Harry Pearce
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Quotes for
Harry Pearce (Character)
from "MI-5" (2002)

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MI-5 (2015)
[last lines]
Harry Pearce: Agents like you don't last long in this life.
Will Holloway: So which ones remain?
Harry Pearce: [looking back] The ones like me...

Harry Pearce: [to Will] It's quite telling the fact that the closet thing I have to a friend is someone who thinks I've ruined his life.

Will Holloway: [pointing gun at him] Why'd you bring him here?
Harry Pearce: I made a choice; to stop the attack on London. To expose the traitor.
Will Holloway: With no backup plan?
Harry Pearce: I had a backup plan. You. Why do you think I kept you out of that room?
Will Holloway: People are still dead, Harry.
Harry Pearce: Far fewer than would have died in the bombings.
Will Holloway: How do you make a choice like that?
Harry Pearce: It's my job.
[walks away from him]

Harry Pearce: I need to find someone outside the service that I can trust. It's a short list when you take off the drunk, the mad and the dead.

Harry Pearce: If I'd given up the fight the moment I realized I was on the losing side, my career would have been a short one.

Harry Pearce: [Revealing he's poisoned June for her treachery] I had the pub lunch too... you never noticed that capsule I put in your food... the same capsule you gave me... the one that causes massive fatal internal bleeding, now you can either spend your last hours in hospital in futile hope and needlessly suffering... or you can spend it with your loved ones
[looks outside to see June's sister and niece playing in the garden]

Will Holloway: [Around 113.00 in darkened garage] Sorry... you would have brought back up otherwise
Hannah Santo: Who says I didn't ?
Harry Pearce: I do
Will Holloway: We can get to Qasim, but we need help. Call it in and we disappear.
[Hanna is about to make the call]
Will Holloway: One clean choice Hanna... trust me, and help me... or walk away.
Hannah Santo: Do good or do well hey?
[lowers phone from ear and hangs up]
Hannah Santo: sh_t... I thought you were going to kill him.
Harry Pearce: One thing at a time Miss Santo.

Harry Pearce: I have something which by rights should be yours... Your father was wearing it the night he died. The Stassi stripped his body of everything that could be useful and It found its way into an FSB archive somewhere.
Will Holloway: He was wearing a wedding ring on the night of his op.
Harry Pearce: Ordinarily he wouldn't have, but he just found out that he was to have a son... I didn't decommission you because you weren't good enough. After your father I couldn't...
[sigh]
Harry Pearce: ... I had to protect you. The good ones tend not to last Will
Will Holloway: [Harry is walking away] Then who does?
Harry Pearce: [Harry stops and turns around] The ones like me.


"MI-5: Episode #1.5" (2002)
Jools Siviter: Well, the trouble with whistleblowers is that they do tend to play their own tune.
Harry Pearce: Do you distrust Maynard?
Jools Siviter: I find there's a ambiguity there. Do you do ambiguity, Tom?
Tom Quinn: No. In the end a thing s either a lie or it's true.
Jools Siviter: What an admirable position.

Harry Pearce: This better be about something big.
Hampton Wilder: How about the fall of the government.

Harry Pearce: Well, that concludes things.
Richard Maynard: Then, on behalf of my colleagues I'd like to thank you for this briefing. So reassuringly alarming.

Jools Siviter: There is someone in this building who is seriously disloyal. I could be looking at him or her right now.
Harry Pearce: That is a very serious allegation to level at your sister service.
Jools Siviter: Well my sister should be bent over and given a good whack on the behind!
Harry Pearce: I don't find that helpful.
Jools Siviter: Helpful? You get an excellent asset of mine killed and you want my help!

Harry Pearce: I think I may have to have a drink with Mr Siviter.
Tom Quinn: And I think this thing stinks to high heaven. Have they just destroyed a good man?
Harry Pearce: Don't brood, Tom. Politicians are conniving, wheeler-dealing scum. Don't have a fit of morals over them, they wouldn't over you.

Harry Pearce: MI5 don't do evil; just treachery, treason and armageddon.


