Ashes To Ashes: Make A Date

Montserrat Lombard as Shaz

“TIME is running out.”

Shaz is very much out of sorts in Ashes To Ashes final series episode two.

Written by Ashley Pharoah, it further lifts the curtain on what appears will form part of the Ashes and Mars conclusion.

Two moments in particular left the hairs on the back of my neck standing up like never before.

Perhaps more revealing than anything we have seen so far – yet posing more of those tantalising questions about where we are headed on this epic journey.

It’s also Montserrat Lombard’s finest hour to date as Shaz, a young woman in heartbreaking turmoil.

If you saw the teaser trail at the end of episode one, you will know how high the stakes are for Sharon.

There’s another one of those wonderfully tender lines from Luigi when he says to her: “Stay lovely Shaz.”

But she replies: “I just don’t feel a part of it anymore.”

Also look out for more of that warm and knowing bond between Alex and Shaz.

And where does Shaz actually live?

The always superb Beth Goddard guest stars as dating agency boss Elaine Downing, who has some simply delicious scenes with Gene Hunt. Alex Drake and Luigi.

Made all the more enjoyable when you know that Beth and Philip Glenister are married in real life.

This is also the episode with the much trailed Uptown Girl fantasy sequence – a perfect fit for Gene and Alex.

With Jim Keats (Danny Mays) continuing to interview members of CID.

And Gene revealing the moment when we are at our most vulnerable.

Edmund Butt’s original music for Ashes continues to play its important role.

If you are able to, try listening to this ep at some stage via headphones to fully appreciate his work.

Keeley Hawes as Alex

Things to look out for in episode two include:

1. A new voiceover.
2. Tools.
3. A photo.
4. More shallow graves.
5. Pens and pencils.
6. A carving.
7. Two bars.
8. Doodles.
9. A shadow.
10. Bitter.
11. The second delivery.
12. Reflections.

This track doesn’t feature in episode two but there’s a reference to the artist – and it’s one of the best songs ever written:

Ashes To Ashes final series episode two is on BBC1 at 9pm on Friday.

Ashes To Ashes: Daniel Mays

Farewell Gene

Ashes To Ashes: Philip Glenister Extras

Ashes To Ashes Blogs

Philip Glenister Official Site

The Railway Arms Ashes and Mars Fansite

Luigi’s Ashes Fansite

BBC TV Blog: Matthew Graham

Follow Ian Wylie on Twitter

Alex and Jim (Daniel Mays)

Unlucky in love?

Ray (Dean Andrews) and Chris (Marshall Lancaster)

Geoff Francis as Viv



Filed under Ashes To Ashes

17 responses to “Ashes To Ashes: Make A Date

  1. Gaelle

    Thank you for your blog, Ian, I’m very much looking forward to this episode (and the rest of the series!) 🙂

  2. Tegwen Haf Parry

    Thanks for another great pre-episode blog. I always love reading your blogs and twitter updates. I am really looking forward to this episode, I think it will be a platform for Gene and Alex’s relationship, and maybe a way for them to truly understand how they feel for one another, all the jealousy and angst. I had your list of things to look out for whilst watching episode 1 and found them all, no doubt I shall be doing the same on Friday! Thanks again Ian and look forward to your Episode 3 blog x

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  4. I always knew there was something more with Shaz than with the others. she always catches alex doing somthing strange, like this week with alex talking intot he radio, and alex saying this world feels more real because it isnt and then Shaz’s reply of half way there!

    its about time though as well she got a full role! but the seed that something isnt right has been planted with chris tellingt alex she is so angry all the time! i wonder if she has some PTSD with what happened with alex during operation rose!

  5. Charlie Artist

    Seriously, seriously cannot wait for this one…especially going by what your very good self has said, Ian, in that this ep is pure brilliance, and what Matt G said – that “we’re only just getting warmed up”…I thought ep 1 was beyond stunning, so if this is even better, we really are in for THE biggest treat!
    I look forward immensely to the Uptown Girl sequence, in whatever form it comes, be that pure, unadulterated cheese or unnerving and surreal sequences…I suspect the former – how else could it be done!? It’s the very essence of Ashes, to have such contrast between scenes, from comedy to terror and back again, and I know this is going to be something truly special.
    Thanks again for your excellent blog!

  6. Thanks for another tantalising blog Ian. I was lucky enough to see a couple of the ep 2 “luigis” scenes being filmed. Totally agree with your ‘hairs on the back of the neck’ line.

