"Inspector George Gently" The Burning Man (TV Episode 2008) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • The charred corpse of a man believed to be Ruari O'Connell is found near RAF base Huxton and a ring found in his stomach leads Gently and Bacchus to his lover cafe owner Wanda Lane. When a second Irishman is shot dead supercilious Special Branch commander Empton arrives, telling Gently that Ruari was an IRA informer on the run from vengeful compatriots and he believes Ruari faked his death to avoid them. In that case who was the burning man? And will Bacchus survive a hostage situation to allow Gently to take him fishing?

  • After the remains of a burned body is found there is little left to identify the victim. The man was shot in the head, then doused in petrol and set alight. They also find a ring in his stomach with the name Wanda engraved on it which DS Bacchus quickly traces to Wanda Lane, the owner of a roadside café. She identifies the dead man as Ruairy O'Connell. Scotland Yard Special Branch Commander Empton arrives unannounced but won't tell Gently why he's there which makes Gently wonder is Special Branch might have an interest in their burned body. When Carmel O'Shaughnessy reports her father missing for the last 36 hours, it takes them to O'Shaughnessy's place of work, the nearby RAF supply station. They establish that O'Connell and O'Shaughnessy were mates. They also learn that 144 Sten guns have gone missing. As Empton uses his own methods to get information, Gently begins to wonder just whose burned corpse they found and just what game his Special Branch colleague is playing.

  • After an unidentified badly burnt body is found near an RAF base in 1964, Gently works alongside Special Branch officers who suspect the victim was involved with the IRA.


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