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Broadchurch

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Was there no forum for season 1?  I just started watching this and only saw threads starting in season 2 in the vault.  I'm all confused since the reorg.  Also, I don't like the idea that things might be discussed in a catch all topic that are spoilers for someone just starting a series.  This is especially an issue in Netflix as people often catch on to series like this years after they were first aired.  It will make people like me avoid the thread so as not to trip over any spoilers.

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I'm rewatching the series now via Netflix and really enjoying it from the perspective of knowing what happens later in the series. A few times I have noticed a small action or what felt like throwaway dialogue at the time, that turned out to have more significance than initially guessed. I especially enjoy watching David Tennant and Olivia Colman interact with each other. It's done well enough that you can see why he is exasperated by her, and she by him, but that they keep trying to make the working relationship productive. The scene where she feels compelled to invite him to dinner with her family still makes me laugh aloud. 

However,  Mark Latimer just annoys me to no end, even more so than when I first watched the series. How self-absorbed do you have to be to not realize that when a murder investigation is going on to figure out who killed your son, that you need to tell the cops the truth about where you were at the time of the murder? (Not that Mark's brand of stupidity and self-centeredness is confined to Broadchurch; I've seen this in multiple procedurals.) If nothing else, lying to them will end up in them eventually discovering that your alibi is fake, and then they will waste time focusing on where you really were and why you lied about it, instead of making actual progress toward identifying the killer. 

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A couple of days ago I rewatched the first episode of Gracepoint (the US version of Broadchurch that also starred David Tennant but set in the US with primarily US actors), and doing so made me realize something about DS Miller's character. In Gracepoint, the same character is played by Anna Gunn, and for most of the episode, I felt something was off. That wasn't just for her character; although I normally like Michael Pena, he was completely unconvincing in this. But the major difference between Broadchurch DS Miller and Gracepoint DS Miller was a difference in personality and outlook. Specifically, Olivia Colman conveys that DS Miller, while serious about her job, has a normally cheerful outlook and is inclined to think the best of people until they prove her wrong. And a large part of what makes Broadchurch work for me is seeing the arc that her character goes through, from her unthinking assumption that nobody she knows could be a killer (or even do anything particularly wrong) to her realization that many of the people she thought she knew have some fairly serious secrets and that one of them is in fact a killer. In Gracepoint, though, at least in the first episode, Anna Gunn's version of DS Miller comes across as 100% serious all the time, and there just isn't that cheerful personality and naive acceptance of people at face value. I don't blame Anna Gunn; there were some subtle changes that made it so her personality, as well as that of others, was toned down. But overall, rewatching the US version has given me much more appreciation for the level of acting that was going on in Broadchurch. It's not showy acting, just quietly convincing. I'd be curious to know how much of the difference between the two shows came from the director's perspective and how much was purely a decision by the actor. For example, there is a scene in both where the the father (Mark) demands to go see the body. In Broadchurch, the tone makes it clear the father doesn't entirely believe it's his son who is dead, or at least he still has some hope it's not his son. In Gracepoint, the father sounds angry when he makes the demand, and there's no sense that he doesn't believe it, nor is there that line of dialogue when he sees Danny, that all the way over there he'd been convinced it was a mistaken identification. 

There is something I find puzzling in the first episode. After Chloe goes to the beach to put Danny's toy there, why is the family then so upset that the news is reported online? I understand the cops not wanting the information out there until next of kin have been notified, but that's already happened. Why should the entire Latimer family freak out because there is online news stating that Danny is dead? Why would it even matter to them? I've never been in that position and sincerely hope never to be, but after the cops have told you that your child is dead, what difference does it make if other people find out about it via news sites? Presumably by that point they would have called any other extended family members and close friends to let them know. Also, even though the young reporter shouldn't have tweeted it until he had confirmation of the identity, anyone else at the beach who saw Chloe put the toy there could have figured out that it was Danny. This is supposed to be a fairly small community, so most likely there would have been at least a few people at the beach who knew who she was. So while again, the reporter shouldn't have tweeted it without confirmation, it's Chloe's fault that the identity of the body was leaked to the media, not Miller's fault just because she answered her cell phone when her nephew called to try to get confirmation. What was she supposed to do, tell him his guess was wrong? She flatly told him not to publish it. 

Edited by BookWoman56
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On 12/31/2018 at 7:23 PM, Yeah No said:

Was there no forum for season 1?

No, there weren't separate episode threads or discussion for S1 because S1 aired in March 2013 and the PTV forums weren't created until the end of 2013 (and most people joined the PTV forums in the mass migration after TWoP closed in March 2014).

On 12/31/2018 at 7:23 PM, Yeah No said:

I don't like the idea that things might be discussed in a catch all topic that are spoilers for someone just starting a series.  This is especially an issue in Netflix as people often catch on to series like this years after they were first aired.  It will make people like me avoid the thread so as not to trip over any spoilers.

