What did come as a shock, however, was that head writer Daniel Brierley would have the guts to kill off one of the series’ main characters just an hour after their introduction.
It’s safe to say that this death twist will fundamentally change the dynamic of the series going forward. (Read our guide to who died in ITV’s Trigger Point episode 1).
While much of Trigger Point’s first episode was taken up by nail-biting bomb disarming sequences, hints have also been dropped about the identity of the sinister menace that has London firmly in its sights.
Read on for our review of Trigger Point’s first episode and our top five questions after that immense cliffhanger. However, be warned: full spoilers follow.
Who survived the explosion?
Trigger Point episode one ended on a devastating note that is sure to get viewers talking, as Joel Nutkins (Adrian Lester) realised too late that a van parked in the vicinity of the crime scene had been rigged with an explosive.
The sudden detonation killed him instantly, with longtime partner Lana Washington (Vicky McClure) finding his arm among the debris, which was instantly recognisable due to his distinctive tattoo.
She too was caught in the blast but escaped with her life, while we also know that her colleague and love interest Thom Youngblood (Mark Stanley) is among the survivors.
However, questions remain over whether all of the Metropolitan Police operatives on the scene got away unscathed, while it seems certain that a number of innocent civilians perished in the attack.
On this matter, the Met may find itself under intense public scrutiny, given that it dropped a protective cordon and declared the area safe mere moments before the vehicle exploded.
Who is responsible for the attacks?
The key focus for this entire series is likely to be finding out who exactly is orchestrating these attacks, with this first episode offering a few clues but not enough to draw firm conclusions.
The wife of victim Andy Phelan (Rick Warden) noted that their attackers were talking a mixture of English and Arabic, which led officers on the scene to wonder if this could be the work of an Islamic extremist group.
However, something that sets this case apart is that the culprits are clearly equipped with sophisticated technology, as they were able to bypass the police’s mobile phone signal jammers as well as interfere with the bomb disposal robot.
Later, Special Operations leader Samira Desai (Manjinder Virk) noted that the attempted activation of Phelan’s bomb vest was carried out by two unregistered burner phones in separate locations, suggesting the formation of an organised terror cell.
What are their motives?
While we’re intrigued to find out the culprits behind these co-ordinated attacks, it’s equally important to ask what has driven them to commit such unspeakable acts of terrorism.
We have very little to go on so far which means the matter is entirely open to speculation, with my only hope being that there is more to their motivation than Islamic extremism.
That’s not to undermine its status as a real-world threat to our society, but it’s such a sensitive topic that building an entire series around it could be upsetting to some viewers, particularly those who have been directly affected by the issue.
Meanwhile, the glut of generic “Arab villains” in scripted film and television is getting really tiresome, with actor Riz Ahmed among the many to point out that this depiction of Muslims is unrepresentative and unfair.
What is the relevance of their timing?
Interestingly, the story of Trigger Point gets underway as a sweltering heat wave is gripping London, resulting in several characters struggling to keep their focus as the sun beats down on them.
It seems unlikely that screenwriter Brierley has included this factor for no reason whatsoever, which means that it could play a more direct role in the plot further down the line.
Perhaps the hot weather will drive more people outdoors or into public spaces, giving the terrorists a greater number of opportunities to target the citizens of London.
However, there is a possibility that this element was written into the plot merely to ramp up the tension, as most of us will attest that high temperatures can make manual jobs quite exhausting – from pulling up weeds to defusing bombs.
Is there a traitor in the Met?
Given that the creator of BBC One’s Line of Duty is one of the key players behind-the-scenes, we can’t rule out that police corruption could be one of the elements at play in Trigger Point.
As previously mentioned, the unknown terror cell responsible for the attacks in this episode are seemingly equipped with sophisticated technology, meaning its possible they could be smuggling resources from the Met’s own supply.
Lee Robins (Cal McAninch) of the Specialist Firearms Command certainly seemed eager to shoot the innocent victim Andy Phelan after he emerged from a car boot strapped into a bomb vest.
While he may have just assumed that Phelan was the mastermind behind this plot, his terrified demeanour and the fact that he was beaten to a pulp were clear signs to the contrary.
Perhaps Robins had another motive for swiftly taking Phelan off the board, fearing that his survival could bring the Met closer to uncovering a conspiracy within their own ranks.
Just for the hell of it, let’s throw Thom Youngblood on the suspect list too – there’s nothing more dramatic than a two-faced lover, after all. Watch your back, Lana.