The recurrent theme in the first season of Broadchurch seemed to be witch hunts. It's a murder mystery with a large cast, much like Twin Peaks which influenced it, but one of the things that makes it different from Twin Peaks is that it features people coming together to hate individuals they feel are guilty of the murder or of other things. Not knowing who the killer is prompts the viewer to examine the validity of the mob response. Oddly, this is one of the things that makes the show feel smaller in scope than Twin Peaks but at the same time it's interesting and helps make the mystery genuinely engaging. The performances on the show are good though some of the melodrama, particularly involving cheating husbands, feels a little cheap. But that may be a personal thing for me--I simply don't understand what's so hard about avoiding steamy secret love affairs. I seem to avoid them all the time.
Several people are accused of paedophilia because the murder victim is a child. Scenes of one character facing an angry mob over the subject distinctly reminded me of a first season episode of the British version of Being Human. Considering a number of high profile celebrities in Britain--Jimmy Savile, Pete Townsend--have been caught up in paedophilia scandals it's maybe no wonder writers are interested in the vigour with which the public turns on these figures.
I kind of wish more of the people on the show had actually been guilty of a thing or two. Particularly in one case where it turns out someone had actually done something very noble and is protecting someone else by keeping quiet while the world thinks he'd made a horrible blunder. I would have pointed writer Chris Chibnall to the effective central point of tension in Kurosawa's Stray Dog, Toshiro Mifune's very real guilt about allowing his gun to be stolen.
But there is plenty of ambiguity to chew on, especially in the final episode though in it the show opens a can of worms it doesn't quite take the time I felt it ought to have in exploring. But it gives you something.
Twitter Sonnet #631
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