mi5_s05e01_main.jpg

'Mi-5,' Episode Thirty-Seven Recap: 'Gas and Oil (Part 1)'

Miss an episode of this spy-centric BBC One series? Then read our 'Mi-5' recaps here!

Previously on Mi-5

Former Mi-5 agent Angela Wells (Lindsay Duncan) holds the team hostage, demanding that Harry (Peter Firth) confess his involvement in Princess Diana's death. In the episode's final moments, Angela shoots Adam down with a well-aimed sniper bullet. For more, read the full episode recap here.

This Week's Episode: "Gas and Oil (Part 1)"

Written by: Ben Richards
Directed by: Omar Madha

Flashing back to the final moments of the series 4 finale, Harry and Adam (Rupert Penry-Jones) are discussing what to do with former Mi-5 agent Angela Wells, who held up headquarters with a bomb and nearly succeeding in blowing up the Royal Family. Exiting their car outside of Thames House, gunshots suddenly ring out. Despite running for cover, Adam takes a gruesome hit. Collapsed onto the ground, Harry looks up and across the street, where he meets eyes with the sniper rifle-toting Angela. "Forgive me, Harry," she mutters, and she takes leave of her position, sparing Harry's life. Walking to the edge of her vista, she proclaims, "Djakarta is coming!" then throws herself off the building and to her death.

Four weeks later and after a bloody and near-fatal surgery, Adam returns to work just in time despite suffering from constant nightmares. A fuel depot has been blown up, clearly the work of terrorists, and Mi-5 has two leads: their investigation into a Holland-based Al Qaeda cell, and the familiar words "Djakarta is coming," which have started to appear more and more as the violence around London escalates. Additionally, the same words have appeared in a threat sent to the Prime Minister's son Rowan (Simon Woods), and while Mi-5 takes care of their own leads, they sent newest hire Jo (Miranda Raison) to go undercover and guard him at his hall of residence.

The tension escalates around London when three people--one very graphically on a crowded city bus--dies from a chronic cough, which could be evidence of biological warfare. This is no time for any mistakes, and Harry goes straight to one of the most influential men in the country, media mogul Paul Millington (Roger Allam), to beg for him to tone down the rhetoric of his news outlets. There is no proof of actual terrorism yet, and there's no use causing mass psychosis. Show him proof that London isn't under biological weapon attack, Millington responds, and he'll alter the story. And since all three poisoning victims were found to have small puncture marks on their bodies, there's a good chance that this was done by a passer-by and might indicate malfeasance outside the easy answer of Al Qaeda terrorism. So reports Gerry Houghton (Roger Ringrose), Special Policy Advisor to the PM, who insists that the public remain calm. But when Millington buries this story on Page 5, Harry is infuriated.

Harry probably should have seen this coming, as in the world of British politics a controversial anti-terror bill has been defeated in the House of Commons. With that defeat still smarting, the Home Secretary (Roger Glenister) calls for a meeting so there can be interagency cooperation to stop these attacks. There, Harry meets up with Michael Collingwood (Nicholas Jones), his counterpart at Mi-6, and his associate Rosalind "Ros" Myers (Hermione Norris). At the meeting, Collingwood and the Home Secretary start sniping at each other, the former demanding that the country must fight fire with fire and thus he must be given the weapons to do so. And since the information they have on the Holland Al Qaeda cell is fairly insignificant, he needs all the help he can get, even if that means using deadly force. Post-meeting, Harry has a word with the Home Secretary, who advises him to keep an eye on Houghton as he is the sole voice of reason left, one going around making sure that the British government doesn't overreach and receive too much power. But if one more major attack happens, all bets are off and the public will demand increased action. Alas, later that day, Houghton is assassinated in cold blood.

Ruth (Nicola Walker) comes into headquarters with some shocking information. Not only did Mi-6 have high-grade intelligence on the Holland cell and knew it was planning a hit, they even knew that the fuel depot was a possible location. Insignificant, my foot. How was it marked as low priority, then? The info went from a desk clerk to Collingwood, who in turn buried the information. Not only that, they've discovered that the phrase "Djakarta is coming" has appeared before, in 1970s Chile, in order to warn that a great massacre was coming. And who was stationed in Latin America at the time? Collingwood. Concerned that Collingwood and his people might be running a parallel agenda and blaming it on terrorists, and perhaps even murdered Houghton, Harry assigns his staff to do surveillance on Mi-6.

But Adam, still hurting not only from getting hit with a high-velocity bullet but also from the recent death of his wife, may be distracted by the blonde beauty that is Mi-6 associate Ros. On a date, she confesses what he already knew, that her father is Sir Jocelyn Myers, ex-ambassador to Russia and on the board of Gas-Stream, earning his trust. When Adam leaves to take a babysitter's call, though, Ros reveals her true intentions and switches out his water glass with one she brought with her, presumably to steal his fingerprints.

