A big aspect of this episode was to call back to 2×09: “The Pyramid Job” as references and ties to Sophie’s past come up again during this episode but with more explanation to progress things further while still leaving us on the edge for even more and it was fantastic.
At the end of episode 9, there is mention of a daughter in regard to Sophie so it was wonderful to see what was meant by that as we’re introduced to Astrid Pickford (Alexandra Park). It was interesting to find out that she’s Sophie’s stepdaughter and how that all came to be. Gina Bellman is an outstanding actor and the way she portrayed Sophie’s thoughts and feelings throughout, often without actually saying anything, was fantastic. In particular, that moment when Astrid cornered her at the museum and they shook hands. It was filmed and played out so wonderfully that you could see all of the emotions and feel the tension without any words needed.
Max Baker returning as Billy is another way of touching back to episode 9 and Sophie’s past. It was actually kind of nice to see him again and I did enjoy that he ended up standing up for himself and Sophie as well even if it wasn’t totally necessary and despite his reluctance to get involved in the first place. This appearance from him also brought Ramsey (Ralph Brown) out of the woodwork so we could see him not only in person but also interacting with Sophie.
Something I found interesting is that Sophie was reluctant to engage with Astrid in person despite keeping tabs on her and putting genuinely bad criminals in her path to arrest because of the past and how Astrid may react. However, when Astrid stops Ramsey and arrests him, she reveals she’s been waiting a long time to do that because of what he did to her father, implying he’s also been at the centre of any hatred or negative emotions, so I’m curious to know if she blames Sophie for anything at all and what their interactions could be like if Astrid knew exactly who she was talking to. Hopefully, we’ll still get the chance to see it.
With the way the episode ended, the focus will presumably remain quite firmly on Sophie. It’ll be interesting to see what will happen. Will she get truly be caught and go to prison (even if only temporarily)? Between Astrid coming into her life, Ramsay getting arrested because of her, and Damian O’Hare also reappearing as Arthur Wilde at the end, Sophie’s got a lot to face up to.
Besides, Sophie/Gina being glorious in this episode, Eliot and Parker were next to steal the show for me. Grumpy Eliot is a common sight but it was very hilarious this time around. Watching him not so subtly complain about everyone and everything as he not only secures a bomb for them but also pretends to defuse it too. His inability to do accents was like the cherry on top of a delightful performance. It was also a joy to watch him drag Parker across the bar because she refused to let go of the bag they were both holding onto and then there’s the way he called her out on breaking into their places and had a go at her. They make such a fantastic duo so the whole thing was just great to watch especially when you saw the drawing he did of the two of them while scoping out the museum.
Understandably there were probably scheduling conflicts but it’s a shame Hardison didn’t get to make an appearance this episode, especially with Paker going on about Astrid being her nemesis. I feel like it could have elevated the humour even more.
Even so, this was a really great episode and felt like a good accumulation of information that’s been collected across the season. With that cliffhanger, the next episode should hopefully be quite entertaining and intense and I can’t wait to see what’s to come.