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Why The Blacklist Season 7 Episode 'Kuwait' Had Fans Rolling Their Eyes

NBC's "The Blacklist" definitely has a number of moments that have caused consternation among the show's fanbase. When the audience isn't arguing about who Raymond "Red" Reddington (James Spader) might truly be, they're fighting over whether or not the show is still worth watching as it winds itself through plot shifts and cast losses toward its latest season. Don't get them talking about the incredibly disappointing way the show killed off Liz Keen (Megan Boone), if you know what's good for you. Fans of the show still consider that moment a major shark jump.

Ergo, sometimes "The Blacklist" features poor single-episode plotting, directing choices that get under the audience's skin, or terrible visual choices that end up forever tainting rewatches as time goes on and the series recedes into the annals of television history. Fans of "The Blacklist" have found an example of the latter in "Kuwait," which hails from the show's 7th season. For them, it's hard to turn away from one glaring visual error that takes place during the episode, and it definitely had members of the show's subreddit talking.

A bad greenscreen shot leaves the audience howling

u/EverettDonovan posted a screencap from "Kuwait" similar to the one above, which, in their opinion, shows off some glaringly obvious green screen effects. "I'm still in disbelief that this scene made it in the cut. Visual effects artists must have had a rough time back then," the post reads.

Many fans posting to the show's subreddit agree with that assessment. "The entire episode was low budget," said u/SMB75. u/outofwedlock uses the visual mistake in this scene to point out how the series' use of special effects has generally degenerated over time, from its use of pyrotechnics to obvious but casual-seeming mistakes like forgetting to use proper rank and file names for U.S. military personnel on tombstones. But other fans found some levity in the situation and compared the image to something you'd see in a video game cutscene or an ineptly edited home movie. "When you have 1 hour left on video software and gotta finish the scene," joked u/iceleel

Other fans admitted they've become so used to the way the show uses CGI that rough examples of poorly-applied post-production technology don't register with them anymore. "I think I became acclimatized to most of the greenscreen the show had to offer, to the point that I've taken anything iffy or plain outrageous in this case as normal lol," said u/Sampoline. Others pointed out the time crunch that has affected many CGI production units for large entertainment companies, which might be at work here.

The Blacklist isn't the only show with CGI problems

Of course, "The Blacklist" isn't the only TV show which has recently suffered from a poor public reaction to their program's use of CGI. A Season 9 episode of "The Goldbergs" went viral in 2022 because of the show's use of visual effects. When combined with body doubles and alternate vocal takes, the show's graven image of Murray Goldberg (Jeff Garlin) resulted in something uncanny-looking and waxy, like a walking mannequin. Garlin notably departed the show under a cloud of controversy and a disciplinary investigation from ABC's HR department, which necessitated the show's heavy use of CGI to complete its season. And though he has never commented on the situation, co-star Wendi McLendon-Covey tweeted that the show tried to make the best out of a bad situation with its technical wizardry.

Other shows without cast issues have also had some CGI problems. When the first look trailer for "She-Hulk: Attorney at Law" dropped in the spring of 2022, fans claimed that the iconic character resembled a video game character or a displaced person from Shrek's Far Far Away Land. This resulted in both the trailer being fixed on Disney+ and several members of the show's visual effects team speaking out about abuses they claim to have undergone while working for the House of Mouse. In the end, the show's CGI was improved before hitting the streaming platform.