    And thanks for your lovely post on the railway arms last week, it was much appreciated.


  7. Susan Seddon

    Thanks for the latest blog, i’m eagerly looking forward to this episode, so much to see, including the Uptown Girl sequence for Gene and Alex, which is just the perfect song for them always. I follow your ten things to look out for every week and always keep an eagle eye for them. Episode 1 was fantastic opener and i think Episode 2 will show us a lot more things. Keats is an interesting new character and can’t wait to see how important he becomes in the series.

  8. “Edmund Butt’s original music for Ashes continues to play its important role.

    If you are able to, try listening to this ep at some stage via headphones to fully appreciate his work.”

    Agreed, and I often rewatch episodes on the iPlayer to do just that. There was bit in the premiere episode last week where his music gave me goosebumps, I think it’s a recurring sequence of music but I can’t recall if it’s on any of the soundtracks. It was just after Dorothy’s stepmother repeats Alex’s words to Gene earlier: “Sometimes you can’t help which way you fall.” Then more strings came in and the music reached a crescendo as Alex turned to face Dorothy before leaving. Brilliant.

  9. Missy Lupton

    Many thanks for the teaser! I am so ridiculously excited about this series it’s not funny. More shallow graves, you say?

    *wonders if there will turn out to be more than four*

  10. Judy

    I came to this third series with a lot of reservations but now I can honestly say last Friday’s cracking opener put all my doubts to rest. What a brilliant start! Ashes certainly has “upped it’s game”.

  11. Claire M


    So can I. I still prefer LoM & probably always will. The
    music was better, Gene was sexier, etc. When LoM was on dad & I got the ending *exactly right*. both shows make you think – which a lot of people seem to be afraid of doing nowadays. (Apologies for sounding like I’m the same age as Gene.)

    Nervous for ending – or “Thee End [sic]” as I refer to it — but I’m not being forced to watch A2A am I ??. No-one’s holding a gun to my head, are they ??
    Leaning more towards the idea they’re all dead (hence said graves) but they don’t know *shudder*. I saw that in ‘Afterlife’ & it was *brilliant*.

  12. Maria

    Hi Ian

    I popped back to have a look at you “what to look out for list”

    And i was wondering if it would be possible – At a later date to tell us what these actually were …I saw some and am stumped on the rest .and until the DVDs come out have no way of rewatching them…

    Brilliant episode…

    Is there really only six left..?

    Thank and regards


  13. iva

    hi ian,

    this was a brilliant episode!

    one thing, i missed this:

    12. Reflections.


  14. madame m

    Episode 2 was brilliant. I have always had this crazy notion that Alex and Sam were one person and a scene in this episode almost suggests it. When Shaz is on TV and asked by Gene ‘ What T is the occupational name and given name for both genders?’ or something along that line. Maybe Alex or vice versa had a trans-op and her memory is blocked by some kind of trauma/accident pre-op. It is a very wacky idea but the thought of Sam being killed may not be literal! Many holes in this theory but just hear me out! Gene is central to all this because either he was the surgeon or carried out the op. or he is Alex’s male/egocentric side. Jim Keats is terrific and that may explain his hostility towards Gene and his warmth towards both Shaz and Alex. Time will soon reveal what it’s all about and I can’t wait!!!

  15. Kate

    Love your blog Ian! Think this episode posed lots more questions, but I for one cannot WAIT for next Friday for another fix of Ashes!

  16. Donna

    ‘Ashes to Ashes’ has been excellent and one of the very few programmes on TV which are actually worth watching.

    Series three has been absolutely phenomenal so far – and we’re only two episodes in!

    I will look forward to reading your next blog!

  17. Claire M


    I’ve a feeling that they’re all dead but don’t know it, or that something went wrong when Alex was expecting her daughter (so she never actually had a child & is fantasising that she has one) & Gene is a counsellor she’s going to. If that’s true I wish I needed it (I’m joking) One appointment would cheer you up.

    There are so many theories flying about TRA you could drive yourself (literally) mad. Let’s face it — at least one has got to be right, & the only ones who know for sure are the writers. They make me want to write too. Unless there’s another show popping up like this, I probably won’t look forward to a series this much again, or get as attached to its characters (thinking about the nonsense I’ve put on TRA I *really* hope not), so I’m going to enjoy it while it lasts.

    I wonder if they [writers] look forward to it like we do ??

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