The episode begins with a distorted view of a police officer attempting to arrest Matt Murdock. He has his hands up, but he won’t get on his knees. Matt’s surrounded by police, so gets on his knees and they handcuff him.
The police ask what to do about Vladimir, the other man with Matt, and it’s said that they’ll kill him. Matt takes advantage of this and starts fighting them, kicking the men down even while handcuffed.
He disarms an officer and gets his gun, then fights all of them, accidentally shooting Vladimir in the process. Matt asks Vladimir how bad he’s hurt, but when he doesn’t get an English answer, he kicks Vladimir and knocks him out. One of the police officers starts to try to get up, and he shoots Sergei, Vladimir's right hand man (what just happened???). The cop radios for backup, and we are taken to the opening credits.
When we return, Ben Urich is making a board out of playing cards, trying to come up with connections. He stares particularly intently at a card with a question mark.
Ben starts to hear noise outside of his office--it’s his boss letting them know about the explosions from last episode and assigning people to cover the stories. Ben realizes it’s not gas fires, and it's not coincidental: it’s all locations that were controlled by the Russians.
Elsewhere, there are a lot of cars on the streets tonight, including some police cars and some black SUVs. Who could possibly be inside?
Our first shot is of Wesley, who clearly has nothing better to do than ride around in cars all day. He’s having a tense conversation, and when he hangs up, he lets Fisk know that Vladimir’s still in play… and so is the man in the black mask. Fisk is worried about Madame Gao, since she may not be happy about how things went down. Wesley asks what Fisk’s going to do about the police, and Fisk delivers a semi-chilling line:
Wesley: She’ll want to know what our next move is.It's very clear that Fisk controls everything in this town.
Fisk: Letting the police do their jobs. That’s what I pay them for, isn’t it?
Cut to the wreckage of one of the explosions. There’s fire and a Russian coughing up blood. Blake and Hoffman, the police men that work for Fisk, are checking things out when they see the Russian guy lying on the floor. One of the Jerk Cops tortures it out of the already battered-and-bleeding man. He wants to know where Vladimir is, even though this man says he doesn’t know, but jerk cop presses forward. Then shoots him in the head. He then gives orders for everyone else to do the same if they find any survivors.
Matt is heading up some stairs, carrying Vladimir over his shoulders. He sets Vladimir down in an abandoned building and from the sounds Vladimir is making he’s not doing well. Matt tells him he’s been shot, and Vladimir responds with a string of Russian.
Matt: “That sounds pretty bad, but I don’t speak asshole.”
Vladimir tells Matt he’s going to kill him for what he did to his brother (Anatoly), but Matt admits it wasn’t him.
“I don’t kill people. Not even scumbags like you who deserve it.”
They argue about the guy Matt threw off the roof in "Cut Man" and how it was kind of morally dubious that Matt left him in a coma (despite not killing him. Props for you?). They also argue about how Matt’s mask was planted on Anatoly, and Matt tries to convince Vladimir that they’re both being played by Fisk. Matt tells Vladimir to pick a side, then reveals that his goal is for Fisk to be on trial for everything he’s done.
There's just one problem: Vladimir is bleeding out, leaving a puddle of red stuff on the concrete floor. Matt tries to convince Vladimir to sell out Fisk for “payback,” but Vladimir (rudely) refuses.
We cut to an emergency room, which is crowded and chaotic due to the explosions. Foggy and Karen bring in Mrs. Cardenas who’s bleeding badly from her head, and they call for help. A nurse asks where she’s hurt and as she gets closer we realize… IT’S CLAIRE! Finally, our two worlds collide!
Claire speaks Spanish to Mrs. Cardenas to help calm her down, then sweeps “Mrs. C”, as Foggy calls her, off to a room. Foggy and Karen realize they should call Matt because everything’s so bad. Karen points out that Foggy’s injured too; blood mars his formal shirt. Karen goes off trying to find someone to help him.
Meanwhile, the ER boss expresses surprise that Claire’s back, since apparently Claire was in a “car accident.”
