Waking the Dead: Series 3, Episodes 7 and 8: Final Cut
Written by Stephen Davis; Directed by Betsan Morris Evans
It’s always struck be that, apart from Boyd, the only character in Waking the Dead whose past we know anything about is Spence. He would end up being the main focus of the Series 5 finale, and here, two years earlier, his childhood comes back to haunt him in a rather convoluted storyline that also ropes in his mother and missing father. That’s about as personal as things ever get in this show, and it’s somewhat odd, given that I’ve always felt that Spence was the least interesting of the original line-up of characters (now, once the insufferable Eve arrives for Series 6, that’s another matter entirely…). I’m not convinced that the revelations of this episode do anything for the character of Spence, given that they are never referenced again and really don’t succeed in making him any more interesting, but at least his role is something more than functional in this episode.
Anyway, what follows is an extremely convoluted plot, even by Waking the Dead’s standards, which somehow ties together the Mafia, drug smuggling, an extremely violent movie, bizarre burial rituals in a black community, numerous dead bodies concealed in a derelict building, and Ken Russell as a foul-mouthed, booze-soaked director with an overinflated opinion of his own abilities (haha). I’ve seen this one three times now and I’m still not entirely convinced I’ve worked it all out, but at least I’m not completely scratching my head in confusion as I was with Walking on Water earlier in the series. As with that episode, the first part is better than the second, and I suspect that has a lot to do with the face that most of the confusion emerges in the final 30 minutes, but, that said, it’s a strong episode overall and an effective end to a series that has, barring the rather forgettable season premiere, turned out to be better than I remembered. Oh, and, to the best of my knowledge, it’s also the only episode to include a character using the word “fuck”. You rebels!
Holby connections: Camelia Baptiste is played by Sharon D. Clarke, who currently appears in Holby City as consultant Lola Griffin.