The Line of Duty series finale was “underwhelming” for a lot of of its viewers – however consideration has now turned to if there goes to be a seventh version of the BBC drama.
Sunday’s episode handled a main storyline which has rolled on for greater than six series, however there’s nonetheless loads of burning questions that want answering.
With no formal announcement on if one other instalment is on the horizon, there are query marks over whether or not we will see Ted Hastings, Steve Arnott and Kate Fleming on our screens once more.
With author Jed Mercurio remaining tight-lipped about his future plans, will there ever be extra Line Of Duty?
Grab your workplace cross and favorite waistcoat – it is time to study the proof, AC-12 fashion.
Buckells by no means truly admitted to collusion – and smirk on the finish
Popcorn-makers throughout the nation went into overdrive as a grey-sweatshirted prisoner was marched into the goldfish bowl at AC-12 surrounded by armed police.
The nation gasped as none aside from Ian Buckells was lastly revealed as H – the so-called Fourth Man on the coronary heart of the bent copper community.
As he smugly no-commented his manner by way of the proof mounting in opposition to him – the laptop computer present in his jail cell, the identical grammatical errors littering his earlier police information – Buckells clearly thought he’d get away with the lot, believing he may apply for immunity.
But as Steve, Kate and Ted made it clear, he would not be granted immunity from prosecution except he collaborated with their investigation.
Buckells’ face fell because it dawned on him he’d be going away for a lengthy, very long time.
But he by no means answered Hastings’ query about whether or not he and Osborne had colluded within the homicide of investigative journalist Gail Vella.
Fans have identified that former lawyer Jimmy Lakewell’s homicide occurred in entrance of terrified Buckells in jail earlier within the series – so the order could not have come from him.
There was additionally the matter of that smirk proper on the finish of the episode when Buckells was marched to a cell watched round the clock by jail officers.
Has Buckells truly bought away with all of it? Or is he nonetheless protecting up for the actual H?
Who signed the jail paperwork?
Poor Jo Davidson seemed like a rabbit within the headlights as she was moved from jail by evil-eyed safety guards in an unmarked van.
Clever Chloe Bishop at AC-12 managed to trace down the manufacturing order paperwork filed to maneuver Jo to Hillside Lane Police Station – which meant her convoy may be intercepted earlier than the OCG may silence her for good.
But the dodgy paperwork was signed off by Chris Lomax and none aside from Kate Fleming – which means it had been solid by another person throughout the drive.
It cannot have been Buckells as a result of he was behind bars at that level – so there should nonetheless be a bent copper doing the OCG’s bidding whereas hiding in plain sight.
Jed Mercurio’s trace
In final night time’s Obsessed With Line Of Duty podcast, which aired instantly after the finale, former LoD star Craig Parkinson (who performed DI Matthew ‘Dot’ Cottan) begged creator Jed Mercurio for extra.
“Can you go and get writing one other series please?” Craig requested him, to which Mercurio replied: “Well, we’ll see about that…”
But two months in the past, Mercurio additionally claimed there have been no plans in place for the following series.
“We’re in a state of affairs the place it is not totally clear that there will be a seventh series,” he instructed RadioTimes.
“We would hope there may be. But we’re having to do our planning popping out of Covid, and a complete bunch of different issues across the thought that this stuff aren’t assured in any respect now.”
He went on: “Since most likely season 4, we have been speaking to the BBC in regards to the reasonable longevity of the series. I’ve skilled broadcasters pulling the plug whereas we have been nonetheless growing a storyline – Bodies and Cardiac Arrest each ended prematurely on the BBC. So it is an ongoing dialogue, is all I can say. Rather a lot of it is determined by the important thing creatives – me and the principle actors – discovering new tales to inform inside that universe.”
But he ended on a constructive word, including: “Without a formal fee, I might say conversations have been very reassuring from the standpoint of not having to wrap issues up.”
Clear as mud.
The series epilogue
Most of the remaining strings have been tied within the ultimate scenes of the episode – Terry Boyles was launched from custody and rehomed by Social Services, PC Ferida Jatri had her prices dropped and was reinstated to lively service.
Darren Hunter – Tommy’s son – is being investigated for Lawrence Christopher’s homicide, whereas we noticed Jo Davidson taking a deep breath of freedom in her new life together with her girlfriend and canine underneath witness safety.
Even Buckells bought his comeuppance as he was dragged again to jail and housed within the susceptible prisoners unit.
But it seemed like curtains for AC-12, with Carmichael swooping in to take over the closing down of the unit on the orders of Chief Constable Phillip Osborne.
As the end-of-series epilogue rolled, we have been warned it is about to get even worse for individuals who have devoted their careers to rooting out corruption within the police.
“Systematic restructuring of anticorruption models continues, with shut colleagues of the Chief Constable appointed to senior positions.
“Central police have submitted an software for public-interest immunity in authorized proceedings in opposition to Ian Buckells.
“If profitable, no proof referring to institutionalised corruption will be heard in courtroom.
“Currently AC-12’s powers to curb wrongdoing in public workplace have by no means been weaker.”
Ouch. But does this go away the show vast open for a model new season…?
Kate hinting she desires again in at AC-12
At the world’s most low-key celebratory drinks, Kate and Steve known as one another mate roughly 17 instances as they cheersed their success over a bev.
“Well that is bizarre innit, wrapping all the pieces up,” Kate mentioned as if channelling the nation.
As dialog turned to Hastings and his admission about handing the soiled £50,000 to Steph Corbett, Kate identified: “I imagine him too. But if Carmichael takes over that’s him out anyway.”
“Yeah. Probably me too,” mentioned Steve forlornly.
“And me. If I resolve to come back again,” Kate shot again with a cheeky glint in her eye. “Well somebody’s bought to maintain you lot in line.”
YES, KATE. YES.
Ted interesting his retirement
Ted Hastings cannot be gone for good – however will he ever be allowed again?
His final act earlier than being forcibly retired was to admit his darkest secret to Carmichael – that info he fed to OCG thug Lee Banks in a jail interview inadvertently led to the brutal slaughter of undercover cop John Corbett.
In a stirring speech, a clearly emotional Hastings instructed Carmichael it was as much as her what she does along with his confession – “however no matter you do, you do it since you care about reality and accountability. You do it since you carry the fireplace”.
It’s a beautiful set-up for series 7 – if Carmichael actually is ‘good’ she’ll report him, and if not she’s uncovered herself already as somebody not match for main an anticorruption drive.
But will Ted be capable of struggle again in opposition to a wave of forms? Or will be develop into a bitter retiree who’s nonetheless fixated on discovering the reality? And who’s going to take care of the wee donkey?
Biggest clue to this point – BBC’s response
Having bagged a record-setting 12.8 million viewers on Sunday night time – over 56% of the viewers share – it was solely a matter of time earlier than the BBC responded.
And certain sufficient, Charlotte Moore, the chief content material officer for the BBC, put out a assertion suggesting there’s going to be extra to come back.
“Addictive occasion tv, Line Of Duty has saved the nation guessing for the final seven weeks, so it is no shock that final night time’s jaw-dropping finale set a rankings report,” she mentioned.
“Jed Mercurio is a grasp of his craft and I wish to congratulate him and your complete cast and crew for delivering such an unbelievable drama series.”
She added: “I’m trying ahead to having a dialog with the group about the place we go subsequent and what the longer term of the series would possibly be.”
She could not have been extra apparent except she was driving a blacked-out SUV whereas sporting a balaclava.
*Line Of Duty is offered to stream now on BBC iPlayer