16 September 2015

Spooks 1.5: The Rose Bed Memoirs - Micro-Review

Review by Tom Newsom

A particularly comedic episode this! The script is full of witty lines and scenes, and also political asides.

The main attraction is the guest cast – more on that later – but topping the list is Tim Pigott-Smith, as a disgraced, jailed politician who’s written his memoirs. The story is thin, but the plot is complex – basically, who is telling the truth over foreign weapons deals? Is a popular MP involved?

The ending is quite satisfactory though – typical Spooks twists and turns, done in style. Hugh Laurie is roped back in (wonderful scene where he’s at the opera – steals the show) and it turns out MI6 had a big hand in all of it.

Meanwhile Tessa is particularly shady (getting it on with Nicholas Farrell!). Whilst she didn’t leak the memoirs (oh, the scene where they all read them was a hoot!), she did get the shady Russian guy killed. Shock! She’s a bad girl. Also Ellie moves back in with Maisie’s real Dad... but seeing as he’s now been scared off, surely that won’t last? Well, it’s the last one next time for this series, and I remember how it ends...

Standout Moment: Jools Siviter in the opera, and being taken out of it. Or practically any scene of his, or Harry’s. Hilarious, especially by Spooks standards, this ep – and it gets very dark in a few years time.
Guest Star Watch: Drum-roll please... well, there’s Tim Pigott-Smith as the Jeffrey Archer type, and future Torchwood PM Nicholas Farrell as the MP guy Richard Maynard. Hugh Laurie is also back. (Unrecognisable as a Russian is David Calder – but it seems I’ve got mixed up with him and I don’t recognise him from anything) But Naoko Mori is a overly Japanese girlfriend of Danny’s (hurrah!), and the Dad from Silence in the Library turns up as Ellie’s ex. And apparently Aleksander Mikic – who was in The Waters of Mars as Yuri, and turned up as other stuff) was ‘Young Man’ – most likely the one who killed the Russian guy. Never spotted him!
Hellos and Goodbyes: Nobody, really. Well, Ellie’s ex and Maisie’s father perhaps, for the one episode.
Death Count: The Russian guy who got stabbed by ‘a bit of rough’. (First ‘openly’ gay character actually, and he’s killed!) Think that was it, really.

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