Binge Guide

Why You Need to Watch Season One of Broadchurch This Weekend

by | February 25, 2015 | Comments

With season two coming to BBC America on Wednesday, Mar. 4 (and the announcement of season three this week), now is the perfect time to binge Broadchurch, an eight-part British mystery that’ll have you guessing right through to the end.




What’s the premise? Two detectives investigate the murder of an eleven-year-old boy in a British coastal village where everyone’s a suspect.

What’s it like? Broadchurch takes the classic buddy detective template (she’s by the book, he plays by his own rules), drops it into a beautiful little seaside town, and gives the procedural depth by showing the emotional aftermath of an unspeakable crime. That said, Broadchurch is never melodramatic; it’s haunting and sad. It would be fair to compare it to the first season of The Killing — gloomy, raw, creepy, suspenseful — but unlike The Killing, Broadchurch season one has a definitive resolution.

Where can I see it? Season one is available in its entirety on Netflix. You can also pay to stream it on Amazon Instant Video, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu, and Xbox Video. You can also get the complete first season on DVD and Blu-ray.

How long will it take? Eight hours. That’s it. And that’s including breaks, since each episode is only 45 minutes long. Plenty of time to catch up before season two next Wednesday.

What do the critics think? Season one is Certified Fresh at 90 percent, with most critics agreeing that Broadchurch is a well-written procedural with fine actors and an engrossing mystery. In her rave for the St. Louis Post Dispatch, Gail Pennington wrote, “It’s everything great drama should be — riveting, raw, heartbreaking, funny and very, very smart.” And Alan Sepinwall of HitFix identified what set apart Broadchurch from all the other shows with a similar premise. “Broadchurch is a police procedural, and an effective one, but what renders it special is the way it tracks the ways that physical and emotional violence haunts everyone in the town.”

Why should I watch this? The Brits know how to weave a mystery. Anyone looking for a slow burn among the damp, lush cliffs of the English seaside will want to spend eight hours in Broadchurch. Each episode unfolds a new element to the mystery and a new motive to consider. The two detectives, brought to life by Olivia Colman and David Tennant, have chemistry and compassion for each other, and the dozen featured townspeople are given enough screentime to breathe. As the characters criss-cross, the narrative never strays too far from the mystery at hand, making the final few episodes extra-rewarding.

What’s my next step? In 2014, Fox aired an American adaptation, Gracepoint, starring Breaking Bad‘s Anna Gunn and Broadchurch‘s David Tennant, so you might want to give that a shot — though many critics agree that it pales in comparison to the original. Other options that capture the mood and pace of Broadchurch are the Sundance TV 2013 miniseries Top of the Lake with Mad Men‘s Elisabeth Moss, HBO’s first season of True Detective with Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson from 2014, and Pivot’s new Certified Fresh series Fortitude with Stanley Tucci, airing now. Season one of The Missing on Starz is another season-contained mystery treated with emotional depth and cinematic storytelling. And Masterpiece’s The Escape Artist, a three-parter with David Tennant as a London lawyer confronted with personal tragedy, is currently streaming on Amazon Prime.

Will you be caught up with Broadchurch before season two starts? Let us know in the comments below!

