26 February 2017

TV Crime Log: Broadchurch, Prime Suspect 1973

You lucky people in the UK who like a good crime drama will be thrilled at the return of not one, but two, pedigree dramas this week. 

Broadchurch is back for a third, and final, run. The first series – which successfully used many of the tropes of scandi noir, with its story of a murder in a small community, colourful design and slow, merciless examination of personal and professional secrets – was something of a phenomenon when it aired several years ago. 

The second series, not so much. 

But creator Chris Chibnall – the new showrunner on Doctor Who, of course – always envisioned the concept as a trilogy. So, hopefully, this final series will end the story in a satisfying way.

Without further ado, here’s the press release for all those other details I really couldn’t be bothered to mention:

The critically acclaimed award-winning drama Broadchurch returns for a third and final series.

Olivia Colman and David Tennant reprise their roles as DS Ellie Miller and DI Alec Hardy, this time investigating a serious sexual assault in the Dorset community.

The first series saw the murder of 11-year-old Danny Latimer rock the small Dorset town of Broadchurch, as DI Alec Hardy – still haunted by the collapse of a previous murder case he worked on – was put in charge of the case, much to the chagrin of local officer DS Ellie Miller.

In series two, the town faced the trauma of a trial when after pleading not guilty, the murderer found another lawyer to fight his case, a lawyer so strong, that the Latimers were terrified they may not win.

So the third, and final, series of Broadchurch begins on Monday night at 9pm. Or, to put it another way, tomorrow.

DCI Jane Tennison is a television LEGEND. No doubt about it. Dame Helen Mirren played the character to great acclaim for seven hugely-successful series, but it’s been many years since we last saw Tennison. 

But, of course, if there’s a will, there’s a way to bring back beloved television detectives. First thing you do is go to the props department for some period clothes, like Endeavour did. 

It also helps that Lynda La Plante wrote a successful prequel novel to Prime Suspect, called Tennison. Now renamed Prime Suspect 1973 that book has been adapted into a six-part drama for ITV.

The press release takes up the slack from here:

Starring Stefanie Martini as the young WPC Jane Tennison, the six-part drama charts the rise of the novice policewoman as she assists in her first murder investigation, revealing her first steps towards becoming the complex and formidable character that viewers havecome to know.

Adapted by Glen Laker, the hotly-anticipated series is set in 1970s Hackney, where women police constables are slowly being integrated into the force. Amongst them is 22-year-old Jane, a naïve get determined probationary officer learning the ropes in a world where high-ranking police officers are notoriously chauvinistic and the rules often bent.

Working alongside her superior, DI Bradfield Tennison is thrown in at the deep end on her first case, experiencing London’s violent criminal ganglands first hand and witnessing the devastating effects that such crimes have.

The first episode of Prime Suspect 1973 starts at 9pm on Thursday night on ITV.

Happy television watching, crimey chums!