Broadchurch: Season 2
December 5, 2015 9:56 AM - Season 2 (Full Season) - Subscribe

On December 1st, 2015, Broadchurch Season 2 was added to Netflix. [Season 2 spoilers in thread]

Some personal thoughts: the courtroom subplot and scenes were slow, overly dramatic (to the point of parody at times), and improbable (how was Miller's loan to her sister admissible as evidence?). But the Sandbrook subplot was interesting -- particularly, I thought, the slow reveal of Claire's true character throughout the season. And while David Tennant is a great and wonderful actor, Olivia Colman was the star of this season. Her performance was full of joy, anger, and sorrow, and it never once seemed forced.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates (9 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I could not believe they were doing a second season. Everything was wrapped up! Of course, that's what the characters thought, too, and of course life is messier than that. I was surprised to find that I think season 2 surpasses season 1. I'm still wary about season 3, but hopeful.
posted by rikschell at 10:20 AM on December 5, 2015 [1 favorite]

If anyone reads this who hasn't seen Season 2 already, my advice is to rewatch Season 1 so the timeline and details will be fresh in your mind. When you see them subverted in the courtroom scenes, you will understand why I found them infuriating.

Prosecutor: "You were having an affair with him!"
Witness: "What? No!"
Defense: *crickets*

I understand that courtroom scenes are written for drama but I actually went onto a UK forum to determine if throwing out random accusations with no substantiation, no objections, was standard legal practice; the entire trial was like that.

The Sandbrook story was framed so poorly. I didn't care about any of the parents. We didn't learn enough about them to make them real. The two main ones, Claire, okay, she was supposed to be a basket case but such an obvious one, I didn't understand why Tennant's supposedly clever character didn't see through her manipulation. And that dark-haired guy whose name I've forgotten, omg, he spent half his scenes standing off in the distance, brooding and staring. I think he was supposed to be menacing but instead he came off petulant and dim-witted.

Also didn't care about the two lawyers and their back story and it seemed to me that the third series might revolve around them and the defense lawyer's son.

So, yeah, I hate-watched this. I could not believe the clumsy writing/plotting/direction/character motivation when the first series was so strong. There was one good scene: Olivia Coleman: "You come home right now!" That scene was enough to keep me watching in case it happened again.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 4:11 PM on December 5, 2015 [1 favorite]

I agree people should get a refresher before watching the new season, though the S1 recap on the BBC America site might be sufficient. I have to admit we were wracking our brains the first couple S2 eps trying to remember all the details.

So, yeah, I hate-watched this.

I never really understand this, no offense. While I find some of the characters on Broadchurch very frustrating - one frequently wants to slap both Hardy and Miller upside the head, in both seasons, it's not because I think they're poorly-written or -acted, it's just that the central characters of the story are deeply flawed individuals, and that's a big part of what the show is actually about, rather than being a more straightforward mystery show.
posted by aught at 7:43 AM on December 7, 2015 [2 favorites]

I watched S2 a while back, mainly because one season of Olivia Colman as Miller was not nearly enough for me. (Also, David Tennant's accent, because it's my kryptonite.)

I absolutely loved Miller all the way through both seasons - at the character's starting point in S1, she reminded me so much of my childhood best friend that it was quite devastating to see her evolve and eventually get put through the wringer.

S2 was more frustrating, messier and required quite a bit more willful suspension of disbelief, but there was nevertheless again that sadness at the heart of a crime story that I'm a sucker for. I think that also owes a lot to the soundtrack, tbh. Like the Danish S1 of The Killing, which I'd recommend to anyone who likes Broadchurch (I think it's on Netflix?).
posted by sively at 12:42 PM on December 8, 2015

So, yeah, I hate-watched this.

I never really understand this, no offense. While I find some of the characters on Broadchurch very frustrating - one frequently wants to slap both Hardy and Miller upside the head, in both seasons, it's not because I think they're poorly-written or -acted, it's just that the central characters of the story are deeply flawed individuals, and that's a big part of what the show is actually about, rather than being a more straightforward mystery show.

