BE WARNED: SPOILERS AHEAD!
What an episode that was! I thought Robert might have more of an influence on things with two episodes to go but who’d have guessed Kerry would be the telekinetic tinkerer? Not me anywho. And may I just say before delving further into last night’s penultimate episode what a pleasure it was to watch actress Lisa Hammond growing into her role. I wasn’t convinced about her delivery of her lines earlier in the series but fair play to her as I think she really pulled it out of the bag last night with a performance that was really rather frightening at times. Mental note Robert: don’t screw with Kerry.
So, with just two episodes to go this one had to rip through the script at a fair old pace, revealing many a plot twist along the way. Every key character’s part was turned upside down last night, but non more so than the serial killing mother and son partnership, the Sowerbutts.
Maureen discovered that David’s initial ‘murder’ wasn’t actually a real one at all and just part of his overly exuberant participation in the Murder Mystery evening. Naturally, this knocked her back a bit, making her realise that everything that had happened since was more her doing than David’s. There has always been the sense that their murderous ways were such and it was fitting that this revelation should hit home so close to the end.
Overdosing on pills (is she dead?), we last saw her collapsing in David’s bedroom. David in the meantime could be seen walking towards Ravenhill Hospital, the location for Nurse Kenchington’s murder most foul and the place that ties all these characters together. But what’s that in the bag David?
Well, it could be Mr Jolly’s severed head, last seen in the hands of the mystery blackmailer. This was the base of the show’s comedy this episode, fittingly centred around what I consider to be the series’ finest character, Mr Jelly. With oversized rubber hand in place and an old, handcuffed woman in tow (just one of the hazards of performing in an old people’s home) Jelly witnesses Jolly’s murder, all the while being questioned by said woman as to whether it was all part of his trick. It was a brilliantly executed sequence and raised some of the precious few laughs that were found in episode six.
Of course, this was largely down to two factors. Firstly, the plot was so dense with so many loose ends to begin to tie up that humour naturally took a back seat. Secondly, this was the darkest episode yet and for that we once again had a particular eerie turn from everyone’s favourite female comedian to thank.
Joy’s eyes said it all in the final throws of episode five. She was out for revenge, and by gum, did she get it. Of course, you can’t feel that sorry for Nicola – she was having it away with Joy’s husband after all – but what a way to go. And if the sight of blood pouring out from a baby doll’s eyes isn’t one of the scariest visions on TV this year, I’ll eat my hat.
Perhaps it’s because I have one of my own on the way, but I really must applaud the show for squeezing every last ounce of horror from what is no more than just a plastic doll – with an easily removable head. Thanks to the last two episodes I’ll be having Freddie-shaped nightmares for weeks to come.
But what of the fate of the series’ other toy, Snappy the Crocodile? Well it too was lying in wait at Ravenhill and Tealeaf is a clever lad, finding his way to the priceless green plaything while ditching the Crabtree sisters. Shame then that Joy – clearly more than a little off her rocker – had locked him in one of the hospital’s cells. One desperate call to Oscar later and the finale is now set up for all the characters to converge upon the Addams Family-style hospital – I’m sure it looks much nicer during the day.
What can we expect from next week’s final episode, then? Well I was hoping I’d know by now, courtesy of the BBC’s Red Button but, either down to the BBC’s incompetence or my Freeview box’s limitations, I couldn’t watch it on my TV as advertised after all (I was treated to extra footage from Taking The Flak instead – no bad thing). In light of that I’m just as in the dark as everyone else (unless your red button actually worked for you, you jammy blighters) so I have no idea how it’s all going to end up, really, except to say that I’m fairly sure there will be a few more scares and shocks in store yet.
It’s been set up nicely for a thrilling ending. Please boys, don’t let us down.
Check out our review of episode 5 here.