"MI-5: Episode #1.2" (2002)
Harry Pearce: Didn't know she was a boozer, did we?
Tom Quinn: Well, she kept it well hidden.
Harry Pearce: We train our officers well.

Harry Pearce: The couple who run the computer classes, are they removable?
[beat]
Harry Pearce: In a nice way.

Tom Quinn: I'll need a wife, of course.
Harry Pearce: Shouldn't have thought that too difficult. A dishy catch like you.

Tom Quinn: I just wanted to keep things simple.
Harry Pearce: Always a mistake, in my experience.

Harry Pearce: You're a little shite, Derek. Have I ever told you that?
Derek Morris: You've implied it enough times. Take a chill pill, Harry.


"MI-5: Episode #1.1" (2002)
Danny Hunter: Bloody Yanks. Everything's a bloody competition.
Tom Quinn: Harry, what do you think?
Harry Pearce: I think all kinds of things.

Harry Pearce: I signed up here because I knew who the enemy was and I wanted to fight them. These days the enemy don't even have a flag.
Toby McInnes: At least you knew where they were, I suppose.
Harry Pearce: Gave them something to put over the coffin.

Toby McInnes: So where is she?
Harry Pearce: No idea, old boy. We lost her.

Harry Pearce: Mary Kane is a very hot name to drop in Washington right now. They are practically frothing at the mouth for her.

Harry Pearce: Well, assuming she passes vetting, when might you be addressing the microscopic issue that your real name is Tom Quinn and you're a spy.


"MI-5: Episode #3.1" (2004)
Oliver Mace: Ah Harry, good to see you. Do you know Jason Belling?
Harry Pearce: Only from certain tape recordings.

Oliver Mace: There's a serious threat to national security here. I can't keep to the niceties.
Harry Pearce: I like the niceties. They protect us from tyranny.

Harry Pearce: So, we lure a United States citizen into our country, and force confession out of her. That is a totally illegal, madcap scheme. I like it, great idea, Adam.
Adam Carter: It's not mine, Tom's.

Ruth Evershed: We had a spook taxi outside the hotel. Carmen hired it.
Harry Pearce: Spook taxi?
Ruth Evershed: I've been recruiting taxi drivers. It is cheaper than having cars.


"MI-5: Episode #3.8" (2004)
Harry Pearce: Dear God, Ruth. Is any institution in this country safe from you?
Ruth Evershed: I like to think not.

Adam Carter: I've never handled kidnapping before.
Harry Pearce: And this we are all that. Please keep that unit's bible, Abduction Procedures, read it and speedily digest it.

B: So, you are the boss spook.
Harry Pearce: Absolutely.
B: You're not James Bond.

Harry Pearce: How's Fiona?
Adam Carter: She's okay, still in a hospital.
Danny Hunter: [seeing Fiona in office] Ah, I don't think she is.
Adam Carter: Oh, no...
[Fiona comes into a meeting room]
Adam Carter: Fi.
Fiona Carter: [to Adam] You, come.
[to others]
Fiona Carter: I would claim special contingencies.
Harry Pearce: I don't think I can sing...
Fiona Carter: It's all right. I don't like him hang out.


"MI-5: The Lesser of Two Evils (#1.6)" (2002)
Harry Pearce: You called the cavalry I take it?
Tessa Phillips: Anti Terrorism and Special Branch will be here in six minutes.
Harry Pearce: What are they getting, a tram?

Tom Quinn: Lesser evil stops greater evil every single time.
Harry Pearce: You think this?
Tom Quinn: Yes.
Harry Pearce: Even when the greater evil exists only as a fiction?
Tom Quinn: It's a chance we have to take.
Harry Pearce: Not on my watch. We move. This bomb does not go off.

Harry Pearce: Are you threatening me?
Tessa Phillips: You threatened me from way up there on your moral high ground. You hypocritical arsehole.
Harry Pearce: Sounds like you have an ejector seat.
Tessa Phillips: lets just say that it would be better for you if I were to stay here.

