Season 8 Episode 30

Episode 354

 

Sky One Transmission Date:

Sunday 15th May 2005

 

Directed By

Riitta-Leena Lynn

  

GS: Eli Knox (Shane Lynch)  D.I. Macey (James Allen)  Detective Constable (Dan Skinner)  Doctor Wearing (Richard Brimblecombe) 

Fletch’s Lawyer (Ian Bass)

 

As Harchester head in for half time, the lads find Gina sprawled out on the dressing room floor. Fletch dashes in to be by her side, and the paramedics arrive. Don sees Gina being stretchered out of the club from the top of the stairs, and learns from the receptionist what happened. After the teams begin their second half, Don enters the Dragons' dressing room, locates Fletch's kitbag and places a cyanide bottle inside. He also swipes Fletch's phone to use later. After Fletch calls Don from a pay-phone at the hospital and demands to know what he has done, Don, using a handkerchief to cover his fingerprints, phones the hospital to offer information on what Gina has ingested.

 

 

West Ham score twice, leaving Harchester 2-0 down, and another would take them out of the Play-Off's altogether. The doctors work on Gina, and Fletch is told the poison she ingested was identified but the caller didn't say who they were. Fletch is shocked to hear Gina was poisoned and the doctor tells him the police will be sorting it out. West Ham score for the third time and it's looking bleak for Harchester as Reading could be about to take their place in the Play Off's. D.I. Frank Macey (who investigated Tommy's stabbing) comes wanting to speak with Eli, and suggests the present Don join them. Inside they are told that Gina was deliberately poisoned and that the police will be needing to speak to everyone who had access to the dressing room, i.e the players. As they are told, Ryan scores against West Ham in the 92nd minute and Dean and Eli are ecstatic as Don watches on sullenly. As they enter the tunnel, celebrating their survival, the team find police guarding the dressing room. They are escorted to the Players' Lounge where Dean tells them that Eli has asked him to speak to them regarding Gina. D.I. Macey watches as Dean tells the boys how the police believe she wasn't the intended victim of the poisoning. Ryan, ironically, susses the team were and the lads are shocked. As she is checking out of the Grange, Jodie sees Sky Sports News announce that Gina has been rushed to hospital, and phones the police. Back at the club, a policeman tells D.I. Macey of Jodie's call and how the water bottles may have been poisoned. The players then realise that during the fire evacuation anyone could have got into the dressing room. D.I. Macey tells the players they can go home, and Viv asks Curtis if he will take Lee back to his, as if anyone is trying to hurt the team they will go for Lee and Ryan first. Fletch sits by Gina's bedside as Jodie comes in. Fletch tells her if Gina dies he'll always know he could have spent last night with her instead of with Jodie. Jodie says last night shouldn't have happened but at the time they both needed each other, and Gina will never find out about it.

 

At the club that night, Eli asks Dean whether he'd consider sticking around on a permanent basis, but Dean tells Eli he's there to help his friends - the ones he made him trick into staying. He tells Eli he won't work for him again and Eli replies he couldn't blame him for trying. D.I. Macey comes into the office and says they’ve got their man on CCTV. He plays the tape and Dean realises the figure is wearing football boots. D.I. Macey says they are Venino boots, and a Spanish make. He adds they are now suspecting anyone at the club who would wear those boots. At the hospital Gina regains consciousness and Fletch lets her know he is prepared to give up anything she wants him to, including football. He then asks her to marry him and she accepts. Doctor Wearing comes in and tells Fletch he should go get some sleep. D.I. Macey shows Viv the CCTV footage and asks does Venino ring any bells, while Don meanwhile is being questioned in the Players' Lounge. He tells the D.C. that Karl Fletcher was the only one on the Harchester team who wore Venino boots. He also drops in that Fletch had come to him a couple of days ago asking for a contract with West Ham, as if Harchester went up they weren't taking him with them. The seed planted, an unaware Fletch arrives at the club and tries to get into the still blocked-off dressing room for his kitbag. D.I. Macey comes out holding it and tells Fletch they better go for a chat down the station. There, D.I. Macey goes through the evidence against Fletch before presenting a small bottle of cyanide, which he says was found in Fletch's kitbag. He adds that it was the same poison the anonymous caller phoned the hospital to describe. In the black of night, Dean stumbles to Curtis’ having been drinking in town. Unable to work his key from Ryan double-locking the door, he bangs loudly to be let in. Curtis, worried about just who is outside (when it's not hard to work out that it's Dean) goes into Ryan with Jaws' shotgun and together they go down to find Lee opening the door for Dean. They are relieved, but from behind Ryan slips on the stairs, knocking into Curtis and sending the gun blasting off. Lee falls to the ground clutching his leg, wailing that Curtis shot him!

