Line of Duty divided a number of fans with its season finale. But a proportion of those fans have gone relatively unheard.
Each season a new guest star is thrown into the fold to run rings around AC-12. This year, Kelly Macdonald took centre stage and captured the immediate attention of numerous fans through her character; Jo Davidson.
Kate and Jo’s connection became obvious pretty quickly. Towards the end the first episode, they share an intimate and vulnerable moment as Jo takes Kate’s hand. For a split second, it even looks like she’s leaning in to kiss her. This felt like a seed had been planted. With a moment like this appearing in the first episode, surely it was a sign of what was to come?
Fans soon dubbed them the name ‘Flemson’ and grew more and more attached to the two as each episode passed. When everyone else was doubting Jo’s character, Kate was the one defending her innocence. She saw a side to her that the others didn’t and did all she could to defend her.
This wasn’t just the fans making assumptions about Jo’s sexuality either. The fact that she had an ex-girlfriend gave hope that something might actually happen between Kate and Jo.
I’m not of the belief that the feelings were one sided on Jo’s part. When Jo and Kate were together having drinks and the two men at the table next to them made a move, Jo soon turned them away. She jokes that she had blown Kate’s chances, almost as if she was testing whether she was attracted to them. Kate smugly replies “not really my type”. This felt like flirting at it’s finest, so the fact that nothing really amounted from a scene like that is strange.
It also felt very out of character for Kate to flee the scene when she shot Ryan. The only explanation seemed to be that she wanted to help Jo and uncover the truth. This was a pivotal moment in their dynamic. By taking the blame for the killing, Jo made her feelings explicitly clear.
In another moment shortly after, Jo says to Kate “I always worried you were pretending”. Now we know what she’s alluding to, but Kate seems to dismiss it. This is the biggest admission of feelings between the two that we get. Jo clearly felt that a connection was there, but she held back from acting on it as she didn’t know Kate’s true intensions.
Frustratingly for Jo and for viewers, she never gets the confirmation she needed.
The subtext that was written between the two was obvious, yet it resulted in nothing. There was all this build up, the question of “will they won’t they”, and it fizzled out completely in episode 7. What’s more frustrating its that there was ample opportunity for it. When AC 12 intercept the van transporting Jo, we see that Kate made her way into the back of the vehicle. Was there really no interaction in that moment? The final chance then comes when Kate and Steve interview Jo. After the intimate scenes between them in episodes 1-6, this one feels out of place.
So what was the point of that 6 episode build up if there was no intention of concluding it?
If the two were not to end up together, fans could just about recover from that. Kate is a core part of the show and couldn’t exactly go and live with Jo in witness protection. But to not even have an acknowledgement of feelings or a personal goodbye left fans feeling pretty short changed.
Jo got the girl in the end which was one thing. It just wasn’t the right girl.
Could another season of Line of Duty bring back Jo Davidson? We can only hope.