FLASHPOINT “Terror” Review

FLASHPOINT “Terror” Season 4 Episode 3* – Jules’ plan to spend her day off relaxing with paramedic boyfriend Steve goes awry when the pair find themselves in the middle of a hostage situation. While Steve tries to help an injured waiter, Jules finds herself dealing with a situation from the inside, liasing with Team 1 and trying to calm the hostage taker down – all without letting him know she’s a police officer.

The hostage taker, Davis, is a paranoid schizophrenic who is convinced that the owner of the restaurant, Riyaz, is a terrorist. After learning that Riyaz is on the Anti-Terrorist Unit watchlist Team 1 check him out. They learn that Riyaz being investigated is all based on a misunderstanding after he was the target of a scam, but that he was also subject to threats emailed from Davis’ computer. Spike digs deeper and it’s revealed that the emails were actually sent by Davis’ social worker, Clive Irwin. Sam goes in and together he and Jules take down Davis – but not before Steve is shot saving another hostage’s life.

Clive is a victim of the 7/7 terrorist attacks in London that injured him and killed his wife. He convinced Davis, who has a degree in chemical engineering, to build him a chemical ‘bomb’ in a fire extinguisher. While Team 1 are wrapping up things over at the rhestaurant, Clive goes to the local mosque with his bomb. Team 1 get there soon after but not in time to stop him from detonating the bomb and releasing the chemical agent. Everyone is evacuated, but five people (including Riyaz’s young son) are taken ill. Clive dies at the scene.

Later Spike informs Ed and Greg that all five are expected to pull through. At the hospital, Jules and Steve break up.

I’ll start with what I didn’t like about this episode – Jules and Steve’s relationship. From the rom-com sappy opening – wherein Steve admits hearing Jules sing on a rooftop after a breakup back in college – to the cliched ‘I want you but you don’t really want me’ break up at the end of the episode, their relationship-based scenes were ridiculous. Which was a shame, because the rest of this episode was fantastic.

I really enjoyed the plotline and performances this week. Flashpoint has a strong main cast and they can do some great things when given the right material. The shifts in attitude after the revelations that Davis has a psychiatric disorder and that Riyaz is innocent were subtle but obviously there, a small tweak in Team 1s respective attitudes.

Similarly, small tweaks elevated this plot to the next level. The use of the 7/7 attacks in London instead of the usual television go-to of 9/11, and choosing to have a born and raised Canadian terror suspect (no asian accent, ‘he was born in Vancouver’), made the episode a little less ‘samey’ and refreshed what could have been an otherwise overused plot device.

Overall, a great episode that shows us the strength of Flashpoint‘s acting and writing.

What did you think of ‘Terror’? Let us know in the comments below!

* This episode is also known as 3×10 in Canada.

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