Matt calls her to tell her that they won’t be dealing with the Russians anymore and that the explosions weren’t his fault. He also says he needs her help. He needs to get intel out of Vladimir, but that involves making sure Vladimir doesn't die--something rather difficult since Matt can’t call the authorities or go to the hospital on this one. That's where Claire comes in. Ah, isn’t it nice to have a standby nurse?
Matt asks her to help walk him through stabilizing him.
Claire: “It’s not as easy as it looks in the movies, you know.”
Matt: “I don’t really go to the movies…? I like records though.”
Matt reveals that it’s Vladimir they need to stabilize, and Claire does not take that well considering he beat her up. She takes a while to consider whether to help, but then starts walking him through the process. There isn’t much for Matt to use since he’s in an abandoned warehouse. He goes through the things that he has on hand, when he mentions a roadside emergency kit. Claire asks if there are any flares in it, and Matt says yes. Claire tells him he’s going to cauterize the wound. She explains that it’ll give him a chance to not bleed out before he tells them what they need to know, and that it will also “hurt like a sunuvabitch.” That’s a bonus for her, since she’s not fond of Mr. Rankashov.
Matt puts Claire on speaker, then lights the flare. Claire warns him not to let up, no matter how much he screams. He puts the flare against Vladimir’s skin and Vladimir does scream, which Matt muffles with his hand. A police officer hears the screaming in the abandoned warehouse just before Vladimir passes out from the pain.
The cop goes inside the warehouse and tries find the source of the noise. Matt hangs up on Claire and says he has to go as the cop calls for backup. The police officer heads upstairs, gun extended, but finds nothing except for a passed out Vladimir. He tries to talk to Vladimir, but Matt says “he can’t hear you” and suddenly knocks out the cop, his knee on his throat. Matt says he must answer his questions once he takes his knee off his throat. The cop agrees.
Matt asks who he works for, yet isn’t satisfied with the answer and asks him again. The cop repeats his answer: he works for the city of New York and Matt realizes he’s not lying due to the sound of his heartbeat. Matt tells the cop to call headquarters and say it was a false alarm and that there’s no need to send backup. The cop raises his radio and contacts HQ. Matt waits, but suddenly the cop starts yelling...
“Second floor! Perp in mask! Wounded civilian!”
Matt knocks him out. The radio keeps going: they are sending backup. Two cop cars take off, as well as a helicopter (oh great).
Those Jerk Cops, Blake and Hoffman, arrive at the warehouse and start running the operation. This is bad.
Suddenly, Ben Ulrich shows up and starts asking questions about the situation. He asks for a statement from Jerk Cops.
“Yeah. The world’s a shitty place. You can quote me.”
Ben implies that he knows about the cop inside--Officer Sullivan.
“How the hell do you know that?”
“How long I been doing this?”
“Long enough to be a pain in the ass.”
They ask Ben to leave and say that if this thing goes sideways, things will be bad for him. Ben says he’ll keep his head down.
Wesley and Fisk are still in the car, where they’ve received news about the masked man’s appearance at the abandoned building. Wesley says they’re waiting for permission to take the building, which Fisk grants because he wants to get all this behind them. Wesley mentions that Ben Urich is at the scene and that it could be a problem because Ben is the one who discovered the Union Allied thing.
Fisk: “Problems are just opportunities that haven’t presented themselves.”
Fisk says for Wesley to reach out to all their contacts in the media.
“I want everyone in Hell’s Kitchen to see what’s about to happen.”
Back in the building, Matt’s tying up Officer Sullivan. Vladimir wakes up, and Matt says they’re completely surrounded (this is bad). Matt gets rid of Officer Sullivan's gun. Vladimir says they could’ve used it, but Matt says he’s not big on guns. He picks up a piece of piping instead.
Vladimir: “Great. Little stick. Much better.”He asks what was done to him and Matt explains: the bullet is still inside him. Vladimir isn’t very thankful that Matt saved his life, but Matt says if he didn’t want him alive they wouldn’t be having this conversation.
