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Episode Review - Broadchurch 1.4

Broadchurch Episode 1.4


Broadchurch airs Wednesday nights at 10 on BBCAm.

Broadchurch 1.4
BBCAm (my edit)

Episode 4, halfway through the series, and we have a new lead that might be a red herring, and another that might unlock the whole case!

The Rundown:

  • Ollie finds out that Jack-the-news-seller had a previous conviction fro sex with a minor that he won't talk about when confronted.
  • Reverend Paul is seen lurking, and doesn't have anyone to vouch for where he was That Night, and gets sort of twitchy when they ask him about it.
  • The Psychic turns out to be a fraud, as we all knew, arrested for being a fraud more than once.
  • Beth feels more alone than ever.
  • Susan is sometimes called Elaine and won't say why, and when Maggie-the-Editor confronts her about it, she breaks in, spooks her, and then threatens her with the worst violence you can do to a woman--which is probably the most shocking thing she could have done in a show full of pretty shocking things, because she's a woman threatening that sort of violence on another woman.
  • Nigel and Susan are "connected now" and he wants nothing to do with her, but she won't leave him alone. And Nige seems to be really intent on ingratiating himself. What's that all about?
  • DI Hardy is out of medicine and has an episode that leaves him bleeding on the floor and taken to the hospital, though he makes Becka-the-Inkeeper keep it a secret.
  • Tom still isn't saying whatever he knows, be we now know that he and Danny were practically computer whiz kids, naturals at it.
  • Miller doesn't like how she's already getting hard and suspicious.
  • Karen-from-The-Herald convinces the Lattimers to talk to her paper, and since Beth is the most photogenic, she gets the pictures--which brings the press down on them, hard, and now everyone is taking pictures of everything and harassing people.
  • We get out first scene this week that could be called 'fun', though it's fun in the way that awkwardness is fun: Hardy doesn't back out of dinner, and shows up at Miller's house with three guest-gifts because he couldn't decide which one to bring, and then stands there in her kitchen being abrasive and strange and not really having any people skills at all. Over dinner, we learn that he was married and has a daughter, but the Job (he says) drove them away, with the implication that he never sees them. We also learn that he worries at least a little that Miller doesn't like him and doesn't like working with him, and he and her husband bond a little over Mr Miller not confirming or denying the fears. And then we learn exactly why he shouldn't drink when he's out of meds.

Meanwhile, there's all sorts of connections in this town and they're all going bonkers. Everyone is developing a theory, everyone thinks they know something, but no one is coming forward, and the only lead they have is Jack, who doesn't want anything to do with it and tells them that he's "not that kind of man" and that he's innocent. Funny, out of everyone on this show who has claimed to be innocent, I feel like he might actually be telling the truth...though he's acting shifty with the burning of every picture of Danny he has and all.

Really, I feel bad for those Sea Scouts or whatever they call them. One adult there is Jack, who has a shady past, and the other is Susan / Elaine, who is just horrible. She was horrible before, but she wasn't threateningly dangerous; now she's horrifying, she still has Danny's skateboard, and she's acting like she has split personalities or something.

But we have movement on the case, even with all of this!

  • The boat we saw burning at the end of last episode has proof of accellerants AND traces of hair that match Danny's.
  • Jack finds Danny's phone--he says in the bottom of the delivery bags, and he seems to be telling the truth, but now I'm getting hardened and paranoid, and it's clear Mark doesn't believe him.
  • Plus, there was a case 15 years ago in Yorkshire that seems to match this one, and it was only 5 miles away from where Jack used to live.
  • Mark about sums it up when he says "What've we done to ourselves?" I think that's probably the closest we'll get to a theme or a moral to this story.

The show is still good, still beautifully made, and it's nice that the pace feels like it's picking up a bit. If it follows the typical pattern of a drama, the next four episodes should be even more intense, and probably start snowballing bigtime...but this is also a quieter sort of show, so who knows. I'm just totally taken in by rubbernecking these people's lives as they fall apart, which makes me feel bad; maybe that's another theme or moral--a commentary on the state of media and loss and crime. It's a show about how crimes are a show. Which is brilliant. As far as I can tell, the procedural part of it is closer than anything else I've seen to how crimes are actually investigated--how they're slow, painstaking, have lots of loose ends and weird conjunctions, how it's hard to tell what's good and what's not. If it's as accurate as it looks and feels, maybe it's really how crimes are. And maybe it wants to tell us that they're messy and frustrating and we need to stop getting in the way for entertainment value.

On to the next episode!

Samantha Tweets, Tumbles, Blogs, and missed a few weeks because of a terrible sinus infection, and apologizes.

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