ITV drama Broadchurch aired earlier this year: it seemed to be the talk of the nation and sparked the juiciest murder mystery “whodunit” from recent memory; starring David Tennant and Olivia Colman, they steered the series and the investigation to the killer.
Ultimately the series became a lot more than a murder mystery – it became an emotive, atmospheric and engaging drama about how a small town copes in the aftermath of grief. 11 year-old Danny Latimer was found murdered on the beach of the small town of Broadchurch and over several weeks, viewers followed the investigation into his murder, as well as the family’s emotional turmoil over the tragic event.
Tennant and Colman as DI Alex Hardy and DS Ellie Miller were fantastic, both had a great chemistry together –bickering their way through the investigation but by the end they had certainly come to an understanding that they were both there for their partner if they needed it. The series had a great cast, and no one was left out of the suspect list. It wasn’t just the acting that made this drama so good – it was the atmospheric music, the camera work that perfectly captured a rural, small coastal town but managed to make it look eerie and the overall storyline which left viewers captivated.
As a side note a personal geeky moment for Doctor Who fans was certainly David Tennant and Arthur Darvill sharing screen time together, not to mention Olivia Colman and David Bradley who both had guest spots in the show when Arthur was involved.
But back to Broadchurch – it’s not often that a murder mystery drama leaves you feeling like your heart has been ripped out, and at several points during the series, that is exactly how I felt (and not all of them are related to the murder directly). Writer Chris Chibnall (ex-Doctor Who writer) really does a brilliant job in creating characters that not only look likely to be the killer, but have harrowing pasts. I’m not going to give anything away, but at points, particularly towards the end, I felt slightly heartbroken for the characters in question (David Tennant I’m looking at you in particular).
By not giving away too much about the ending, Olivia Colman really proved during the series that she is a real gem of British acting talent (and her recent success at the TV BAFTA’s further sealed this). Her sheer raw emotive acting is stunning to watch and hopefully she will receive more recognition for her work on this drama.
The final scene of the town gathering to light beacons in Danny Latimer’s memory is a sentimental and heart-warming way to end this series. I wished that it didn’t have to end as it certainly brightened up my Monday evenings. What’s more I was delighted to learn that a second series was being planned by Chibnall!
I’ve deliberately kept this post spoiler free in the hope that some have not stumbled across this drama yet, and will be able to watch and fully appreciate it. It’s out now on DVD in the UK, and trust me, you will not regret it – it’s a gem of British TV!
Alec Hardy: I bought wine
Ellie Miller: Oh that’s very kind of you-
Hardy: And flowers
Miller: Oh, you didn’t –
Hardy: And chocolates.
Miller (surprised) Wow.
Hardy: Wasn’t sure which to choose, so I just bought them all.