Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A Lot of People in America Don't Know MI-5 (Spooks). They Should.

I wish more people in America knew about MI-5 (Spooks). It is simply phenomenal. Some of the best TV I have ever seen. And from me that is really saying something because I hate dark, gritty, thrilling programs. If this is good enough to make me fall in love with it, I can imagine few who wouldn't.
What makes Spooks so good is the acting, the tension, the style of filming, and the writing. Among other things :) And for me, the best character in Spooks is London itself; it is shot lovingly in that city giving meaningful glimpses into the British government and way of life that I think would be especially fun for Americans since we don't otherwise see that. Of course it scares the hell out of me. And sometimes is very disturbing. But the acting and writing make the characters come fully to life and it can be appreciated at different levels. These factors make everything worth it.

And its actually pretty easy to come by. You can get it on Netflix or Blockbuster through the rental of dvds or online streaming. I actually watch it on dvds that I check out from my library and my husband tells me it is also on TV late at night.  Just look for it.  The only caveat in the "looking for it" plan, is that you need to know that in Britain it is called "Spooks," in America it is packaged as "MI-5." Also, good to know that in Britain the term "series" means what we call a "season." I mention all this, because, armed with info there is simply no excuse not to start enjoying this show today.

I suppose it should go without saying to wait till the little ones are in bed though. It is seriously intense, sometimes graphic, and sometimes contains nudity and sexual situations. I did let my 12 year old watch one episode with me because it was just so good and one of the more appropriate ones (more of a PG-13 than an R). In fact it is the episode that I would recommend to anyone interested in the show.  If you watch only one episode of this show, let it be Episode 8 of Season 7.  In fact, to make it easy, I found a great clip of it on youtube. Indulge me and watch this short clip. All the way to the end. Come on, its only just over 5 minutes. The best part is near the end.


Episode image for Episode 8These are the best spies I know. They are just sooooo cool. In case you don't know, the characters you see here are: Harry, their leader (the guy with the tie, you know what I mean if you watched the clip), Lucas (the very sexy dark haired guy who knew they were speaking Russian), and Ros and Connie the other two who are on the run and getting shot at. They are all good guys. Except that Connie (Gemma Jones, who most Americans would know most readily as Bridget Jones' mum) was just discovered to be a "mole" for the enemy. (That's spy talk for someone who has infiltrated your organization). Ros is my favorite character of all time, but you just get glimpses of her in this clip. Still you can see how awesome she is just by how she walks and holds her phone. You also briefly get to see Malcolm and Jo (the good guys assisting with cool high tech stuff at good guy headquarters -- we in the know call that "the grid").

This show continues on with a great chase and confrontation under the street of London in defunct subway lines. I won't say more.

British TV in general and Spooks in particular just has a talent for fully developing amazingly rich characters while simultaneously entertaining you with great plot lines. Add some incredibly talented actors and you just can't miss.

Great show.

A Lot of People in America Don't Know MI-5 (Spooks). They Should. LostinBritishTV


  1. I am going to check out this show. I have been meaning to all summer- maybe today is the day! The clip was very good. Maybe this show will replace the loss of 24- one of my all time favorite shows.

  2. YES! Preach it, Amy!