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Pondering The Professionals

Given that I know I'm very late to the ball-park, I'm going to post my The Professionals comments, reactions etc here rather than any of the comms. (I think I'm still being watched by red_in_black for the Newsletter, so maybe some people will come by anyway.)

These pondering posts may be a little random.

The Purging of CI5 : every single time I see this episode, the scene with Williams and the briefcase reminds me of one of my Dad's favourite anecdotes.

You know how I grew up on the Essex part of the London borders - we had the Met police, London phone numbers (01 London code in the 70s and 80s - not required when dialling within London, 3-digit area code (always required even if dialling between two 508 numbers etc), 4-digit personal number - and everyone I knew with London numbers, unlike those with Essex area codes, answered the phone with those last 4 digits, each family with their own rhythm/ditty to them) and London transport, but Essex Council and Essex postcodes - but close enough to London that my secondary school was *in* East London (E17, in fact) and my Dad worked in the City. During the IRA terror campaign, we were occasionally directly affected. I've been on a train - aged 14 and in charge of three younger kids from my drama group - which turned out to have a bomb on it, the IRA blew up Dad's office building, etc etc...

But Dad loves and loved to tell the story of his friend and colleague who took the Irish Times as well as the Daily Telegraph, who once, after having stopped in the pub for a quick one after work, ran off for his train, remembering his mac and attache case, but forgetting his briefcase, which he left sitting quietly under a table with his folded Irish Times on top.

As he discovered when he phoned up the pub to ask if his briefcase was still there, this led to an unfortunate series of events. Someone spotted the unattended luggage, and also noting the newspaper, phoned the police. The pub was evacuated and bomb squad called out. Not knowing what they were dealing with, they proceded to carry out "a small controlled explosion" which reduced the leather case and his papers to confetti.

In consequence, I find it kind of darkly-amusing that a CI5-man would just *open* an unattended, slightly suspicious briefcase.

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
moonlightmead
Jun. 29th, 2014 05:52 am (UTC)
Post wherever and whenever you like! We need some more episode posts :)

I love Purging. It may be my favourite episode ever. The scuffle in the lift, the scene in the car where they are not sure, 'Hold your breath, sunshine', the crazy non-metal detector ('WEEEEEH'), Susan polishing her nails, the box that falls off the wardrobe and lands on - oh, thingy, whoever Susan subdues... (any scene with Susan in it, really), recognising Billy (he was Moxey in Auf Wiedersehen, Pet), all of it.

And heh, yeah, I can imagine the Irish Times rousing suspicions. Dear me.

CI5's full of dodgy technique. Bursting in through doors with the light behind them making them easy targets (apparently the actors complained about that, and were told to shut up and get on with it :)), the computer room that needed heat for the computers to room... and yes, hadn't thought about it, but the briefcase, definitely!

I think this is the episode written by someone who was actually still in his teens, so I'll forgive them this one!
natsuko1978
Jun. 29th, 2014 10:28 am (UTC)
There are some brilliant - and *humourous* - moments in the ep certainly - what about, "Do you know where you're going?" and Martin and Lew trying not to break scene with laughter when the A-Z falls off the dashboard? And certainly, in spite of the serious business, it's a glorious Bodie and Doyle and enjoying their job ep.

But there are some glaring plot holes, too. How about, if the car-bomb killed Matheson at that distance, how did Cowley, Bodie and Doyle get far enough away from the caravan bomb that the only effect it had was ringing in their ears? They had about 4 seconds to run, as far as I can tell.

But in an era of justified paranoia about unattended baggage, a counter-terrorism unit just going, "Oooooh, what's in here, then?" is funnier than it should be.

I also spend a lot of that ep wondering what the hell Martin had done to make his perm go *that* frizzy. :D
msmoat
Jul. 17th, 2014 01:18 pm (UTC)
Hey there. Just following links to get here and wanted to say that I adore that anecdote. *g* Thank you for sharing it!

I love Purging. Well, I love all of the episodes, at least for bits and pieces, but, yeah, plot holes and head-scratching techniques. Still, there's the advantage of fan fiction! We can make them more, competent. Or, at least, more logical. *g*

Do you mind if I friend you? If you're going to be doing Pros pondering, then I'd love to see it!
natsuko1978
Jul. 17th, 2014 06:49 pm (UTC)
I would be delighted for you to friend me! The more the merrier! As I said, I just feel very aware of being a new-comer to an old, established fandom, so a bit nervous about wittering on a comm. :D If you are interested, you might like to browse my "fandom: professionals" tag in general, as I've posted a few ponderings, wonderings and random thoughts.

It's a great story, isn't it? We even had the bomb squad called out to my secondary school once (C of E school in East London) for a suspicious bag (leading to a running joke about us having to be careful with our sports bags etc and smelly socks being suspicious substances). (And one ex-pupil a few years above me did go on to actually *become* a terrorist, leading to a category in the Leavers' Annual for "Most Likely to Be Arrested for Terrorism Offences".

A doodle-bug fell at one end of my Dad's street in the '40s (when he was a kid), the IRA put a bomb in a hotel he was staying in in the 70s (because of a conference being held there) and then the IRA actually blew up his office block in the 90s (the coded warning told the Met they had left it in a different building - this was when they destroyed the *Baltic* Exchange having warned about the *Stock* exchange - to this day we don't know if that was deception or a mistake). I keep telling him *he* should write about all this stuff.

The Gerkin is only there because the IRA destroyed a Grade II Listed Georgian building, that was supposed to be restored exactly "as was", which no one could afford to do - pillars and marble atriums and stuff.

I love Purging, but like so many of my favouite eps I love it for the characters and the acting rather than the plot/story/logic. But as you say, this is why we have fic! Perfect shows need no fic IMO - a good starting point of fic, for me, is making canon make sense. (That and slash.)
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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