While Raymond Reddington may capture the attention of most Blacklist fans, there’s no arguing the glue that holds the show together is Elizabeth Keen. The story of The Blacklist starts with Liz’s first day at the FBI and weaves through one of the most intricate stories on network television. There is a lot to absorb with her story. That’s why Nerds and Scoundrels put together our Top 10 things you need to know about Elizabeth Keen. Fair warning: there are spoilers ahead!
The Top 10 Elizabeth Keen Blacklist Facts You Should Know
10. The Role of Liz is Played by Megan Boone
The star of The Blacklist, Megan Boone plays lead character Elizabeth Keen. Bone was born on April 29, 1983 in Petoskey, Michigan. An actress from a young age, Boone had a number of small roles in tv shows and movies like Sex and the City 2 and Step up Revolution. Her first major TV role was as assistant district attorney Lauren Stanton in Law & Order: L.A., but that series was quickly canceled. It was not until Boone was cast on The Blacklist that she got her big break.
9. Agent Keen is a new Profiler for the FBI
The Blacklist centers around Elizabeth Keen and the events that surround her first day as an FBI profiler. While many recount the pilot as Keen’s first day on the job at the FBI, that isn’t the case. In fact, Keen had been working for the FBI for four years as an agent before accepting her new role as a profiler.
8. Her Real Name is Masha Rostova
While Liz has more than two dozen aliases during the course of The Blacklist, it’s worth noting that Liz Keen isn’t even her real name. And that’s not just because took the surname of husband Tom Keen after they were married. (Her maiden name was Elizabeth Scott) Elizabeth’s real name is Masha Rostova, and despite living her life in the United States she was born in Russia to Katarina Rostova – a Soviet spy.
7. Her Mother is Katarina Rostova
One of the early mysteries of the show was who Liz’s real parents were. Thankfully, we got the answer to that mystery during season two. Liz, AKA Masha, is the daughter of Katarina Rostova. Rostova was a Russian national and former KGB agent that fled with her daughter to the United States at the end of the cold war. But if Katarina is her mother, who is the father of Liz?
6. Liz Keen’s Father is Unconfirmed
Easily the biggest mystery that has carried throughout the entirety of The Blacklist, the true identity father has still not completely been revealed. We do have a lot of hints though. As of Season 6, the longest theory that puts Reddington as Liz’s father has been confirmed – maybe? A DNA test shows that Liz is the daughter of Reddington. But here’s the kicker: the man we know as Raymond Reddington is not the REAL Reddington (you know, the spouse of Naomi Hyland). The original Reddington, who is the father of Elizabeth, died years ago and the imposter assumed his identity.
That being said, most fans aren’t convinced the James Spader version of Reddington isn’t the real father. After all, the DNA that was tested was decades old, which gives any number of potential angles for a plot twist. But the main reason this point isn’t resolved is that Liz and Red have yet to have a real discussion on the matter. This won’t be resolved entirely until the two have a true meeting of the minds.
There have been ample other theories on who was the real father, although many of those seem to be disproven. While there was a focus on Katarina’s husband, Constantin Rostov, it ultimately turned out he was not Keen’s biological father. And there’s also the story of the man who raised Keen as a girl – Sam Scott.
5. Liz Was Raised by Sam Scott
Before Liz was a Keen, she was a Scott. Raised by her adoptive father Sam Scott, Liz was led to believe that both of her parents were dead. But as we later learned, Sam took Liz in as a child upon Reddington’s request after her mother was forced to go into hiding. Sam was one of the few people who knew that Reddington was an imposter. That secret was worth killing over, as Reddington smothered Scott to death in his hospital bed after he vowed to tell Elizabeth the real identity of her father.
4. Elizabeth Keen is the widow of Tom Keen
The question of Elizabeth’s parents were on a slow burn from the very beginning, but the most captivating story of season one was certainly the mystery surrounding Liz’s husband Tom. A jovial school teacher, Tom turned out to be far more complicated after Liz discovered his stache of money, guns, and fake passports. Liz grows to distrust Tom, and when she learns he is a spy that was paid to get close to her, she goes so far as to hold him captive for a time.
The crazier part? They get back together! Tom turns out to be decent after all, and when fate brings them back together they end up as a real couple this time. The only problem is their original marriage was annulled, so the two get engaged – again. This marriage was never meant to be, unfortunately, as Tom was eventually killed by Ian Garvey.
3. She Was on FBI’s Most Wanted List
While she is known to bend the rules at times, Agent Keen has always been on the side of law enforcement. That is until she is put on the FBI’s Most Wanted List for assassinating a senator. Of course, Liz was framed for the murder but that doesn’t prevent her from facing the full weight of the FBI and the federal government. In the end, Liz identified the real killer and was able to re-join the team.
2. Keen faked her own Death
Is Elizabeth Keen dead? Obviously not. But that was the question many fan’s minds after she seemed to get knocked off in the Season 3 episode “Mr. Solomon: Conclusion.” The good news is Liz, with the help of her ex Nick, Tom, and Mr. Kaplan faked her own death shortly after giving birth to her daughter Agnes. The purpose of faking her death was to get away from Reddington and live a normal life as a family. But the plan backfired when her stepfather tracked her and Agnes to Cuba. Luckily, once Mr. Kaplan told Red the truth she was ultimately rescued.
1. She Also Betrayed Reddington
In the premiere of Season 6, Elizabeth Keen is at a crossroads. She and her half-sister Jennifer (who she learned about thanks to Ian Garvey) have learned that the man they know as Raymond Reddington is an imposter. They have also learned the identity of the doctor that changed the imposter Reddington’s face. The only problem: the two can’t get to the doctor without tipping off Reddington. This led Liz to setting up Reddington to get arrested on a gun charge. His public arrest sent him on a collision course with the death penalty, as the courts tore up his immunity agreement. Feeling guilty, Liz worked tirelessly to free Red. Despite knowing of the betrayal, Red’s right-hand-man Dembe was reluctant to tell him of the betrayal.
Nerds and Scoundrels
And that concludes our action-packed Elizabeth Keen rundown. Did we leave anything out? If so, be sure to let us know in the comment section below. And don’t forget to check out the rest of our Blacklist content here at Nerds and Scoundrels.