Player Finale Recap

The Player Recap: Was All or Nothing Resolved by the Series Finale?

NBC’s The Player cashed out on Thursday night, wrapping its truncated nine-episode run with an hour that left the House down a man, while adding a new twist to the Ginny mystery.

The final episode of the one-half-and-done action-drama largely followed two stories: Alex’s search for Fuller, a former U.S. Marshal-turned-forger who helps criminals evade law enforcement and is believed to have had a role in Ginny’s vanishing, and Cassandra’s abduction/interrogation by Special Agent Nolan’s team.

Mr. Johnson, meanwhile, met with Miles Drentell, who apparently oversees the worldwide network of Houses, to ask that the current game — which Cassandra and Alex orchestrated to expose his seeming role in Ginny’s vanishing — be forfeited. That request was just barely obliged.

Bagged and gagged and then stripped and searched in Nolan’s bunker, Cassandra held firm in her disposition, dodging the shifty fed’s questions about other cities involved in the worldwide criminal network she allegedly is wrapped up in. Nolan then digs deeper, bringing up Cassandra’s childhood — namely, the 1990 murder of her parents and sibling, suggesting that Johnson was a person of interest in that case. Cassandra stays tough, though, scoffing at Nolan and Brown, “You’re both out of your depth,” before freeing herself and subduing the guards, then escaping.

Cassandra is back home decompressing when Alex calls, in urgent need of help in finding Brown, who was targeted for a kill after leaving the interrogation. Alex manages to find and rush his gunshot friend to the hospital, where Brown utters just before surgery, “They took the blonde, and questioned her.”

Alex shows up at the House rarin’ to, as once promised, throw Johnson out the window, but the Pit Boss repeatedly fends his Player off, never breaking a sweat nor putting his cell phone down. When Cassandra then shows up waving a gun, Johnson warns that “they” are trying to play them all against each other — “they” being “a threat that’s bigger than the gamblers, bigger than the House. And I need you to help me stop them.” But Alex just says no.

Adding to Alex’s woes, he visits Cal at the hospital only to be told that the cop wants no part of “whatever shade of charcoal” he’s gotten himself wrapped up in. That Cal crossed lines and his own moral code, and for what? His “friend”? There will be no more favors, no more phone calls, no more “looking the other way.” Says Cal, coldly: “You and me, we’re done.”

At episode’s end, Johnson delivers Fuller to Alex’s loft, where just the right amount of pummeling gets the guy to reveal that Ginny is the one who hired him to obtain a new identity, but then she got grabbed by a mysterious group of men — and now is “in the wind.” Alex accepts that truth, bids Johnson a final adieu, and then returns to the storage locker Ginny had rented. There, he reads the “just in case” letter his ex left for him… before discovering a false wall inside the unit, behind which is a significant armory. Meanwhile, we learn that Cassandra’s interrogation was part of Johnson’s plan to find out how mch Nolan knows, in the name of someday (or not) finding out who’s pulling her strings.

What did you think of The Player‘s finale? And do we agree that it was the (very) low-rated show most undeserving of dismissal?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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510 Comments
  1. Dan says:

    I stopped watching after episode 2. reading this recap, I wish I hadn’t. so it’s confirmed cancelled? last I heard, it just had a reduced episode order

    • Mel says:

      It’s so not the usual kind of show I watch but I really liked it. It’s worth checking out if it ends up in Netflix etc. And nope, in this case, ‘reduced episode order’ actually means ‘you’re not getting any more episodes’ :(

    • Sally McLinn says:

      It was confusing to me. I was watching for the stunts and action. It ended without resolution. I hope it reappears on Hulu or some other non-network channel. Maybe online?
      But because it was truncated a lot of the show is missing parts. I enjoyed Wesley Snipes, seeing him again. The stunts and action were cool. But it just didn’t flow.

      • Julie Miller says:

        It is on Hulu and that is where I have watched it since it was on air. I really wish they have given this more time to develop because it was a good show.

        • Anne Easley says:

          I thought that The Player was something fresh and new. It had a great story line. It held your interest “what would happen next”. Very sorry to see it cancelled by another cop shows. We have enough cop shows already. Why add another which I am sure will fail?

          • Tim hoover says:

            I’m pissed at nbc, i wasn’t even goi.g to watch the player, thought it sounded lame. Caught a repeat of ep 1 on a boring Saturday night and started watching it. That shades of blue is garbage, couldn’t even get thru the first episode.writing and plot are crap as lopezs acting.

          • Tammy says:

            I downloaded the nbc app to watch it i love it but mad how it ended with no more episodes ugh lame

          • D Morrow says:

            I had no idea it was replaced by Shades of Blue. That was a show I never saw interest in. Looked stupid. I like JLo as a singer. Wonder who is the dummy that let that happen.

