30 September 2015

Spooks 3.3: Who Guards the Guards? - Micro-Review

A bit of an odd episode this one – standard, with some good set pieces and themes. But the plot is slightly weak. Starts off beautifully though with a gunfight at a meeting in a bookshop, which looks brilliant.

The target is a novelist with a fatwa (Salman Rushdie, anyone?) – though it actual transpires the real target was the person he was meeting, a book shop owner, who turns out to be a double agent for MI6.
Oliver Mace reappears – with Tim McInnery standing in for Hugh Laurie’s MI6 boss from series one, pretty much. He’s an overseer, but Harry doesn’t visit the boss of Six, and Oliver Mace seems to boss them around. And he’s as venomous and shadowy as you can imagine – as MI5 cross over into their investigation.

There’s a ludicrous but wonderfully choreographed sequence with Adam going to meet someone, and his being followed by MI6. Very fun touches involving fake runners, boards with signs on, CCTV stuff, car spotting, and all the trademarks. Harry gets a favour from a tube station boss, and so Adam is able to evade them by closing the doors on the trains just in time! (p.s: the face-scanning American embassy software which turns their heads around... not buying that one at all! Silly!)

Lots of character moments too – not least with the bookshop person. There’s a very notable cricketing referencing going on numerous times in this episode, topped off by marvellous location filming at Lords! Wow. Also Danny, Malcolm and Ruth get nice moments, and Adam has to prove his worth and get out of Tom’s shadow (they’ve done the lead character switcheroo quite subtly in-universe, as ever). Also Zoe – in a framing device involving a wedding, set after the events of the main episode, talks to her boyfriend about spies. It’s nice, but foreshadowing something I feel, and from what I remember...

Standout Moment: The shootout at the start - action and terror and gunmen bursting in and books being shredded and then the terrorist escaping by motorbike... (Close call with that and finally seeing the cricket guy at Lords)
Guest Star Watch: Lots of good acting, but no notable guest stars I recognised. Apparently the character Muhammed Khordad reappears in series 7, haha!
Hellos and Goodbyes: Nobody.
Death Count: One, the main target bookseller guy – assassinated by being shot in the back of the car with Danny at the wheel. Talk about playing cricket at Lords being something to do before you die...

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