The season 1 finale of Gangs Of London leaves lots of unresolved plot threads at the end and plenty of unanswered questions when the final credits roll. Having said that, the show does a good enough job to wrap up some of the bigger plot points this year while leaving the door open for more to come. With little in the way of big action and more stylish back-and-forth timeline segments, the show finishes on a whimper rather than a roar after such an explosive opening half.
The episode begins with Elliot awakening to find himself in a makeshift hospital. As he pleads with his captors to speak to his handler, Elliot finds himself tied up to a chair and interrogated, especially after Sean Wallace blowing up the skyscraper has him listed as a terrorist. It turns out Elliot ran from the scene of the crime and shot back at the police, which is why he’s currently being tortured.
We then skip back a day as news spreads fast after the building collapses. It also sees the Captain make his move, putting Elliot on trial alongside Sean and making Vicky interview Shannon. On the back of this, Sean phones Alex and arranges a face to face interview. Not long after, Sean manages to crack Anthony’s phone and finds pictures of Elliot on there.
Meanwhile, Asif hosts a party for Jevan but upstairs, amidst a whole sea of balloons, he finds him butchered. That murder happens to be at the hands of Lale, who gets her revenge on Asif with the help of Sean. After sleeping with the crime boss, Lale decides to pack up her things and head back to her home country.
Things continue to unravel as Ed shoots Marian in cold blood while Vicky makes her move and speaks to Shannon, who realizes Elliot was undercover. Elliot phones Vicky and leaves a voicemail, informing of Sean’s location but she doesn’t get that message, especially as Shannon brandishes a shotgun and shoots the officer in cold blood.
Using Billy to find Sean’s location, Elliot heads into his apartment where Sean lays out the hard truth. He knows he’s undercover and contemplates shooting him right there. Elliot holds his ground though, telling Sean that he’s spent his whole life watching people get away with crimes and wants to put Sean behind bars.
In the future, Elliot continues to be tortured surrounding what he does and doesn’t know. Midway through, a nurse arrives and checks his vitals, giving him crucial information before the torture continues. Before it can however, he requests a phone call and rings his Father, telling him to leave.
Deciding to use Elliot for his own crusade, Sean chooses to work with him and take down everyone at the top using incriminating evidence he’s gathered over the years. Not long after, Alex arrives and the two end up squaring off. Sean pleads with Alex to work with him and help take down the big bosses and those overseeing their war.
Midway through their agreement though, Elliot shoots Sean in the face; a task forced on him by two shadowy figures who told him that Sean “must never stand trial” and Alex Dumani should remain in power. They use Shannon and Danny as leverage to force his hand.
As police rush to the scene, Elliot and Alex escape the room and blend into the crowd. Biding their time, Elliot guides Alex out the building and this brings us back to the torture scenes in the future as these two timelines overlap. He tells the police he has a message from the people he works for – he’s protected under diplomatic immunity by the Republic Of Panama. On the back of this, Elliot is allowed to leave after being told he’s made dangerous enemies.
As he stumbles out and into the busy underground, Elliot reveals the sim card he’s been hiding in his mouth all this time, determined to take down all of those at the top and gain crucial retribution to those hurt by Sean Wallace and the various crime bosses.
Stepping out into the street, he receives a call from those in charge. “Well done Elliot, we’ll be in touch”. During an epilogue, we cut back to the previous day again as we see Floriana approach Marian and tells her she’s going to help, which is where the series ends.
Gangs Of London has been a wild rollercoaster ride and in some ways, the second half of this show has lost its way slightly since the reveal about Jevan. With the mystery wrapped up and most of the players pitted against one another, the action in the fifth episode subsides in favour of more simple melodrama and character feuds. While there’s nothing wrong with that, given the sheer amount of action in the first half of the series, this does feel like a show of two halves.
There’s a few questionable elements here too, including the forced romance between Lale and Sean which does come out of left-field. A few of the characters do get unsatisfying conclusions to their tales too while Mosi’s inclusion in the story feels completely mismanaged.
The future of London certainly hangs in the balance too. Will Alex be able to stabilize the criminal empire now that he’s at the top? What will the repercussions be for Elliot releasing the information about the crime bosses? And just who are the two people he’s been forced to work for?
There’s lots of scope for a second season though and hopefully this one will be renewed for a second season sooner rather than later so we can get some answers to these questions.