Scott & Bailey: S03E08 (Futures).

Previously on Scott & Bailey: Episode 7.

This series finale packs a punch. Brace yourselves.

If there’s one thing I hate, it’s so-called former friends trash-talking others behind their backs. This is the best-possible contrast to Janet last episode: Janet was legitimately upset, she only detailed to Rob what had happened and what she thought about it. She wondered about Rachel’s personality, but she did not make any unfounded assumptions. What Rachel is doing, blabbing about some sort of mid-life crisis and Janet flirting with Rob—which she’s not doing, fucking hell—and making a fool of herself, and blabbing about it to Mitch, who she knows goes back with Janet a long way, is infuriating and childish and the exact opposite of getting her shit together. “I used to be so impressed with her.” Oh, please, Rachel, disguising it as professional criticism? That doesn’t fly, Detective Constable. Mitch has been loyal to both Janet and Rachel in the past, and seeing him so deeply uncomfortable in that situation makes me ache. And it makes me look on Rachel a lot less favourably.

Rachel acts as if the “in-crowd” is out to get her. It really isn’t. And then she acts as if none of this was actually really anything to do with her. Rob getting caught in the cross-fire is just… it’s like with Andy, but much worse. One word against another—whether Janet did ask Rachel for the report three days ago or not, who the hell even cares. They are colleagues, they need to talk. Well, they do talk, but passive-aggressive shit isn’t getting anyone anywhere. And that business with messing with Janet’s rear-view mirror in the car, biting off her fingernail and spitting it… this is so fucking childish, it’s making me really angry! The writers are really, really taking a risk here. I know that people do that, I know how stupid people can be, so it’s not even that this isn’t credible human behaviour. The question is just whether that’s really consistent with Rachel’s character(isation) or if it’s pushing it too far. There is a line marking absurdity; and although the narratological implications considering our perception of Rachel through Janet’s eyes—and, through their radio silence, losing that perception of her and seeing her plain(*)—are exciting, I’m really pissed off at Rachel over here. At least they’ve managed to make the leap and figure out who abducted Gill…

Since I’ve been writing this review while watching, actually, you’ve been getting my unfiltered reactions so far, and now you’re getting my unfiltered reaction to the scene in the pub: it was a bit of a shit apology. Really. Why can’t people just say they’re sorry? No justifications, no ‘buts.’ Just saying, I was screwed up, that’s why I fucked up, and the fact of the matter remains, I fucked up and I hurt you and I’m sorry. Counter-accusations don’t make for a clean slate. Janet’s being the bigger person here in apologising as well. There’s no “getting over it,” Rachel. There’s just forgiving, and you’re bloody lucky Janet really does want to be your friend. Blimey.

Nicola Walker is amazing as a completely unhinged basket case, and Amelia Bullmore’s performance in that car is equally stunning. Just… stunning. It’s a brilliant exercise in two amazing actresses being magnificent in scenes in which nothing much actually happens, just… a battle of will and power and the shit that people get put through when mistakes are made.

“What d’you think this is? Life on Mars?”

Brilliant. last. line.


  1. Your notes on this episode are very good, thanks. I do wonder if the series should move away from Rachel’s character, as, in my opinion, flawed, screwed-up inconsistent people are really not as interesting as driven, moral, compassionate people. Gill Murray’s character has completely eclipsed Rachel Bailey’s character. That made the ending seem awkward: I would be surprised if most viewers cared or believed, by the end of the third series, that the friendship had been revived.



    1. Thank you!

      Yes, I’m not sure either whether the audiences will keep caring about and sticking with Rachel the way they have in the past series. The ending caught me off guard, I didn’t think they’d simply smooth it over like that between the three of them.
      Since the show has been recommissioned for a fourth series, it’ll be interesting to see how exactly they’re going to reintroduce that friendship into the show, and how they’re going to deal with Rachel and her narrative in relation to the other characters.
      I have no preference in terms of flawed vs moral, but I just felt that Rachel’s story had become a bit overbearing; especially after the balance was struck so well in Series 1 and 2. I guess it’s just because the supporting cast is so good — especially Gill Murray — that I’d just like to see more of them as well.



  2. Rachel’s character reminds me of NYPD’s resident functional drunk, Sipowicz (Dennis Franz)

    Brilliant cop with major baggage.

    I expect the show to reveal the baggage slowly like it has been doing (brother, mother) and since there are references to drunk dad ( which will probably be the root cause of why Rachel is so fucked up.)

    A great show, which I do enjoy.



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