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Villainess Review: Mary Jo Clarkson (Blue Bloods)

The long-running series' first-ever villainess is a deranged madwoman bent on destruction in this Season One episode

By Clyde E. DawkinsPublished 3 months ago 3 min read
Kerry Butler as Mary Jo Clarkson

So, the news broke early on November 20, 2023: Blue Bloods is ending. The long-running CBS series was one of many hampered by this year's strike, though shortly after the strike ended, CBS announced their post-strike returns for their shows, and regarding Blue Bloods, the show 14th and final season will kick off on February 16, 2024. In addition to the news that Season Fourteen will be it for the series, it was also announced that the final season will consist of 18 episodes, with 10 airing during the spring, while the final eight will air in the fall.

14 seasons. That's just amazing. Blue Bloods, as of this point, serves as CBS' second-longest running program, behind the original NCIS, which will kick off their 21st season on February 12, 2024. I must have written about a lot of the show's villainesses, though let's face it, the series has a lot of good and memorable ones, such as Margaret Olson and Chelsey Parker, to name a few. With the news of Blue Bloods ending, I think it's fitting that this review centers on the very first villainess to appear on the show, and she's a doozy!

The episode, "What You See," centered on a bomb threat hitting New York City--a suicide bombing at that. The case was slightly personal to Danny, as the suspect in custody was Khalid Hassan, who Danny knew as Steve Hass, as Steve was robbed a few years prior to the events. As the episode revealed, Steve had converted to Islam after following a radical Islamic imam, and he wasn't the only one. Another convert was someone close to him: Mary Jo Clarkson, who was actually married to Steve's cousin, Alex Hass. A visit to Alex's home revealed that he and Mary Jo had been divorced, and Alex also revealed to Danny that Mary Jo had been deeply radicalized, which resulted in Alex receiving full custody of their son, Jacob.

Mary Jo pleaded with Alex for one more night with Jacob, but as we saw, the madwoman was planning a suicide bombing with her son inside. As Mary Jo drove to a nearby park, she informed Jacob that they were headed to "a beautiful place"; all the while, Danny arrived at the park with Alex, with the former approaching Mary Jo and claiming that he was a friend of Alex's. The plan was slightly hampered when Jacob saw Alex, which was followed by Danny ordering Alex to stand back, while Mary Jo made a maniacal threat to actually kill Jacob--which also included referring to herself and Alex as being "married for eternity." Despite this, Danny remained focused on the task at hand, which was talking Mary Jo down from her evil rampage. He ended up being successful; Jacob was rescued by Danny's partner, Ava Hotchkiss, and Mary Jo was taken into custody.

"What You See" was the fifth-ever episode of Blue Bloods, and aired on CBS on October 22, 2010. The episode featured Kerry Butler as the evil Mary Jo Clarkson, who served as the very first of many villainesses to appear on the long-running series. I said she was a doozy; though, that is an understatement. After all, this is a high level of villainy; a wife and mother turned deranged terrorist and attempted suicide bomber. And yes, she's a terrorist, and no, it's not because of what she converted to; seriously, people need to realize that terrorism can come from anyone, not just one group. It is painfully clear that Mary Jo's heel turn centered more on destroying Alex emotionally rather than her radicalization. Honestly, the capture of Mary Jo snarling in the midst of her maniacal rant proves it. It's a good shot of Mary Jo's heel persona in action, but it also showed how truly insane she was.

Kerry Butler absolutely shined as Mary Jo Clarkson; she acted out Mary Jo's psychotic demeanor and her bloodthirsty conduct to absolute perfection. Her delivery of her dialogue, as well as her character's sinister expressions...absolutely golden! Butler's performance is why Mary Jo Clarkson remains one of my favorite villainesses from Blue Bloods. As for her other credits, Butler has appeared in episodes of Elementary, SVU, and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (among other shows), and she is known for her stage work, most notably portraying Barbara Maitland in the Beetlejuice musical.

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Check out Mary Jo Clarkson's profile on Villainous Beauties Wiki!


About the Creator

Clyde E. Dawkins

I am an avid fan of sports and wrestling, and I've been a fan of female villains since the age of eight. Also into film and TV, especially Simpsons and Family Guy.

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Comments (2)

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  • Babs Iverson3 months ago

    Wonderful review!!! Love it!!!❤️❤️💕

  • Philip Gipson3 months ago

    I'm truly happy with your review on Mary Jo Clarkson. I don't really watch "Blue Bloods," but you did great with this particular villainess review.

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