The following post contains major spoilers for Friday’s episode of The Blacklist.
The Blacklist‘s task force is officially down one crucial member: Mozhan Marnò, who has played Agent Samar Navabi since Season 2, is leaving the NBC drama, TVLine has learned. Friday’s two-hour episode served as Marnò’s final installment with the series.
The fate of Marnò’s character has been uncertain since the start of Season 6, when it was revealed that Samar never fully recovered from a car accident that left her underwater (and left her brain without oxygen) for several minutes. In Friday’s episode, Samar learned she has been suffering from vascular dementia, a condition that has been prompting a series of mini-strokes that continuously worsen her brain.
Samar’s handlers at Mossad eventually learned of her declining health and, fearing that Samar’s fuzzy memory would eventually become a liability for the agency, put a hit out on her. She became the target of a mercenary group called the Osterman Umbrella Company — and after realizing the assassins would stop at nothing to kill her, Samar decided to leave town.
Aram initially planned to come with Samar, following her to whichever corner of the world would let them safely assume new identities. But Samar, unwilling to let Aram’s life be ruined by her own problems, opted to make her escape alone, and she enlisted Red’s help to do so. (“I will never forgive you for this,” Aram spat at Red — after punching him in the face! — upon learning that he’d conspired with Samar.)
“I love you, Aram,” Samar told her fiancé on her flight out of the country. “I won’t let you slip away.”
Series creator Jon Bokenkamp had warned viewers about Samar’s complicated storyline back in January, when Season 6 began.
“This is The Blacklist, so weddings don’t typically go great. Romances are often rocky,” Bokenkamp said of Samar and Aram’s engagement, adding that Samar’s medical woes would be “a real doozy. It will change the landscape of the show in a great way.”
Marnò addressed her departure from the show in a sentimental Instagram post on Friday:
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Five years ago, I got a call from my manager telling me I got the role of Samar on The Blacklist. Almost overnight, my life changed. It has been an amazing experience; I have made mistakes, I have made friends, I have grown. I’ve been in the room with some incredible people. And, every time I get on the subway in New York, someone affectionately yells out, “Yo, Samar!” But, last summer, I decided that I was ready for my next chapter, and the producers very graciously granted my request to move on from the show. And so, tonight, my life changes again. As my last episode airs, I just wanted to express gratitude to my colleagues, my producers, and the fans of the show: thank you. It’s been so much fun. @nbcblacklist
The Blacklist fans, will you miss Samar? Tell us in the comments below.