Line of Duty: S5.E5. “Episode Five”

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Screen Capture: Adrian Dunbar as Superintendent Ted Hastings in written an created by Jed Mercurio BBC anti-police corruption drama series “Line of Duty.”
Screen Capture: Adrian Dunbar as Superintendent Ted Hastings in written an created by Jed Mercurio BBC anti-police corruption drama series “Line of Duty.”



The penultimate episode in the current series of “Line of Duty,” directed by Sue Tully, was televised in the British Isles on Sunday, 28 Aril 2019. Written an created by Jed Mercurio, the series revolves around investigations conducted by the anti-corruption unit AC-12.

Promotional poster
“Line of Duty” promotional poster. Image Credit: IMDb.

SPOILER WARNING

If you have yet to see the episode, do not read past this point. There are spoilers in this article which will make you want to pull your hair out at the root. If you choose to comment, it would be appreciated if you could tell me why you agree with me or why you think I am wrong.

Brief Episode Synopsis

As the investigation into H strengthens, Detective Inspector Kate Fleming (Vicky McClure) and Detective Sergeant Steve Arnott (Martin Compston) have justifiable concerns if Superintendent Ted Hastings (Adrian Dunbar) is guarding a dark secret.

Screen Capture: Martin Compston and Vicky McClure as Detective Sergeant Steve Arnott and Detective Inspector Kate Fleming, respectively, in the Jed Mercurio written and created BBC anti-police corruption drama series “Line of Duty.”
Screen Capture: Martin Compston and Vicky McClure as Detective Sergeant Steve Arnott and Detective Inspector Kate Fleming, respectively, in the Jed Mercurio written and created BBC anti-police corruption drama series “Line of Duty.”

This series five episode, with Hastings at the heart of the narrative, is intense. With “line of Duty” the drama has always increased in intensity as we progress from the first to the last episode in any given series. With only one more episode in the current series, the six and final instalment will be a feature length production.

Typically seen in the background berating his immediate subordinates, the superintendent has been cagy regarding his personal history. Hastings insists he is not hiding anything.

AC-3 Brought in to Investigate Hastings

With much of this episode’s narrative revolving around Hastings, the intensity of drama is significantly high. Hastings has inadvertently implicated himself in the very investigation AC-12 is engaged in. As a result, anti-corruption unit AC-3 is brought in to the mix.

Screen Capture: Anna Maxwell Martin as Detective Chief Superintendent Patricia Carmichael in the Jed Mercurio written and created BBC anti-police corruption drama series “Line of Duty.”
Screen Capture: Anna Maxwell Martin as Detective Chief Superintendent Patricia Carmichael in the Jed Mercurio written and created BBC anti-police corruption drama series “Line of Duty.”

Hastings is now facing off against a more senior police officer. With a determination to uncover corruption at the highest levels within the force, Detective Chief Superintendent Patricia Carmichael (Anna Maxwell Martin) believes Hastings is H. Carmichael pursues a line of inquiry which supports this hypothesis. Is she on the right track? Is Hastings be H?

Adrian Dunbar. Image Credit: IMDb

A True Thespian

If you know anything about Dunbar’s acting career, you will know he’s a true thespian of the highest calibre. While the Northern Ireland born actor has appeared in such Oscar-winning productions as My Left Foot (1989) and The Crying Game (1992), the actor is better known for treading the boards of live theatre Dublin’s Abbey Theatre, the Royal Shakespeare Company and Dublin’s Liberty Hall Theatre.

In 2016, the thespian brought his experience of Shakespearean acting to the television production “The Hollow Crown” when he took on the role of Plantagenet for the episodes  Henry VI Parts I and II.

Dunbar’s Performance

Tonight, Dunbar’s performance was nothing short of spectacular. Dunbar has somehow taken his character from the nonconformist maverick to a potentially wronged man. His interpretation of Hastings is exact. In this episode, in an attempt to wrap up the case, Hastings puts himself in danger by executing an undercover operation himself.

To maintain the pretence of and arrest, Hastings must stay at the AC-12 offices. Consequently, his appearance diminishes greatly. It is a significant departure from the well-groomed clean-shaven senior police officer we have become accustomed to seeing.

Hastings is in custody

Screen Capture: Adrian Dunbar as Superintendent Ted Hastings in written an created by Jed Mercurio BBC anti-police corruption drama series “Line of Duty.”
Screen Capture: Adrian Dunbar as Superintendent Ted Hastings in written an created by Jed Mercurio BBC anti-police corruption drama series “Line of Duty.”

Did you find it surprising Hastings is under arrest? This was no longer a pretence. Hastings is not happy Carmichael is questioning him. Stripped of his rank and honour, the tail end of the episode sees Hastings put behind bars. His new inmate clothes are a vast contract to what we normally see them.

Is there a trailer?

Final Thoughts

Screen Capture: Gina McKee and Lennie James as Detective Inspector Kate Fleming and Detective Sergeant Steve Arnott, respectively, in the Jed Mercurio written and created BBC anti-police corruption drama series “Line of Duty.”
Screen Capture: Gina McKee and Lennie James as Jackie Laverty and Detective Inspector Tony Gates, respectively, in the Jed Mercurio written and created BBC anti-police corruption drama series “Line of Duty.”

Did you notice the references to the first series? Jackie Laverty (Gina McKee), during the first series, was having an affair with DI Tony Gates (Lennie James). Both characters died during the first series. Laverty was murdered and Gates died as a result of an RTA (road traffic accident) in the line of duty.

If you are enjoying this current series, you need not worry the sixth and final episode of the fifth series is coming next Sunday. There is a sixth series in the pipeline.