 

In the morning Viv arrives at the hospital and berates Curtis for using the gun when it was supposed to be in safe keeping. He tells Curtis to get to the club for training as the first leg(!) is in four days time, and they may not have Fletch as he’s being questioned. At the station the evidence is mounting against Fletch, with his fingerprints being found on the burnt out bin and his phone being traced to the call at the hospital. Jodie meanwhile arrives at the hospital to see Gina, where she tells her that Fletch proposed yesterday. On the television they hear that the police are questioning a 33-year-old man, and when Ryan and Caskey are asked for their reactions, Curtis stops them, having heard about Fletch. Fletch asks his lawyer if he can use his phone to make a private call, and calls Jodie to inform her that her dad has fitted him up. Jodie refuses to listen, but when Fletch tells her how he wouldn't have left Gina to die if he'd known what was in that water and how Don has his phone, Jodie goes to find out. Jodie gets a chambermaid to let her into Gina's room where inside she finds the safe full of money – the £100K Don paid Fletch. She loads the money into her bag and goes to Don's room. There she shows her dad the money and then rings Fletch's number, for his phone to begin ringing out from inside Barker's desk draw. Jodie is stunned and tells her father to stay away from her while Don insists that he never meant to hurt anybody, just get Fletch back so he'd lose his job just like he lost his. From the station Fletch attempts to contact Jodie one last time. In his room Don talks Jodie down on how he knows she wouldn't shop her own father and to give him the phone. Jodie gives in to her loyalty and hands the phone (and obviously the money which we never hear of again) over to Don. The call is cut and Fletch has to face D.I. Macey who tells him he is being arrested for the attempted murder of Gina Moliano.

 

Notes:

 

·          Last appearance of Eli Knox (Shane Lynch). He still owns the club until summer 2005, but isn’t present for the Play-Off final. Shane Lynch published his autobiography “The Chancer” in 2008 (Shane Lynch with Steve Legg [Canaan Press, May 2008]) where in Chapter 18 Living Proof he discusses his time on Dream Team. He is highly complimentary about the show, finishing with how he had a really great time playing Knox. Check it out if you ever get the chance.

 

The Best: The lengths Don has gone to settle (or now exceed) the score with Fletch. Eli, a really cool character departing from here on. I always thought Shane Lynch did a good job. Jodie’s showdown with her dad, and after everything we see she is still not fully prepared to go against him.

 

·          Logic: The team sharing various hate mails they have received during their careers (and strangely kept).

 

Quotes: Dean's reaction to Curtis (shooting at him and actually getting Lee): "You stupid, silly man!!". He was drunk though.

 

·          Continuity: Fletch says this isn't the first time he's been fitted up for something he hasn't done (first half of Season 5 in 2001). He also refers Jodie to his bankruptcy two years ago (275: Gone to the Dogs). Caskey says he has known Fletch for sixteen years [1989 – when Fletch would have entered the youth team].

 

Additional Info: Promotion back to the Premiership for either Harchester or West Ham is worth £20M. Having survived the game against West Ham, Harchester have made it to the first leg of the Play Off's and will face Preston next for their place in the final.

 

·          Swearing Is Not Clever (mostly): Both Eli and Fletch are heard to mutter the word “Shit”, an expletive rarely allowed on the “family show”. This does however give credit to how bold DT was with both stories and the dialogue during Season 8.

 

Soundtrack: Amon Tobin: "El Wraith" and "Saboteur",  Sigur Ros: "Track 3.”

 

Screencaps from 8.30’s original broadcast on Sky One on 15/05/05.

 

Don has Fletch's phone

 Dean and Eli view the culprit

 

 

Gina says Yes!

 "You shot me!!"

 

 

Will Jodie hear Fletch out?

 Will Jodie do the right thing?

 

 

Nope! Fletch is screwed

 

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