Jodie Whittaker takes centre stage in Broadchurch

Jodie Whittaker in Broadchurch. Picture: Contributed
Jodie Whittaker in Broadchurch. Picture: Contributed
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SO, have you figured out whodunit yet? This eight-part series from acclaimed writer Chris Chibnall has been a slow-burner, but our patience has been rewarded with one of the most gripping plots we’ve seen in a long while.

So far we’ve learned that Danny Latimer has been murdered and that most of the people in the town of Broadchurch, where he lived, have something to hide and could possibly have bumped him off in to keep their secrets. And that’s about it really - although we’re just as keen to find out what’s really wrong with DI Alec Hardy, the detective in charge of the case, as we are the identity of the killer.

The acting has been of a uniformly high standard. At the centre of it all is Jodie Whittaker as Beth, Danny’s grief-stricken mother.

The 30-year-old Huddersfield-born actress is making a habit of playing young mums - in BBC Two’s Royal Wedding, she was a woman who’d had a baby at 15, and she’s in the same situation here.

During filming, neither she nor the rest of the cast knew who the killer was. “I only got the first episode for the audition and I found that quite nerve-wracking, not knowing where it was going,” she says. “But that’s a really great thing to do because it keeps you anxious the whole way through. It keeps you guessing and makes you not trust any of the other characters; which you wouldn’t do in that environment.

“That first episode was heart-breaking to read, but you met so many interesting characters.

“When I came on board, David Tennant, Olivia Colman, Vicky McClure and Andrew Buchan were already attached. Every week, new names were signed to it which was really exciting to think you would be working with them on an ensemble piece.

“Not a lot of dramas are ensemble and there are about 20 of us.”

But it hasn’t just been the human cast that Jodie has enjoyed being around - the Dorset scenery has almost been a character itself.

“I always enjoy filming on location as there is that feeling that you can be in it the whole time; you are staying away, you don’t have to deal with normal life when you get home from work, so it’s been a great experience.”

It’s been great watching it too - here’s hoping the last episode lives up to expectations.

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