I've been out of the Spooks-loop for years. I saw the first one or two series then reached that age where I'd rather be out chasing the ladies than watching TV. Needless to say, the ladies all ran far too fast for me, so back to the telly I came. And here I've been ever since. And - fair play - there's been plenty to watch! Until recently, when all the stuff I watched finished and I was left with the soaps or the news or the shopping channels.
Then, Spooks began again. Monday night saw the ninth series (I think) kick off in... style? Well, no. Not that. It left me a little lost for thrills, to be honest. My BIG SPOOKS MEMORY is of the bit where that bird got her head deep-fried in front of the fella with the big lips. That stuck in my mind. But last night's? Nothing really jumped at me.
It was a bit like watching "24 - UK" (as it always has been, really) but without the violent, twisty thrills... Even the blinder of a cliffhanger couldn't save the episode. It was as though the writers needed to start with a big bang, and borrowed to do it. ALL from 24.
There was the "random hostage situation played out to mask a terrorist plot" plot that 24 churned out in considerable style in every 'episode 2 - 5' that it's ever had. There was the "is the Asian good-guy computer nerd REALLY the Asian terrorist-super-hacker? NO!" guessing-game/pay-off. There was a bloody big EMP bomb! That's been done (albeit, not as chillingly as it was here). Basically, there were lots of good things crammed haphazardly into an hour, badly. And I'd had a drink, so that meant - and I don't know if anyone else gets this, too, when watching TV while intoxicated - that all the characters seemed to be acting with as much depth as Richard Ayoade's amazing Moss from The IT Crowd. I KNOW they're not that wooden - it's the beer what done it!
And then there was the "super-famous, English hotty, much-publicised 'new member of the team' spending half the episode pretending to be a Russian sex slave/All Saint (it's the costume)' and fooling nobody... There are so many holes to poke... so many nits to pick! I didn't WANT to like it...
...And yet, despite all that, Spooks is back and I've missed 6 years of predictably predictable thrills and spills... Something tells me that my Monday nights will be separated by evenings lost on the net, cramming series 1 - 8 all over again...
Television, you bastard. I know people who are married with families at my age.
I also know people older than me who are not. And they like TV. They tend to be better company than "young family-men"; I have more in common with them, more to talk about. They're more interesting, with bigger, brighter imaginations. Bish is one such person. And this post is for him, with love. Here's to discussing next week's Spooks over a "swift half" at Bar 33, eh Bish?