TV series episode review: Spooks (2010), series 9, episode 6, directed by Julian Holmes
a) Oh FFS. b) Yay, Malcolm! c) OH FFS LUCAS WTH?!
And writing the rest will be a bit weird because I’m doing things in the wrong order again, writing this after I have seen the next episode and want to talk about that one rather than this one. Oy vey.
I watched 9.6 but not very closely – my laptop is very distracting and I shouldn’t be allowed to be on it when I’m watching things I need to pay attention to. So later on in the week I re-watched the episode as I’m taping them all. Re-watching filled in some of the blanks, which I only sort of found out about from reading other people’s reviews during the week. Such as “oh, so THAT’S what that blonde woman was” and so on. The first time, she was just some American woman who annoyed me with the constant “James” calling. And then she died. But okay, now I get it – a blonde, red-lipped version of Tariq (Shazad Latif), except Tariq hasn’t done time (as far as we know) for hacking into the Pentagon. We also don’t really know if he has any “nice tats”. Have to say, I preferred Dannielle’s tats over Lucas’s.
Anyway, that aside, YAY FOR MALCOLM (Hugh Simon)! I did actually gave an excited start when I saw him, even though I’m in no way a Spooks fangirl, and I’ve only watched something like series one (when it was first on in Sweden) and 7-9, and only the latter with particular interest. Nice to see him again, anyway, and his hiding of the Albany file. Or was it? No, it was but a fake, gasp! And the safe house was a fake too! Double gasp!
The end, when Lucas (Richard Armitage) shows up – with murderous intent, surely – and finds the place an empty shell, I thought that a potential end for Lucas is him killing himself in despair. I’m kind of going off that idea, having seen 9.7, but that’s for another post. It could happen. Maybe. Or maybe not. Probably not.
Superb acting – just seeing his jaw and mouth in the back mirror, I couldn’t help but hear echoing words from Servetus, saying something about microexpressions. I was well impressed by that acting, because even though we only saw such a small part of his physiognomy, it said so much. That’s the sort of talent the world could do with more of!
The running, driving, shooting was pretty standard. The moral dilemma, ooh, now that was worth watching. I’m surprised the cyber intruders didn’t just say something like “duh, Carmina Burana, how so?” or something, just make something up. And also, there is a failsafe way of closing the door to cyber attackers. It’s called “pulling the plug”. As in, remove the network cables. Ta-da! They can’t get in if there’s no way in. The other option, is of course to just switch the power off, but that’s a bit more of a rigmarole, as you can’t actually work on getting the attackers out if the computer’s off. You can, however, if they’re on, but not connected to the internet. I know, it would alert the intruders to the fact that you know they’re inside, but you know, it would solve the problem of them being inside the system lurking about, stealing files.
The handheld computer thing made no sense. If the intruders are in the system, having a wireless device hooked up to THE SAME SYSTEM is still going to access THE SAME SYSTEM, which is UNDER SURVEILLANCE. Just because it’s not hardwired doesn’t mean it’s undetectable. Like that boy in The Event, who is supposedly this super hacker and he was SURPRISED to hear that an FBI agent’s netbook couldn’t connect wirelessly to the FBI mainframe, and that it would have to be hardwired at an FBI office. Why was that a surprise? That was the first thing that popped into my head seeing that, and my hacking skills are non-existent! I am, however, quite familiar with networks. Even if it was a VPN (which is what Mr T suggested might be what the guy in The Event thought the FBI lady had access to), there’s still the fact that it connects to THE SAME SYSTEM that the intruders are all over. Can’t they have people with actual technical skills advising the script writers? ANY script writers?
The killing off of aforementioned American cryptographer was cold, oh so cold. But seen in the light of 9.7, chillingly fitting. All in all, 9.6 was a bit so-so. Enjoyed the Lucas bits more than the cyber attack, as you might’ve guessed from the above techie rant, and it set things up nicely for the continued screwing-over of Lucas North slash John. And I’ve probably forgotten a bunch of things here. Oh yes, you’re not allowed to use a mobile phone when driving in this country. For shame, Lucas North, you scandalous lawbreaker you! I tut in your general direction.