There's only one thing that's got me talking this week...
Usually, my 5 telly talking points of the week are from different shows and different genres, and whilst I could have included something from Love Island: All Stars or this week's Emmys, there is only one thing I'm talking about (some would say obsessively) and that's The Traitors.
Having launched with 3m viewers, just 300k shy of the 3.3m who tuned in to the series one finale back in December 2022, the show has seen its ratings grow achieving an all-time high this week of 4m on Wednesday, before breaking that record again on Thursday with 4.4m viewers before ending the week on 4.3m.
As we prepare ourselves for the final week of The Traitors and an extended 70-minute finale, here are my 5 talking points from this week's incredible episodes... And as ever, please don't read ahead if you haven't caught up yet as there are spoilers ahead.
1. "Breakfast tomorrow is going to be very interesting."
That epic funeral march twist that saw Diane receive the send-off she deserves
After waiting what felt like 17 years, but in reality, was just 5 incredibly long days, to find out whether or not Diane drank from the poisoned chalice, Wednesday's episode of The Traitors did NOT disappoint. In fact, episode seven was one of the most perfect hours of reality television I've ever watched.
With speculation rife about what will happen to Diane - Did she know the drink was poisoned and confront Miles? Did she pour the drink into another glass and therefore not drink from it herself? Did she hand it to somebody else? Or did the Traitors miss their deadline and therefore Diane wouldn't be poisoned and instead become a Traitor? - all very good theories, but none of them were right.
Instead, after two minutes into episode seven, we had our answer. Diane DID drink from the chalice and Claudia very quickly told us "The deed is done and a Faithful has drunk from the poisoned chalice." but THEN came the twist, "What the Traitors don't know is that the poison doesn't work with immediate effect." before predicting correctly that "Breakfast tomorrow is going to be very interesting."
As we cut to the following morning, secret mother-and-son duo Ross and Diane were first into breakfast and as they chatted about the game, Diane warned him to lay off Zack and he admitted that he suspects she might be a Traitor. But then, there was a knock at the door and in comes Traitor Miles whose face was A PICTURE when he saw Diane sitting at the breakfast table, very much alive.
Next in was Harry, who was also shocked by Diane's presence at breakfast and then it was Paul's turn to discover their poisoned Faithful having her usual morning cuppa. Then, panic set in when Claudia broke the news to the players that "the Traitors did still strike" and that one of them had been poisoned and "by the end of today's mission, they will be dead."
The second Claudia left the room, the players tried to decipher what exactly was the poisoning act, considering a kiss, a hug, and heavy suspicion that it could have been a drink.
The missions are usually my least favourite part of an episode, however on Wednesday, the episode would have been poorer without it. The players were asked to meet Claudia outside of the castle dressed in black to pay their respects to the poisoned player, with Claudia - dressed in full funeral attire, complete with horse-drawn carriage - confirmed someone would be murdered by the end of the funeral march towards the poisoned player's final resting place.
Along the way, they'd be given clues as to who the poisoned player was and would win £7,000 if they correctly guessed who they were before the burial. What followed was almost 15 minutes of incredible production values that any television drama would be proud of.
At the end of their march, the players were greeted by three open coffins, belonging to Evie, Paul, and Dian. As they each got into their respective coffins, it was up to the remaining players to decide who they thought was poisoned by throwing a black rose inside and explaining to Claudia why. When it was Ross' turn to place his rose inside a coffin, he chose his mums and out of view, she was able to say "Bye" to him.
After each player had cast their votes, Claudia walked over to the coffins and said "The player poisoned by the Traitors is..." before rather dramatically shutting the lid on Diane's coffin and confimring that the group had added £7000 to their prize fund.
2. "Do you reckon there's two Traitors going at each other?"
Harry's incredible gameplay as he took two Traitors out in one week
At 22, British Army Engineer Harry might be the youngest player, but he's proved himself to be the smartest when it comes to playing the game and this week secured his place as the favourite to walk away with that life-changing amount of money.
After pleading with Claudia at the start of the series to become a Traitor, we now understand why when he got that all-important tap on the shoulder from Claudia, Harry licked his lips. He was here to play the game. Quite how brilliantly he was going to play it, no one could have predicted.
From the moment he turned on Traitor Ash in episode four, Harry was unstoppable in taking down his fellow Traitors with episode seven seeing him and Paul team up to take down Miles, following Diane's slow poisoned death. Whilst letting Paul do all the talking, Harry planted the seeds of Paul also being a traitor.
During Wednesday's Round Table, there was a tennis match between Paul and Miles, as both Traitors went head to head to try and deflect suspicions away from themselves and onto one another. But it was Harry who delivered the best line of the series yet. Turning to Zack, he whisphered "Do you reckon there's two Traitors going at each other? and when Zack agreed, I think THAT was the moment social media came alight, and we all declared Harry our winner.
After a lengthy battle between Miles and Paul, with question marks against both of them and a rogue vote for Andrew from Jaz, it was Miles who received the most votes and was the next player to be banished from the game.
Not content with just taking down Miles, the following night, during episode eight, Harry began to question his alliance with Paul after hearing from Charlotte that he was talking about him in the jeep after the challenge. And sure enough, when it came to the Round Table, Harry turned on Paul leaving him in disbelief as Harry didn't hold back, reeling off a list of guilty traits and instances that could categorise Paul as a Traitor.
