Mobile tinker tailor soldier spy 97223
In 1973, an indiscretion by a Soviet operative in Hong Kong confirms the existence of the mole to Oliver Lacon, the Civil Service overseer of the Circus in Whitehall . Smiley is recalled from retirement to investigate and ultimately unmasks Haydon after a tortuous, soul-searching quest. Under interrogation, Haydon reveals much of his secret past to Smiley and plans are set in motion to exchange Haydon for Western agents held in the Eastern Bloc but before this happens he is killed while still in Circus custody. It is strongly implied, though never stated, that the killer was Prideaux.
Haydon is portrayed rather in the mould of real-life double agent Kim Philby who is known to have compromised le Carré's own career in MI6; certainly his actions parallel Philby's ability to paralyse the British intelligence service.  Haydon claims that, although he was recruited by Soviet intelligence at university in the 1930s, he only became a serious agent for them following the Suez crisis when it became clear to him that Britain was no longer a world power and, in his view, was subservient to America. This perceived inferiority led to Haydon developing a deep hatred for America and resolved him to damage them as much as possible by spying for the Russians.
Haydon was played by Ian Richardson in the 1979 BBC television serial based on the novel .  In the 1988 BBC Radio 4 series, he was played by Edward de Souza .  In the 2011 film adaptation , he was played by Colin Firth .  In the 2011 Radio 4 series, The Complete Smiley , he was portrayed by Michael Feast.