The second series of the police procedural came to a shocking end, with lots to take in - let us break it all down for you.
Bloodlands season 2 saw enigmatic widow Olivia Foyle take centre stage in the storyline. Played by Victoria Smurfit, Foyle becomes close to James Nesbitt’s DCI Brannick, when he’s responsible for investigating the riddle her murdered husband left behind. Brannick is led to some crooked accountants throughout the course of the investigation, and with this comes a trail threatening to expose his secret identity as the assassin Goliath. DS Niamh McGovern, DCS Jackie Twomey, DC 'Birdy' Bird, and even Brannick’s daughter Izzy are part of the investigation and he is forced to go to new and extreme lengths to keep his identity secret. So what exactly went down in the series 2 finale? We will break it down and clear up any unanswered questions.
For more BBC drama, the SAS Rogue Heroes release date (opens in new tab) is finally here. Penned by Peaky Blinders' Steven Knight, it's sure to be fantastic. For those asking when is Happy Valley coming back (opens in new tab), we have the latest updates on the BAFTA winning drama. A series showcasing diversity warmed all our hearts - Ralph & Katie filmed (opens in new tab) across some recognisable Northern locations, but where exactly were they?
Bloodlands season 2: Ending explained
Bloodlands season 2 ended with everyone involved in the investigation believing Robert Dardis killed Colin Foyle, but he had really been killed by Tom.
Niamh had previously presented the theory everyone came to believe, suggesting that Robert Dardis and Colin Foyle buried the gold together at his wife’s grave, and Dardis turned on Foyle and killed him. The detectives thought Dardis believed Foyle planned to keep the gold for themselves, and this caused him to murder Foyle. Nobody yet suspected Tom had struck yet again.
Visiting land owned by Foyle, Birdy’s body was found inside a barn, leaving Niamh devastated. DCS Jackie Twomey finds a clump of Olivia’s hair on his body, but this must’ve been planted by Tom in the hope Olivia would get the blame. The connection between Tom and Birdy’s death could be a plotline for another potential season.
Izzy was kidnapped by Ryan Savage, who wanted to trade her for the gold. Tom and Olivia went along with this, giving him the gold back in order to get Izzy back safely. Although pleased to see her dad, Izzy now knows that he is crooked, and is secretly sleeping with Olivia. As the gold was handed over and Izzy safely in her father’s arms, an explosion is heard. Tom had rigged the bags with explosives and Ryan is hurt in the blast.
When it becomes clear he hasn’t been fatally wounded and tries to get up, Tom grabs one of the gold bars and beats him around the head while Izzy watches in horror. Lying in a pool of blood, although Ryan survived the blast, he is now definitely dead. Panicked by Tom’s actions, Olivia makes a grab for his phone - Ryan had told her if he didn’t make contact with his people within 20 minutes of the gold handover, her son would be killed.
However, the phone is in pieces and she is unable to make contact. At this point Olivia reaches for a gun and aims it at Tom, saying she no longer needs him. Izzy acts quickly to grab the gun and shoots Olivia, who dies instantly.
Does Niamh know that Tom killed Robert Dardis?
Although not completely clear if Niamh knows that Tom killed Robert Dardis, she certainly has her suspicions about him.
When Niamh tells Tom about an eyewitness account placing Robert Dardis in a car with a mystery driver the night he was murdered, Tom panics. He tells the officers responsible for tracing the image, to send it to him immediately. The picture is left on Tom's desk, but PC Judith Kenny has already seen it and recognised Tom as the unidentified driver.
She then sends the image to Niamh, who hasn't displayed any outward knowledge that she knows it was Tom who killed him so far in the episode. She has been suspicious of Tom in the past, with no real evidence to back it up. With real evidence at her disposal, she is last seen tracking his phone and heading to his location. If this is to confront him over what she's found out, she might be the next person to end up dead.
Bloodlands season 2: Reviews
Jack Seale from The Guardian (opens in new tab) wasn't impressed with season 2 of Bloodlands. He offered 2 out of 5 stars, and wrote "James Nesbitt’s meaningful stares are laugh-out-loud funny. After the first season’s big reveal, there’s no suspense left in this crime drama’s plot. So instead, the actors fall back on pained looks and sly side-eyes – until it becomes unwittingly hilarious".
Anita Singh from The Telegraph (opens in new tab) was only slightly more enthusiastic, offering 3 out of 5 stars. She said "It’s pretty bleak (do they have sunshine in Northern Ireland? This show suggests not) and consists largely of Nesbitt looking shifty, angry, stressed or sinister. The tense soundtrack from composer Ruth Barrett is back, and so dominant that at times it feels like a theme tune with a small drama attached. Dramas can feel like a bit of a slog when the central character is unlikeable and potentially everyone is lying. We can’t trust anything that Brannick says. We can’t trust anything that the widow (Victoria Smurfit) says. And I’m not sure if we’re meant to trust Det Chief Supt Jackie Twomey (Lorcan Cranitch) or not".
The show also has mixed audience reviews on review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes (opens in new tab). One audience member offered 5 stars, saying "Complicated but well presented "who done it". Makes you want to stay up late to find out what comes out in the next episode. Keep track of the characters and evidence or you will find yourself rewatching to be sure you "understand". What you saw. Good challenging thriller without all the blood and gore so prevalent in most other crime shows".
However, another offered 1 star, saying "This series is so bad. How Nesbitt gets an IFTA nomination for his role in this shambles is beyond me. I felt like I was constantly watching the "Eastenders stare", you know the gloomy, perplexed look of the cast members which take up most of the episodes. The only line Nesbitt was short of in this was 'I gotta dash out, look after the stall for us would ya?!' The creator / director tried so hard to make this a 'gripping' series, they failed miserably. I would expand on my reasons for leaving such a poor review but to be honest my head begins to hurt when I actually recall the many, many woeful scenes. Trust me on this, you'd be better off cleaning your windows for four hours rather than watching this series. At least that would be constructive!"
Will there be a season 3 of Bloodlands?
There has been no official announcement about Bloodlands returning for season 3, and season 2 ratings have been much lower than season 1 - indicating cause for possible cancellation.
Some Twitter fans were calling for a season 3, with one saying "#bbc. #bloodlands. Bring on series 3. Too many cliff hangers for there not to be one. Excellent series. Another added (opens in new tab) "They can’t leave it like that!! Series 3?? #Bloodlands"
#bbc. #bloodlands. Bring on series 3. Too many cliff hangers for there not to be one. Excellent series.October 23, 2022
However, another viewer wrote (opens in new tab) "I stuck with this series with the expectation it would be the last Jeez, dragging it out for series 3!!! #Bloodlands." Another agreed, saying "Not sure I liked that ending, too much unfinished. I’m not sure I’d like a series 3 either #Bloodlands."
Related BBC Features:
- Who is Karen Hauer married to? All you need to know about the Strictly Come Dancing star (opens in new tab)
- Strictly Come Dancing live tour 2023: Who will be there and how to get tickets (opens in new tab)
- The A Word: Ending explained and everything you need to know about the BBC drama ahead of spin-off Ralph and Katie release (opens in new tab)
- Industry season 1 recap: What happened during the first season of the banking drama (opens in new tab)
- A Good Girl's Guide to Murder - Is it based on a true story? (opens in new tab)
- The Osbournes Home to Roost - all you need to know about Sharon and Ozzy and their new show (opens in new tab)
- Is Gone Fishing coming back and how many episodes are there? (opens in new tab)
- Line of Duty star Martin Compston in first-look images of him in new BBC drama Mayflies (opens in new tab)
Video of the Week