** Warning: this article contains spoilers about Line of Duty, series 2 episode six (the final episode). If you have not seen the final episode you are advised not to read further **
So, caught your breath yet? Finally come to terms with the fact that Keeley Hawes’ Lindsay Denton WAS guilty of being involved in the fatal ambush that opened episode one, though perhaps not for reasons we may have expected?
Yes, as we have just discovered at the end of Line of Duty 2 episode 6, she was complicit in the hit on the protected witness – but her motives appear to be more complicated than simple greed.
Sure, she was paid off by Jane Akers and Craig Parkinson's slippery weasel “Dot” Cottan (something which led to her finally being nailed). Sure, she was greedy. But she had a sick Mum who needed looking after and she also appeared keen to get nasty criminal Tommy out of the way because she had witnessed at first hand his cruel and violent treatment of teenager Carly Kirk. Or am I being too kind on her?
Yes, Denton was a psychopath (just look at the way she calmly moved the tracker device while the car was burning in the reconstruction of the hit) but was she a psychopath with a heart?
Perhaps she was simply narcissist who only felt feelings towards the missing girl Carly because she saw her as a projection of herself.
Because one thing we can say about Line of Duty is that while things were never straightforward they were psychologically plausible. Oh yes, and it was exciting. Extremely exciting. This was a drama that always managed to twist and turn, as Lord Melchett so brilliantly put it in Blackadder 2, like a twisty turny thing.
Were you satisfied by the end? Did Denton’s demise leave you empty – a bit like the moment Lennie James carked it at the end of series one?
And what about Martin Compston's Arnott? A copper who "could not keep it in his pants", as Denton not inaccurately said of him earlier in the series, he was being rather smart all along and did not have designs on Denton after all. By the end was cleverly playing on her. Smart work, Arnott.
Will you be happy to see “Dot” Cottan make it into series three, a properly dodgy copper now at the heart of AC12? I suspect many viewers are longing for his comeuppance – and that of Neil Morrissey’s equally nasty Nigel Morton while we’re at it.
Personally, I was pretty impressed with this finale, and am pleased that my conviction throughout the series that Denton Done It proved right.
But what did you think? We’d really like to know because if there’s one salient characteristic about Line of Duty it’s that the truth is rarely pure – and never simple...