Along with @reddybear56, I too believe in the Impostor!Red theory more than ever, thanks to last night’s finale. This is the only way to reconcile the inconsistencies that Raymond Reddington is Liz’s dad but our Red is not, and has never lied to her.
I think more stuff in S4 only further confirmed this.
(To clarify, when I say ‘Raymond Reddington,’ I mean Liz’s biological father who died the Night of the Fire; and ‘our Red’ means James Spader’s character who was introduced to us in the pilot episode.)
Operating under the assumptions (as TPTB said multiple times) that Red never lies to Liz and that the Liz-Paternity question was answered in last night’s episode, this can only mean that our Red is an impostor.
Unless the DNA test was tampered with, or the sample from the shirt belonged to someone else, that’s the only way both of the aforementioned ‘assumptions,’ which TPTB have confirmed, can be true.
If I may, @eaglechica19, summarize your original theory just so I can write it out, streamlined, in front of me. Perhaps this will help other people too. Really, I think a lot of confirmation for the theory came from S4c.
(Again: Raymond Reddington = character before the Night of the Fire; and our Red = James Spader’s character)
According to Kaplan’s memories and Katarina’s diary, Katarina had an affair with an American named Raymond Reddington
In Kaplan’s flashbacks, we see Katarina having sex with Raymond Reddington in a car (or at least, that’s who she tells us it is), and we get a quick glimpse of him; he appears to be played by a different actor and not James Spader. However, when Kaplan meets “Raymond Reddington” later in the shadows – which, chronologically, was maybe a year after the Night of the Fire – he IS played by James Spader
Again, in Kaplan’s flashbacks, we find out that Raymond Reddington believes Liz/Masha is his kid and abducts her, forcing Katarina to follow him to America, leading to the famous Night of the Fire
In Liz’s flashbacks in 2x10, we hear her mother arguing with “Raymond” about Liz/Masha and the Fulcrum
Thanks to Liz’s memories and Red’s scars, we know that our Red was there the Night of the Fire; Red’s conversation with Ghost!Katarina confirms that he chose to save Masha rather than Katarina, confirming that, at the very least, he was in their lives at this point in time
In the S2 finale, Liz remembers shooting and killing her father when he and her mother argued the Night of the Fire; Red confirms that her father is dead and, per TPTB, Red does not lie to Liz
Based on all this evidence, we know FOR SURE of four people who were there the night of the fire: Liz’s biological father, who is Raymond Reddington according to the DNA test; Katarina; Liz/Masha; and our Red. Liz’s father died from the gunshot wound and his body was likely still in the house when it burned down.
Kirk is like super-convinced that “Raymond Reddington” had a thing with/for Katarina; once Kirk finds out he himself is not Liz’s/Masha’s father, he automatically wonders whether “Raymond Reddington” is
The real Raymond Reddington being Liz/Masha’s dead father, yet our Red being alive only makes sense under the Impostor!Red theory
Again, all props to @eaglechica19 for her very hard work on this theory, and all the additions she’s made in these past few episodes.
Unless the writers have lied to us, or have changed their minds, this is the only thing that makes sense.
Imagine Reddington thinking he frightens you but eventually coming to realize that you’re attracted to him.
**Sequel to “Imagine being an FBI agent working under Cooper and developing a crush on Reddington.” [x]**
Reddington watched you curiously across the room. He found himself watching you more often lately, trying to decipher you. Trying to fit the pieces together. A little puzzle in the back of his mind that he would take out and play with on occasion. A hobby of sorts.
His initial conclusion had been that he intimidated you. He was aware that he often had that effect on people. Then he had realized that this diagnoses didn’t seem quite accurate. He had seen your reactions to intimidating people before. You were good at hiding your fear. It was part of your training as an agent. Now Red was gradually starting to come to a new hypothesis. And that was why he was watching.
You made your way back over to the man, picking your way through the other agents dotting the room. The latest mission was finally coming to a close. “Looks like we’re almost done here,” you announced with a tired smile. “I can finally go home and get some real sleep.”
Red chuckled lightly, allowing a smile to curl his lips. “I’ve been keeping you awake, have I?” he teased, gauging your reaction. As expected, your ears went a shade darker. He arched a brow. His next question was meant to catch you off guard, “Have you ever been in love, [f/n]?”
You blinked and seemed momentarily taken aback. “I-I’m not sure what you mean exactly,” you stated with a slight frown.
“Love, [f/n], have you ever been in love?” Red repeated patiently, tilting his head to one side to look you in the eyes. “When you love someone, you have no control. That’s what love is. Being powerless.”
You swallowed hard, “I don’t know if I’ve ever felt that way before.”
The tiniest hint of a smile ghosted over his face. Red leaned forwards so his lips brushed against your ear, “It’s an exhilarating sensation, I promise.”
Imagine being an FBI agent working under Cooper and developing a crush on Reddington.
It was horribly embarrassing to know that you had fallen for Reddington. It was utterly unprofessional. He was a con man. He was a liar, a thief, and a cold-blooded killer.
But he was also charming and intelligent and, on occasion, even kind. You had seen him be sweet and gentle and sad. You had no way of knowing whether or not it was part of his act. It was why you went so far out of your way to avoid him.
The uncertainty was always there in the back of your mind, and the humiliation that you might have fallen for his tricks too. But there were moments when contact became unavoidable. You were certain he could see right through you.
The worst happened when Cooper assigned you to an undercover operation with Reddington. It was already a struggle to keep yourself professional around him, nevermind when you were pretending to be a couple. Reddington seemed to have no qualms about it, easily hooking his arm around your waist or pressing a kiss into your hair.
“Come along, darling, we should be getting back to our hotel,” he advised, his thumb rubbing circles on your hip. The contact had your stomach doing flips. It didn’t help that you both had consumed a few glasses of wine to keep up your guise. You were terrified that you’d slip up. Keeping your cover among terrorists wasn’t what had you so anxious. It was keeping your cool around Reddington that you were worried about.
Reddington’s lips brushed your ear and you could smell the hint of wine still on his breath. “At least try to look like you’re enjoying yourself, darling. Relax.”
You shivered and he chuckled lowly, his grip on your waist tightening imperceptibly. “Don’t worry, [f/n]. I prefer that slight curve at the small of the back, the swell of a breast, the soft nape of the neck to quicken my heartbeat. I promise I’ll stay in control of myself. I am nothing if not a gentleman.”