Pointless Nonsense

Posted in tv by Bill on November 6, 2014

the-gameThe Game is a new BBC America miniseries about MI5 in the 70s, cold war spy stuff.

I was slightly confused, since I thought MI5 was for domestic matters and MI6 for foreign. But apparently the distinction is more subtle. MI6 gathers foreign intelligence, while MI5’s primary responsibility is the protection of the UK, its people, and its interests. Which can include foreign intelligence operations. So that just seems like a recipe for jurisdictional disputes.

Unfortunately, I spent a good portion of the beginning of the episode researching this, and this is not the action kind of spy story. It’s the slow, methodical, you don’t know who to trust sort of thing. And those can get quite complicated, and are not the type of thing you should try to follow while reading wikipedia articles about intelligence services.

The main guy sorta looks like Cillian Murphy or Ben Whishaw. He has a potential defector who claims there’s some big Project Glass to do something really bad to the UK that involves activating KGB sleeper agents. He brings this back to MI5 and they set up a committee run by Brian Cox, including the gay probation worker guy from Misfits who is I think just a police detective. There are also flashbacks to the main guy’s previous mission which went pretty badly awry, but is full of mystery. Anyway, in the end, they conclude there might be a mole on the committee, so therein lies the “you don’t know who to trust” part.

I debated for a while but eventually decided not to follow this, even though it’s only a miniseries.


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