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3.9 DVD Commentary
24-05-2010, 12:44 AM
Post: #1
3.9 DVD Commentary
Info from 3.9 DVD commentary [Simon CC and Andrew Woodhead]:
-Used mainly wide and tight shots in ep -- not much in between. Always trying to find new angles on shooting grid.
-Rupert Walters (writer) knows a lot about security services. Idea of weapons hide from Cold War is true -- Soviets hid weapons in UK and Brits hid weapons in Russia.
-There was a lot of night shooting in ep.
-Titles changed 3 times in s3, but decided to keep opening shot of Tom, Zoe and Danny -- iconic spooks image.
-Look of interrogation room based on Waterloo tube station.
-Very enclosed ep -- most of it takes place in interrogation suite.
-First meeting room scene -- typical spooks; sets up who Morgan is and what the threat is.
-Harry always slightly irritated with Malcom and Colin techspeak -- doesn't really get what they're on about.
-Laser weapon -- fashioned out of a child's telescope with bits pasted on.
-Adam and Danny getting smartened up before they go in to see Morgan for the first time -- standard interrogation technique. Put suspect in disheveled overalls and then come in impeccably dressed.
-Owen Teale (Morgan) -- menacing presence. His physicality makes him an equal to Adam and Danny, at the beginning.
-B strand of ep -- part of the unwritten, unspoken, ever-burgeoning relationship between Harry and Ruth.
-Harry being asked to interview for DG -- a look into the world of professional politics in the intelligence services.
-Morgan -- not a cowed prisoner, coming on with full attitude.
-Brooding atmosphere throughout ep.
-Question of ep -- how far do you go to get needed info? where's the line?
-Harry completely overwhelmed when Ruth begins to outline areas he needs to address for interview.
-PF and NW -- have great on-screen chemistry which makes H/R story plausible.
-Getting a suspect's signature during an interview -- standard technique. Can use signature for many purposes. Importance of signature shown through camera closeup.
-Adam trying to get into Morgan's head throughout ep.
-Siren in interrogation room -- turning up the heat on Morgan.
-Ep written and shot prior to news of torture in Abu Ghraib coming to light.
-3.9 is Fiona's first ep as full member of MI5.
-Rupert Walters -- very interested in relationship between big multi-national corporations and politics. Works that into ep.
-Fiona's "crash" with Juliet Taylor -- a real technique undercover officers use to make contact with subjects.
-Harry begins to regret he ever asked Ruth to help with the DG interview. Ruth reveling in the role reversal and putting H on the spot.
-Owen Teale was exhausted after his week on spooks -- got worked really hard physically.
-Camera focus on water bottle -- made you know it was important.
-Danny playing "better cop" (not good cop) to Adam's "bad cop."
-The idea of the need to get info quickly from Morgan -- advisors said after 24 hours, all potential plans would have been changed.
-Morgan's "vomit" -- very big gulp of vegetable soup.
-Scene with Juliet Taylor walking (on phone with Fiona) and scene with Harry and Danny on bench -- Albert Embankment. Same place as Tom and Ruth in s2.
-Changing Morgan's military history -- complete destruction of a man's life. Have to keep remembering that this man is trying to launch a missile in London.
-Ep really establishes Adam in leader's role -- his character carries the ep. This was Adam's ep for the first time.
-Adam begins to feed Morgan pieces of info that they know to unsettle him; try to get him into a mindset where he begins to question himself.
-Adam watching Morgan in stress position -- sees himself.
-Important element for Adam -- really doesn't want to use Morgan's family if he doesn't have to, but ultimately he will, if necessary.
-Continuity problem with Fiona's costume -- she spends too much time in the white blouse, while others have already changed for day 2 of ep.
-Bold question from Ruth to Harry (re Morgan's daughter): "Do you never draw the line on this kind of stuff?"
-Used the location of Danny's flat as Fiona's to save money.
-Harry coming to the interrogation suite to talk with Adam about using Morgan's daughter is an indication of the moral stage they've gotten to.
-Morgan as a terrorist who's also a good father -- lots of layers in ep.
-Fear of reprisals is what's keeping Morgan from giving them the info.
-Harbor shots -- too long. They got a bit carried away after being cooped up inside for so long. Actors loved being on the launch, especially PF. Great shots of Harry off the grid.
-Chinook shot overhead was serendipity -- happened to flyover during the harbor shooting.
-At end, payoff for Morgan -- tells Adam they're the same.
-Harry in DG interview -- scene very gray and corporate, elegant camera work, faceless political world.
-End of ep -- back to beginning. Ruth getting ready to go out.
-Great end shot of Harry laughing.

"What is the truth?"
"Betrayal is a cancer. Let it eat your soul, not mine."
"Please tell me this isn't going where I think it's going."
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24-05-2010, 06:15 AM
Post: #2
RE: 3.9 DVD Commentary
Yeah, I love those shots of Morgan, Harry and Adam on the launch - how fortuitous that the helicopter went overhead!!

The thing that confused me about this episode was how often Adam seemed to be at home whilst interrogating Morgan.

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24-05-2010, 06:43 AM
Post: #3
RE: 3.9 DVD Commentary
Thanks for this, lwhite53. Very interesting reading. I had wondered why Adam and Danny had dressed up in suits before starting the questioning and it was funny to read that the laser weapon was a kids telescope with bits added on!!

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24-05-2010, 08:21 AM
Post: #4
RE: 3.9 DVD Commentary
Great. Thanks lwhite53. Interesting to read about the scenes on the Thames. I don't think I would have enjoyed the scenes on the launch if it was me on it, but then again PF does like boats and fast cars so it was probably great fun for them. Smile

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24-05-2010, 01:24 PM
Post: #5
RE: 3.9 DVD Commentary
Thanks for posting this lwhite53. The commentary sounded fascinating with a lot of detail.

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24-05-2010, 04:47 PM
Post: #6
RE: 3.9 DVD Commentary
Thanks lwhite. I also listened to this commentary the other day, and found their comments on the bits cut out for the European and US markets interesting. They said it was usually the B-plot that got cut, but my experience is that it is the little character moments that usually go, even if they are linked to the A-plot. I can remember for instance that when they showed this episode here (we get the European version) two of the Adam/Fiona scenes were missing, which I thought was pretty crucial to the A-plot as they showed Adam's ambivalence about what he was doing. They also cut the whole "pacing" scene between Harry and Ruth, and the bits where Harry indicated he didn't want to get the DG job. I remember being confused as to why Ruth would tell him that not getting the job was what he wanted in that last scene...

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24-05-2010, 04:52 PM
Post: #7
RE: 3.9 DVD Commentary
When I first saw spooks in the US it was on the A&E network, where they cut 14 mins from each ep -- to say it was confusing is an understatement! The whole Harry/Ruth relationship was cut in those eps. Whe I saw some of the same eps on PBS, it was like "I don't remember those scenes -- where did they come from." Thanks God for DVDs.

"What is the truth?"
"Betrayal is a cancer. Let it eat your soul, not mine."
"Please tell me this isn't going where I think it's going."
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19-07-2010, 10:57 AM
Post: #8
RE: 3.9 DVD Commentary
i just watched this ep again last night for the f2nd time!

adam i think in a way struggles because he is affected by what happened to him! he needed to talk abotu it but adam being adam wont!

i loved harrys laugh ;-) also i noticed the lovely little things more between harry and ruth and the tension i always see between adam and danny was back after not being to obvious

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