earth did I not watch this sooner?
Before starting it, I knew little about it. Simply that Michael Emerson a.k.a Benjamin Linus from Lost was in it, something about a machine and the dynamic pairing of Root and Shaw. Those two really got my attention and after watching most of their scenes throughout the seasons, I decided it was time to watch them in context.
It took me a while to get round to watching it, but thankfully I finally did. Although I already knew how the series ended for her, I never could have envisioned falling in love with Root the way that I did.
I’ve watched a lot of TV shows and thus have a lot of favourite characters, but Root is on a whole other level.
When she was first introduced to us in Season 1, she was introduced as a villain. The writers didn’t intend to make her a key player, but when you have what Amy Acker brings to Root, there’s no going back.
Root arrived and instantly transformed Person of Interest. She brought something incredibly entertaining to the show that just didn’t seem to be there before.
Amy Acker’s portrayal of this captivating character is primarily what makes Root so brilliant. I simply can’t envision anyone else being able to accomplish what Amy does in every episode. She delivers each line with the power and intensity that the scene desires. She brings comedic relief with her witty remarks and playful expressions. With every scene, you become more enthralled with Root because of what Amy brings.
Root may be a slightly psychopathic assassin, but you can’t help but fall in love with it.
Watching her take out guys who are double her size, whether that be with a gun shot to the kneecaps or some crazy fight moves, is something I could sit and watch for hours. The smirks and coy remarks she makes as she goes along on her killing and kidnapping sprees are exactly what draws you in.
It takes her a while to get there, but Root does become a hero. Before joining Team Machine, she didn’t have much that grounded her. But that soon changed and we saw her become someone who wouldn’t hesitate to put her life on the line when necessary. She found her family, and that transformed her arc.
Root grew beautifully throughout the series and I love reflecting on who she was when she first appeared, to who she was in her final episodes.
The list of beautifully bad-ass women in television seems to be growing expeditiously, and Root’s name is going to be pretty high up that list for a long time.
Without the machine in her ear, she’s more than capable of handling herself and hacking into whatever she so desires. But when she goes into God Mode, she’s unstoppable.
Not only is she always seven steps ahead and able to shoot someone down before they’ve even stepped foot in the room, but she’s completely fearless. Her only fear derives from the thought of those she cares about being at risk.
This is a woman who’ll bring a knife to a gun fight (literally) and still have the upper hand. Give her one gun and watch her go, but two and you won’t be able to take your eyes off her.
Complex female characters are probably my biggest weak spot. And that’s just one of many reasons as to why I love Root so much.
She shifts from being the antagonist to protagonist and you strangely seem to get behind her as both. She has a troubled past and because of her previous actions, her trust is often doubted. But you just can’t help but root for her (pun intended).
She’s both sadistic and charming, feminine and tough. She’s insanely intelligent and is never depicted as less-than capable as Harold, or anyone else in the show.
Then comes her relationship with Shaw, which only adds more depth to her character and more power to the show.
These two powerful and complex women go from being strangers who take pleasure in torturing each other, to doing whatever it takes to keep the other alive. They grow to depend on each other. Not only to get the job done, but to survive, to be.
Even from the very beginning, when Root ties Shaw up and threatens to torture her with an iron, you can sense their chemistry. They admire each other’s resilience and strength and that slowly grows into something much more intense.
Root can’t resist flirting with Shaw. Mainly because she knows how much it irritates her, but also because there’s an attraction there. Her endless innuendos make her character even more enjoyable.
But after a while, their relationship shifts from being playful to meaningful.
Root and Shaw have one of the most interesting and dynamic relationships that I’ve ever seen on TV. I’ve already discussed Root’s complexity, but Shaw’s is possibly what makes the pairing so impactful.
Shaw is a sociopath with a personality disorder. She has feelings, she clearly cares, she just can’t express it in the way that Root may. Shaw knows that she needs Root and admires her strength, just as Root admires hers. The flirting may bug her but after a while, it seems like she secretly enjoys it and their relationship only grows in intensity.
Although their love isn’t expressed through conventional affection, it’s instead shown through sacrifice. They risk their lives for each continuously. Shaw would rather end her life than put Root’s at risk, and Root would go down with her if it meant living in a world without her. At the end of the day, all they want is for the other to be safe.
When paired together, Root and Shaw are a force to be reckoned with.
Root developed into a fiercely loyal character. Her mission to free the machine coupled with her desire to keep her friends out of danger created some incredible moments. She united with Team Machine to end Samaritan, risked everything to find Shaw and get a message out to her and sacrificed herself to save Harold, but didn’t even waver as she took out her enemies head on.
After years of misdirection, Root found solace and become a person who people depended on. Without her, the story could have taken a significantly different path.
Introducing new characters who shake up the narrative isn’t always well-received, but bringing in Amy Acker as Root significantly solidified my love for Person of Interest.
People may come close, but it’s going to be a while before I’m as enraptured about a character as I am with Root.