I'm the same way. I either avoid the thread altogether until I'm completely caught up or I click on the thread title, hold my hand over the screen to avoid accidentally reading anything, scroll down the bottom, and post  about the episode(s) without reading any of the previous posts. I always feel guilty about doing that because I learned old school forum rules back in ye olden days and one of those rules was that it was rude to just post without reading what other people had already posted. Once I'm all caught up, I go back and read the old posts because I feel guilty.

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On 2/2/2019 at 5:04 AM, ElectricBoogaloo said:

No, there weren't separate episode threads or discussion for S1 because S1 aired in March 2013 and the PTV forums weren't created until the end of 2013 (and most people joined the PTV forums in the mass migration after TWoP closed in March 2014).

I'm the same way. I either avoid the thread altogether until I'm completely caught up or I click on the thread title, hold my hand over the screen to avoid accidentally reading anything, scroll down the bottom, and post  about the episode(s) without reading any of the previous posts. I always feel guilty about doing that because I learned old school forum rules back in ye olden days and one of those rules was that it was rude to just post without reading what other people had already posted. Once I'm all caught up, I go back and read the old posts because I feel guilty.

Thanks for the explanation, I remember TWoP but didn't make the connection about this show's first season predating the migration to this site.  It's weird how they came out with a new season every 2 years instead of one, but I guess that's because the cast was probably so busy with other stuff.  I learned old school forum rules too so I feel the same way about not reading the posts, except that I'm not that good at shielding myself from seeing spoilery stuff especially on this new big screen I have!  Maybe I'll try it on my laptop.

Edited by Yeah No

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Although I've watched all three seasons, I'm deliberately making an effort not to reference anything specific to any episodes after the first episode, or the subsequent seasons. It's a little difficult to avoid making general observations, when there's the perspective of having seen the entire series. But I don't think it's a spoiler to comment that the killer turns out to be someone that Miller knows or that she discovers that various people connected to the case have secrets. That's fairly standard in this type of show; when I watched the first episode the first time around, I knew by the end of the first episode that this wasn't going to be a Criminal Minds type of show, where the focus is on finding a perpetrator that is more or less unknown to local law enforcement. For the series to make narrative sense, there has to be an arc for Miller that shakes up her assumptions about life in her small town and the people she knows.

It reminds me a bit of murder mysteries in which you have not only the damage done by the death of the victim, but also the collateral damage done by having suspicion focus on various people who end up not being the killer. That is, in the death of a child, it's normal for one parent to wonder, at least to himself/herself, if the other parent is guilty. It's normal to wonder if a family friend or member of the extended family is the killer, even while thinking that it must have been a stranger. But the fact of having that suspicion almost always means that you can't regard the people you've suspected quite the same way ever again. Because if you can envision a scenario in which this person you know would kill someone and then cover it up, you're admitting to yourself (at least on a subconscious level), that you don't know this person as well as you thought you did, or that you sense there is a potential for violence there that you would have previously not acknowledged. And if various procedurals have taught me anything, it's that during the course of a murder investigation, people's secrets that are more or less unrelated to the murder will be uncovered, and that far too many people are stupid enough to think that they can just lie to the police about where they were, what they were doing, etc., and the police will just accept their word for it rather than checking alibis, and those same people will then be shocked when the police decide that if suspect A was lying about where he/she was, then suspect A could well be lying about other things as well, up to and including the murder itself.  I would give bonus points to any suspect who immediately said, "Okay, I was actually shacking up with my best friend's spouse" or "Yeah, I was actually playing hooky from work/school so I could go do something fun" instead of insisting on some fake alibi that will fall apart the second anyone starts seriously poking into it.

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I am confused about whether it's OK for me to reference episode details in this thread.  The series is over so why not?

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6 hours ago, Yeah No said:

I am confused about whether it's OK for me to reference episode details in this thread.  The series is over so why not?

Yes, once an episode has aired, there is no need to spoiler tag anything.

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Thank you!  I just finished this series and felt it was wrapped up rather abruptly to the point of being unsatisfying, despite the neat tying up of loose ends.  I don't understand how Mark could just drive off somewhere when he owns a local business.  That's not how it works.  It was confusing with them all asleep on the couch in one scene, then he's taking off in the next. 

I actually liked the first two seasons better.  I liked the courtroom scenes although I'm still wondering how realistic any of them were.  It was interesting to see how different British law is from American.  Although the acting was superb, I found the plot with Trish a little bit unbelievable from the standpoint of casting.  I get it that the actress is excellent and well known but I guess I'm shallow in thinking she should have been more attractive to be irresistible enough for two men including her ex husband to stalk her.  I don't think her personality was magnetic enough to explain it either.  Perhaps this is my American perspective here?  When I talked this over with two friends who had also watched the series they both told me they felt the same way!  I could hardly believe the actress was born in 1970.  I'm 60 and I look younger.  My husband and I thought she was around my age at least if not more.  That said, it's too bad they ended the show so soon, I would have liked it to continue.  I agree that Miller and Hardy's chemistry was off the charts and will miss them together.