      • Julie Miller says:

        This is why I hate getting involved in watching a new show because I wind up liking it and it winds up going by the way side. Yet they keep crap on like reality shows and comedies that if you crack a smile it is a miracle. The one good comedy that NBC had “Growing up Fisher” with JK Simmons a couple of years back was funny as heck. Boom, out the door. This is the last time I watch a new series on NBC.

  2. Carlos Lee says:

    I wish they wrapped the story line before ending the show. It is too bad the producers were informed no new episodes were being ordered when they just started filming episode 9 (the last episode).

    • The Pit Boss says:

      The fight isn’t over yet! Fans can keep rewatching “The Player” on NBC.com, NBC app, or Hulu to get the online ratings up! NBC did renew “Aquarius” for season 2 due to its high online viewership. Hope the same can be done for “The Player.” If not, then I hope Hulu, Netflix, or Amazon will renew the show!

  3. Jay Taylor says:

    That truly sucks. Once you gave it a chance it was not a bad show at all and had a lot of interesting possibilities ahead.

  4. Mr. Tran K says:

    Very sad that it was “game over” for The Player. It was destined to be a great show but the series’ numbers were the biggest disappointment on a Thursday night and nobody feels the love of the action and high stakes drama not to mention Wesley Snipes and Philip Winchester. Hope someday the show will find a new home if it gets un-canceled like USA Network (part of the NBC Universal family of networks). I’m really going to miss The Player just because it’s the only new show of the TV season people are sad to see it go.

    • Murica! says:

      Thank you for posting another comment that makes absolutely no sense at all. You made me laugh again!

    • Maxine says:

      Definitely the wrong night of the week for this show. I mean, Thursday night belongs to Thursday night football and Shonda Rhymes. ..HELLO!

  5. ninamags says:

    Just when it was getting good. Hopefully someone will bring it back. I like this a lot more than the goofball Limitless guy.

    Winchester was a hottie.

  6. Carla Krae says:

    NBC hasn’t announced cancellation, yet, that I’ve seen. Only paused production.

  7. Francine Harris says:

    This show should have been giving a better time slot and day. It was very good to me and my friends. We talked about it the office all the time.

    • dysturbed says:

      In your opinion, while taking into consideration whatever competition it would have had on another day, and considering that if it aired in another slot, the show occupying that slot would perhaps unfairly be elsewhere, what would the better day and timeslot have been?

  8. melissa says:

    I ENJOYED ‘the player’.. I WISH IF THEY FILMED OTHER EPISODES. .THAT AT LEAST THEY MAY BE AVAILABLE ON DEMAND OR ON nbc.com.
    I think a finale should not leave one hanging.. especially with what he found a significant armory.

  9. Sylvie says:

    Aww come on!! I really enjoyed this show and was looking forward to it coming back in January. Especially with the ending. There were so many possibilities.. Really too bad! I could think of a few new shows that really should be cancelled!!

    • The Pit Boss says:

      The fight isn’t over yet! Fans can keep rewatching “The Player” on NBC.com, NBC app, or Hulu to get the online ratings up! NBC did renew “Aquarius” for season 2 due to its high online viewership. Hope the same can be done for “The Player.” If not, then I hope Hulu, Netflix, or Amazon will renew the show!

  10. Pascual Beltran says:

    Very disappointed the show has been canceled!!!!! In the past when shows struggled they would be moved to different time slots why was this not an option for the Player! How bout getting rid of one of the Dateline shows.

  11. Someone else or another network needs to pick up the player cuz it was a great show. I think it should be on HBO or somewhere wherelse it can be more intense and violent that would appeal to all age groups.

  12. ndixit says:

    I hope to see Winchester in something soon. He was a damn good action lead.

  13. Betty says:

    I agree a bad time slot, limitless a horrible show was picked up for a year. This show has more action, better actors. NBC should put it in the same time slot as limitless on Mondays. If the completed 13 episodes it should be available on iTunes or DVD tv series.

  14. kathy Remak says:

    I liked The PLayer. Sorry it got cancelled. They could have moved a little faster in clues about
    Ginny, especially if they were cancelling the show. It needed a tighter closure. And also Kane
    should have found out about Johnson and Cass’s family.Hope it gets picked up again. I’ve gotten TIRED of Modern Family,silly sitcoms, and science Fiction shows.It had some action and
    storyline. OH WELL!

  15. Joe says:

    Know from a source close to Winchester that the show has been officially cancelled for a while. NBC Just had to fill in time slots so they used a few more episodes to fill the void in programming taking it off the air earlier would have caused.

