Warning: Spoilers ahead for Netflix's Bodyguard finale.
If you were to read the frantic text messages I sent while screening the last 20 minutes of Netflix’s Bodyguard finale, you would probably expect I was the one in the midst of a multi-layered police-mob conspiracy that included assassinating a politician. Alas, I was not. I was simply watching the streaming service’s latest British import unravel the answers to all of its greatest mysteries, from identifying who actually killed Julia Montague (Keeley Hawes) to what exactly the deal is with Julia’s mysterious tablet made of the often talked about, little explained “kompromat.”
And, of course, the final twist comes in the form of revealing the true plan of Nadia (Anjli Mohindra), the Muslim woman Bodyguard’s dashing hero David Budd (Game Of Thrones King In The North, Richard Madden), assumes is a brainwashed and battered woman. Clearly, PPO Budd was wrong.
While there are tons of moving parts involved in understanding all of these finale revelations, the key resolution is that despite all the nefarious men populating the series, women were actually always the biggest power players in this political thriller.
Let’s get down to why.
The Initial Assassination Scheme
When you get to the end of Bodyguard, it becomes clear a lot of the series was sleight of hand. You’re lead to believe the multiple attempts on Julia’s life were due to her pro-war policies and interest in increasing the surveillance of citizens in the name of fighting terror. The near-assassination, and subsequent successful assassination, seem to be the ultimate punishment for Julia’s policies. Following the “First Of October” terrorist attack, where an extremist Muslim man supposedly almost had his wife blow up a train, such a line of thinking is obvious.
But, Bodyguard’s sixth episode proves all of that was all a lie — and exactly what the real culprits wanted you to believe. Instead, known mob boss Luke Aitkens (Matt Stokoe) was actually the mastermind behind Julia’s murder. While her policies would uncover terrorist activity, that wouldn’t be the only criminal faction affected by Julia’s “RIPA 18” bill. “Enhanced surveillance on phone and email activity would be just as big a threat to organized crime,” David deduces in Bodyguard’s fifth episode.
After all, even Aitkens’ London SUV is tied to a shady company in the Cayman Islands. That is a very suspicious detail that a widespread surveillance bill would unquestionably flag.
So, as we learn in Bodyguard’s finale, Aitkens used an inside “man” in the police department to neutralize the Julia threat and cover his tracks. The series makes you think Anne Sampson (Gina McKee), the very direct and Julia-obsessed head of the police force, is the mole… before revealing it’s actually David’s very maternal boss, Lorraine Craddock (Pippa Haywood). This twist makes sense, considering how quickly Lorraine moves to discredit David after somehow magically learning about his sexual relationship with the late Julia. She cites multiple reasons David shouldn’t be trusted in the episode and heavily questions his mental health in an official capacity.
Lorraine confirms this was all a part of the conspiracy during her finale confession, admitting Aitkens found out Julia was planning to transfer more powers to the Securities Service, England’s version of the CIA, giving them an even greater “upper hand” against organized crime. With Julia putting Securities in charge of investigating organized crime, it would also be harder for people like Aitkens to bribe officers, as Securities is under higher scrutiny than the police, where mob cases had originally fallen.
This brings us to David and his positioning as Julia’s bodyguard. With the scheme to murder Julia already in motion, Lorraine chose the former military vet as “the perfect fall guy.” Aitkens could have plotted all he wanted against Julia Montague, but, without Lorraine’s involvement, his planning would have amounted to nothing.
Nadia, The Villain
Lorraine’s confession brings us to one of the biggest mysteries of Bodyguard: Who is Nadia, really? The answer is that the supposedly abused woman was actually the mastermind behind the First Of October would-be bombing. While Nadia was unable to go through with her initial attack, she “atoned” by helping Luke Aitkens with his plan to assassinate Julia, a leading British politician. By supplying Luke with the bombs that murdered multiple police officers just outside of the school David’s children attend — yes, that was Nadia’s idea — and killed Julia, Nadia explains she has both harmed the British government and gained more money for ammunition in her holy war.
Nadia' entire story about being a “poor, oppressed Muslim woman” was merely subterfuge to continue on with her self-described “jihadi” plans from behind bars. So, Aitkens used Nadia’s bombs for most of his faux terrorism assassination plots, and, as Lorraine tells authorities, armed David’s former army buddy Andy Apsted (Tom Brooke) for the initial attempt on Julia’s life.
What Is The Kompromat?
All of this intrigue proves the separate Bodyguard conspiracy — involving Julia’s MIA tablet and the “kompromat” hidden inside of it — wasn’t involved her her death. Rather, all of that business was simple House Of Cards-level political machinations. Essentially, Julia had teamed with the Director General Of The Security Service, Stephen Hunter-Dunn (Stuart Bowman), to get damning information on the current prime minister (David Westhead). Julia would then use that information to take the PM job for herself. With Julia installed in the powerful position, she would then give Security Service those heightened powers Lorraine was talking about earlier. But, after Julia's death, it became crucial to keep the compromising information out of the public's hands.
The fact that Tahir Mahmood (Shubham Saraf), who was unwittingly dragged into the political counter plot to bring Julia down, set off the bomb that killed Julia was a mere accident. As Julia’s advisor Rob Macdonald (Paul Ready) tells police, his group of anti-Julia schemers simply wanted to embarrass Julia out of political life — not murder her.
Three earth-shattering twists in a single 75-minute episode? It would be a crime against television if Bodyguard doesn't return for a season 2.
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