Episode 5 of The Rig starts with us back at the Rig as it turns out the lights in the water was actually coming from a lifeboat sent over from Kinloch Charlie. It’s certainly not enough for an evac and the group decide not to abandon them and bring them onboard. Among those on this boat from Charlie is David Coake, who happens to be part of Pictor Research & Expansion.
When Rose asks him what the Research Team are doing here, he unironically retorts “Research”. Thanks Captain Obvious! But this isn’t played as a joke, this is genuine dialogue.
Anyway, Coake gets updated on what’s happened across the Rig, before dropping the absolute clanger that Rose is actually in charge of the Decommissioned program. She’s good at keeping secrets is Rose, and this is another big one!
One of the men down in the Med Bay, Harish, points out that once Coake came onboard then he sent some of the guys back to the beach along with their OIM as well. This occurred just prior to the fog and everything else, as it seems like Coake was fronting an operation to send something down, rather than up, into the water. This could well be the catalyst for what’s caused all of this.
Rose has concerns over what Coake is actually doing here and she’s struggling to make sense of how everything is linked together. When Magnus shows up, the utter irony of this woman ensues. After keeping secrets from everyone about Fulmer and the Decommissioning gig, she bemoans Coake for keeping secrets, claiming that he’s “risking the lives of everyone.”
Magnus encourages Rose to keep researching whatever this is after that speech, while he attempts to deal with Coake and the other guys onboard. However, it seems like Coake isn’t actually part of the team, given his file doesn’t show up on the system. Heather hurriedly tells Harish and Easter, trying to make sense of this. Heading together to the console, the trio work together and realize that Coake has already seen this organism before.
Rose deduces that the rings are actually part of a way for measuring time, just like the rings of a tree. However, here the rings appear to be matching the time between each of the five major mass extinction events. The last ring hasn’t closed yet and it appears Baz and the others are trying to cause this extinction event themselves.
Coake enlists a group to undermine a weakened Magnus and force their way to the pump control. Coake is not coming with them though, but he claims he’s going to help out from this side. He tells Hutton and the other volunteers that when the Fire Suppression System activates, the module doors will try to seal to allow full saturation. Coake claims he’ll hold them open from Control so they can get out, then they can go back for Baz and Garrow.
Dunlin is not so sure this is a good idea, given they know nothing about Coake’s intentions, but they put their blind faith in him all the same and head inside. As they activate the system, Fulmer heads out to try and find them. This time they’re wearing protective face-gear with oxygen tanks… but not gloves. A whole calamity of stupidity ensues.
Garrow collapses and ends up dead. Dunlin removes his mask and calls for help, only to suddenly start coughing as the toxins invade his throat. He puts his mask back on but he’s running low on oxygen. Garrow spews blood over Hutton’s bare hands, given he’s not wearing gloves, while Fulmer and Baz also collapse. Furthermore, there’s a camera set up on the exact hallway although we were told 3 episodes ago that there were no cameras on this part of the rig!
To the surprise of absolutely no one, Coake locks the doors and seals them in. Dunlin is stuck and he begins to run out of oxygen. Unfortunately he passes away, while Hutton survives. Rose refuses to leave this lying down and finds Dunlin by heading in a separate door, one that’s just down the hallway. Rose takes off her mask and shares the oxygen with Fulmer before attempting to move him out. When she falls over, Rose touches the ground and it inexplicably reacts with Fulmer and brings him back to life.
Hutton and Magnus finally see eye to eye and after a chat together, decide they need to take out Coake together. As they formulate a plan, Rose decides not to attempt to save Dunlin or Garrow the same way she did Fulmer, pointing out it’s a lost cause. With the fire doors now open, they manage to get to safety and are reunited with Magnus.
On the sea bed, the final ring joins together as it seems like a mass extinction event is upon us.
The Episode Review
The penultimate episode of The Rig sees the poor writing come to the foreground in this one in a big way. There’s a whole catalogue of errors in here, including internal consistency across the episodes not being followed. We get the canteen scene in here about there being food troubles… but only because there’s more people onboard, not because of a shortage of food like we were told earlier on.
Furthermore, none of these guys wear gloves when they head in to pump control. While I do appreciate the oxygen masks may be enough, the fact none of them wear gloves and they know blood can become infected if you end up with a cut seems completely foolhardy. And that’s before mentioning the camera issue.
We learned early on that there’s not enough cameras to cover the entirety of the rig but here we see that Coake is watching the monitors in the exact location that Baz and the others are hiding out in. Why couldn’t they have checked that camera before?
These sort of issues with the writing extend across the whole season and it’s not helped by the production design either, which continues to look super cheap overall. Unfortunately this was a very poor episode overall.