Season 4 Episode 10

Episode 10

Aired Monday 9:00 PM Nov 10, 2005 on BBC
out of 10
User Rating
71 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

A former spook with a secret agenda holds the team hostage, threatening to blow up Thames House unless they tell her the "truth" about the death of Diana, Princess of Wales. Ruth is left to try to talk her out of her murderous plans, but the team fails to see their former colleague's real agenda until it is too late…moreless

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  • Good ending to the season.

    As we have come to expect from Spooks, the end with another cliff-hanger where at first glance it seems impossible that all of the main characters are going to get out alive. I have no doubt that Adam and Harry will both return next year for season 5, I don\'t think having established Adam as the main spook they would want to get in another fresh face. This season we have had to adjust to not having the original three (Tom, Zoe, Danny) at all. Although I think Adam has grown and fills one of those places, and I think Raza is getting better too, I\'m still unsure about Jo. I was pleased to see Ruth have a troublesome time; she is one of my favourite characters.

    Hopefully season 5 will find its feet again. Some of season 4 felt a little lost in it\'s direction. But it can be expected after the loss of three main characters in a season, and a fourth main character (Fiona) in season 4.


    And so this hit-and miss series drew to a close with a suitably uneven episode.

    Having axed three leads last year, season 4 had a lot of work to do if it was to retain its place in both the fans’ hearts and the BBC’s line up. The introduction of three new Spooks (Anna Chancellor, Raza Jaffrey and Miranda Raison), as well as continuing the development of Adam and (to a lesser extent) Ruth, Fiona and Harry was always a tall order, leading to one or two sub-par episodes. However for the most part this one was back on form.

    Spooks has never shied away from topics that would make most producers queasy. This episode was no exception, taking as its subject matter the death of princess Diana which even now, eight years on, is still a very emotive issue for a lot of people. This brave decision paid off, with a highly-charged episode. The ambiguity, presumably necessary to avoid legal trouble, actually lent an air of authenticity; although in theory a conclusion was reached, darker possibilities were consistently hinted at and never really ruled out.

    The build-up, although brief, was engaging. It even featured Ruth’s house being broken into yet again (someone please buy that girl a deadlock for Christmas)

    And things get going properly. The hostage situation came as no surprise to the viewer, but strangely this made it more enjoyable, introducing a pantomime “she’s behind you” element. For the next half hour we are treated to a claustrophobic lockdown situation, reminiscent of series 2’s I Spy Apocalypse . This allowed almost every actor to show off their chops, with some neat bits of humour dotted about. Even Jo was slightly less irritating than usual.

    The highlight of the episode for me came in the downbeat scene between Ruth and Angela, nicely played by both parties; completely riveting, yet it left me feeling like I had intruded on a private moment.

    And so the siege ends.

    Thought it was over, huh? Not a chance. According to the law of Spooks there was a storm brewing, ready for the traditional cliffhanger finish. So followed a bit of frantic running around, shouting into mobiles in good old Spooks fashion. When you thing about it, that bit didn’t make a huge amount of sense, but it was good fun so who cares. It could’ve done with an extra quarter of an hour for pacing’s sake, but limitations of the format and the obvious attempt to conceal the twist from the viewer made that unworkable.

    And then the final scene, which in 30 seconds fired enough cylinders in my brain to sustain its own review. Each series to date has ended on a slightly different note; series one seemed to finish with Tom making the ultimate sacrifice with tasteful understatement; series two saw a ‘bloody hell’ moment like no other; and series three with a stunningly melancholic farewell. And now series four, ending once again with our heroes in mortal peril. While it’s a fairly safe bet that Adam will survive, Harry’s fate genuinely hangs in the balance. Having lost every other original lead in quick succession, Peter Firth is now the exception, not the rule. And with the recent introduction of Juliet Shaw, could Harry’s time really have come? Well, I suppose I’ll just have to watch the next series. But then, I would have anyway.

Lindsay Duncan

Lindsay Duncan

Angela Wells

Guest Star

James Scales

James Scales

Peter Haigh

Guest Star

Johnnie Lyne-Pirkis

Johnnie Lyne-Pirkis

as Johnnie Lyne-Perkins) (Sir Petrie Meacham

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


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