‘Broadchurch’ Season 1 Review: Is This the Best Murder Mystery Since ‘Twin Peaks’?

Published 2 years ago by

broadchurch full series review ellie miller Broadchurch Season 1 Review: Is This the Best Murder Mystery Since Twin Peaks?

The final reveal is a surprise that rocks Ellie’s world. For a character so seemingly devoid of compassion, DI Hardy shows an ample bit as he follows the breadcrumbs to their end, keeping Ellie in the dark until his suspicions are confirmed. There is no satisfaction at the end of the case, just a human moment between Alec and Ellie as he clues her in.

“How could you not know?” is a phrase that will surely figure into season 2, whenever and however it occurs. It’s what Beth asks Ellie after the killer’s identity is revealed, and it’s what Ellie asked Susan Wright (a one-time suspect and star of her own sub-plot with Nigel) the day prior.

If Ellie is the focus, then it will be very interesting to see her evolution. How can she possibly police a city that knows that she slept with a murderer under her roof? David Tennant’s involvement in the next series is not yet confirmed, but if he does return, one imagines that he’ll re-train his focus on the Sandbrook case now that local reporters Oliver and Maggie have broken the story about what really happened there.

Regardless of who returns and who doesn’t, the challenge will be to find a way to continue this story while most likely staying away from the “murder in a small town” trope. There is plenty of ugliness left to uncover in this pretty town, but for a second series to succeed, Chris Chibnall can’t try to recreate or top a brilliant first season that may be un-toppable.


Broadchurch season 1 is currently available on VOD.


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  1. I don’t really see the point in having an article about a show to encourage people to watch it and pack it full of spoilers making the whole point of it void. A “review” should not contain any spoilers. As a companion piece in a spoilers discussion perhaps, but as the main article that will be introducing new viewers to the show!?

    I didn’t watch “Broadchurch”, but the ending was spoiled for me because everyone was talking about it and it was in all the papers. So now I feel there is no point watching it. I didn’t expect SR to be doing the same.

    • *throws toys out of pram and sulks*

    • There are still plenty of reasons to watch it. The performances are outstanding and the mood is gripping. I’ve watched the first series three times now (once by myself and twice with diffferent friends), and I’m just starting in on the second. Do yourself a favour and check it out. It’s not just about “whodunnit”. It’s better to travel hopelessly through Broadchurch than it is to arrive! 😉

  2. What channel is it on? Never heard of it.

    • It’s on BBC America.

      • Or it was on ITV1 in the UK earlier this year.

        Not sure how they can have a season 2 but they will. I didn’t like it at first but it drew me in by the end.

        • BBC had it as I watched it on iPlayer earlier this year.

  3. You should have watched Forbrydelsen i.d. original danish version of the Killing…there is nothing special about Broadchurch, all English crime tv shows have constant quality…

  4. I’d say that this one stands out for what it doesn’t do … there are plenty of moments where the music and the photography simply carry the story themselves and allow the town itself to become a character. Very much like Twin Peaks did, but the Brits have it down pat as the soundtrack and the visuals lend their own poignancy to the storytelling here. The performances from the cast as well as the writing bring forth the reality of living in a tabloid world where accusations and speculation trample the truth and set perceptions.

    Just because there’s been a reveal doesn’t mean that the acting and storytelling here aren’t first rate. Other BBC shows of the same background, Luther, Spooks are also well worth the time.