Events pivot around Charles Thoroughgood (Charlie Cox), a wet-behind-the-ears MI6 agent whose university friendship with Russian diplomat Viktor Koslov sees him fast-tracked into the middle of a urgent campaign to undermine Operation Legacy, a Soviet plot to destroy British infrastructure. But what will he find in this dark hinterland? Clearly peril and betrayal, but also shocking information about his own family and – via unhappily married espionage widow Anna (Romola Garai) – an insight into the emotional hazards of a life lived in such shark-infested waters.
Like most of Milne’s work it’s earnest to a fault, but also psychologically credible thanks to Cox and Garai’s expressive and committed performances. It also looks great: the permanent dusk of blackout 1974 is exploited to maximum effect.
Le Vieux Comptoir
Francophiles thanks to France's food and drink might quite like this Marylebone venue. It's a wine bar, wine shop, restaurant, deli and grocery, with everything sourced from French producers. Even the coffee and tea comes from France. The dining menu includes a daily terrine, escargots, two types of foie gras, confit de canard, beef tartare and a selection of French salads and omelettes. Seafood comes from the île d'Yeu, and charcuterie and cheese from farms in Lyon, Savoie and the French Basque Country. Each of the wines on the all-French list is available by the 125ml or 250ml glass, alongside Champagnes and other French sparkling wines. And if you can't wait to try your bottle bought from the cellar? They'll let you drink it on-site for a £10 corkage. Bar nibbles (Provence olives, bread and butter, charcuterie and cheese) are available at the bar, too. Keep an eye out for wine tastings, grower showcases and other special events.
Venue says: “The season of cheese fondue and raclette is going to start at Le Vieux Comptoir! A taste of regional France, in Marylebone.”