Broadchurch—Season 1

broadchurch season 1 poster episode guide
9.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Acting: 9/10
Visuals: 9/10

A smart, tense mystery-thriller


broadchurch season 1 title card episode guide

Got to love a quiet, little town…

The body of Danny Latimer (Oskar McNamara) is found on Dorset Beach in Broadchurch. Newly appointed detective Alec Hardy (David Tennant) finds he has a shot at redemption while his partner Ellie Miller (Olivia Colman) feels she deserved his job. The town of Broadchurch has secrets, and the secrets could be explosive and deadly. As the search for the killer continues, the list of suspects is growing.

Broadchurch—Season 1 aired on ITV in England. The series was released to critical acclaim and led to an American version of the series called Graceland with David Tennant reprising his role with Anna Gunn and a French series called Malaterra.

broadchurch season 1 episode 1 danny latimer killed

What happened that night?

I had wanted to watch Broadchurch for a while…and kept putting it off. With it available on Netflix, I decided to dive right in. Fortunately, I didn’t know anything about the series other than David Tennant starred, and it was a mystery. The first season of the series was a compelling thriller with lots of twists and turns.

The idea of a murder in small town isn’t necessarily a new one nor is the idea that everyone could be a suspect, but Broadchurch tells it in a way that feels fresh and exciting. The short eight episode season has a really compelling storyline that keeps you watching (and it is definitely binge-worthy). It doesn’t always go where you expect, but the trip still makes sense.

broadchurch season 1 episode 1 beth running jodie whittaker

A mother finds out…

Part of the joy of the series is that the cast is strong. David Tennant and Olivia Colman make a good team because they are rather antagonistic for their own reasons. Their past, failures, and other events come in to play throughout the season, and it does pay off. Jodie Whittaker is also solid as the bereaved mother of Danny while Andrew Buchan’s role is more restrained. David Bradley gives a strong performance as a suspect with a past, and Pauline Quirke is sinister as someone who knows more than she’s saying. I will say I’m not a huge fan of the Simone McAullay “Becca Fisher” character who doesn’t seem to do much throughout the season.

broadchurch season 1 episode 2 alec hardy ellie miller olivia colman david tennant

Be prepared for a season of shocked faces

The show looks great. The location is moody, and echoes Twin Peaks (which was a big influence) in its small town appeal. The show is stylishly shot and presented in a way that builds the tension and increases the mystery. It gives you the clues you want/need but then raises more questions in a timely manner instead of dragging them out.

Broadchurch—Season 1 is the great start to a series, but also could be considered a stand-alone. It tells a story and generally feels like that story is complete (in typical murder-investigation telling fronts), but Broadchurch goes deeper the next season with how actions can have consequences. Despite having a seemingly clear answer to the crimes committed in the show, the show continues to twist and turn…it is definitely worth checking out.

Broadchurch—Season 1 Complete Episode Guide:

broadchurch season 1 episode 1 danny latimer dead on beach oskar mcnamara

“Episode 1”

1.1 Episode 1 Airdate: 03/04/13

Danny Latimer (Oskar McNamara) is dead in Broadchurch. His body has been found at the bottom of the cliffs at Dorset Beach but the death is suspicious. Danny’s mother Beth (Jodie Whittaker) and father Mark (Andrew Buchan) learn the horrible truth about their son’s death as new detective Alec Hardy (David Tennant) deals with his new partner Ellie Miller (Olivia Colman) who feels he took her job. Oliver Stevens (Jonathan Bailey) sees the death as his chance for a big story despite his relationship with Ellie…and finds himself facing criticism. Karen White (Vickey McClure) is sent to cover the story as Ellie’s son Tom (Adam Wilson) could know something about Danny’s death. The secrets of Broadchurch are growing and a murderer could be living there.

broadchurch season 1 episode 2 reverend paul coates beth latimer jodie whittaker arthur darvill

“Episode 2”