Harry Pearce: You know, I feel about as welcome as a fart in a Wind Machine.
Tom Quinn: Sefton B?
Patrick McCann: Aye. It would take out everything south of Bristol. Not that anyone would miss Wales.


"MI-5: Episode #4.2" (2005)
Adam Carter: It's not me asking - this is for your country.
Tash: Oh yeah? What's the country ever done for me?
Harry Pearce: Educated you, provided you with opportunities to find employment, offered you financial assistance if you can't, looked after you when you were sick, ensured you were clothed, housed and fed, protected rather than persecuted you and allowed you to choose your own government. Actually, you're one of the luckier citizens of this planet.

Harry Pearce: ...we could make things more comfortable for you.
Forster: I'm not interested in comfort.
Juliet Shaw: I don't think you've experienced real *discomfort* yet.

Home Secretary: The Prime Minister is minded to make Juliet the new national security coordinator. Do you have a view on that?
Harry Pearce: She's a ruthless, untrustworthy, right-wing crazy who will stop at nothing.
Home Secretary: I got that impression... rather a terrifying stare, also.
Harry Pearce: Mmm, that can be quite useful sometimes.


"MI-5: Episode #3.9" (2004)
Adam Carter: You're not gonna weaken on me, are you, Harry?
Harry Pearce: Never been known to.

Adam Carter: You know what I like about you, Harry, is you never say that 'imagine if it was your daughter' stuff.
Harry Pearce: 'Imagine' and 'if' compassion may be a very good thing but it's not always useful in this job.

Ruth Evershed: Harry, is there any area we don't touch?
Harry Pearce: Ethics, here.
Ruth Evershed: I'm serious. Say, to do with his family. Morgan's daughter, Mary, she's eight. She needs liver transplant, looking for a donor. She has a mother's surname we didn't find before. And he calls her all the time. I mean, it's quite possible that I just never came across this particular piece of information.
Harry Pearce: Because you don't trust Adam and I to use that?


"MI-5: Episode #7.2" (2008)
Harry Pearce: ...and am I going to understand the next bit?
Malcolm Wynn-Jones: It was a low-power beam at 532 nanometers, a pulse of half a nanosecond.
Harry Pearce: I say again...

Harry Pearce: It would be wrong of me to trust you because of where you've been, who you've been with and the threat that Russia currently poses towards this country. Don't take this personally. You're home, take the time, enjoy it.
Lucas North: Home isn't where you live. It's where people understand you. If I don't have trust from MI-5, from you, then I'll never really be home. I'll just be back in England.

Harry Pearce: I have not been authorized to target the Russian operation in London.
Jo Portman: So what do we do?
Harry Pearce: We target the Russian operation in London.


"MI-5: Episode #6.10" (2007)
Adam Carter: He called me a monkey and questioned my sexuality.
Harry Pearce: Yeah, the monkey insult crossed the line.

Harry Pearce: There's something about him I like. He's the opposite of you.
Adam Carter: Am I supposed to take that as a compliment?
Harry Pearce: We need different types. He's got brains.
Adam Carter: This just gets better and better.

Fernando Torres: La vida no vale nada, as they say.
Harry Pearce: Not an expression we hear very much around these parts, but then again we did have rather more success in seeing off the Spanish than you.


"MI-5: Episode #3.10" (2004)
Harry Pearce: But we must protect my officers.
Guy Facer: They're not civilians, Harry. I'm sorry to say this, but it does make the moral dilemma somewhat less acute.

Harry Pearce: Something is wrong?
Ruth Evershed: How do you know?
Harry Pearce: You knocked.
Ruth Evershed: It's Adam.
Harry Pearce: What's the matter?
Ruth Evershed: He just called a cancel of the meeting because he says he's with Danny and Fiona.
Harry Pearce: Well, just routine briefing could wait.
Ruth Evershed: Yes, but...
Harry Pearce: But what?
Ruth Evershed: He said that he bought Fiona chocolates for her birthday as I suggested.
Harry Pearce: That was my suggestion.
Ruth Evershed: Exactly, and...
Harry Pearce: Well, it's probably he's just mixed up.
Ruth Evershed: Harry, I talked Adam. There is no way in this world he'd like to buy Fiona chocolates for her birthday, no matter who suggested it. Not there is anything wrong with chocolates as a birthday present of course. He just wasn't going to do it.


