Broadchurch: the Twitter reaction

The critics had a mixed reaction to the finale of David Tennant and Olivia Colman's detective drama, but what did the Twittersphere make of it?

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SPOILER ALERT: DO NOT READ ON IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN LAST NIGHT’S EPISODE

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Last night the nation came to a standstill. Pubs were deserted, phones were switched off and families clamoured around their television sets to finally learn the answer to the question on everyone’s lips: who killed Danny Latimer? 

Week on week we’ve been pushed and pulled, thrown bating clues and dodged red herrings, argued our suspicions with our friends, family and colleagues and – finally – been given some #closure. We were hooked – and in reaction to last night’s episode, Twitter came into its own…

Even before the 65-minute broadcast had begun, the social networking site was a-buzz with excitement: 

And Twitter was a hub of frenzied discussion each time the advert breaks made their unwelcome appearance.

Broadchurch writer Chris Chibnall weighed in early with a promise to his scores of dedicated viewers.

And many tweeters were quick to commend his achievement of bringing together a nation of telly watchers for a mass viewing, unseen since the likes of Homeland’s dramatic finale and the climax of Who Shot JR?

Heat magazine’s Boyd Hilton was one of many to heap on the praise:

While former EastEnders actress Tracy Ann Oberman rejoiced in the effect the drama has had on the nation.  

And as we sat down in front of the box and readied ourselves for the “big reveal”, actress Charlotte Beaumont (who plays Danny’s sister Chloe Latimer) revealed her #madfamily’s unconventional viewing habits…

Excellent! But as our excitement hit fever pitch in the opening 15 minutes, Chris Chibnall pulled a fast one and unveiled his killer – a good 45 minutes before anyone was expecting it. Corrie’s Natalie Gumede was so beside herself she was struggling to respire:

And as the masses digested Joe Miller’s abrupt confession, Twitter provided an outlet for their early doubts.  As the bookies favourite for the past few weeks, it came as no surprise that Joe was responsible for Danny’s demise, but tweeters were quick to suggest that this might be another of the drama’s many red herrings, including EastEnder Jo Joyner…

But Joe it was, and as he cowered in his prison cell, his on-screen wife Olivia Colman took centre stage – and stole the show. Twitter was quick to share its well-deserved praise with the surely-soon-to-be-Bafta-winning actress, with showbiz reporter Dan Wootton and comedy writer Mark O’Connell eagerly adopting their caps lock buttons:

And while many lamented the decision to reveal the killer’s identity in the first quarter, Mr Selfridge actress Lauren Crace applauded Colman’s performance as the episode’s saving grace…

While Colman’s DS Miller stole the headlines, Digital Spy’s Morgan Jeffery employed similar vocabulary to recognise the credibility of her co-star’s performance:

Meanwhile, Blogtor Who was angling for a Doctor Who twist on the series finale…

But instead of a sci-fi twist, ITV had another trick up their sleeves, with the announcement of a second series following the show’s end credits – and Twitter immediately buzzed with storyline suggestions… Enamoured actor Shaun Dooley spied a nifty opportunity: 

Meanwhile Radio 1 presenter Matt Edmonson jumped on the opportunity to investigate slug-gate.

Indeed, the sight of Olivia Colman planting her shoe on top of an innocent slug as she surveyed the crime scene at her family home prompted Twitter outrage, with many (well, Towie’s Lucy Mecklenburgh) expressing their incredulity:

Meanwhile, @westendproducer suggested the slug deserved more air-time than its one second sacrifice in exchange for some blindingly obvious symbolism…

But as the credits rolled, the great and the good of the entertainment industry pulled out their phones/laptops/iPads to share their judgement with the Twittersphere, and – for the most part – they were positive. Radio Times columnist Sarah Millican sent her congratulations to writer Chris Chibnall and the cast.

While Dragon Deborah Meaden pulled her thesaurus out to accurately capture her thoughts on the series. 

Downton Abbey actress Amy Nuttall adopted a hyperbolic turn of phrase to deliver her review:

And Sarah Hitching predicted awards-season glory for the ITV drama…

But it wasn’t all praise and glory for the eight-part series, with an underwhelmed Chris Evans not buying into the drawn-out conclusion:

Meanwhile, Emma Kennedy took issue with the naff final scenes which saw the village community lighting a series of beacons in rememberance of Danny – and a bizarre flirtatious add-on between Arthur Darvill’s vicar Paul Coates and hotelier Becca Fisher.

But as we said goodbye to what is now the first of two series of Broadchurch, ITV left us with an extra glimpse of the village’s residents as they rallied one last time for Danny’s wake. If you haven’t seen it, take a look here…

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What did you make of last night’s Broadchurch? Share you thoughts in the comments box below…