At the vote, it was tight between Jaz and Paul, however, Paul received the most votes and was banished from the game resulting in a celebration so joyous that even Claudia struggled to contain her excitement.
So convincing was Harry's measured performance that he was treated like the hero. But after managing to maintain the likeability and humility he had at the start of the show, is his bubble about to burst? As we reach the final stages of the game, is our hero about to fall? And could Ross be the one to do it?
As we began to see at the end of Friday's episode, Harry's days may be numbered as Ross discovers he killed his mum. (Scroll down for more on that!) But does Harry deserve to win? Absolutely. Will he? Well, that's anyone's guess.
3. "You wee shit!"
Diane's reaction to finding out that Miles, Harry and Paul were Traitors
Whilst there's a lot to be said about how brilliant The Traitors is, one thing that was missing from the first series was witnessing the moment when the players discovered who the Traitors were when they were banished or murdered. Thankfully, they've fixed that this year as we get to see those reactions straight after the main show on BBC Two during The Traitors: Uncloaked.
Hosted by comedian Ed Gamble, The Traitors: Uncloaked swaps the usual companion show shiny floor setup for a visualised podcast setup and it's all the better for it. Cutting out all the usual filler that these shows tend to have, Ed sits down each night after the show with a mix of celebrity fans and series one players to discuss that night's episodes. Before welcoming that evening's banished/murdered players to discuss their time on the show.
But before they come out, we witness the moment they find out who the Traitors were and as expected, Diane's reactions during Wednesday's episode were priceless. She really is the gift that keeps on giving. This series would not have been what it was without her.
Sitting down with banished Traitor Miles, Diane asks him who he thinks the Traitors are and is shocked when he reveals to her that he was one, calling him a "bastard" and a "wee shit" and telling him that she thought she'd "never like a Traitor". But of course, it's all in jest as she reassures him that she does still love him, regardless of the part he played in her murder, complimenting him on playing "an amazing game".
As the other Traitors were revealed to her, Diane called Harry a "wee bastard" and after seeing Paul's name written down, she admitted that her "kids were right, I would be shit at this game" before telling Miles "One of the nicest things you said to me was - Your children would be proud of you" before informing him that "One of them particularly is proud of me" and revealing that Ross is her son!
Diane really was the gift that kept on giving and thank God she lasted as long as she did, even though I would have loved to see how she played it in the final.
4. "She was my mum first!"
Ross breaking the fourth wall and giving us a wink
During episode eight as the players headed out on their mission, during their journey to the church, Ross told Charlotte, Jasmine and Paul that "Diane will be looking down on us now and going - Go get the Traitors guys. Go get the Traitors now.", showing off his impeccable Diane impression.
However, it's not just Ross who can do a great impression of his mum, so too can Paul whose "Absolutely" genuinely made me feel as though Diane had risen from that coffin and was back with us.
But it was Jasmine who unknowingly set up one of the greatest moments in The Traitors yet, and it had nothing to do with the game. Remembering Diane, Jasmine said "I love her. She was like my mum." to which Paul replied with "She WAS my mum", alluding to the fact that at the start of the series, many believed that Paul was Diane's secret son leading to that now infamous "...but Ross is." reveal from Diane.
Let's not forget, as we near the final week, their secret is still safe. No one has any idea that Ross witnessed his mother being shut in a coffin after being poisoned. So he playfully replies to both Jasmine and Paul to say "She was my mum first!" before giving a knowing look up to the camera and giving us a wink. A risky move? Perhaps. But I screamed when it happened. so for that and the memes it's produced, thank you, Ross. Sensational television.
5. "What about Diane?"
The feeling that revenge is coming as Ross is recruited by the Traitors
Speaking of Ross, episode nine saw the two remaining Traitors - Harry and Andrew - choose to recruit, rather than murder. Why? Because Harry had the shield, so if no one was murdered, it would look to the Faithfuls as though the Traitors had tried to murder him. Honest, as I said earlier on in this piece, the man really knows how to play this game.
After being asked to join the Traitors, Ross accepted to honour his mum and as he made his way to the Traitors' conclave, was shocked to discover that Andrew and Harry were the Traitors. After calling them "two crafty bastards" and admitting that he "didn't think it would be you two" Harry proudly admitted to putting "all three of them in the ground".
When confronted with "Don't be doing that to us two", Harry assured them that he wouldn't. But if I know Harry, and I think I do, his assurances during this game count for nothing. But for the first time, by recruiting Ross, Harry may have made his first wrong move and sealed his fate ahead of the final.
After discovering that Harry was responsible for murdering his mum, Ross quizzes Harry on his decision to murder Diane, not disclosing the real reason why he found her funeral more upsetting than most.
When Harry replied that Diane was "getting too brave, so we put her in her place" the LOOK that Ross gave Harry screamed anger, revenge and all that good stuff. If looks alone could kill, Harry would have been out of there and into Ed Gamble's Uncloaked studio faster than he found those Shakespeare books in the library.
So is the game up for Harry? Will he live (or rather die) to regret the decision to recruit? Is Ross about to seek revenge for the death of his mother? Honestly, whatever happens, I'm here for it. The way the events in this series have unfolded is more gripping than most television dramas.
The Traitors concludes Wednesday to Friday at 9pm on BBC One with the first nine episodes available to watch now on BBC iPlayer