Review: Broadchurch (Series 3, Episode 3)

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80%
80
Thrilling

With no clear frontrunner suspect, every episode is a whirlwind of excitement and drama. This episode threw more suspicion into the mix and had a focus upon blaming the victim, Trish.

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As Olivia Colman’s Ellie Miller keenly observes in this episode, the more people Broadchurch‘s detective duo talk to, the more suspects emerge. Where in previous series I have had a guess at ‘whodunnit’ (wrong every time), in this fast-paced third series, I’m left with no clue. Central to this episode, and noticeable in past ones too, is an examination of victim blaming culture.

Ed Burnett (Sir Lenny Henry) and his daughter, DC Katie Harford (Georgina Campbell), have both said things such as “[Trish] isn’t the sort of woman who this happens too”, and “Was she drinking?”. Even Trish’ friend Cath (Sarah Parish) comments “I know, at a party like that”, indicating to the audience that if it were anywhere else, it would have been fine. It’s good to see Chris Chibnall tackling this real-world issue, as many people in real life still blame the victim for what they’re wearing, the amount of alcohol they’ve consumed, etc. It is written in such a way that the audience can see that it is ludicrous to even suggest that the attack was Trish’s fault, with Ellie disgusted at such comments. By including this, hopefully the message will be learnt that rape and other sexual attacks aren’t the fault of the victim.

The investigation itself has progressed for the audience, but not for Miller and Hardy (David Tennant). We now know that the taxi driver, Clive (Poldark‘s Sebastian Armesto), is letting on more than we first thought as he has hold of her keys, but with this reveal so early on, it perhaps hints more than he’s not the culprit. Trish’s estranged husband (Charlie Higson) was seen meeting with rope factory worker Leo Sawyer (Chris Mason) to erase something from his laptop. “I don’t want anyone to see it,” he ominously claims – but what exactly is “it”? And does it have anything to do with Trish’s attack – or could it, in an outlandish twist, have something to do with the Latimers, and Danny’s death?

The series is getting more and more confusing, but I’m waiting for a big twist to send the audience in a spin…

Broadchurch continues Monday nights at 9pm.

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