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On 2/3/2019 at 1:06 PM, BookWoman56 said:

It reminds me a bit of murder mysteries in which you have not only the damage done by the death of the victim, but also the collateral damage done by having suspicion focus on various people who end up not being the killer.

I've just finished watching all three seasons of Broadchurch and congratulate you for talking about collateral damage. Frankly, I have begun to think of Netflix as a kind of video-counseling service, whether a series is real-life ("Making a Murderer") or fictional (I give "The Break" a slight, just a slight, edge over "Broadchurch"). ALL these series are about what you so aptly call collateral damage.

I'd be interested in knowing what others thought of the finale. SPOILERS. PLEASE DON'T CONTINUE READING IF YOU HAVEN'T FINISHED SEASON 3.

At the end, I actually hated Beth. I understood her, and I sympathized with her need to carry on and survive and build a new life, but if she could do that only by throwing out a husband who couldn't heal... Mm-mn. She did not love hiim.

Great, great, super-great series.

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I disliked Beth more in the second season than in the third season, when she was being bitchy to Ellie, which while understandable, seemed a little much at times. Regarding the marriage, there were several factors there. From what I've read, many marriages don't survive the death of a child, maybe in part because each spouse blames the other. But in Mark's case, he had cheated on Beth and while I personally find having sex outside the marriage to be fine, by the terms of their marriage he had violated her trust. Mark testified in court that he planned to tell Beth that the marriage was over. Also, given that Beth was 15 or so when she married Mark, and presumably because she was pregnant, it makes sense that she would opt to get out of the marriage because she's no longer the same person she was when they got married. From her perspective, Mark is more or less wallowing in his grief rather than at least trying to move on from a huge loss. So I completely understand why she's willing to end the marriage, even though Mark hasn't healed from Danny's murder, and I can't really blame her. Part of my dislike of Mark is that at no point did he seem to own up to his culpability in the whole situation. Had he not hit Danny, had he not repeatedly abandoned doing things with Danny because of his other interests, then maybe Danny wouldn't have been quite as susceptible to overtures from someone who turned out to be a pedophile and murderer. In many ways, it was Mark's actions that set the whole chain of events in motion. So while I of course sympathize with him because the murder of your child is a staggering loss, I can't see him as a victim in the end of his marriage to Beth. 

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Just finished the third series tonight, and I have to say this was one of the most depressing things I've ever watched. Especially how S3 ended. Season 1 was one of the best I've ever seen. S2 wasn't nearly as good, but damnit, S3 just made me feel like I was getting curb-stomped over and over. And in the end, every bit of the fabric of the town was torn apart; the vicar resigns, the honest newspaper closes, to be replaced by a vlog and a shitty tabloid, and the Lattimers marriage is shattered, with Mark basically a zombie moving away. 

Sure, I get that this might really happen, but do we, the audience, want that much depression as entertainment? And a murder mystery where a child killer gets off scot-free and never faces any kind of justice, except for feeling bad about starting over again. Boo effin' hoo for him. 

And the rape story in S3 was just agonizing to watch from beginning to end.

Now for a show that wants to accurately portray the aftermath of tragedy (and I guess they did succeed at that), they lost any sense of realism in the law, and in investigations. What Joe did, as horrible as it was, was not premeditated in the slightest, the relationship wasn't sexual and it basically just happened in a horrible moment. There's no conceivable way that would not be charged or brought to trial as manslaughter. Any solicitor or barrister worth more than £1.99 would have gotten him a reduced charge. Facing murder, yeah, of course he'd plead not guilty, so why the crown wouldn't offer 10 years for a lesser charge (with half sentence in custody, typically) is ludicrous.

Likewise the investigational procedures were the usual bit of television detective horseshit. Of course every suspect speaks to investigators, every time, and the lawyers (i.e. extras) they have with them in the interrogation room never ever say a single word as they admit X and Y and Z. Riiiiiiight. "On advice of council I respectfully refuse to answer any questions at this time." Live it, love it, and learn it.

Once they had a narrow set of suspects, at least in the US (not sure about BritLaw here), they'd have had probable cause to pull phone records, and check GPS coordinates. For that matter, just pull the tower data down for a list of which subscribers pinged off it during the estimated time of the attack, then narrow the subscriber data with GPS data (realizing that in real life, GPS data is accurate to within about a metre). Many a criminal is serving a life sentence thanks to that, thankfully.

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