Spooks s9 ep 7

“I’ve seen you risk your life to save others and I believe in you.”

Sadly, we weren’t permitted the same luxury as Beth any longer this week; we were forced to wake up from the fantasy that was Lucas North.

There was a heavy, menacing atmosphere pervading everything from the very first scene as, inch by inch, we got closer to the big “John” revelation that has been such a long time coming.  In contrast to last week’s high-speed chase of an episode, most of this one was quiet and slow as the writers took time to weave in a desperately sad story touching on Ruth’s grief over her lost family and Harry’s guilt that has been a long time coming as well, before finally telling us who John is, or was, and is now going to be again.

Dimitri and Beth’s presence seemed intrusive; they didn’t belong in this story of a heroine who survived horrors only to begin dying inside, and a killer “who fell asleep and dreamed he was a hero.”  The episode went overboard with the flashbacks – to things that happened ten minutes earlier?  Really, guys? – and the massive amount of exposition threatened to slow things down a little too much at points, but the power was in the performances and the almost Shakespearean air of tragedy around them. Ruth’s ordeal in the flat and her grim resignation afterwards, Harry’s concern and affection turning to contempt, John’s self-loathing and despair – all bravura work from Nicola Walker, Peter Firth and Richard Armitage which made this hard to watch but impossible not to.  A fun episode it wasn’t, but a heartbreaking, nerve-shredding and incredibly powerful one it turned out to be.

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7 thoughts on “Spooks s9 ep 7

  1. Ann Marie November 2, 2010 / 3:06 am

    I am somewhat speechless by this episode. And my heart is well and truly broken. Did Lucas (and I will always call him that) mean what he said when he told Harry that he survived the torture and pain of the Russian prison because he deserved it? Was everything else he told Harry a lie? There are still pieces that do not make sense and I don’t see how they can wrap it up in one episode but the writers took some clever twists.

    Most exciting TV episodes in years this season of Spooks. If Mr. Armitage is leaving, I will miss him terribly. Fortunately the fans will take it from here and keep Lucas alive as the hero we knew him to be.

  2. CJ Cregg November 2, 2010 / 8:14 pm

    It was devastating stuff, wasn’t it, Anne Marie? I’m gutted about what the show has turned Lucas into – even the small solace of him not knowing about the bomb or not causing Original Lucas’ death was taken away from us. Sob!

    I think he did mean it about the prison though. I think he wholeheartedly threw himself into being the hero Lucas would have been and was so good at it he almost managed to forget he was ever anything else. After a while it wasn’t a pretence any more -he learned to love something greater than himself, like Original Lucas said. “John the killer” may be here now, but I hope we get our Lucas back again one last time at least – surely one last heroic, self-sacrificing act is the least they can do for us?

  3. Ann Marie November 2, 2010 / 8:24 pm

    I think that he was losing parts of himself all along. After all, how long can you keep on pretending to be someone else? As an example of this, I remember what he said to the military cryptographer that he killed/let die about music, “Sometimes you just stop hearing it.”

    I have recovered enough to want to see how they wrap this up next week.

  4. Amandajane November 3, 2010 / 9:13 am

    I agree with you both there. It’s breaking my heart to see what’s been done with Lucas.
    That confession scene with Harry (fabulous work from both actors)had me in tears;as
    did Lucas telling the cryptographer last week that he can’t hear music any more.

    I believe that he really has been feeling remorse about what he did;truly feels that his time in prison and all he suffered there was deserved.

    I definitely think he did genuinely throw himself into the Lucas North Heroic Spy persona and came to believe in what he was doing.

    Now we’re seeing his desperation as the illusion he’s tried to build into fact
    is shattered.

    I really hope they give him that persona back one last time next week.

  5. CJ Cregg November 3, 2010 / 8:52 pm

    Hi Amandajane, welcome to unpopcult. Am resolutely avoiding spoilers but hopeful!

  6. Capt. Harold Dobey November 5, 2010 / 9:55 pm

    As much as I’m still not buying the whole Maya thing, I did enjoy the payoff on this. Very well done and I’m still not sure if we have the truth.

  7. CJ Cregg November 6, 2010 / 7:43 pm

    Agree about Maya, Capt – pure plot device and the story works best if she’s just ignored.

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