Spooks Series 5 ends

So another series of Spooks, possibly my favourite tv show, ended last night. As I had been watching the BBC Three broadcasts, it had been two weeks since I'd seen the previous episode (the BBC Three broadcasts are shown a week ahead of BBC One, but don't include the first or last episodes), so I was looking forward to the last show.

Series 5 has generally been pretty good, with plots involving fundamentalist Christian groups, dodgy Israelis, the British Government selling nuclear technology, British politicians plotting a coup, British arms sales to dodgy foreign states, and so on. Generally the series seems to have been more suspicious of the authorities than ever, with political references aplenty.

Without wanting to summarise the whole thing, the last episode centred around some environmental activists holding London to ransom by by refusing to raise the Thames barrier against a high spring tide in a siege situation. Along the way, we discover that the Government has written a highly secretive report suggesting that they exploit global warming by securing oil resources in order to maintain an economic advantage. It's all a bit preposterous, but does contain some biting comment, such as the suggestion that the Government announces superficial environmental measures in order to keep green pressure groups happy.

The episode paces along, managing not to be too predictable (most episodes do seem to follow a general pattern), until the ending, where two of the lead characters are trapped underwater in a submerged chamber beneath the Thames Barrier. There's a great Titanic-esque moment where their path is blocked by a metal grille, and I thought the series would end there on a cliff-hanger, but Adam manages to open the grille, using a ringpull he plucked earlier from his son's art project, and they escape to the surface, upon which the series ends. It all seemed a bit cheesy for Spooks, the programme which once had killed someone off by plunging their head into a deep fat fryer. It would have been far better to have either had them both drown, or to end with us not knowing...

Series 6 has already been commissioned, and so I hope the franchise continues to be generally pretty excellent.