Marcella went undercover in season 3, which takes place 18 months after the end of season 2. Everyone in her life – her family and her former coworkers – think she’s dead.
Marcella (Anna Friel) was dead, in a way. During the 18 month gap between seasons, we learn that her handler, Frank (Hugo Speer) reprogrammed her. She’s now Keira from Belfast. Frank’s training was so good that Keira referred to Marcella in the 3rd person.
Marcella as Keira still had issues – blackouts and fugue states. But she’d learned coping strategies and could handle them better and talk herself down when she went off. Some of these moments when she was mentally out of control were used to tie back to Marcella’s life and her infant who died.
Undercover, Keira infiltrated the Maguire family. This included the matriarch Katherine Maguire (Amanda Burton), the emotionally driven Finn (Aaron McCusker), pregnant Stacey (Kelly Gough), and the germophobic Rory (Michael Colgan).
The Maguire family ran drugs, did human trafficking, sold guns, and everything else that made a profit. Being around this crowd and their various spouses, lovers, and underlings made for a lot of murdered people. When the series was over, I felt like that kid who announced, “I see dead people.”
Marcella was created by Hans Rosenfeldt and Nicola Larder. The season had all male directors. To a man, the directors loved to focus in on a sleeper’s eyeballs at just the moment they woke up.
Did the creatives behind the writing listen to the viewers complaints about confusing storylines? Because season 3 was more straightforward and clear than previous seasons. It was so simplified, the ending was obvious the more we got into the situation with Keira.
Marcella’s secret identity was discovered, of course. DI Rav Sangha (Ray Panthaki) was investigating something else and found Keira in the Maguire’s house. He kept her secret, but it enabled the return of a few folks from previous seasons. It added a sense of continuity to the story.
Anna Friel is really good in this part. She does the moments of madness so well, she’s tough in a fight, and she’s sexy when seducing some mobster or other. Her character is a survivor, I like that about her. It’s not contradictory to say that in a character whose mind played nasty tricks on her, Marcella survived because she was strong minded.
I really loved Amanda Burton as the steely-eyed head of her crime family. #EldersRock, you know it.
Here’s a look at the trailer.
Are you a fan of this series? What did you think of season 3? It felt like the end to me, like they knew they were through. Did you get that feeling, too?