Line of Duty series 5 episode 3 review

Line of Duty series 5 episode 3

WARNING: spoilers below. Still catching up? Read Steve’s review of episode 2 here.

Have we finally discovered who ‘H’ is…? Perhaps. But it’s pretty likely that the corrupt copper conspiracy goes even higher than the man in the balaclava revealed here in the latest Line of Duty.

We left last week’s slice of the action with disgraced AFO (authorised firearms officer) Jane Cafferty quite literally pointing the finger at who we were led to believe might be the elusive H. The scene was presented to us in such a way that Superintendent Ted Hastings was very much in frame. As it turns out, Cafferty was identifying the late DI Matthew ‘Dot’ Cottan, a known bent copper who was shot dead by gangsters in the final episode of series 3.

So Dot was H, then? Well, no. H is still alive and kicking. Unless he died here… Only joining Dot in dodgy detective Heaven is Central Police’s Detective Chief Superintendent Lester Hargreaves (‘H’ for Hargreaves?). By the conclusion of this week’s Line of Duty, he’s outed as corrupt and found to be helping out the mob of robbers led by Stephen Graham’s UCO (undercover officer) John Corbett.

Whether Hargreaves’ complicity was voluntary or if he was being blackmailed for using ‘sexual services’ remains to be seen. It’s all fairly irrelevant now, anyway. Corbett shot and killed him during a high-risk raid he used to flush H out.

The crossings and double crossings have all got a little complicated at this halfway stage. One thing’s for sure, popping to the kitchen to make a brew during the show is not a wise idea, no matter how quickly your kettle boils. You’re definitely going to miss something.

Hastings is certainly missing something – his wife. Holed up in his pokey little hotel room with a busted toilet flush, his romantic and money woes continue to blight him. As does Senior Legal Counsel and Police and Crime Commissioner’s right-hand woman Gill Biggeloe.

The pair meet for dinner and Hastings quickly susses out she’s angling for him to take ‘early retirement’ – “you’re flattering yourself using the adjective ‘early’…” she replies rather cattily. The pair still end up in Ted’s hotel room after dessert, though. Given how knackered the facilities are, let’s hope Gill didn’t need a wee while she was there.

This is Line of Duty, so there was – of course – a bit of a shocker. In the final scene we saw Corbett go fully rogue. Now a murderer, he’s become a desperate man. He wants to bring H down – and quickly. He’s convinced that Hastings is the Top Dog and so – to get to him – he snatches his estranged wife Roisin. It’s a risky move and one we can’t really see paying off.

As you’ll have no doubt noticed by now, this fifth series of Jed Mercurio’s police drama is rather oddly obsessed with acronyms. Previous series have featured them, but this run has gone a little OTT with them.

Perhaps we should write our reviews of LoD in acronyms. It’d certainly make them quicker to read…

‘FYI, the AFO ID’d H (JK). The UCO in the UCG has gone MIA. AC-12 must apprehend ASAP. TTFN!’

Or maybe not.

Did you tune in for Line of Duty series 5 episode 3? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

Steve Charnock

Steve Charnock is a freelance writer who writes news stories, features, articles, reviews and lists. But *always* forgets to write his mum a birthday card.

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