It couldn’t look worse for sleazy Patrick Fairbank; as he’s being questioned about his failure to investigate child abuse, Lindsay Denton’s emailed copy of the Incriminating List turns up. Fairbank is of course on The List, and though Lindsay’s now dead, it seems that her work has been done.But though The Caddy’s paymasters may fall, will the corrupt cop himself escape?
With Arnott on suspension, he’s hardly in a position to finger Cottan; but Kate is perhaps more suspicious of the wily Dot than she has let on.
Arnott catches on that Lindsay has stolen his notebook, but doesn’t yet know that Cottan killed her in Arnott’s car; when she’s found, his prints are of course all over the blood-spattered vehicle, and Dot takes great pleasure in taking him in.
It sounds like Arnott has plenty of motive for killing Lindsay, particularly when the infamous ‘shagging tape’ turns up; whether they did have sex or not, Lindsay’s testimony damaged his career. Plus, Dot’s set up loads of planted evidence including gun records, phones, cash and a golf tee that point to Arnott being The Caddy.
Hastings is understandably furious that Dot and Bigelow have hidden the evidence of the golf tee from him; Dot claims that the tee was in the blood-stained envelope addressed to Arnott. Does this make Bigelow a dupe, or a conspirator?
Dot messages his masters, and has a very Shakespearean moment in the washroom when the incriminating SIM card won’t flush away, and he’s haunted by visions of gore-spattered Lindsay.
Kate’s persistence forces Bigelow to confess that Cottan gave her the redacted files; and Maneet’s examination of CCTV shows Steve’s car driving around with fake plates. DI Morton is called in for questioning; and as we know, he has the dirt on Dot.
Fairbank, meanwhile, is trying to get off the abuse charges by claiming dementia, and Bigelow is all for allowing things to be brushed under the carpet. In a week when in real life the police are being accused of a massive conspiracy and cover-up, Bigelow represents the unpleasant face of political expediency. Hastings gives her an ultimatum to quit, and his chances of a leg-over have definitely gone out of the window.
Under questioning, Dot claims that the file was doctored by his source, a former girlfriend of Arnott’s; and he’s hardly tested by evidence found in his car, synthetic fibres like those in the rope he claimed Hari Bains used to hang Rod Kennedy. Morton’s SIM card evidence linking Dot’s phone to Tommy Hunter, Maneet’s CCTV evidence and the armoury paperwork are also glossed over by the confident Dot. But he’s caught out by his lack of an alibi for the time of Lindsay’s murder – the one question he couldn’t answer, because he couldn’t know whether Kate had been there.
If we were waiting for an action-packed conclusion to the series, we certainly get one with the final sequence combining elements of Die Hard, The French Connection and Dirty Harry. Dot messages for an escape route, an armed officer (obviously the one who helped him fake the armoury records) shoots up the building, and the two go on the run with Kate in hot pursuit.
Now, we always regarded the possibility of a romance between Kate and Dot with revulsion, but the two seem to seriously think that they might have had something going if it weren’t for all these pesky paedophiles coming between them.
Would Dot have gone for a confession, and Kate’s cosy retirement plan? We’ll never know, because Kate pops the armed cop, and Dot’s escape driver. Dot has taken a bullet, and dies after a whispered confession.
All this time, of course, Arnott is kicking his heels in his cell, moping about his girlfriend who’s effectively dumped him, a neat reversal of the usual action hero tropes. But when he’s released, Kate’s there to give him a hug.
In a coda, we see Fairbank getting 10 years for his crimes, Kate getting a commendation, Lindsay in a pauper’s grave, and Morton retiring on a full pension. Arnott, Fleming and Hastings carry on fighting the good fight at AC-12.
Now, we’re led to believe that this ties up all the loose ends of these three seasons, but of course there are still the other names on The List, plus the network of corrupt police officers working with The Caddy to investigate, so there’s no shortage of further storylines. But, we’re told that the next series (and one has been commissioned) will offer a fresh start.
It’s been edge of the seat stuff all the way with this series, with even the most jaded viewers and reviewers forced to wait for the latest dose of excitement. In a world of spoilers and binge viewing, it’s good that something can still provide the anticipation and week-by-week talking points that make some TV drama truly great.
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