"MI-5: Episode #3.2" (2004)
Harry Pearce: I'm decommissioning you, Tom.
Tom Quinn: That would be ridiculous, Harry.
Harry Pearce: You are no longer in our service.
Tom Quinn: Danny, Zoe, come on!
Zoe Reynolds: ...Just leave it.
Tom Quinn: Come on, back me up!
Danny Hunter: How come we do that?
Tom Quinn: Because we understand each other, we always have.
Danny Hunter: Not any more.

Tom Quinn: Everybody safe? Fred's family? What about Lawrence Sayle? We got him?
[laughs wryly]
Tom Quinn: You can't, you can't tell me. I'm in the public now.
Harry Pearce: Yeah... I envy you.
Tom Quinn: I doubt that.
Harry Pearce: No, I mean... this thing is really... leaving you.
Tom Quinn: The spy thing? Habitual secrecy, given false name, false life?
Harry Pearce: You get really generous pension.
Tom Quinn: Pay off.


"MI-5: Episode #5.9" (2006)
Harry Pearce: You could sell Dempsey's intelligence to the highest bidder, fomenting turf wars, territorial clashes... the more chaos there was, the more money you'd make. You're worse than a traitor, John. You're a pimp.

John Russell: What aren't you telling me, Harry?
Harry Pearce: John, I've been up all night, my psychic powers are at a low ebb. Please elaborate.


"MI-5: Episode #8.4" (2009)
Harry Pearce: Lucas, you invited a man who repeatedly tortured you, into your private space. What do you think a psychologist will say about that?
Lucas North: No idea, but I have a feeling it might be in Latin.

Ruth Evershed: Wasn't there something you wanted to talk to me about?
Harry Pearce: I asked you here today because I needed to talk about Jo to someone.
Ruth Evershed: But there was something else, too.
Harry Pearce: There'll always be something else, Ruth.


"MI-5: Episode #8.8" (2009)
Harry Pearce: Do you still sing, in your choir?
Ruth Evershed: Yes... we're doing Beethoven tonight... Ode To Joy
Harry Pearce: Alle menschen...
Ruth Evershed: ...werden bruder
Harry Pearce: All men will be brothers
Ruth Evershed: Under gentle wings...
[Harry turns away, overcome by emotion for a moment, Ruth lays a hand on his arm]
Ruth Evershed: Harry? Harry all men are brothers, that's why we shed tears for people we don't know


"MI-5: Episode #2.2" (2003)
Ruth Evershed: Why don't we just close the place down?
Harry Pearce: Home Office directive. Community-sensitive policy parameters. In real speak, they don't want a riot.
Ruth Evershed: Bugger the Home Office.
Harry Pearce: Mmm, if only...


"MI-5: Spiders (#2.3)" (2003)
Harry Pearce: You see you always knew where you were with a public school traitor. Just look for the pipe-smoking sixteen year old sodomite with a copy of E.M. Forster under his arm.


"MI-5: Episode #3.6" (2004)
Harry Pearce: I need to be sure, Zoe. You do not deviate from the story that's been agreed.
Zoe Reynolds: I tell the truth under oath, up to be.
Harry Pearce: This is very complex, much more than you think.
Zoe Reynolds: I stick to what we agreed.
Harry Pearce: To tell the truth, but not...
Zoe Reynolds: The truth, not all about the truth.


"MI-5: Episode #2.8" (2003)
Malcolm Wynn-Jones: He can't explode the stick.
Harry Pearce: I'd like to believe that
Malcolm Wynn-Jones: I mean he physically can't. The container's made of titanium steel it's several feet thick. He could run an express train into it. The train would end up in the scrap yard. It requires specialised tools to open. You can't just pop the lid off with a screwdriver.
Zoe Reynolds: Those are oil vats. He's not going to bomb the truck, he's going to bomb those. It's a massive oil fire. What would that do to Uranium?
Malcolm Wynn-Jones: It would make it very angry.