  16. Robert Walker says:

    Given the shortened episode order, the writers did a decent job of concluding the show, while leaving enough plot lines open to continue the storyline in a tv movie, or in a revived series.

  17. Henry says:

    This is extremely disappointing The Player was my favorite show. Wesley Snipes was awesome in this along with Winchester why do we have all these shows on that nobody likes but we cancel the good ones. This one was different with all the back stories. If u were going to cancel we deserved a wrap that brings it all together… ridiculous. NBC always does this. Im leary of watching new shows because u put thing in bad time slots and u dont allow them to develop. This show belongs on USA its why better then BURN NOTICE which I loved.. and burn notice lasted for years.. NBC and USA are subsidiaries right. Why cant USA take over where NBC left off? BRING BACK THE PLAYER!!!!!

  18. prish says:

    Of The Player’s last episode, the husband says, “This is good, it’s good.” No higher praise for a show with martial arts in our household. We are sorry for the ending of The Player, since we were both glued to the show’s every moment. Hopefully, the suits will realize they have to have something for everyone, or the bucks will not be paying for cable. The martial arts in this show was superb. The husband felt the fighting in Blindspot was too amateurish, and Into the Badlands was too talky. The Player is the perfect balance of expert martial arts, plotting, acting, with tight dialogue.

    • Paul Ross says:

      Yes!!!! I agree, damn straight!
      Check out strike back it aired on Cinemax and I couldn’t agree more on blindspot! It was laughable! But it does have more intrigue and a much better airing night. Sad to see the potential of this show scrapped.
      Just wish it aired on a cable network or movie channel. If it was on a movie channel; I would be hooked and that I believe was the critical mistake of this show… It belongs on a movie channel!!!!
      And what a terrible way to conclude a show that isn’t being renewed. Almost as if the producers wanted to say F*** You to Nbc and everyone that watched the show

  19. A shame as this was a really good show.

  20. Sarah D says:

    They need to bring this back! Hope it gets picked up by another network and gets a different day and time slot.

  21. Shawn Light says:

    I truly believe that the player is an awesome show with great potential. I believe the true problem is the day, the time slot, and…. THE COMPETITION! Coming on after the blacklist was somewhat of a mistake. The premise and characters of the player are excellent….. The show SHOULD NOT BE CANCELLED!

  22. Cheryl Artmann says:

    I thought the Finale sucked! It was pretty obvious that there is still more to come. They can’t leave it like that. There has to be other shows that are lower rated than this one. It really was something really different that hasn’t been done before and I really loved it!

  23. Audrey says:

    I really hope this gets picked up on another network. I would follow it. When I first saw advertising for the premise I didn’t think I would watch it but happened on the first episode and was hooked. I can’t believe they didn’t give it more of a chance.

  24. pem says:

    I really liked it — it was “different”. Sorry to see it go and not be given a chance to at least tie up the massively loose ends.

  25. Amy says:

    I’m really sad about this cancellation. The show has been improving steadily,and has so much promise. Love Cassandra. I’m going to miss her most of all.

  26. Kevin Smith says:

    I really like this show it had action and it was different from everything else I think it had a slow start and a bad time slot but I hope it gets picked up somewhere Wesley was awesome !

  27. Spoiler Junkie says:

    Utter shame that this show was canceled. I went into it not expecting much but the show turned out to be highly entertaining. Also, the mythology aspect that they were building slowly (Ginny, enemies of the House, FBI’s Agent Nolan etc) was quite intriguing. All the three leads, Wesley, Winchester and Wakefield were amazing. So, I repeat again, an utter shame that this was canceled.

  28. Sannie Murdock says:

    We really enjoyed it, it seems like everytime we get into a show, it gets cancelled ….. hoping it will make it’s way back !!!!!

  29. Cdunz says:

    It was an enjoyable show with a completely different concept. Unfortunately like American odyssey it got cancelled.

  30. Princess says:

    Hello, yes I am very disappointed that they canceled the Player, I watched it every week. I feel that it is a lot of more shows that should be taken off the air. Wesley Snipes have been one of my favorite actors for along time. I even stayed up past my bedtime after the Player to watch him in Murder at 1600 another great movie. Yes, I am going to miss seeing him on Thursday night’s hopefully he will be in another series or make another movie real soon, until then I will keep watching him on TV or in the movies on DVD. Thanks good day to all.

  31. mike says:

    Was my favorite new show of the season. NBC did not give it a fair chance.

    • zerb says:

      They couldn’t afford to. If a show has bad ratings that get worse weekly, all that extra time would do is get them to lose more money, not gain more viewers.

  32. Andrea says:

    While it was a far fetched plot, I enjoyed this series and am sad to see it go when there is so much more crap that should get the boot instead.

