'Mi-5,' Episode Thirty-Three Recap: 'Syria'

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Previously on Mi-5

In order to prevent an attack, Mi-5 releases a suspected Algerian terrorist from prison, hoping that he will lead them directly to the culprits.

This Week's Episode: "Syria"

Written by: Raymond Khoury
Directed by: Omar Madha

Adam (Rupert Penry-Jones) and Fiona (Olga Sosnovska) seem like the perfect marriage spy couple, always there to support and protect each other. But what brought them together in the first place? And is there something in their past that's about to catch up to them?

At headquarters, Fiona comes to Harry (Peter Firth) with a fax from Section 6, one she seems particularly and personally interested in. It seems that Riyad Barzali (Sam Dastor), the Syrian Foreign Minister, has found a way into the inner circle of his country's secretive and well-armed regime, and could be a very valuable asset to the U.K. Barzali will be visiting London soon in order to open a cultural center, and since Fiona has experience with Syrians, she requests that she heads up the operation. At home, Fiona's husband and fellow spy Adam tries to talk her down, saying it's too dangerous, especially since her ex-husband turned out to be an Israeli spy.

Adam's pleas fall on deaf ears, and Fiona, posing as a public relations guru, attends the opening of the new Syrian Cultural Center. With Zaf (Raza Jaffrey) and new recruit Jo (Miranda Raison) on site and the rest of Mi-5 on Comm, they are prepared should any danger befall Fiona. Schmoozing with the minister, Fiona and the team learn that Barzali is never alone thanks to his assigned security detail, a fearsome-looking man named Ali (Khalid Laith). He is a member of the Syrian intelligence service, or the Mukhabarat, described as the KGB on steroids and incredibly dangerous, so it's going to be tougher than they thought in order to have a private word with the minister. A few feet away, though, nobody in Mi-5 notices another Syrian a few feet away call somebody up on his cell, expressing disbelief at who is standing right before him.

Back at headquarters, Fiona prepares for the next step of the operation, loading up on gadgets, getting the tracking device she requested, and asking Ruth (Nicola Walker) to monitor all Syrian passports coming through Heathrow customs, just in case somebody arrives hoping to cause her harm. With an undercover Jo in tow, Fiona arrives at the embassy, where she and Barzali discuss how her company can improve Syria's public image and remove them from being considered a part of the Axis of Evil.

Post-meeting, Fiona finally opens up to Jo about why she is so interested in this Syrian case. A student of Arab literature, she lived in Syria with her husband, an intelligence officer named Farook (Darrell D'Silva), who she met at a Beirut nightclub. Acquiescing to his request that she convert to Islam, she overhauled herself entirely, changing her name from Amelia (her real name) to Amal. But when they could not seem to get pregnant, Farook turned from her and started sleeping around. As he would not permit a divorce, she felt trapped. Until one day, government agent Adam arrived in Syria investigating a series of suicide bombings, and all signs pointed to Farook and his bosses. Aghast at what her husband was capable of, she and Adam started an affair, but when Farook found out, he and his captured Adam and beat him nearly to death right in front of her. Enough was enough, and since there was no way that Adam could turn Farook away from the Syrian intelligence service, they decided to frame him, setting him up to look like an double agent working for the Israelis. Considered a traitor to his country, Farook was hanged, and Fiona and Adam fled to the U.K. She knows how the Syrians think, Fiona explains, which is why she's right for this operation.

Continuing with the operation, Mi-5 manages to put a light poison into Barzali's food, forcing him to make an overnight hospital visit. Lacing Ali's coffee with a mild sleeping poison, Adam, posing as a doctor, finally manages to have a face-to-face conversation with Barzali without anybody listening in. Barzali has a proposition: He wants to replace the current Syrian regime, a "Soviet-era dictatorship," with something more democratic, but he can only do that with Mi-5's help. Bringing this information back to headquarters, Harry and National Security Coordinator Juliet Shaw (Anna Chancellor) agree to help, but only if Barzali helps them shut down a weapons-smuggling operation along the Iraq-Syria border. Give the smuggling routes information to Fiona, and they have a deal.

Under Adam's request, Ruth and Colin (Rory MacGregor) take second and third looks at the cultural embassy opening footage, looking for anything suspicious, and they finally notice the man on the phone. As they attempt to isolate his audio, Fiona starts flashing back to an event that took place six months earlier. One day on the streets of London, a woman named Joumama (Nathalie Armin) called out Fiona's Muslim name. Although Fiona initially does not wish to speak to this person from her past, she relents and they catch up. But when Fiona notices Joumana's recent scars, the truth comes out. Somebody is looking for Fiona, and they're willing to torture in order to obtain this information.

Back in the present, Fiona proceeds to the hotel meeting with Barzali where they will make their agreement. But when Fiona arrives, Syrian intelligence officer Ali and his men hold her at gunpoint and force her into a getaway car. Barzali has been found out and beaten to death. So why are the Syrians keeping Fiona alive?

At headquarters, Ruth and Colin finally figure out that the mysterious man at the cultural center opening is Bashir Shalhoob (Bijan Daneshmand). And who was on the other end of that phone call? The very-much alive Farook. What's worse, Fiona has known for six months that he wasn't dead, and this operation was her way of ending this torment once and for all. Able to track down Farook's cell phone, they find that he is not in Damascus after all, but just outside of London. Racing against the clock, Adam and Zaf follow her tracking device to a parking garage, where they find the getaway car completely empty and discarded clothes on the ground. Fiona has been forced to change outfits to put Mi-5 off her scent. Adam is able to spot one of the Syrians' cars nearby, and after getting forceful with them learns that Farook and Fiona are on their way to a private airfield, which explains why Ruth wasn't able to flag down Farook upon his entry into the U.K.

Arriving at the private airfield, Farook admonishes Fiona for forcing him into hiding for ten years, as well as her new job helping traitors who only want to use Mi-5 to do their dirty work. Throwing Fiona into a holding cell while Farook's men get their private plane up and running, they return only to find that she has slit her wrists. As Farook tries to pick her up, she awakens, stabs him in the neck, and runs out of the cell just as Adam arrives at the airfield. Farook regains his composure and shoots her in the back, prompting Adam to gun him down.

As the authorities arrive to arrest the Syrians, Adam wraps a dying Fiona in his jacket and in his arms. "I had to do it," Fiona whispers. "I couldn't tell you. He almost killed you once because of me." With her final breath, she makes Adam promise to keep their son safe.

Hey! I Know That Actor!

Darrell D'Silva, who played Fiona's ex-husband Farook Sukkarieh, is a Shakespeare-trained actor best known for his work on "Criminal Justice" and "Out of the Blue" and the film "Dirty Pretty Things."


About the Author

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