Salting the Battlefield BBC Two review

Salting the Battlefield BBC Two review

Published by jamdog on 27th March, 2014.

 Salting the Battlefield BBC Two review

BBC Two

Having fingered the detention centre building kiddie fiddlers in Turks and Caicos our favourite rogue agent Johnny Worricker is on the lam in Salting the Battlefield. We come upon him speaking Kraut, sipping coffee and firing continental pastries into Helena Bone’em Sharter‘s foof as she squeals with delight. Their idyllic café culture meets Sodom lifestyle is wrecked however when he recognises jogger Amber Page (Leanne Best) as a spy he recruited a couple of years back. They are both too slick for the dopey crew of flunkies set on their trail but Johnny knows they can’t live like this forever. He’s an old cunt about six months away from full-blown Alzheimer’s and Bone’em Sharter’s bunions are making her walk like Max Wall. Both of them have seen better days and they need an endgame, an exit plan, a GTFO. You know?

He’s an old cunt about six months away from full-blown Alzheimer’s and Bone’em Sharter’s bunions are making her walk like Max Wall.

So he slips a little story about the PM’s connection to Gladstone into the Diary section of the Independent, with the help of Rollo’s niece Allegra Betts (Kate Burdette). Nothing major just some low-level insinuation and speculation and the Indie only has about 67 readers but it’s enough for Prime Minister Ralph Fiennes to get all up in Stirling Rogers’ grill about it. “You made me look a right cunt, a right fucking Mister Confused.” he tells him.  Stirling assures him they don’t got nothing to worry about. The very best men and women of Her Majesty’s Secret Service are on the case. Somehow, this placates Ralph not one bit.

His misgivings are well founded. His natural successor Anthea Catcheside (Saskia Reeves) is being manoeuvred into a prime pouncing position by MI5 honcho Jill Tankard (Judy Davis). Jill is a girl who likes smooth transitions and likes an Intelligence-friendly government even more. He may have won 19 consecutive elections but maybe it’s time for Ralph to jump before he’s pushed?

Johnny could help with that. He pays a visit to Independent editor Belinda Kay (Olivia Williams) and drops the Gladstone story in her lap. Johnny gets to make a difference and Belinda gets to topple a PM – everyone’s a winner. That includes Ralph who informs Johnny he will be leaving number 10 to take up the post of Consul General to Iran. The full extent of Ralph’s foundation’s links to Gladstone will never be known. Johnny’s silence is the price for an easy life for his daughter and Bone’em.

“Fuck!” he says “Shit!” he continues. But he stands there and he takes it because like Ralph says “The Establishment always wins”.

Speaking of the Establishment there’s just enough time for Johnny to meet with Jill Tankard. By now he’s figured out that she was helping him out all along – sending the bozo Amber Page after him, covering his arse, reining in the hounds. The little tinker wanted Beasley out – she saw the evidence and knew he was fucked. And now it’s all done she wants Johnny on board the New World Order of national security.  He’s the king of intelligence analysis, she’s the queen of intelligence admin. Who would stand against them? She’s a woman Johnny can do business with. Fuck it. He’s in.

He’s out of the relationship with Bone’em Sharter however, who dumps him like a pile of flaming shit on the doorstep of a science teacher in Alabama. It stings but in six months time he won’t be able to remember his own name much less remember whatever the fuck she was called, much less the patisserie he installed in her vagina on those warm summer evenings in Wiesbaden.

The verdict: Salt, anyone?

Marks out of 10: 7.5

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Salting the Battlefield BBC Two
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