He was silent for 30 years, but now you can’t shut him up. Clive Walsh may be a crappy brother, but he’s a great witness. Thanks to him, we know all five plods exited the Ford Granada that night, heading in the same direction. Matthew’s racially aggravated assault on Ram three weeks earlier seems likely to have been the inciting incident.
Another big help is Hendon trainer Ian Henderson. We can park his gammon tendencies for now and admire the priceless insight he gives us into the suspects. Ram is a smart but “cocky little runt” who “used to play the race card at every opportunity – still does”. Dean, meanwhile, is a fast thinker with a great analytical brain. Then there’s the alpha of the group, Liz. The Prof, they called her – a natural leader. She was thick as thieves with Fiona, “the wet blanket”, a born copper if ever there wasn’t one. Gentle giant Rob “nice-but-dim” Fogarty completed the group, who formed something of a gang seemingly based on familial disapproval of their career choice. None had a guest at the passing-out party.
Maybe the best testimony of all, though, comes from Matthew Walsh’s mummified head. It may not say much, but the sharp object inside speaks volumes, as do the Sweet Cicely remnants on his T-shirt. Now we’re looking at the foot chase winding up in a nearby allotment, culminating in either a terrible accident or brutal killing.
Ram has been the star of the series so far, and, whatever his flaws, you have to admire how he always plays to win. Cassie comes at him pretty hard in the interview, but he remains unflappable and stoically on-message. We do get his first flashback, though, featuring an Asian man, a deep fat fryer, a pub urinal, a shoe and a broken pair of glasses on the ground. Cassie finds it pretty laughable that he claims not to remember a man who committed a racially aggravated assault on him, but, without solid evidence, the interview is swiftly over.
Even so, Ram knows that his luck may be running out. With the Down’s syndrome diagnosis confirmed and Cassie’s jaws locked around Matthew Walsh’s corpse, Anna faces the very real prospect of raising the child without him and without his police pension. She doesn’t know this, and he can’t tell her, so his unexplained pivot towards termination causes consternation. It’s all so messy and only getting messier.
Eugenia has Liz over a barrel and cruelly forces her to pay her gas bill and agree to a pay rise to an exorbitant £9 an hour. As if being bled dry by her domestic wasn’t bad enough, she has to endure a meeting with the increasingly soppy Fiona. Having swept her for wires, recording devices and suicide vests, she reminds her old friend that everything will be fine if they just stick to “the truth”. Not the actual truth, of course (as if!), but their carefully constructed mix of frank disclosure and plausible deniability built to ensure their freedom.
“You’re still beautiful, Fi,” says Liz with genuine affection. “I hope your life has been happy.”
Fat chance. Not only has she been carrying Matthew Walsh’s death on her conscience all these years but also that of the toddler she killed while drink-driving in 1993. It looks as if Liz disappeared her blood test, turning vehicular manslaughter into a trifling dangerous-driving conviction. There’s a good chance she and Liz were lovers, and we know they were cohabiting in 1991. Once the incredibly principled Mark tells Geoff of her criminal past, her partner of 17 years faces up to a future with a woman he no longer knows. “Is there anything else you need to tell me?” he asks. She says no. She knows he’ll find out she’s lying, but for now she’s taking things one disaster at a time.
Good old Deano. Straight as a die, Ian Henderson called him. And he should know. As he meets his longtime criminal co-conspirator Ram they discuss perverting the course of justice on the Walsh case and the strings Ram pulled to help him out on the recent Calais caper. You can expect these two seasoned cons to stick to their story even as the circumstantials, forensics and witnesses pile up against them.
If only it were that simple at home. It’s one thing lying to the police, but Marnie is another matter. She knows about the Mother’s Day card and the police interview. “I can’t take the secrets and lies,” she says. It’s Unforgotten, babe. All they do is hide away.
Notes and observations
I’ve been trying to get a response from email@example.com on how many Millwall fans are going to show up buried in the allotment, but for now Liz retains her trademark stoicism. More as I have it.
John wants half an hour but, if necessary, he’ll take 10 minutes. Cassie haggles him down to five. In the end, she spends a grand total of one minute 40 seconds with her man before returning to her true love: the smelly, dismembered remains of strangers. Stick a fork in this relationship, folks – it’s done.
Ram and Liz I get, and Dean’s family history is yet to come – but why is Fiona’s proud dad absent from the passing out party? Are we looking at another scandal? Exactly how long has she been dropping bodies?
What’s the story with Dean’s parents? Will Cassie dump John by text or simply fake her own death to avoid him? How long before Fiona kills again? Have your say below the line.