  33. F.G. says:

    This is show should not be cancelled, it has a great story, great characters and it is fun to watch which is what NBC needs. It is criminal that NBC did not see that and give it a proper chance to grow because the show does have fans.

  34. todd weil says:

    big mistake the show is excellent need to be brought back

  35. Tobin says:

    WHY does NBC always do this with shows I like!? There have only been 2 shows aired on NBC that I watched religiously every week and both got cancelled in the first season: The Player and The Black Donnellys smh

  36. Jennifer says:

    Kinda sad. Really enjoyed this show and the action was outstanding. Love these new big production value shows. Huge Winchester fan after watching Strike Back so had hopes that he and sully would find sucess elsewhere. Fingers crossed someone else sees the possibilities with this show.

  37. Todd says:

    This show was filled with action and had a great cast. I loved seeing Philip Winchester in this role (he was also great in Strike Back), and man, Wesley Snipes looks great. It is sad this show is canceled and leave people hanging. Why can’t this come back on another network or even just on NBC.com? For all the people who stopped watching after a few episodes, go back and watch the rest. You won’t be disappointed…

  38. Bill says:

    Damned shame they killed it. It’s better than a lot of current TV and should get picked up by another network. Perhaps Amazon, CW or someone else will give it a shot. Good action shows with suspense are rare except for the Blacklist.

  39. B. Stevens says:

    This was a great show, can’t believe it is being cancelled, and what a way to end it! Makes you wonder who really controls the ratings because this show was liked by everyone I know that was watching it.

  40. Ron Doyle says:

    this was such an entertaining show with an interesting theme and an underlying mystery – all of the actors were great in this – such a shame people didn’t watch or that it wasn’t given a chance – really had a good at least one full season to wrap it up – some of the crap people watch now is befuddling to me – just real low rent, this was a refreshing show will miss it

  41. I enjoyed this show, and don’t think NBC gave it enough of a chance. The Player is gone and The Blacklist is taking an 8 week break. Is NBC purposely sending its Thursday night viewers to CBS? I do not understand their strategy.

  42. Wish they had given it 13 episodes and wrapped it up. This is just ridiculous to leave everything out in the open

  43. arlyn says:

    Really liked the show !! Had a lot more going for it than Limitless. I really hope the change their minds and bring it back !! It left us wanting more !! Excellent show !!

  44. Curtis says:

    Wth!!!!! They cancelled this show??? This show was awesome as heck and had excellent actors, and SOOO many questions needed to be answered. This some big BS! Hope they bring it back someway.

  45. lisa davis says:

    i liked the show it had alot of action and it kept u on your toes guessing what will happen next, unlike blindspot at first it was good but now it has become boring. so i think it was a bad idea to cancel the player.

  46. jaychum says:

    First they diss Trump, now The Player? NBC needs to remove their head from their ass and get with the program.

  47. Melanie Rodriguez says:

    I love your wonderful show player it’s full of action and hope and faith in another person so that he can find his true love. But it makes you wonder what Ginny is into please don’t cancel the show. Melanie Rodriguez

  48. James says:

    Phillip Winchester was very good in the role, and there was a lot to like about the show. I mean, it was a show that acknowledged what it was … a fun, action show. There’s a fun, rogue-ish charisma that he showed that I really don’t recall seeing as much of in Strike Back (or it didn’t seem as pronounced). Charity Wakefield was fine, and it felt like they were just about to delve into her character’s background when the show got cut off. Wesley Snipes was very solid in his return.

    The issues? Leaving aside slotting … I think the high concept (gambler’s network on crimes) might’ve been a deterrent. I think this type of concept could conceivably work, but I think they need to delve into it a bit faster. Furthermore, the “core” story of Alex searching for Ginny needed to have some more clues early on. I think in their bid to be a “crime” of the week show, the pacing of letting us know what was happening with Ginny was interrupted enough. Finally, it took until episode 8 to let us know that there was a “real” big bad out there, coming after Mr. Johnson. I know this show probably tried to follow the Blacklist lead of slowly bringing along the idea of Berlin in Season 1, but I don’t think it fit for the Player, as there was a separate strand here involving a search for Ginny.

    All in all, a show I will miss. Reminded me a bit of a better Human Target, as I liked Phillip Winchester a bit more than Mark Valley in that rogue-ish lead role. I’m assuming we are getting re-runs and specials until January? (particularly considering it was Blacklist’s fall finale as well?)

  49. danoregon says:

    I liked it. There were plenty of directions it could have gone. Would have been nice to see The Player lose a bet once though. I mean, if you’re a gambler, wouldn’t you always bet on the guy who never loses?

  50. This was one of my favorite shows this year. Sorry to see it canceled.