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Editor’s note: As we gear up for the Season 6 U.S. premiere of ‘Spiral’*, we gave writer Allison Lowe Huff the enviable task of binge watching all seasons of ‘Spiral’ to help introduce new viewers to this brilliant, gritty series. Viewers familiar with ‘Spiral’ may learn a thing or two from this series of recaps as well. We recommend watching ‘Spiral’ Season 5 first before digging into Allison’s unique take on ‘Spiral’.

WARNING: Spoilers ahead! 

Spiral Season Recaps

Season 5 Recap

Laure and the rest of the team are shakily recovering from the tragic death of Samy and the literal explosion of their unit as Season 5 opens with one of the saddest crimes on record for Spiral, the murder of a woman and her little daughter, bound together and thrown into the Seine. Her very shady husband makes an obvious suspect. He is perhaps too obvious, as both Laure and Roban become obsessed with proving his guilt to a damaging extreme, going up against his defense counselors, Pierre and Joséphine. The case seems like it’s going one way, but – guess what? It spirals, beginning with…

The complicating factor.
Let’s see: Laure’s one true love was killed in an explosion that could also ruin her career; her boss, Herville, is as ambitious and over-promising as ever; her relationship with the stable Brémont is over; her crew is in various stages of personal discord… so, of course, this is the perfect time to find out she’s pregnant! PS, she doesn’t know who the father is, and is convinced that she doesn’t want the baby, anyway. She is, in a word, a mess, sleeping in her car, eating every piece of junk food she can find, flippantly scheduling and re-scheduling a termination. It doesn’t help that Gilou, once her cynical confidant, has taken to his new role as the department’s Dad so completely, all but begging her to keep the baby so that they can raise it, together. I must admit, my heart swelled nearly to bursting at the thought. It wasn’t the last time I’d be overcome by emotion, like when…

Spiral Season 5

The bad goodbye.
So, Roban is still on the job and in Laure’s corner, as always, but his tunnel vision when it comes to the murder investigation and a connected side case lead him to make a few grievous errors in judgment leading to terrible and shocking consequences. Even Marianne, his trusted supporter, finds herself unable to look at le juge after his actions contribute to the desperation of an accused man, ultimately resulting in the death of their beloved friend, Pierre. It nearly destroyed me, too, Marianne. I’m still not over it. Roban finds solace in a new partnership with a young judge, throwing himself into his work, zealously pursuing a baddie diplomat at the cost of his own health. Still, he and Laure are not the only ones making bad choices. There’s also…

The boys.
Surviving an exploding bomb and dealing with the death of a colleague might be enough to make some people take a hard look at their lives and start living better. On the other hand, it might lead you to, say, ignore your responsibilities at home (Tintin) or entangle yourself in the sheets of a violent informant’s needy girlfriend (Gilou, bien sûr). Guys, what are you doing? Gilou really ends up in hot water after putting himself on the line for Herville, placing illegal tracking devices on a gang’s mopeds. (Incidentally, a lot of Parisian crime happens on mopeds, which is really the most French way to commit a crime that I can imagine.) Wonder of wonders, Herville rises to the occasion, taking responsibility for his team’s actions, admitting they’re all far better cops than he is, and finally throwing his support behind Laure one hundred percent. Well, as the Bard taught us, misery acquaints a person with strange bedfellows, and this is nowhere more true than…

(L to R) Fred Bianconi (Tintin), Caroline Proust (Laure)

The sisterhood.
Oh, Maître Karlsson. She’s been through too much. Finally achieving something like true happiness for the first time in her work and in her loving relationship with Pierre, she sees it all snatched away when he is killed. I am NOT over it. Who holds her up, now, in her time of deepest need? None other than Laure, her former sworn enemy. Though their friendship is based on terrible sadness, this strong-woman bond is something I’ve been waiting on for five seasons. I wish Laure had been around when Joséphine decided to accept a job with a big shot firm, because I think she might have talked her out of what seems like it will be an unhealthy, if lucrative, situation. And I hope Joséphine, when the time comes can be there for Laure when…

The unknown.
It turns out, when the chips are very much down, Laure realizes she does want her baby. This enlightenment makes her particularly empathetic when the criminals responsible for the murder she is working on hold a young girl hostage for money. Laure, with motherly compassion for both the teen kidnapper and the child, tries to save them both and ends up nearly losing her own life. The fate of her baby remains in question. As Gilou cries on the phone to Brémont, things don’t look good. How we’ll wait to Season 6 to find out what happens, I really don’t know.

(L to R) Thierry Godard (Gilou), Foed Amara (Djibril Merini)

 * Due to distribution limitations, this program is only available to stream within the U.S. only.


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About the author:
Allison Lowe Huff is a freelance writer and editor with an overly concentrated interest in mystery stories from anywhere and everywhere. Follow her on Twitter @lowehuff.