1.2 Episode 2 Airdate: 03/11/13

Jack Marshall (David Bradley) recalls seeing Danny in an argument before the murder and the search of Danny’s room comes up with a shocking find. Danny’s sister Chloe (Charlotte Beaumont) is revealed to have made a cocaine deal for Becca Fisher (Simone McAullay), and Ellie and Alec follow up Jack’s lead. A trip out for Beth leads to an offer of help from Reverend Paul Coates (Arthur Darvill) and a revelation. A technician named Steve Connelly (Will Mellor) comes to Ellie and Alec with a message from Danny. The person with Danny’s skateboard is revealed as a potential murder site is discovered. Mark’s alibi is questioned.

broadchurch season 1 episode 3 mark latimer andrew buchan

“Episode 3”

1.3 Episode 3 Airdate: 03/18/13

Mark’s alibi falls apart and forces Alec to accuse him obstructing the case. Beth tries to avoid staying home and continues to hide her pregnancy. Tom prepares for questioning as Mark’s work partner Nige Carter (Joe Sims) tries to keep his alibi. Karen reveals why she came to investigate Danny’s murder and her ties to Alec’s past. Mark’s location during the time of the murder is revealed as Beth gets Steve’s message from Danny.

broadchurch season 1 episode 4 town meeting david tennant guide

“Episode 4”

1.4 Episode 4 Airdate: 03/25/13

The public begins to question the speed of the case as the tourism begins to be affected. Ellie begins to question ’s tie to the case, and Susan Wright (Pauline Quirke) confronts Nige about what they need to do. Jack Martin’s past is revealed, and he’s brought in to questioning about his relationship with Danny. Karen makes her pitch to try to get Beth to speak about the case which could cause an explosion while Maggie Radcliffe (Carolyn Pickles) has a run in with Susan. A night at Ellie’s house ends up with a trip to the hospital for Alec, and Jack finds a potentially important piece of evidence as people learn of his past.

broadchurch season 1 episode 5 david bradley

“Episode 5”

1.5 Episode 5 Airdate: 04/01/13

The town recreates the murder and finds that the case is gaining national attention. Mark’s affair is exposed and leads to Beth revealing her pregnancy to Mark. Ellie’s sister Lucy (Tanya Franks) shows up for money and claims to have information on Danny’s murder. Olly and Karen publish on Jack’s past and take the next step in their relationship. Jack reveals his past and how he went to prison, but he discovers the damage has been done. Cigarettes are found at the scene of the crime that could be linked to the killer, and the owner of the burned boat is revealed.

broadchurch season 1 episode 6 susan wright pauline quirke guide list

“Episode 6”

1.6 Episode 6 Airdate: 04/08/13

The town prepares to bury Jack Marshall and questions their part in his death. Life begins to return to normal in Broadchurch, and Karen finds that her coverage is being cut. Beth tries to find resolution by meeting with Cate Gillespie (Amanda Drew) who lost her child. Mark returns to work but Mark and Beth discover that Chloe has left school to be with Dean Thomas (Jacob Anderson). Tom deals with Danny’s death and worries about the deleted files on his computer. Susan’s involvement in the case is exposed but Nige could pose a problem. Hardy puts his sights on Reverend Coates and investigates his past as he continues to suffer more health problems…a lead could potentially reveal the killer and expose Alec’s medical problems.

broadchurch season episode 7 alec hardy david tennant

“Episode 7”

1.7 Episode 7 Airdate: 04/15/13

Alec’s heart arrhythmia could cause him to lose his job, and Olly’s discovery of it could make it public. Susan’s past is examined as a potential suspect, and Susan reveals what she saw the day Danny was killed. Nige is brought in for questioning and reveals his relationship with Susan. Reverend Coates provides Hardy with potential evidence that could change the case’s direction, and Hardy reveals what happened to the case in the Sandbrook murder.

broadchurch season 1 episode 8 ellie miller olivia colman

“Episode 8”

1.8 Episode 8 Airdate: 04/22/13

Ellie pays her sister for the information as Susan leaves town and Nige shakes the police surveillance. Hardy brings Tom in for questioning about the murder, and Tom provides evidence on the relationship between him and Danny. When Danny’s secret phone comes active again, the real killer is unmasked and the night of Danny’s murder is revealed.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

Leave A Response