Blindspot : Tattoo Analysis (1)

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this is an in-depth analysis of the first episode of NBCs Blindspot specifically relating to the tattoo thats uncovered along with Janes past and the progress in finding out who she is 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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i wanted to do some individual posts for each and every tattoo that is explained / unlocked, this show is so damn intriguing and fuck i did not see the finale coming my jaw was on the floor . So yeah i just thought id go through the tattoos with a post each explaining what the significance of them were and what case it related to, the slow release of information about Jane’s murky and elusive past etc .

The episode (the pilot) starts off with Jane being found naked and tattooed in a duffle bag in times square .

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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The guys the FBI had sent out were expecting a bomb but get quite a surprise when she confusedly climbs out of the bag – they tell her to put her hands behind her head n get on the ground .

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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The first main piece of information they find is a tattoo on Jane’s upper back : the name of a very high up FBI special agent .

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Jane is poked and prodded and examined in everyway possible – DNA marker scanning, facial recognition, bloods 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Fingerprints 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Iris scans etc .

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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followed by a full body scan to detail and capture all the tattoos 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Jane is then taken in for some in-depth questioning . They find shes in a possibly permanent state of chemically induced amnesia – her whole system was flooded with a drug that, with tiny doses can help PTSD victims (soldiers who’ve seen combat / rape victims etc.) her procedural memory is still there but the specifics are gone – for example “she knows what music is but doesnt remember the Beatles” .

Once they establish that she is telling the truth she begins to take part in her own case 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Patterson (our resident nerd) is on it – she and her team are analyzing the tattoos and trying to decrypt and decode them . The shrink treating Jane recommends that she have a look at their progress (or lack there of) 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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So we begin with the very first tattoo that is “unlocked” Jane see’s this & speaks what she reads – the chinese symbols give an address and a date : 399 WhiteStreet, Apartment 7, Chinatown

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Were shown that the tattoo is only about an inch big and its behind Jane’s left ear . This initially went unnoticed by the FBI because its was in an incredibly rare Chinese Dialect called “Wenzhou” or “The Devils Tongue” – Doctor Borden recommended that jane have a look at the screens showing her tattoos 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Once jane has translated they bring up the address and see whos living it it. Turns out to be one “Chao Zhang” who is a transportation engineer 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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From there the team heads out along with Jane, & since Chao’s roommate speaks no english and they forgot to bring a translator : enter Jane! Upon kicking in Chao’s bedroom door they find a little chemist lab set up – they smell sulfur, find sawdust & with a fancy tool that looks like a supermarket barcode reader find out its materials to make Class E explosives 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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We see Jane figuring out she has some serious martial arts skills when the man abusing his wife goes for her and her quick reflexes take them both by surprise – this starts to make sense as they find that the large black opague square tattoo on her shoulder was obscuring a navy SEAL tattoo . granted if she were navy she’d be in their database, but not if she was special ops 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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They then find a video file on his laptop (that again they need jane to translate) which they find early and is set to upload 4 hours later – talking about the attack on “the mother of Exiles” being just the start – saying that America has ignored chinese suffering for too long – America sits back and savours its freedom while atrocities are commited & familys are destroyed – today ‘The Reckoning’ has begun 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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So the team have 3 and a half / 4 hours to figure out where he’s planning on setting the bombs up . Patterson sends Weller the emails that Zhang had been sending the government – Jane translates that he had just found out his mother had been killed in a chinese prison camp – he and his sister had been begging the US government for years to help her get released for years but they didnt. Kurt then puts together the loss of Zhang’s mother – with the mother of Exiles comment in the video and realises that Zhang’s planning on blowing up the Statue of Liberty! – they find Chao disguised as a Park Ranger . He shoots an unexpecting Jane in the arm 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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After climbing a gazillion stairs up the Statue of Liberty Chao gets a knife around Kurts neck but is shot by a weakened but badass AF Jane

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Which – triggers her first memory : running an outdoor shooting course. A full chronological view of all of Jane’s flashbacks can be found here * .

this is the first glimpse into Jane’s past as everything we know about her is speculation – even her name “Jane Doe” was given to her by the feds as her memory had been wiped 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Our first peek behind the curtains is Jane running an outdoor shooting course . And a bearded man telling her “you missed two – do it again”

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Later on Kurt goes to check up on Jane – after she admits to feeling like nothing feels real to her anymore they hug 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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And Kurt notices something that catches his eye . A scar on the base of her neck – just above the tattoo of his name 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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The plot then thickens when in the last minute of the episode we see Chao waking up after his surgery – and someone pays him a visit 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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Its the same mysterious Bearded guy that we saw in Janes Flashback shortly before . He tells Chao that the deal was him for his sister – he was supposed to die – we then see him leaving the room with the sound of sirens going off – Chao’s flatlined 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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It then cuts to a further flashback of the same man holding a cannula attached to an IV bag – saying “Once i insert this, everything you were will cease to exist” (now this is being shown to us but made clear that Jane is not remembering this)

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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it then cuts to jane* who says – “i know, but its my only choice” dramatic ay? We see the cannula go in and her pupils dilated AF 

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Blindspot Episode Tattoo Analysis

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aaand that is episode one people – so the things we know :

  • Jane Doe and the Beardy man have a past together – they trained together & he was the one who injected her with the memory erasing fluid that set her on the course she is on, granted Jane is not yet aware of this further connection .

  • Beardy man also had struck a deal w Chao Zhang – the engineer who constructed the bombs throughout the episode, the deal being Chao’s life for his sisters . So Beardy was conected to the irrevocable change in Jane’s life – meaning he was also connected to the creation of the tattoos possibly or at least was working in cahootes w whoever did them . Many many a questions – they put the perfect amount of info and flashbacks to make this reviewer damn curious .

  • Jane has high level language abilities and has some serious self defense skills – beyond your average martial arts classes – we suspect she may have been a SEAL as if she were special ops then her fingerprints wouldnt be in any of the FBIs databases .