This review contains spoilers
1.4 Inside Mans
Okay, let’s just take a moment to recap everything that’s happened so far. Sam and Phil have found a mobile phone and returned a mobile phone; taken and returned a hostage; and saved a woman from kidnappers – only to find she might be more trouble than she’s worth. They also met a secret agent, saw him get killed, and stole his car. This week, they returned some stolen money, infiltrated a party and prevented an assassination, and chased down a musical McGuffin. That’s a hell of a lot of action for a couple of council workers, especially since only a couple of days seem to have passed. And the chaos shows no sign of abating any time soon, either.
One loose end got tied off this week, or at least it looked that way: Mr Lau finally got his money, minus £50 for that art dealer’s cab home, minus whatever Sam and Phil spent in that posh hotel on room service and hot stone massages. Since he now doesn’t have a hostage, and Mr Stevens is dead, and he’s got his cash, that might be the last we see of him – though you never know, with this show.
Scarlett, on the other hand, is a loose end that’s only getting looser, and she’s seemingly intent on untying some other threads while she’s at it. Posing as Phil’s girlfriend again, she drops in on his mum and uses her phone to set up a meeting with the boys. Turns out her husband sold something extra-valuable when he was trying to raise funds to buy her back, and now her dad (who seems like a baddie of the very baddest sort) needs her to get it back. And since she’s holding the threat of the police over Sam and Phil’s heads, she sends them on the recovery mission instead of going herself.
Really, at some point, you’d think people would stop assuming Sam and Phil are good at running errands, because nothing ever goes to plan. But no, Scarlett seems happy enough to entrust them with a deadly serious mission, so soon they’re off to tackle yet another dangerous criminal. The constant introduction of more and more bad guys is starting to get a little wearing, but at least Marat Milankovic was kind of fun, in a gun-waving-drugged-up-lunatic kind of a way.
One really smart thing this episode did was to bring back the town regeneration project, and tie it into whatever’s going on with Scarlett and co. Sam used his town planning skills to look up Milankovic’s address, and also found a newspaper clipping on Lizzie’s desk that revealed the guy funding Bracknell’s regeneration project – the one Lizzie’s so proud of – is none other than Scarlett’s dad, Mr Reid. Absolutely nothing good can come of that, can it?
Poor Lizzie. It seems kind of likely that Sam and Phil are going to do something that’ll mean her project won’t work out, and she still hasn’t really been given much of a role in the story yet. (Besides being the butt of Phil’s horrendous sexism, and the object of Sam’s pathetic infatuation, of course. Is it too much to hope she’ll resist getting back together with him at the end of the show? Because that would be terrible.) Maybe it’s because I’m something of a workaholic control freak myself, but she’s the character I identify with most in this story, so I’m kind of hoping she gets a happy ending.
With just two episodes left to go, Sam and Phil are gonna have to deal with returning Scarlett’s music box (assuming, of course, that it’s the right one, and whatever made it special is still intact); babysitting Milankovic; and escaping from the secret service, who had a tracker in Agent Walker’s car (the one they’re still inexplicably driving around in) and have sent an agent after them. That’ll be the agent we already know from last week is a double agent and murderer, then? Right. And probably they ought to go in to work at some point, too. I’m hoping the final episodes will also see the return of snarky town planner Noel, and maybe a few more scenes of Mat Baynton dancing awkwardly. I just don’t feel like we’ve seen enough of that yet.
Read Sarah’s review of the previous episode, here.
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