AC-12′s investigation into DCI Joanne Davidson kicked up a gear as Line Of Duty continued on Sunday night, with the MIT boss quickly learning that they will stop at nothing in their pursuit of “bent coppers”.
Davidson’s links to organised crime were exposed to viewers as she ominously took delivery of a trademark burner phone at the end of the episode, suggesting she is helping to cover up the murder of journalist Gail Vella.
However, that wasn’t the only big development, as there was the reappearance of two faces from the last series that could have huge consequences for the current case.
Here’s the questions we were left asking this week...
1. Why did Steph Corbett visit Hastings?
You’ll remember at the end of series five, Hastings appeared to hand over £50,000 to John Corbett’s wife at his graveside. This was half the sum of the money corrupt former officer Mark Moffatt had given him when the ex DCI was part of the plot to frame Hastings as ‘H’.
It came after it was revealed Hastings had a connection to the UCO’s late birth mother, Anne-Marie McGillis, as she was acting as an informant for the Royal Ulster Constabulary while he was serving in the force during the 1980s. There had even been suspicions Hastings and Anne-Marie were having an affair, although during questioning, he denied ever getting too close to her.
So what prompted Steph’s visit to AC-12 to see Hastings? Was she demanding more money?
2. What did Arnott do for Steph after Corbett’s death?
After his suspicions about Hastings and Steph were raised, Arnott paid a visit to her home, where she commented on the support Arnott had given her after John’s death.
Arnott clearly didn’t know about the money Hastings had given her, so how else had he supported her? Could the strange tension between them suggest something happened romantically?
3. Will Steph raise the alarm about Arnott’s addiction issues?
Arnott’s addiction to prescription medication to cope with the injuries he sustained when pushed down the stairs by “balaclava man” in series four is becoming increasingly hard to hide. We saw Steph discover a stash of painkillers in his car after he’d had a muscle spasm at her house.
Will she share with anyone what she knows?
Clues hidden in a scannable QR code on a magazine cover featured on the show did recently hint that his problems could come to the fore.
4. What was on Vella’s computer?
Work that Vella couldn’t get on air in her day job as a TV reporter she was putting into a podcast series. Her former bosses told her she’d been looking into the murder case of private detective Daniel Morgan (a real life figure who was murdered in 1987 after it was said he came close to exposing police corruption) and had also been approaching senior police officers about why there’d been a surpression of inquiries into the likes of Dale Roach (a character with links back to series three).
However, this evidence was stolen in a suggested burglary, with her devices replaced with clean ones. So what exactly had Vella uncovered prior to her murder? Whatever it was, it’s likely to have been the motive.
5. Who was the man speaking on Vella’s audio file?
There was only one incomplete audio file on what was supposed to have been Vella’s devices – a recording of her interviewing a man, which Arnott was seen listening to. Is this voice significant? Some fans think they’ve already cracked who this is.
6. Why does Kate have misplaced loyalty to Davidson over her former colleagues?
We suggested last week that there could be more to Fleming’s exit from AC-12, which seems even more likely now that she betrayed her former colleagues to tip Davidson off about their inquiry into Operation Lighthouse.
Why has she suddenly turned on them – did something happen in the intervening 18 months in the timeline between the two series? Or is she harbouring romantic feelings for Davidson and has let that get in the way of her professionalism?
However, some fans believe Fleming could be on her deepest undercover mission yet, and there’s actually evidence to suggest that...
7. Why was Carl Banks murdered?
It’s seemingly likely that Banks was hired by the OCG to kill Vella, so was he himself subsequently killed in order to silence him, given he was supposedly bragging about his involvement in her death?
8. Did Ryan Pilkington plant Banks’ murder weapon at the scene?
With the OCG now having a new inside man in the form of Pilkington, he was easily placed to plant a weapon that the murder scene that would have made it look like the CHIS, Alistair Oldroyd, was responsible.
9. Or was it Pilkington who actually killed Banks?
Banks was killed after this throat was slit with a knife by an assailant – the exact same way John Corbett was murdered in series five. And who killed John Corbett? Yep, Ryan Pilkington.
10. Will Fleming work out who Pilkington is?
After Fleming and Pilkington first met, there was a flicker of recognition on both sides, with Fleming even convinced she had worked with him before. Is it a matter of time before she puts the pieces of the puzzle together and remembers she questioned him for an attack on DCI Tony Gates in series one?
Pilkington was on edge when Arnott turned up at Hillside Lane, as Pilkington had tried to cut Arnott’s fingers off with bolt cutters when the OCG kidnapped him in series one.
With AC-12 likely questioning all officers working on Operation Lighthouse, surely it’s only a matter of time before they come face to face?
11. Why is Davidson working with the OCG?
After trying to frame her former lover PS Farida Jatri by telling AC-12 to look in her home for burner phones, it was revealed that Davidson was in cahoots with the OCG when she received a new burner.
Now that we know she’s in league with organised crime, the question is why? It was suggested by her reaction at the end of the episode that this isn’t something she is willingly participating in, so what do the OCG have on her to have made her co-operate?
12. Why does Arnott arrange to meet Fleming in “right shitholes”?
A very valid point Fleming raised there, if you ask us.
Line Of Duty continues on Sunday at 9pm on BBC One.