The last ever series of Spooks will get underway on Sunday 18th September, the BBC has confirmed.
The corporation has scheduled the show opposite ITV’s Downton Abbey, claiming it had caused the clash between the two popular dramas in order to create a “special event” for viewers who will now have to decide which drama to record and watch later.
BBC One came under fire in 2009 for creating a similar ‘special event’ when it scheduled Strictly Come Dancing to clash with ITV’s X-Factor.
According to BBC News online, a BBC spokesperson said: “This is the last ever series of Spooks and we wanted to celebrate this and make it a special event for viewers in the Sunday 9pm slot.
“It is not unusual for drama to go up against drama here, for example, David Tennant’s Single Father did last year, and ITV’s Vera was up against BBC One’s Exile earlier this year.”
The opening episode of the spy drama finds Harry Pearce (Peter Firth) on gardening leave and Section D with a new leader following Lucas North’s betrayal at the end of the previous series.
Buried secrets are unearthed when Max Witt, a retired spy and Harry’s colleague in Berlin during the Cold War, is found murdered by an unknown assassin.
Announcing the show’s demise last month, executive producer and Kudos Chief Executive Jane Featherstone said: “We have always wanted to end Spooks on a high, but never knew when that time would be. Harry Pearce, played by the wonderful Peter Firth, has always been at the heart of the show and this series focuses on Harry’s past, bringing his tumultuous relationship with Ruth to a head.
“As we near completion of this year’s show, I’m sorry to say but it feels this series is a fitting end to a much-loved show.”