The Game Update: Episode 5

By Darwyn Carson – (originally published 12/2014) Now we know. The Game’s Episode 5 delivered—as promised—the identity of The Mole. Clever writing, this, from series creator Toby Whithouse and writing partner Sarah Dollard.

After the series opener that suggested a non-stop action filled spy drama, Whithouse deliberately adjusted the pace. Time was taken to believably re-construct the political paranoia which rose up out of the ashes after the end of the second World War when tensions between the eastern and western powerhouse nations being at the center of the long ranging Cold War era.

The atmospheric cool, that is taken for grant as being a part of the time and the job, is attractive in its dark intensity. Joe rarely smiles, but that doesn’t seem odd. It would almost be inappropriate if he did. They all smoke, of course, and if they know who the Beatles are, they’re keeping it to themselves.

[more on The Game]

It wasn’t the ‘who it was’ which turned out to be the most surprising—if attention were paid to the intricately placed clues. No, it was the ‘how of it’ that created the tingly bubble of enjoyment that comes from a well-constructed reveal. The path of betrayal, which had been week to week carefully laid out, encouraging viewers to follow, was and is but one part of this very dangerous game. Loyalty as it turns out plays an equal, if not more important, role.

The question became—not who is betraying whom, rather—who is remaining loyal to whom?

If bets were being placed in Vegas, I’d wager that Joe will be vindicated and the justified nature of his questionable actions will be unveiled. He will be the person Daddy has chosen to believe he is and will be instrumental in saving Britain from the disastrous fallout of the KGB’s plan. Or not. Whithouse and team are extremely clever at turning tables and I won’t be mad if the table gets turned this time. It will have created another ‘ah ha’ moment of delight that has kept the intrigue hot and the viewers guessing.

Are you ready for more?

HBO’s The Game is currently available on CBS All Access, iTunes, Google Play, Amazon Prime and Vudu.

The Cast:

Tom Hughes is Joe Lambe

Brian Cox is Daddy

Paul Ritter is Bobby Waterhouse

Victoria Hamilton is Sarah Montag

Jonathan Arisis is Alan Montag

Shaun Dooley is Jim Fenchurch

Chloe Pirrie is Wendy Straw

Marcel Lures is Arkady

Jevgenij Sitochin is Odin

Zana Marjanovic is Yulia

Written by

TVolution Founder and Managing Editor DARWYN CARSON completed a six-year stint as Managing Editor of Leonard Maltin’s Annual Movie Guide in 2015. She has been covering film since her early association with entertainment journalist Michael Symanski at She also covered film and restaurant news in her column Carson’s Corner for a variety of social publications. Her articles have appeared on Zap2It, Indiewire, and, of course, The TVolution. Follow Darwyn @bnoirlikeme. Follow The TVolution @thetvolution. Please Like The TVolution on Facebook.

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