NOTE: This is a Broadchurch related item not Gracepoint - The US version of the show is irrelevant in this post.
It's been bugging me. But, I keep seeing it crop up time and time again in a lot of post review comments... Mainly fueled by the press!
I refer to people complaining about *SPOILER ALERT* - being sprung with the confusion over a mature lesbian storyline plot — WHAT, SHOCK, GASP, HORROR! between two of the shows characters in the recent showing of Broadchurch 2! (Which has now just finished airing in full in the UK). I've seen all sorts of comments, most seemingly under the impression that the two characters in question were sisters?
OK, so...let's get a few things straight here. (Did you see what I did there?)....
Firstly, I feel this is something that has been an error on Chris Chibnall's part right from S1. A lack of information and cut scenes have unfortunately led to people jumping to the wrong conclusions. Because he failed to address it properly in the televised version!
Take your minds back to S1 episode 4 — The scene between Maggie Radcliffe (Carolyn Pickles) and Susan Wright (Pauline Quirke). (Even though I have watched S1 about 40+ times, I still had to double check)
But, if you are unsure where to look, it is just before the scene where, after dinner with The Miller's, DI Hardy falls ill in his hotel room — Yes...That one!
Susan Wright is seen lurking in the dark after seemingly breaking and entering her way into the Broadchurch Echo office late at night, (although I think she randomly managed to walk through an open side door), spooking Maggie Radcliffe. In the scene, Wright is seen and heard threatening Radcliffe with a rather cutting comment.
At the time of airing, the threat threw a number of viewers (me included on first viewing), as perhaps being a bit strong and rather unneccessary. What was Chibnall thinking we all wondered? However, as an avid viewer (OK obsessive in my case
), you realise if you like being fussy and doing a bit of Ellie Miller digging around, that this scene has double meaning and means more than perhaps was first intended. It also makes far more sense if you have,
A: Read the Broadchurch Novel
B: Watched the deleted scenes on the BluRay Version
C: More recently an Ebook released for S2 viewers (UK only atm)
Now, this is a bit unfortunate if you are the type of person who only ever watches a TV show air live the night it goes out on transmission. Or you don't bother to invest any extra time and money in other formats! Understandable. There are just some shows you cannot be bothered to do this with, and if you miss them, so be it! I'm sure you get my point.
So..this brings me to the deleted scene
between Maggie Radcliffe (Carolyn Pickles) and Rev. Paul Coates (Arthur Darvill) that took place outside the Broadchurch Echo. And this can be found on the BluRay Version. And this is where I think the problem comes. Not everyone has a bluray. Believe it or not, it was only because of Broadchurch. I actually purchased one!
Regarding the deleted scene - It is between Maggie Radcliffe and Rev. Paul Coates discussing his need to want to write a column for the Broadchurch Echo, to help push the fact that he wants the public to know that folks can rely on him and the church. However, the screen version DOES NOT MENTION HER FEMALE PARTNER LIL!
I can only think the scene was cut for time, (it is quite a lengthy conversation), and not because it consisted of information regarding Radcliffe's sexuality. However, and unfortunately, to the casual viewer / Joe Public viewer it's significance was probably relevant and IMO should've been included in the televised cut to help those who are now questioning what recently happened in S2.I should point this out though
— At no stage throughout S1, in any episode, does Maggie Radcliffe actually tell another cast member verbally she is gay. Or do we see any suggestion she is gay. In fact, it is fair to say, we know very little about her private life at all throughout S1.Which leads me to the Broadchurch novel.
Again any viewer who has not read it would be completely forgiven. But, I'm afraid to say this is what part of being in a fandom is all about. Those of us who do care, invest the time in looking these things up. (Which is exactly WHY I am trying to address this point. It has been noted that it really is only 'Joe Public', NOT FANS of the show who really do not have a clue what is going on half the time, that keep making these random comments in a lot of the forum's and press comments. Which has, in turn, been fuelling a lot of nasty, unnecessary arguments!
In the novel by Erin Kelly — Maggie's relationship is better defined and made much more clear. And for the benefit of those of you investing the time to read this post, I will however help you out.
Chapter 11 page 71 - 72
'I'd like to write a column,' suggests the vicar. 'Something like Thought of the Day
on Radio 4. To remind people why the Church is important at a time like this, what it can offer them.
Maggie snorts. 'Me and your boss had a parting of the ways long before you popped up here. I was made to feel very unwelcome in your church.
'Not by me,' says the vicar earnestly. 'You and Lil are both always welcome in my church.'
'I should think so too,' says Maggie only slightly appeased. 'Look, thanks for the offer, but I don't want for editorial. What I need right now is advertisers. And that's not you.
Chapter 29 - page 191- 192
Susan takes a step closer. 'You're going to stop asking questions about me.
Why would I do that? A tremble in Maggie's voice undermines the words.
Susan curls her lip. 'I know about you.'
Maggie might be afraid, but she isn't fazed by this one-size-fits-all threat. There's not much to know and nothing she is ashamed of. Is that all you have got? she thinks, and she is about to say it when Susan leans forward. Instinctively Maggie recoils from the whiff of stale tobacco. Now Susan's breath is hot in Maggie's ear.
'I know men who would rape you.'
She lets her threat — as convincing as it is unexpected — hang heavy in the air between them for a long time. Images of The Ripper case, never too far from her subconscious, assault Maggie's memory and her breathing turns shallow. Susan doesn't blink.
'And if you start asking questions, or go to the police, they'll come after your mate
Without another word, Susan disappears back into the darkness. Heavy footsteps echo as she crosses the newsroom. The door bangs closed behind her. Maggie is left shaking and alone. She picks up the phone to call Ellie Miller. She's got Broadchurch CID on speed-dial. It only takes one button but her forefinger quivers above it for nearly a minute and eventually she has to accept that she can't do it. She can't take a chance. Lil knew, when they got together, that late nights, cancelled holidays and a large wine bill were part of the deal, but she didn't ask for any of this. She drops the receiver back in its cradle and a tear oozes its way out of her eye. Maggie is crying with shame as well as fear. She doesn't recognise herself. It's this bloody story. It has changed her on a deeper level than she realised. No one and nothing around here will ever be the same again.
©2014 Chris Chibnall and Erin Kelly
However, whilst I may have made mention to this post being about S2 - I am not going to spoil anything for Broadchurch viewers who are still waiting to see it. But, at least now if you do read some stupid narrow-minded comment you can point them in the right direction and say actually — it's not a shock at all. We already knew and it really is NO BIG DEAL in 2015 anymore!