Ashes To Ashes – Series 3, Episode 5.


“No shooting Bols? Alright, let’s go run him over.”

Now this was a pretty good episode really – musically, it was outstanding, and there’s some old faces in the guise of “The Gay Tash Twins” – DCI Litton and DI Bevan from Manchester. These two slightly evil characters are actually oddly likeable – Litton anyway at least, and compared to DCI Keats they’re positively peachy. On their arrival in London, Keats basically latches onto them and insists on the cooperation of Fenchurch East with Litton and Bevan, to which Hunt says “Right – A Team – mush!”, and Litton refers to Keats as “pencil-neck”.

This episode was also good as it was not too Keats-heavy, as there were two new additions to antagonise the team instead.

Crime Of The Week this episode, ergo, focused around the reason Litton and Bevan were in the capital city, and initially it was because the chap they were chasing, Frank Hardwick, had stolen £2000 from the Police Widows Fund. However, as the episode progressed, and Hunt gazed a scathing eye upon the situation, it became clear this was not the motive for wanting Hardwick either in jail or dead. To me, it was hard to decipher exactly why DCI Litton actually wanted to ‘nick’ him, but Hardwick was terrified of both Litton and Bevan so there must have been something involving him.

Now, there was a fantastic high point when there was a race to capture Frank Hardwick between Litton and Hunt, and then the birds of the show, DI Alex Drake and Sharon Granger, managed to get there first. Absolutely supreme, especially when they took Hardwick out of the place of arrest semi-clothed. He is then shot at, and Ray thinks he’s seen something but can’t quite put his finger on it. There were loyalty issues with Ray quite emphatically in this episode – old colleagues from Manchester reverted him back slightly to his misogynistic ways, and he sways slightly to Litton and Bevan, but eventually comes through when he realises that what he saw was Bevan trying to shoot Hardwick. The race is on the both save and shot Hardwick, and this culminates in Hunt and Drake having a late-night talk with Frank in Luigi’s about why it is that he’s so scared of the Manchester contingent. He informs them that there had been ‘meetings’ for what he thought were coppers to ‘rough up’ the local unsavouries – drug dealers and so on – and that in one instance, he saw someone beating up a black man until he didn’t breath anymore. It turns out this man was Bevan.

So! Drake and Hunt confront Litton, but he genuinely is unaware of the situation (which is why I still need a motive for him wanting to get Hardwick), and this leads to a wonderful partnership between Hunt, Drake and Litton to bring Bevan down, and eventually, after a police gala (‘Opportunity Cops’), Hunt shoots him. Very good work from a patch work team that didn’t involve Keats too much, until the end when he arrests Bevan for “failing to prevent criminal acts perpetrated by your own officer.” To which Hunt replies “He’s got twenty-five years service! He’s innocent! I mean he’s a prat, but an innocent prat.”

So – team relations, I thought, were on the up, as the team worked very well and uncovered something that Keats was supposed to (corruption in CID) before he did (win!), and all loyalties were back in place before the credits, but at the end, Alex followed Keats after he asked “Do we need to talk?” (why Alex why?!), and she kept bloody asking Hunt anything she could about Sam Tyler. My opinion on the Sam thing now is that he left Life On Mars world with the help of Hunt (good help, I assume he wanted to leave), and Hunt is trying to cover for Tyler as there is something negative about the whole situation.

Ray had his “Life On Mars” moment this week and saw stars, like Shaz has done previously, and Alex seems to do all the time, and Chris achieved some excellent dancing and body popping at the police gala and later in CID, Shaz teamed up with Ray for some singing also at the gala, and Drake spoiled the whole thing by buggering off with Keats at the end. Each week I am more and more disappointed in Keats, as he seems to have less and less purpose – and this technically means he shouldn’t be there. Why does he have power to be so evil with no reason? It makes for something of an unbelivable character – you can almost see Daniel Mays just being horrible for the sake of it when he’s acting, as there’s no motivation to be so otherwise. Sort it out writers…

Next week there appears to be some form of riot in a prison, hostages and press reporters, and possibly something bad happens to Ray and Chris – I don’t know, but it’s only two days away, and less than a month until the end of the whole thing, so not much longer to wait!

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