A SundanceTV Original Series
From Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire), starring Brit Marling (Another Earth) and James Nesbitt (The Hobbit)

“BABYLON” Series Recap

Newly appointed communications chief Liz Garvey tries to coach London Police Force Commissioner Richard Miller to improve his public profile. Liz squares off with her predecessor-turned-deputy Finn, who opposes Liz’s strategies of radical transparency in favor of carefully guarding police secrets.

Warwick, an armed officer recently involved in a controversial shooting, suffers increasingly disturbing symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder as he receives threats from friends of the victim. Squadmates Banjo and Tony debate whether Warwick is still fit for duty after he chokes while pursuing a criminal.

New police documentarian Matt Coward surreptitiously hunts for scandalous footage to make into his own, anti-law-enforcement film. Coward comes to focus on loose-cannon and firearms officer Robbie.

Miller tries to use the drug-crime arrest of the deputy mayor’s son to damage his political opponent’s reputation, but Liz helps the deputy mayor brave the hostile press.

Liz proposes a bold new idea: the Metwork, a Metropolitan Police Service news division, which would air both positive and negative police-related stories instead of feeding the information to unpredictable press. Miller supports the effort until the fallout from his backfiring attempt to smear the mayor makes him too cautious to risk the controversy. Liz threatens to walk if he does not give her his support.

Territorial Support Group squad mates Clarkey and Davina carry on a secret affair. Davina grows increasingly distant from husband Banjo, whom she tells Clarkey she’s planning to leave.

After overseeing the evacuation of the Thameside Center and bungling a bomb-deactivation, Miller takes Liz aside. The commissioner confides that he once carried on an affair with a police physical therapist and asks Liz to help contain the news story, which is about to leak. Liz tries to stop the story, but discovers that Miller is also currently sleeping with his wife’s sister.

A reporter contacts Miller about the story, and he then commits suicide by jumping into the Thames River.

Inglis assumes the role of acting commissioner and asks longtime rival Assistant Commissioner Sharon Franklin to head the search for the Thameside bomber.

Banjo, Tony and new squadmate Robbie cover for Warwick when the traumatized team member needs to take an unauthorized mental health day.

Liz finds herself shut out by Finn and Inglis. Finn tries to blackmail Liz into resigning by threatening to leak rumors that she was also romantically involved with Miller.

The firearms squad investigates a reported armed conflict. Banjo shoots a man threatening another, believing the target is aiming a gun. Robbie arrives at the scene first and finds the dead man with his hands empty, though a gun is tucked in his waistband. Robbie transfers the weapon to the victim’s hand.

When news of the shooting breaks, Davina tells Clarkey she’ll have to stay with Banjo for the time being, since the split would place the shooting in an even worse light, throwing Banjo’s mental state into question.

Finn and Inglis watch the news as Sharon receives credit for catching the bomber, increasing her public profile. On another station, Liz curries public favor with a victim-sympathetic evaluation of the shooting. Finn and Inglis realize that she will be nearly impossible to oust.

Liz decides to support Sharon Franklin for commissioner, coaching Franklin to spearhead the search for a missing child with unorthodox but humanizing methods. The search is unsuccessful but Sharon’s candidacy becomes a serious possibility with her profile raised even further.

A review board separately interviews each members of the firearms squad on the shooting. Robbie and Tony protect their own, but Banjo admits that Warwick’s “head is gone” and the guys have been covering for him. Warwick is fired.

A distraught Robbie confides in Matt Coward about moving the gun, while Matt secretly tapes him with his phone. Coward shops the scandalous footage to various media outlets.

With Banjo back on duty, Davina finally moves in with Clarkey. Banjo searches Davina’s purse at home and discovers his wife’s lover’s identity.

As Sharon announces the end of the shooting investigation, security footage leaks of Banjo destroying public property in a blind rage the night of the shooting. Sharon improvises and claims the investigation will be reopened, infuriating members of the force.

Banjo exercises his contractual right not to bring his weapons on duty and the rest of the officers follow suit, effectively going on strike. Territorial Support Group officers follow suit.

Liz watches Inglis address the armed police with an inspiring speech, convincing them to go back on duty to contain the riots escalating all over London in response to the shooting.

Disillusioned by Sharon’s increasingly evident ambition and knee-jerk conservatism, Liz tells Inglis she wants to back him for commissioner.

Matt Coward’s former bosses in the communications department inform Robbie of rumors circulating about Coward’s incriminating footage. Robbie leads Banjo and Tony to Coward’s apartment, planting drugs, arresting Coward, and explaining the truth about the shooting to a horrified Banjo and Tony. Banjo helps Robbie steal Coward’s electronics. Tony plays along but pockets a thumb drive.

Liz leads Sharon into a disastrous meeting with decision-makers, and Inglis receives word he’s to be appointed as Commissioner.

Tony delivers the thumb drive with Robbie’s video confession to Liz.

Banjo uses the cover of the riots to attack Clarkey, who’s defending the streets. Davina and Nobbo pull the two apart after a brief fight.

Liz and Finn debate revealing Robbie’s confession to the public in front of Inglis, Liz pitches the idea as a bold declaration of a new era of openness that could actually win public support, while Finn fears it could exacerbate the riots. Liz finally breaks through Finn’s philosophy, convincing him that transparency could be the best solution to the situation.

Robbie and Banjo are arrested as Inglis presents Robbie’s confession to the press.

Need to catch up? Read recaps from previous episodes.