The third and final season of Broadchurch kicked off on the UK’s ITV last night as British TV’s most-watched program of the evening with 7.5M viewers and a 34 share in Live+1. That’s the biggest drama score for ITV since the last episode of the regular 6th (and final) season of Downton Abbey in November 2015. It’s a tick down on the start of Broadchurch‘s second season in January 2015 which pulled 7.6M viewers, but a lower share of 30. That season ultimately averaged 9M. Broadchurch airs on BBC America in the States where a date has yet to be confirmed for the next run.
In Season 3 of the Chris Chibnall-created crime drama, David Tennant and Olivia Colman are back as Detective Inspector Alec Hardy and Detective Sergeant Ellie Miller who team up for one more case: investigating a serious sexual assault. The launch episode has been roundly praised. The Guardian says the stars are “brilliant” and that the “return to form” new season “has new momentum.” The Telegraph concurs, calling it “a supremely confident return for Tennant and Colman.”
The season begins three years on from the last and five years on from the start. The new crime story begs the question of whether the titular seaside town has a crack running through it caused by Danny Latimer’s death in Season 1. Is this new crime somehow the long-term legacy of that dark moment?
Among other returning cast are Jodie Whittaker and Andrew Buchan as Beth and Mark Latimer. Also coming back are Arthur Darvill as Vicar Paul Coates; Carolyn Pickles as newspaper editor Maggie Radcliffe; Charlotte Beaumont as Mark and Beth’s daughter Chloe; and Adam Wilson as Ellie’s son Tom. Lenny Henry, Roy Hudd, Julie Hesmondhalgh, Georgina Campbell, Sarah Parish, Charlie Higson and Mark Bazeley are all newcomers to the community.
Kudos, Imaginary Friends and Sister Pictures are co-producers.