The next day, Colin (Rory MacGregor) is out in a van in the forest doing solo surveillance when something appears across his screen: access to flight numbers and airlines. "They're mapping the heavens," he tells Malcolm over communication, and soon realizes that this is a simulation in which two passenger planes would be taken off course and crash into each other right over London. Just as he's giving this information to Colin, the comm goes out and the backdoor of the van opens. On the other side are two Mi-6 goons, Lee MacKenzie (Alan McKenna) and Steve Jensen (Steve Nicholson). Wondering why Colin is spying on his own kind, they ask him to get into their SUV with them, where they take him further into the forest. When they stop, Colin runs into the distance, but as he is not a field agent, he is easily found and overtaken. "I'm not strong enough to fight you," he tells him. "Just get on with whatever it is you're gonna do to me, because I might be smaller and weaker than you, and you can hurt me but you won't humiliate me." Telling him that the world is not made for small and weak people any longer, they make a noose, throw it over a tree branch, loop the noose around his neck, and hang him.

When headquarters receives the terrible news, they surmise that this kind of hit could only have been done with high-level clearance. Again, all signs point to Collingwood. But they must not be impulsive, so they decide to act normal--and as if Colin committed suicide--until they are ready to strike.

At Rowan's hall of residence, Jo awakens to the sound of scuffling. Seeing that two men have just apprehended Rowan, she feigns stupidity, gets one of them back into the apartment, and incapacitates him. Grabbing a fire extinguisher and knocking out the other goon, she grabs Rowan, bolts out of there in her vehicle, and reveals her true identity to the PM's son. Now they just need to make it to one of Mi-5's safe houses.

Meanwhile, Adam invites Ros over for a home-cooked meal, and they continue talking business and their mutual attraction. When he gets up to check on his sleeping son, Ros races over to his laptop, puts in his stolen thumbprint, and gains access to an Mi-5 database. Downloading a list of Mi-5 agents active in the field onto an external drive, she now has everything she needs. When Adam returns, they embrace and kiss, but Adam backs off, realizing that Ros is wearing the same perfume that his late wife used to wear. The night is ruined.

As Jo and Rowan make it to a safe house, a group of armed men get out of an SUV and sneak up on the cottage. Breaking in, though, they find not the PM's son, but a much larger group of armed men made up of Mi-5 agents, including Adam and Zaf (Raza Jaffrey). The goons were sent to a decoy cottage. This was all a set-up. Time for Mi-5 to clean house.

The interagency meeting reconvenes the next day, and Harry thoroughly lays out his case against Mi-6 before the Home Secretary, Collingwood, and Ros. Collingwood denies burying the Holland Al Qaeda lead and scoffs at their insinuation that his time in Latin America is proof of malfeasance. But wait, there's more, as Adam chimes in, saying he had set up Ros to discover the info on the decoy cottage, information that was only on Adam's computer. Busted. Collingwood continues to deny all charges. Alas, the rest of the committee seems to believe Mi-6, and they exit the room in a huff leaving Mi-5 behind. How could they disbelieve such obvious proof? Something bigger is going on.

But all is not lost, because as a forensics team takes apart the SUV found at the decoy cottage, they find not only Colin's fingerprints all over the vehicle, but a car pass for the South East Air Traffic Control Center. As Steve Jensen is still missing, is he on his way to crash two planes into each other? Is this the straw that breaks the camel's back, the terrorist attack that sends the country over the edge?

But Harry and Adam have an appointment, called by Collingwood, to meet them in a military bunker in Whitehall. Arriving there, they encounter Ros' powerful father Jocelyn, and it becomes clear to them that corporate powers are trying to take over the government. "Government can no longer handle the world," he informs the Mi-5 officials, and the PM has one week to agree to new terms of government they are putting forward, giving them the power to defend the country by whatever means deemed necessary. During that week, they promise that there will be no further incidents.

As Adam and Harry return to their car, though, the corporate powers that be break their promise immediately and start putting into motion their plan for the day. Feeling guilty for how she treated fragile Adam, though, Ros secretly texts Adam that they should get out of their government cars. They do so, then call Juliet just in time, allowing her to escape her vehicle before it explodes behind her.

As Steve Jensen arrives at the air traffic control center, he applies the filter and reroutes the plane. Back the bunker, Jocelyn receives a call. "It has begun."

To be continued...

Hey! I Know That Actor!

Nicholas Jones, who plays Mi-6 supervisor Michael Collingwood, is best known for his work on British television, including such roles as Eugene on "Our Mutual Friend," Captain Owen Triggers on "Wings," Dr. James Isaacs on "The District Nurse," Jeremy Aldermarten QC on "Kavanagh QC," Roger Dorkins on "Sensitive Skin," and Scary Butler on "Little Dorrit."


About the Author

Marcus Gorman is a pop culture writer and the author of the novel triceratops.
RSS icon

LEAVE A COMMENT Leave Comment