Spooks Wiki
Harry Pearce
Show Spooks
First seen Thou Shalt Not Kill
Last seen Series 10, Episode 6
Job Head of MI5's Section D
Status Alive
Portrayer Peter Firth

Sir Henry James 'Harry' Pearce KBE is the Head of the Counter-Terrorism Department of MI5; and is highly respected by his team. He is the only consistent Character throughout all 10 seasons of Spooks

Personal life[]

Harry met his wife Jane at Oxford where they started out as friends. Jane knew about Harry's past career in the army but she didn't know that he had recently applied and been accepted into MI5 until just after she married Harry on the 15th of June 1977. (Source: Harry's Diary)

In Series 3, Pearce was revealed to be divorced, with two children. He has a daughter, Catherine, on 25 April 1980, followed by a son, Graham, on 18 June 1983, before "Jane filed for divorce, citing irreconcilable differences" in October 1986. At some point between the divorce and her on-screen appearance, his daughter Catherine changed her surname to her mother's maiden name, Townsend.

Prior career[]

After attending the University of Oxford, Pearce went to the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst before joining the Parachute Regiment. Upon leaving the army, he joined MI5, where he completed his training in June 1977.

His first assignment at the service was to A Section, in Northern Ireland, where he was an agent handler during the Provisional IRA's campaign against the British state, until his close colleague Bill Crombie was kidnapped and killed in August 1978. Pearce was then seconded to the Secret Intelligence Service (aka MI6), where he was stationed in Paris, under Juliet Shaw. During this time he worked in Iran, where he had an affair with Shaw. His wife Jane's discomfort in Paris led the couple to move to Cologne before the end of February 1979. In Cologne, he worked against the left-wing terrorists the Red Army Faction, and undertook a black op with only C's knowledge, before his secondment ended in November 1979.

At some point in the Cold War Harry and Connie James took part in Operation: Renaisance which was intended to convince the KGB that they had a mole within MI5. With Connie as bait the two travelled to Russia; unfortunately during this time Connie was turned and become a real mole within the service.

During this time, Harry along with Hugo Prince and Richard Dolby are responsible for the setting up of Operation: Sugarhorse. Sugarhorse was intended to be the West's weapon against Russian nuclear capability. The three MI5 agents recruited West-minded Russians to infiltrate the highest levels of government to be used to cripple any attack against Britain of her allies. Sugarhorse was ultimately compromised by Connie James who was a Russian double agent and lover of Hugo Prince.

On his return to MI5, Pearce was assigned to Section D, the Counter-Terrorism department (then at Gower Street), where he was a junior field officer. During his time as an officer, he saved the lives of two Prime Ministers (Thatcher and Major). Pearce was promoted to senior field officer between October 1986 and December 1988, and appointed to his current role in January 1994.

As Head of Section D[]

In Episode 2 of Series 7, Harry, through Lucas North, manages to frame Arkady Kachimov, the FSB resident in London, as an MI5 mole. Under cover of providing him protection, Harry and Ros meet with him, but Harry shoots Kachimov in revenge for the death of Adam Carter.

In Episode 3 of Series 7, Harry learned from Lucas North that Russian intelligence interrogated him about an operation called Sugarhorse. Harry contacts his mentor, Bernard Qualtrough, a retired spy to consult him about who could have been a mole within this highly classified operation.

In Episode 8 of Series 7, after negotiating with the head of FSB operations in London to not kill his officers as they attempt to defuse a nuclear bomb about to obliterate central London, he is captured and shown with his mouth taped and being zipped up in a body bag, with a helicopter in the background.

In Episode 1 of Series 8, Harry is being held by a group of Russians who plan to sell him to a group of rogue elements of the Indian Secret Service, of the CIA and of MI6. The Russians are killed by the rogue officers and Harry is also apparently killed. The team find a video of his killing on the Internet but refuse to believe he is dead. Harry is interrogated by the officers about uranium weapons that he stole from them in Baghdad. The plan was to use these weapons to justify the war in Iraq but Harry went rogue to stop them. He hid the uranium and told only one officer at MI5 about the uranium's location: Ruth Evershed. Harry and a captured Ruth once again meet and their kidnappers use Ruth's new family to try to get them to reveal the location of the uranium. Ruth tells them but they shoot her husband. It is revealed that they had already checked the location she gave and that it wasn't there. Harry is the only person who really knows where the uranium is. Refusing to tell them, the officer threatens to kill Ruth but is killed by Lucas before he can. Back on the Grid, Malcolm, who went out of his way to save Ruth's stepson, tells Harry that he wants to retire. Though reluctant at first, he accepts and Malcolm leaves MI5.

In Episode 2 of Series 8, Nicholas Blake, the Home Secretary, comes to Harry and tells him that he was informed of a secret meeting in Basel between rogue elements of Western and Eastern intelligence services, including the CIA and MI6. Harry and Blake start to plan for the downfall of the meeting's plans for a new world order.

Harry meets with Samuel Walker, the head of the CIA in London, to discuss this threat. Both suspect that a CIA agent is involved in the conspiracy. Walker is later killed by Sarah Caufield, Lucas North's girlfriend and the CIA mole. Along with Ruth, Harry tries to discover who killed Walker and find out more about the meeting in Basel.

During the investigation of a British bank supposedly planning to make a profit out of the UK's crashing economy, Harry and Ruth discover that the conspiracy, codenamed Nightingale, own an account in that bank worth 6 billion dollars. They also discover that Nightingale is framing the Home Secretary as doing dodgy deals with the Mafia. He is forced to resign, leaving Section D alone to fight Nightingale.

In the series finale, Nightingale has pushed India and Pakistan into a state of near-war. The commander-in-chief of the Pakistani army, General Ali, is a Nightingale asset and is planning an unofficial hardliner seizure of power. As the two different factions meet to discuss peace in London, Harry works to try to save the talks that are being threatened by Sarah Caulfield and Russel Price, head of the CIA in Europe and Sarah's Nightingale handler. After capturing Sarah, Harry sends Ros and Lucas to the hotel where the Home Secretary is meeting with the Pakistani President. Lucas manages to save the President and Harry makes him appear before the TV crew to show Nightingale that they failed. However, Ros and the Home Secretary are still in the building when a bomb blows up.

In the first episode of series 9, shortly after Ros's funeral, Ruth shows Harry a file that places Nicholas Blake at the meeting in Basel and being a member of Nightingale's inner circle, one of its highest-ranking members. His forced resignation was a smoke screen so that he wouldn't be suspected of being a part of Nightingale. It was he who had ordered the attack against the hotel. Furious at the betrayal of the man he thought of as a friend, Harry goes to his home in Scotland and poisons him.