"MI-5: Episode #8.3" (2009)
Ruth Evershed: You're all flustered.
Harry Pearce: Yes, well, that happens sometimes... such as when a group of armed thugs kidnap eight of the wealthiest and most politically powerful men on the planet.
Ruth Evershed: And on my first day back, too. Harry, you shouldn't have.
Harry Pearce: What? Either that or a basket of muffins.


"MI-5: Episode #4.10" (2005)
Harry Pearce: Thats adrenaline withdrawal
Ruth Evershed: Is that what it is? Oh good


"MI-5: Episode #9.1" (2010)
Harry Pearce: This is my "I want some good news" face.


"MI-5: Episode #5.1" (2006)
Harry Pearce: I'm not asking you to mislead people, I'm simply asking for a little restraint.
Paul Millington: These are editorial decisions. I don't interfere with those.
Harry Pearce: I'm sorry-that's the sound of incredulous laughter being stifled.


"MI-5: Episode #3.7" (2004)
Harry Pearce: Colin, tell me something uplifting.
Colin Wells: Well, it's shaping up to be the driest autumn on record.
Harry Pearce: Do you want to be taken out and shot?


"MI-5: Episode #9.3" (2010)
Harry Pearce: It appears I have allowed us to be played by Moscow right from the start
Ruth Evershed: Well not right from the start Harry, that wasn't why you let Aibek go
Harry Pearce: But by allowing him to escape I did the Russians a favour and I have to admit, that was my mistake
Ruth Evershed: A mistake of judgement maybe... but not of decency... Sometimes you have to do what's necessary Harry


"MI-5: Episode #5.8" (2006)
Charles Lee: If a mosque gets blown up tomorrow morning because your information on Paynton's plans was incomplete, you'll be hung out to dry.
Harry Pearce: A man in my position faces that possibility every day, Mr. Lee. You learn to let it not cloud your judgement.


"MI-5: Episode #7.4" (2008)
Harry Pearce: We cannot win the war against terrorism, ever. We can contain it. We can prevent its worst consequences, but we can never defeat it. So when we get an offer to talk, however tentative, however precarious, we take it. We have to.


"MI-5: Episode #3.4" (2004)
Harry Pearce: Bad business.
Danny Hunter: Adam knew Patricia well.
Harry Pearce: Always best to keep personal feelings out, those matters. How's going on the campaign?


"MI-5: Episode #6.2" (2007)
Bob Hogan: This is the guy who was so morally opposed to extraordinary rendition?
Harry Pearce: This isn't extraordinary rendition, Bob. This is kidnap.


"MI-5: Episode #3.5" (2004)
Harry Pearce: Ruth, whatever you're doing in your spare time Is entirely your business.


"MI-5: Episode #8.2" (2009)
Harry Pearce: Did I not say to shut that bloody journalist up? We're supposed to be MI-5, not the Stoke Newington branch of the Green Party.


"MI-5: Episode #2.9" (2003)
Harry Pearce: ...I want to make one thing clear now: the next person who breaks the rules, the next person who messes up, the next paper clip that goes astray from this office and you are out. Is that clear?
Tom Quinn: Oh, physician heal thyself...


"MI-5: Episode #2.4" (2003)
Danny Hunter: Me? Undercover in a bank?
Harry Pearce: You have a history of swindling credit cards. I would have thought that made you perfect for the job.


"MI-5: Episode #7.1" (2008)
Arkardy Katchimov: You look after Lucas now he's home. He's weak, he's tired... and tell him, eat broccoli.
Harry Pearce: I think he's suffered enough, don't you?


"MI-5: Episode #4.1" (2005)
Harry Pearce: ...their main animosity is directed towards America. Consequently, our knowledge of their cadres and cell structures is quite sketchy.
Richard Boyd: Sketchy?... Sketchy as in non-existent?
Harry Pearce: No. Sketchy as in your knowledge of Al-qaeda when they were learning to fly and sunning themselves in Florida.