I watched the first 3 or 4 episodes of season 1 before abandoning it, and have been catching a bit of season 2 over my wife's shoulder, but I think she gave up on it because it hasn't been playing in a while. I stopped watching season 1 when I realized I was starting to hate-watch it, and I have to disagree with you on the well-written part, although I do agree that the mystery is totally beside the point, but not in a good way. Just about everything with the whole show is completely overwrought to the point of ridiculousness, and it seemed like the writers were just trying to set up the most scandalizing things every week while they had the detectives shift their focus from one townsperson to the next, and I thought a lot of their machinations just made no sense to me, as far as how a person would actually behave in that situation. What's been hilarious in season 2 is that the lawyers are getting people up on the stand (I'm thinking Mr. Latimer and that horrible Susan idiot) and forcing them to admit that everything they did was completely ridiculous. They might as well ask someone "why did you do this" and have the answer be "well, the writers had to set up a cliffhanger (pun not intended) for next week". I don't know how so much of the town could decide that a kid getting thrown off a cliff was the perfect time to be evasive with the police and try to use the situation to mess with other people in town. Mr. Latimer greatly preferred to bring suspicion on himself for killing his own son, as long as he didn't have to confess to his affair? Really? Also, I don't know if I noticed it so much in the first season, but the cinematography has been totally over the top this season as well.

So, the parts I've watched have basically been hate-watching, basically because I'm laughing at the show rather than with it. But, I was in the building where they filmed the courtroom scenes a couple months ago, so that's kind of neat.
posted by LionIndex at 7:45 PM on December 10, 2015

We bought S2 after Netflixing S1. It had its flaws but it was very engaging. A lot of the courtroom stuff was suspension-of-disbelief-testing but within cinematic courtroom theatrics expectations. But weirdly the thing that got me was nobody noticing Charlotte Rampling going blind until the wreck.

Also I was glad to see Charlotte Rampling and Marianne Jean-Baptiste (who I am enjoying the heck out of in Blindspot, where she's the shady boss) at the end of the series. I hope they'll be back for S3 in some form.
posted by immlass at 4:07 PM on December 18, 2015

Maybe it was low expectations after reading so many excoriating reviews of Season Two, but I actually quite enjoyed it...mostly.

I didn't think it was unrealistic that the jury found Joe not guilty. The defense certainly introduced enough doubt. I did think it was stupid and unrealistic that the defense was allowed to speculate wildly about Hardy and Miller's "affair", completely unchallenged. It just seemed to be too much in service of the plot--i.e. introducing reasonable doubt.

Beth drove me nuts at the beginning of this season. She wasn't my favourite in Season One, but I definitely had a lot of sympathy for her and thought she was a well-drawn character. But this season, I think the writers went a little over the top in having her be so unrelentingly harsh to Ellie. That was a miscalculation, in my opinion--the audience is supposed to (and does!) love Ellie, so to have someone, anyone, tear into her so viciously can only reflect badly on the attacker, even if the attacker is the mother of a murder victim. I was glad they had Ellie and her sons reunite with the Latimers at the end.

I really liked the Sandbrook case, and found myself jumping from theory to theory. It certainly kept me guessing. I thought it was well done how Claire moved from being an object of sympathy to someone we should be suspicious of. I thought the casting of Ricky was absolutely perfect--he was so greasy and unsympathetic that it created a satisfying dissonance for me--on the one hand, I felt I should be sympathetic to him as the father of a murder victim, but on the other hand, there was something very...offputting and creepy about him.

Anyway, David Tennant + Olivia Colman 4ever. I would watch those two in anything from now on. I hope they are reunited for S3!
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 4:47 PM on April 3, 2016 [2 favorites]

Just finished. Loved the way they handled Joe Miller in the end, which was very simpatico to Doctor Who in spirit. Gives me some hope that Chibnall might be a good fit there.

The spouse and I both enjoyed this a lot. There was some preposterousness here and there, but how could a person not enjoy Colman and Tennant at work like this?

We did note that while Miller and Hardy redeem themselves somewhat from their season one status as the worst cops in the world, season two features the worst barrister in the world, a near blind person who is continually surprised and stunned by every single goddamned thing introduced by the defense in court as though it's never even occurred to her to do any prep.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:19 AM on July 28, 2017

Other things I liked: Eve Myles. Just in general, Eve Myles.

Also, it was fun seeing the guy who played the prissy Jarvis on Agent Carter as a testosterone-dripping alpha male.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 10:50 AM on July 28, 2017 [1 favorite]

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