The Last Enemy – a review

Image: PBS.org

Dear ladies and gents,

there wasn’t much to see last week. On the plus side it got me cracking on Nesbo. And it usually makes me watch shows I have been meaning to check out but didn’t have the time.

Which brings me to the Last Enemy. Written by Peter Berry, it stars Cumberbatch, Robert Carlyle, Max Beesley, Anamaria Marinca and Geraldine James among others. Overall a solid cast. The story is set in London, in a not too distant future when Stephen Ezard (played by Cumberbatch), a mathematician working in China, returns home to attend the funeral of his brother. His brother Michael died in a landmine blast in Afghanistan. Stephen meets his brother’s widow who is harboring an illegal and very ill immigrant. Meanwhile an old girlfriend hires Stephen to test and promote TIA, new government system that gathers all information in one database and technically gives them the ability to track everyone all. the. time. And then people just start dropping off as flies.

That’s the gist of it (without giving too much away).

The Last Enemy is a mini-series (5 episodes in total) and I did find the story rather convoluted and slow at times. It seemed like Cumberbatch spent better part of the first two episodes shouting “Where is Yasmin?” (name of his brother’s widow) or taking his shirt off. Now I’m all for gratuitous shots of his naked bottom and torso (being shallow that I am) but even so after the third time it happened I was like – dude, is this really necessary? Possibly they were trying to make the time go faster (it didn’t). So it would have worked better if they left out some bits and made it a three parter.

When they mentioned nano-technology I had to snort because I remembered this episode of Red Dwarf.

But I was a cynical bish to begin with and being cranky and not feeling well doesn’t help my condition any. So bare that in mind.

So now you are probably thinking why is this silly bint recommending some crappy show, I have better things to do with my time. The thing is yes The Last Enemy is slow at times and feels flimsy somehow. But it is still better than 80% what you will see on TV. The premise of the story is good and shockingly current I would say (even though the show was filmed in 2008).

But the end? The last oh lets say, 30 minutes? Ooooooh ladies and gents – the end makes it worth it. Because it will rattle you and chill you to the bone. Obvs I’m trying not to spoil anything but yes the end makes that slog in the middle worth your while.

So has anyone seen The Last Enemy? What did you think?

Edit – just realized as I was looking for the trailer on YouTube that you can see the whole series on PBS’s YouTube channel. Bless PBS, it’s nice to see they don’t discriminate.

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