Television: Broadchurch 2.2

The rule in drama is: Things must get worse before they can get better. And when one thing is resolved, another problem must be created.

Let's just say things got a lot worse last night.

For one thing, Joe's confession was excluded as evidence because of Ellie's brutality against Joe in the interrogation room. Now, I know what you're thinking: But that came after he confessed! And you're right. But apparently it shed doubt on whether or not there had been any brutality even before that, like when Alec arrested Joe. Remember that Alec and Joe were alone; there are no witnesses to the arrest. I would argue, however, that there is zero evidence that Joe was in any way injured prior to Ellie entering the interrogation room. They have cameras, right? They can see he was not hurt when he entered, can't they? Maybe that's a small thing and not enough, but it might be worth trying to argue that angle given the confession is the most important piece of evidence they have against Joe, and now they can't use it.

Joe, by the way, is being made increasingly reprehensible. Whereas at the end of the first season you thought he was pretty messed up but maybe not really a "bad guy," his selfishness now sets him quite squarely in "bad guy" territory. Yet the writers do such a good job with character because it's utterly believable that this man would behave this way under the circumstances. He's not some "villain" in the overly dramatic sense. He's a person causing a lot of pain through his selfish behavior. And people do that all the time; this is just an extreme case.

"Villain" is reserved for Lee. He approaches Alec and asks to see Claire. Alec convinces Ellie to convince Claire to meet Lee, Alec's hope being Lee will confess something, say something to implicate himself in the Sandbrook case. They use Ellie's old house in Broadchurch as the meeting point, and Alec sets up hidden cameras. Alec is in the kitchen, Ellie is out front. Problem: someone has told Beth Latimer that Ellie is back at her house, so Beth goes storming down there to confront Ellie. The distraction is enough to allow Lee to abduct Claire. (Or did she go willingly? Seems unlikely considering how reluctant she was to meet with him, but then again she did say he was like a drug to her, so maybe she couldn't resist?)

I am a little tired of Beth blaming Ellie, yelling at Ellie, etc. I mean, I understand why. But it doesn't seem to make her feel any better to yell and scream at Ellie, and it isn't going to change things, either. I guess it's not a rational thing, though. It difficult to be rational when your child has been murdered and now you're going through a painful trial.

By the way, Beth yelled so hard this time her water broke.

Other small points include Becca Fisher slyly making the defence team uncomfortable during their stay in Broadchurch, and Mark continuing to meet Tom for video games.

Things are rolling downhill. Still, we've got long enough to go that I'm sure we haven't quite reached bottom. In fact, we're only just getting the momentum going.

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