Months of speculation surrounding one of the most-secretive shows have now been appeased (ever so slightly), as the first episode of series two of Broadchurch aired on ITV to an average of 7.6 million viewers.
A publicity blackout was inevitable. It happened the first time round over a year ago when 11-year-old Danny Latimer's killer was due to be revealed, and Chris Chibnall wanted to ensure that the suspense and tension of the show was guarded at all costs once more. It works incredibly well.
What I thought was at first a slow start turned out to be the build-up to a 15-minute-in twist that flipped the characters on the show's lives upside down once more, as Joe Miller entered an entirely unexpected plea of 'not guilty' and the courtroom erupted into disbelief. My worry was unwarranted and I was, once again, hooked.
Whilst many of us believed that this first 15 minutes would be the closing to the story that we went through the first time around, it was actually the re-opening of an old wound - something Olivia Colman, Jodie Whittaker and co. expertly showed on-screen, their anger, fears and shock all bubbling to the surface.
And though we at times are left teary-eyed because of the sheer incredible acting level displayed, the expertly written script from Chris Chibnall serves to prove that slight and momentary humour can be intertwined into the story - I couldn't help but let out a chuckle when Colman's Ellie Miller told off David Tennant's Alec Hardy for not asking her if she slept well.
Not only were we given the gift of the move from Broadchurch as a 'whodunnit?' to a courtroom drama, but a sub-plot emerged as it was revealed Alec Hardy has been harbouring a witness from one of his old cases in Broadchurch ever since he turned up in the quiet little town. Now that witness is seemingly in danger, and his past is returning to haunt him - something we're likely going to find out more about in the coming episodes.
Perhaps most promising for future episodes is the prospect of cast additions Charlotte Rampling and Marianne-Jean Baptiste as warring ex-colleagues, serving on the prosecution and defence respectively and setting the stones for some in-court drama that could top all others seen on-screen.
Dramatic, clever, tense and with some of the best talent in the country, Broadchurch didn't disappoint, and Chibnall could well be on his way to emulating the success of the first series with this second offering.
Broadchurch continues Monday nights, 9pm on ITV.
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