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Series / The Smoke

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The Smoke is a British television drama that debuted on Sky1 in February 2014. The show was created by Lucy Kirkwood and focuses on the London firefighters of the White Watch, focusing primarily on Kev Allison (Jamie Bamber) who is returning to work after a horrific injury.

This show provides examples of:

  • Anachronic Order: Episode 3 of season 1 flashes back and forth between a rescue at a high rise (where a few of the main characters inexplicably have black eyes/ bruises), and the night before, which eventually explains where these injuries came from.
  • Beauty Inversion: At the ending of the premiere episode, Kev drunkenly pulls his pants down to reveal the severe burn injuries he suffered during the prologue. In a later episode, he's banged up after getting in a fight. Kev is played by Jamie Bamber, who is usually the epitome of Fanservice.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Dennis is freed from Gog's influence and is fully accepted as a member of the team, and Kev and Trish are fully reconciled and take a swim together at the beach, but Mal's still being transferred, Rob is probably leaving the force and Kev will have a hard time forgetting about how he left Gog to burn to death.
  • Bottle Episode: episode 6 of season 1 takes place entirely at the fire station
  • Book Ends: The series starts and ends with a fire at Churchill Estate.
  • British Brevity: The first (and only) season was only eight episodes.
  • Bromance: Rob and Little Al, in droves. Little Al moves in with Rob (and Rob's wife and four daughters)after being kicked out by his own wife, and he and Rob are constantly together, teasing one another, helping one another out, etc. There's also Rob's attempt to kiss Little Al (jokingly) in one episode.
  • Death of a Child: The baby Kev is trying to save in the opening of the series does not survive.
  • Delinquents: Dennis and George, though only the latter is actually a bad person.
  • Distant Prologue: The series begins with Kev getting injured at a fire, then skips forward nine months to when he is returning to work.
  • Double Standard Rape: Female on Male: A group of drunken women who go on a field trip to the firehouse for their bacholorette party attack Little Al, pinning him down, trying to pour alcohol down his mouth, and pulling down his trousers and touching him. Little Al is upset by the experience, and Ziggy and Rob show indignation for him, but the whole thing is basically played for laughs. When Little Al mentions still being disturbed by it in the following episode, Rob basically tells him to get over it.
  • Downer Beginning: The first episode sees Kev getting attacked while trying to rescue an infant from a house fire, left without help after a mistake on the part of another worker, and gets horribly burned as the baby dies in his arms. And that's just the first few minutes!
  • Fan Disservice: Full frontal naked Jamie Bamber? Except he's wearing a prosthetic to make him horribly disfigured
  • Firemen Are Hot: Jamie Bamber, Rashan Stone, Taron Egerton, David Walmsley, Pippa Bennett-Warner...
  • House Husband: Ziggy's partner is the primary caregiver of their twins, and even sewed their school play costumes.
  • Imaginary Friend: Kev's therapist is eventually revealed to be this
  • Love Hurts: Kev and Trish's relationship is basically made of this.
  • Male Frontal Nudity: A major plot point at the end of the first episode; featured again in the opening of episode two
  • Manly Tears: Frequently, as Kev in particular sheds a lot of tears on this show.
  • Mood Whiplash: After the dramatic and tragic events at the tunnel in episode 7, the scene suddenly shifts to the squad finding Billy and Nina having sex.
  • Murder by Inaction: Kev to George in the final episode.
  • Not So Stoic: After coming off as mostly aloof for the start of the series, Dennis is pretty much broken down for all of episode 6 when he admits his complicity to the fire at Churchill Estate.
  • One of the Boys: Ziggy, the one female firefighter on the White Watch
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Public opinion seems to be that despite being from London, Jamie Bamber had trouble maintaining a working-class accent, as it was a distinct change from his natural upper-class one.
  • Playing Sick: Subverted. When Little Al needs to get off work in the middle of a shift, Rob promises to help and smashes him in the face with a petrol container, breaking his nose. Kev initially does not allow him to leave, but eventually relents.
  • Precision F-Strike: Plenty
  • The Reveal: Episode 1 ends with Kev drunkenly dropping his pants at a bigwig ceremony to reveal his horribly burned legs and genitals, and the audience getting a glimpse of a distinctive tattoo on rookie Asbo's behind, revealing him as complicit in Kev's injuries.
  • Shower Scene: Dennis gets one at the end of the first episode. It's to show his complicity in Kev's injuries, but most enjoy it for its Fanservice qualities.
  • The Smurfette Principle: White Watch has one female member. This reflects reality, as presently over 95% of firefignters in the UK are male.
  • The Sociopath: George hits all five of the traits.
  • Spiritual Successor: Like most new series about the Fire Brigade, The Smoke was described as a "new London's Burning".
  • Teen Pregnancy: Ziggy got pregnant at sixteen.
  • There Are No Therapists: Subverted. It's suggested that Kev see a therapist after all he's been through, and at first it seems like he is, but then the therapist turns out to be an Imaginary Friend. The fact that the fire department didn't demand that Kev attend therapy, or suggest it earlier seems rather shady under the circumstances.
  • Wham Episode: Episode 7. The crew fails to save at least two civilians in the tunnel fire, Dennis and Kev are hospitalized, and Trish is (apparently) dead.
  • Wham Shot: The shot of the dragon tattoo on Asbo's behind in the first episode.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Dennis's reaction when Kev admits to purposely not saving George.
    • Dennis also gives one to Kev in the hospital after the tunnel fire after Kev refuses to abandon him instead of going after Trish, which Dennis had wanted him to do.