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Who Is the Freelancer on The Blacklist?

The Freelancer is just one villain we know who returns in The Blacklist Season 10.

By Jessica White
Seeing Red | NBC's The Blacklist

The Blacklist's endless lineup of infamous criminals is part of what makes it a such a must-watch. And it looks like the series is honoring its beginnings with its final installment. 

The Blacklist Season 10 will be the last time fans can watch the illusive Raymond Reddington (James Spader) and his Task Force take down his list of infamous Blacklisters. Throughout the series' nine thrilling seasons, we've seen many horrendous criminals come and go, with many of those villains ending up behind bars thanks to Red's secret role as an FBI informant. But as of the Season 9 finale, Red's secret is out of the bag, and he has quite a few former foes who intend to pay the concierge of crime a little visit. In the Season 10 trailer, fans got a sneak peek of a throwback face, The Freelancer, who could be making a return to Red's radar. 

The Freelancer was a fun Season 1 villain who hasn't given the Task Force any recent trouble. But will that change? Let's look back at his character. 

Who is The Freelancer (Daniel Sauli) on The Blacklist?

The Freelancer on The Blacklist

The Freelancer (#145) is a Season 1 Blacklister played by Daniel Sauli. He's a skilled assassin who prefers to march to the beat of his own sadistic drum, willing to accept any horrific contract as long as the payment is high. The Freelancer's assassination tactics are terrifying. At one point, he killed a French diplomat by blowing up the airplane he was traveling on.

Basically, The Freelancer is willing to do whatever it takes to make sure his target is eliminated, without any concern for the innocent bystanders who die in the process. In Season 1, Red informed his Task Force that The Freelancer was responsible for over 3,000 deaths and counting, akin to some of the world's most dangerous terrorist organizations. 

Fans first meet The Freelancer after Red informed the FBI there would be an accident in a nearby park. While searching the premises, a runaway train derails and crashes out of control. The agents survive the incident, but all eyes were on Red to find out how he knew a disaster would happen. Red clarified he didn't know there would be a train crash but was suspicious of an incident. (Seem strange, still? We'll get there.)

Red told them he believed The Freelancer was responsible for the train crash, as it would fit his M.O. of coordinating mass disasters. Red's former criminal connections allowed him to figure out who The Freelancer's next target was, so he and Liz traveled to Montreal to meet the middleman with the intel.

In Montreal, the Task Force learned The Freelancer was targeting Floriana Campo, an anti-human trafficking activist. Meanwhile, the FBI warned Floriana about the potential threats, with her refusing to cancel a high-volume fundraiser. While she agreed to a change in location, the Task Force became concerned about how The Freelancer might leverage the situation.

Red attended the fundraiser to scope out for The Freelancer and spotted him disguised as a waiter for the event. Red signaled for the FBI to arrest him, but The Freelancer managed to slip away from the chaos. Luckily, Liz pulled a little GTA and took over a taxi, and struck The Freelancer down as he fled. The Task Force arrested him and brought him in for an interrogation, led by Meera Malik

But the episode ends with a real twist, with the Task Force discovering who ordered the hit on Floriana Campo: Raymond Reddington, of course! Red knew that Floriana was secretly the head of the Ebehardt Cartel, and also knew that The Freelancer needed to be put away for his horrendous crimes. Red poisoned Floriana to do the job himself; meanwhile, The Freelancer was arrested.

Red will always figure out the most manipulative way to kill two birds with one stone, but fans love to see it play out every time. With The Freelancer (maybe) returning in some capacity during The Blacklist Season 10, it's only a matter of time until he finds out Red's role in his demise. 

The Freelancer returns for The Blacklist's final season. 

The Freelancer returned to Season 10 of The Blacklist after it was revealed Wujing broke him out of jail to recruit him for his revenge tour against Red. Wujing is attempting to prove Red's involvement with the FBI, and in Episode 7, titled "The Freelancer Part 2," he hires everyone's least-favorite freelancer for help. After the Freelancer sinks a ferry boat, the Task Force is called in after Red identifies the returning Blacklister's M.O.

The Task Force gets a tip about the Freelancer's next attack location, an apartment building he intends to strike, and the team heads out. As they arrive, Agent Siya Malik (Anya Banerjee) spots Keith Perry waiting to take pictures of them and promptly arrests him. Inside, Agent Donald Ressler (Diego Klattenhoff) and Dembe (Hisham Tawfiq) find the Freelancer after he has already done some hefty damage.

Ressler and Dembe get into an altercation with the Freelancer, who puts up an impressive fight. But despite his round-house kicks and low-belt punches, the Freelancer is finally taken down, passing out and becoming helpless as the agents realize his explosive device is still ticking away. Ressler and Dembe hack the code by slashing the power source with an axe, a relatable thought process. But amid the chaos, the Freelancer escapes. Only a small pool of blood remains where the fallen Blacklister lay seconds prior. 

The Freelancer has been escaping proper imprisonment since Season 1 of The Blacklist, and he's managed to slither away again! Even worse, he did so after helping Wujing safely connect Red to authorities. How will this ferocious freelancer continue to terrorize the Task Force, you ask?

Find out by watching The Blacklist's final season Sundays at 10/9c on NBC. It will later stream on Peacock