Vladimir says that Matt will eventually turn into a bad man, like Vladimir himself and Wilson Fisk. Matt says he’s Vladimir’s only shot at getting out of the building alive.
Vladimir opens up to Matt. He says Wesley came to them first and said his employer had taken note and complimented them on their business, then invited them to be a part of something bigger.
“We were going to rule this city, my brother and I.”Vladimir says Fisk works together with the Chinese and Matt demands the names of the Chinese, but according to Vladimir, there is only one name that matters: the man that ties them all together. He asks if Matt has ever heard of the name Leslie Shumway. Matt assumes that Shumway works for Fisk, but Vladimir says that it was Al Capone’s accountant. The truth is clear: Vladimir knows who Fisk’s money man is.
Matt pushes for the name, but Vladimir says it in Russian and then attacks him, determined not to die here. They scuffle and fall through the floor, crashing through several floors of the warehouse. We see a close-up of Matt, who is still and unmoving.
Cut to outside, where Jerk Cops are telling Ben that he doesn’t matter anymore as a reporter. Due to television, he’s obsolete. Ben has a fantastic comeback.
At the hospital, Karen is watching the news and trying to call Matt, who isn’t answering. Foggy’s in a hospital bed due to his injuries from the explosion. Foggy insists Matt’s probably okay, since he’s gotten so good at navigating through life blind.
Karen says, “So you’re not worried about him?” Foggy gets a concerned look on his face. He wants to get up and go find him, but he’s still injured. Karen insists he should stay in bed.
Foggy: “I’m the closest he has to family. He’d do the same for me.”
Karen: “I know… and I love that about you guys, but don’t be an idiot.”
Foggy: “Wouldn’t be the first time.”
Karen: “You’ve played the hero enough for one day. You’re here, and safe. So let’s keep it that way, okay?”
Karen heads out and she and Foggy share a cute moment about how their first date turned out terrible.
“Hell of a first date, huh?”
After Karen leaves, Foggy calls Matt again, asking where he is.
Matt is still face down in the warehouse, groaning as he wakes up. He slowly pulls himself up, but we can tell it’s agonizing for him. He spits out some blood.
Vladimir is lying on the ground looking at him and says that though attacking Matt wasn’t smart, Vladimir enjoyed watching Matt bleed.
Vladimir starts to breathe slowly and finally he dies. Matt can tell by listening to his heart. He performs CPR on Vladimir.
“I’m not done with you yet, you hear me?”
Matt pounds on Vladimir’s chest extremely hard, and Vladimir coughs back to life, asking what happened.
“You died. I brought you back.”
Vladimir finds it interesting that Matt brought him back to life, implying that Matt didn’t have the guts to let Vladimir die. Matt insists that it’s just because he needs information on Fisk.
Speaking of the devil, Fisk is sitting in the car watching the news. Wesley gets into the car and updates him on the situation--an Emergency Response Unit is on the way and Blake and Hoffman have cleared a channel of some sort. The SUVs take off.
Ben Urich is still at the crime scene and watches as the Emergency Response Unit team pulls up and start piling out of the truck, ready to take on whoever's in the warehouse.
Matt watches out the window and listens to the sounds around him--he hears water running. He tells Vladimir he’s finding them a way out, and investigates a vent in the floor.
Suddenly Fisk’s voice comes through a radio--the cop’s radio. Matt picks it up but doesn’t answer. Fisk said he thought it was time they spoke since Matt’s been asking about him.
Matt: “Say your name.”
Fisk: “You first.”
Fisk: “That’s what I thought.”
Fisk says they have a lot in common, Matt says no, and Fisk says that’s what he tells himself.
“Life is not a fairy tale. Not everyone deserves a happy ending.”
Matt says he’s going to find him and make him pay. As Fisk speaks, a man on the roof sets up a sniper rifle. Fisk tells Matt he needs to stop now.
“It’s gonna take a lot more than a voice on a radio to stop me.”
