Viewers and critics have been reacting to the finale of season four of ITV drama Unforgotten.
Many were left questioning whether they were saying goodbye to the show for good after Nicola Walker’s DCI Cassie Stuart was involved in a shock car crash, with Sanjeev Bhaskar’s DI Sunny Khan left to solve the mysterious death of Matthew Walsh.
The sidekick concluded the case without his boss before it was revealed that he pair would never be reunited after Stuart succumbed to her injuries.
The series, and in all likelihood the show itself, concluded with Khan eulogising his friend and colleague.
Critics have paid tribute to the show labelling it a ‘classy’ and ‘powerful’ drama.
‘Momentous end to a classy, powerful drama’ – The Times
Carol Midgley of The Times issued the finale a five-star review, labelling it “an exquisitely crafted punch in the guts, a shocking kick in the teeth”.
Midgley reserved particular praise for the departing main character, calling DCI Cassie Stuart “one of the best TV detectives yet created because she talked like a real human, dressed like a real human, sulked like a real human and you could imagine her living next door”, adding that she was “played magnificently by Nicola Walker throughout every series”.
Midgley believed that the episode was a fitting finale to the show, describing it as “a momentous end to a classy, powerful drama”.
‘A bold and devastating ending’ – i News
i News TV editor Emily Baker was also full of praise for Nicola Walker’s swansong as Cassie, calling the final episode “a bold and devastating ending”.
Baker suggested that the finale was a saving grace in what she described as “a comparatively dry series.
She said: “who cares when one of Unforgotten’s main characters, Cassie, played by the astounding Nicola Walker, has been killed off? It’s certainly one way to gee up a somewhat stagnating police drama”.
She added: “closing on such a permanent bombshell displayed a boldness the series had long been lacking.”
‘A bitter pill to swallow’ – Hello Magazine
Hello Magazine’s digital TV and film editor Emmy Griffiths was one of many left devastated by the finale, describing Stuart’s death as “a bitter pill to swallow.”
Griffiths praised the realism of the show and suggested that, whiel devastating, Stuart’s death was fitting.
She said: “Of course, Unforgotten is a drama, not a melodrama, and so this moment - while shocking - didn't seem gratuitous or silly, because moments such as these really do happen. Cassie was overworked, exhausted and anxious about her father, and made the mistake of pulling out as a car thief sped down the road.
"These things happen, but it doesn't make it any less of a devastating ending.”
‘Pour one out for Cass – she was a real one’ – The Guardian
In his credit-roll recap of the show James Donaghy paid tribute to the show’s beloved main character.
He said: “she didn’t make it.
"The late DCI Cassie Stuart touched many people’s lives, but it’s Sunny I feel for the most. While there’s no league table of grief, there is something particularly heartbreaking about DC Khan losing his colleague, mentor, friend and hero.
"Pour one out for Cass – she was a real one.”