Has Operation Peartree gone pear-shaped? With undercover officer John Corbett making a success of ringing rings around the cops, corrupt officer ‘H’ may be even further embedded than we thought – clearly it wasn’t the deceased ACC Hilton.
Last week’s highly dramatic conclusion, implying that someone in AC-12 may have recruited corrupt officer Cafferty, turns out to be a bust – Cafferty identifies ‘Dot’ Cottan, who died in the last series. So that gets us precisely nowhere – but is Hastings’ relief more than incidental? His money worries are getting him into dangerous waters with his clearly dodgy ex-cop financial advisor Moffatt (Patrick Fitzsymons).
Corbett’s plan to raid the Eastfield evidence storage depot, with the aim of driving out of cover the next link in the chain of corruption forged by Lisa McQueen, seems destined to go wrong. But whoever ‘H’ is – just an anonymous contact on the end of a terminal – he (or she) can’t spell ‘Definately’. Is this a clue?
Corbett gives Arnott a burner phone number with which to track Lisa – who we’re still half certain is actually undercover herself. A contact of hers is Mincowicz (Tomi May), who tortured Arnott back during the investigation into DCI Tony Gates in series one.
Arnott’s not best pleased when Hastings resolves to raid the print shop Corbett’s using, and a block of flats used for prostitution – it’s too early for his liking, and he tips Corbett off. Big mistake Steve, that could be the end of your career. But Ted’s happy that AC-12 is now ‘sucking diesel’.
While the raids free some sex-slaves and capture some passport forgers, Corbett’s crime gang is well away, and he confronts Arnott with the suspicion that Hastings may be covering his own tracks. The big Eastfield raid is still on, though, and Corbett hopes to capture both the gang and ‘H’.
Gill Bigelow is putting the squeeze on Ted, but not in the way he’d prefer – is she pushing to stop Corbett because she’s on H’s payroll?
Steve finally confides in Kate that he’s working with Corbett, and of course Kate is not pleased at being kept in the dark – though she realises that if Corbett’s old boss Powell, or Hastings, is corrupt, then Steve had his reasons. But the planned Eastfield raid has put an end to the possibility of secrecy.
Hastings is in a panic about something after Steve and Kate fill him in – why is he disposing of his laptop?
When the raid goes down, a diversion draws the armed police away from the depot, then ‘H’ turns up and disables the trackers on the stolen goods. But seeing him about to escape, Corbett shoots ‘H’, and the gang escapes with a huge haul.
‘H’ is unmasked as DCS Hargreaves of Serious and Organised Crime (Tony Pitts), who we have previously seen in series two and four and has always been a bit on the dodgy side – he was always on the list of suspects for being ‘H’. Was he too obvious a choice for being ‘H’? We do wonder if this is the case.
While this gives Steve a great excuse for not calling on-off girlfriend Sam Railston (Aiysha Hart), who is in Hargreaves’ department, it doesn’t answer the question of who told H about the tracking devices.
Corbett confronts Arnott and claims he didn’t mean to kill Hargreaves – we had wondered why he didn’t just shoot to wound. But he’s now even more determined that the real H is Hastings.
Ted, meanwhile, is out on the town with sultry and ambiguous Gill Bigelow, little knowing that Corbett is after Mrs Ted – how will he react when he gets the call from the increasingly unhinged Corbett? What’s interesting here is that Bigelow, despite her obvious attraction to Ted, is messing with his mind, gently implying Ted should take early retirement. Make no mistake: with the cop-turned-property-developer making him an offer he may not be able to refuse (do you think this guy is bent too, or is at least more than he seems?), Bigelow on his case (in more ways than one), the mystery laptop and pressure to solve the case intense, it’s safe to say that Ted is all over the shop and definitely not sucking diesel. And he’s not completely out of the woods yet when it comes to the identity of ‘H’.
So will Hargreaves’ DNA turn up in the brothel, or was someone else Lisa’s mysterious visitor? And just what was on Ted Hastings’ laptop other than kitten videos? There’s a long way to go yet, and Corbett might yet do more damage before he’s brought to heel.
As ever, you just can’t take your eyes off this series – it’s still providing rollercoaster-style thrill and spills, and keeping us on our toes and guessing.
We’re half-way through the series, and Jed Mercurio is famous for not following the rules and producing breathtaking twists. We really have no idea where this is going.
TO READ OUR OF EPISODE ONE REVIEW CLICK HERE
TO READ OUR REVIEW OF EPISODE TWO CLICK HERE