“It’s not me you have to worry about. It’s this city you just blew the hell out of.”
Matt asks if Fisk seriously thinks anyone will believe that he caused the explosions. Fisk names the things Matt’s done that are bad, including holding a police officer hostage, and says yes, the explosions can be pinned on him. Then Fisk says it doesn’t have to be this way: if Matt just kills Vladimir, they can let all this go. Fisk tries to convince Matt to do it by reminding him of all the things that Vladimir has done--like hurting the people of the city that Matt loves so much. Matt says that Fisk just confirmed Vladimir was important and that it must worry Fisk what Vladimir might tell Matt. Fisk flips this back around by saying that Vladimir must not have said anything yet.
“You’re a child playing at being a hero.”
“No, no, I’m not trying to be a hero. I’m just a guy that got fed up with men like you and decided to do something about it.
“That’s what makes you dangerous. It’s not the mask. It’s not the skills. It’s your ideology.”
Fisk says that what Matt’s trying to do ends tonight, but Matt says that others will see what he was trying to do and will carry on the legacy. Fisk insists that Matt will be met with abhorrence and disgust.
Then Wesley says to someone on the phone, “Do it.” We see the man with the sniper rifle looking through his scope… at Ben Urich. Blake, one of the Jerk Cops, starts arguing with Ben again, but it’s cut short when the sniper shoots him. Everyone around starts panicking and there’s a commotion. Before anyone can realize what's happening, the sniper continues shooting other police officers. Ben kneels over Blake and tries to stop the bleeding.
Fisk says that Matt forced him to do this, then hangs up. Matt throws the radio in disgust and Fisk tells Wesley, “Tell our friends to roll the tape.”
Claire sees on the news at the hospital that the injuries happened, and that there's a fascinating development in the case of the explosions in Hell's Kitchen. The camera then goes to Foggy who’s also watching the news. The news anchors discuss the explosions in Hell’s Kitchen, and they imply that the masked man caused the explosions. Karen recognizes him as the man who saved her life. She doesn’t believe he would do something like that.
Foggy: “General rule, guys with masks usually have something to hide. Usually it ain’t good.”
Matt continues to pull on the venting to try to get out when his phone rings. Claire calls and informs him that the news says he shot those cops. Matt says it was all Fisk. (We don’t say his name.)
Matt listens and hears police officers outside. Matt and Claire then discuss the fact that they are sort of in love with each other, and Matt says he doesn’t want her to get dragged down with him if things go sideways. He says that if he doesn’t speak to her again, she needs to take care of herself then he hangs up. The police officers are getting closer to discovering Matt, so he starts pulling on the vent in the floor. Vladimir helps, insisting that this is not how he wants to die.
The Emergency Response Unit finds Sullivan tied up, and he’s alive. That is until the Emergency Response Unit guys radio back that Officer Sullivan is dead and then stab him.
Matt and Vladimir get the grating open and start their escape through underground tunnels. They go through a passageway and suddenly the ERU is blasting them with gunfire from machine guns. Somehow Matt dodges this and fights them all off, escaping being shot the whole time. After Matt's killed them all, he turns to Vladimir who’s against the wall and says that there are more coming. Vladimir insists that Matt should get out of there without him and that he'll fight the men off. Matt insists that he needs to bring Vladimir with him.
“No. I’m not a killer.”
“The moment you put on the mask, you got into cage with animals. Animals don’t stop fighting. Not until one of them is dead.”
Vladimir gets to his feet and warns Matt that Fisk will do bad things to Matt and everyone he cares about. Then Vladimir gives him the name of Fisk’s money controller: Leland Owlsley.
“He’ll give you what you think you want. But it won’t be enough. You know that now, don’t you?”
Then he tells Matt to leave him. Vladimir is alone in the tunnel, armed with a gun. He sings in Russian as the police officers come towards him. Matt hears the gunfire as he leaves, walking down a tunnel into the unknown.
Have you seen "Condemned"? What did you think of it?