Tag Cloud

Marathons name the review Photos italian toronto Film Festival History spanish language VOD DGA X-Men Opinion BET Awards Turner new york 2016 justice league award winner comic books spinoff comiccon National Geographic prank game show Wes Anderson Reality IFC werewolf Fargo Countdown 99% black Election AMC RT21 king arthur cinemax Trailer ITV First Look slashers Rock Crackle WarnerMedia TCA 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards LGBTQ suspense MSNBC HFPA spider-verse streaming movies Captain marvel Comedy Super Bowl remakes lord of the rings live action NBC Western PaleyFest MCU Music 79th Golden Globes Awards Netflix Christmas movies japanese discovery child's play Film Writers Guild of America ratings Certified Fresh cancelled south america hispanic Character Guide Reality Competition Red Carpet Adult Swim TBS genre HBO Pet Sematary godzilla criterion vs. Syfy MTV parents Endgame aliens Quiz Paramount TIFF Funimation Heroines Ghostbusters Hollywood Foreign Press Association boxing biopic Video Games 90s young adult TCA Winter 2020 Comedy Central CBS All Access 93rd Oscars APB OneApp Animation halloween Brie Larson laika Oscars SDCC cancelled TV shows action-comedy Star Trek Crunchyroll worst Arrowverse concert aapi Musical Baby Yoda Lifetime Christmas movies dogs art house Christmas book robots Women's History Month children's TV razzies Spike Ellie Kemper 2018 Emmys know your critic Pop TV canceled TV shows American Society of Cinematographers Apple TV Plus Britbox comic book movies free movies Set visit australia PBS Warner Bros. emmy awards boxoffice Lifetime Walt Disney Pictures New York Comic Con Marvel Studios Best and Worst 24 frames casting worst movies Superheroes Infographic video Hallmark Christmas movies Classic Film Comics on TV travel true crime Box Office TLC TV movies animated Anna Paquin Amazon japan festival supernatural Instagram Live RT History politics streaming zombies Cannes rt labs CBS spy thriller Disney twilight Thanksgiving 72 Emmy Awards golden globe awards Schedule ABC Family Rom-Com El Rey serial killer biography The Academy TV Land TNT Tomatazos social media Academy Awards rt archives DC Universe IFC Films Cartoon Network king kong jurassic park nbcuniversal Sony Pictures live event 71st Emmy Awards joker Mindy Kaling screen actors guild war dark Stephen King TCA Awards AMC Plus Esquire cancelled TV series french Ovation HBO Max Paramount Plus rotten green book Discovery Channel See It Skip It Trivia critics Avengers The Purge marvel comics Comic-Con@Home 2021 sequel zombie screenings Peacock Sundance Now nfl video on demand marvel cinematic universe The Walt Disney Company wonder woman toy story cops what to watch high school blaxploitation Universal Pictures Exclusive Video BET cars Netflix Tubi romance diversity spanish Country new zealand crime Logo singing competition medical drama comics feel good sequels doctor who adventure LGBT superhero A&E hollywood stop motion revenge DC Comics Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Calendar crime drama YouTube Premium Winners teaser A24 elevated horror Holiday Musicals sopranos miniseries The Walking Dead mcc Biopics hidden camera Shondaland romantic comedy Mary Poppins Returns Epix 1990s Disney Plus documentary TCA 2017 The CW cancelled television VH1 transformers satire Cosplay Binge Guide tv talk Columbia Pictures Awards mission: impossible Superheroe Tokyo Olympics sitcom crossover Premiere Dates Valentine's Day olympics Broadway indie docudrama sag awards versus Extras Sneak Peek leaderboard 2020 fresh 20th Century Fox kaiju spider-man BBC One basketball Television Critics Association new star wars movies dc NBA all-time slasher Sundance TV adenture Fox Searchlight CW Seed popular Amazon Prime Video Sci-Fi Apple christmas movies trophy scorecard SundanceTV dreamworks First Reviews book adaptation FX on Hulu hist richard e. Grant OWN Disney streaming service Black Mirror women BBC monster movies Action posters 007 Comic Book unscripted legend Television Academy thriller TV One Prime Video 45 Universal critic resources saw Nat Geo Chernobyl scene in color Travel Channel ABC Teen ghosts Lucasfilm Bravo Winter TV Fox News Fantasy finale Acorn TV natural history Marvel Television BBC America anthology Shudder 2019 golden globes kong WGN a nightmare on elm street Apple TV+ football Nickelodeon dceu Mary Tyler Moore anime Hulu ESPN Mystery Mudbound mockumentary TV Pop TruTV heist movie venice international telelvision 21st Century Fox PlayStation psycho sports james bond crime thriller stand-up comedy DirecTV San Diego Comic-Con Rocky Disney Channel Awards Tour DC streaming service breaking bad Masterpiece debate harry potter Starz Year in Review Image Comics political drama Tarantino YouTube Red canceled gangster 4/20 YouTube HBO Go Nominations The Witch kids batman rom-coms Family VICE cooking renewed TV shows docuseries nature Hallmark Holidays Tags: Comedy rt labs critics edition USA Network directors Hear Us Out pirates of the caribbean Rocketman indiana jones President Freeform GLAAD psychological thriller die hard FXX Disney+ Disney Plus TCM SXSW Podcast CMT Elton John dragons Martial Arts Emmy Nominations The Arrangement Lionsgate facebook chucky Vudu Watching Series FOX based on movie Polls and Games theme song NYCC USA fast and furious Amazon Prime festivals blockbuster superman Star Wars Song of Ice and Fire Mary poppins foreign Drama latino vampires blockbusters trailers best scary movies cartoon reviews target talk show IMDb TV Black History Month cults Spring TV period drama CNN Pirates 73rd Emmy Awards movie series historical drama Pixar Dark Horse Comics Fall TV Turner Classic Movies asian-american Horror binge ID Grammys ViacomCBS adaptation quibi television GoT BAFTA Alien reboot Showtime Creative Arts Emmys witnail disaster independent films black comedy Legendary halloween tv Sundance scary Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt hispanic heritage month E3 Pride Month dexter obituary FX composers Kids & Family Marvel strong female leads Food Network science fiction cats YA dramedy deadpool documentaries rotten movies we love franchise space Summer Trophy Talk comedies classics universal monsters TV renewals Pacific Islander Tumblr comic book movie 2021 ABC Signature mob news movies stoner police drama royal family Neflix Amazon Studios 2015 archives game of thrones Spectrum Originals zero dark thirty technology jamie lee curtis Toys Interview 2017 mutant GIFs spain comic E! Paramount Network