The Secret

Series 1 - Episode 3



So, can our lover-murderers get away with it? As this real-life drama unfolds, it sensitively balances our fascination with a lurid story against the fact that these were dire and dreadful events for those involved. That’s not an easy trick to pull off but tonight, in the aftermath of the deaths – devout Baptists Colin and Hazel have disguised the murder of their respective spouses as a double suicide – we get a sense of the toll it takes on them.

Both are skilled liars, to the police and their families, and while Colin can smooth over his conscience with faith (“God will pardon us in time”), Hazel is struggling: and Genevieve O’Reilly nicely underplays how guilt eats away at her. There are more strange, disturbing scenes revealing that what drives Colin is far from godly. And we sense that a reckoning is on the way.


With whispers in the community and lingering police suspicions, Colin and Hazel are prevented from being together until the Coroner's `suicide' verdicts put an official end to the speculation. Later, Hazel feels so guilty she cannot be physical with Colin except under the influence of increasingly powerful drugs, so puts an end to their toxic relationship. Both meet new partners and move on, but when Colin's eldest son Matthew dies in a freak accident, Colin becomes convinced that God is punishing him for the murders. Drama, starring James Nesbitt, Genevieve O'Reilly, Laura Pyper and Glen Wallace.

Cast & Crew

Colin Howell James Nesbitt
Hazel Buchanan Genevieve O'Reilly
Kyle Howell Katherine Kingsley
Dave Stuart Stuart Graham
DI Hutchinson Alan McKee
Jim Buchanan BJ Hogg
Lily Buchanan Julia Dearden
Victor Buchanan Patrick O'Kane
Andrew Buchanan (adult) Rhys Dunlop
Lisa Buchanan (adult) Amy Shiels
Trevor McAuley Conor Grimes
Geoff Harry McEntire
Willie Patrick Molloy
Peter Gordon Fulton
Lauren Howell (adult) Danielle Magennis
Matthew Howell (adult) Rob Malone
Matthew Howell (11 years) Rory Bradley
Matthew Howell Riley Hamilton
Lauren Howell Nina Woods
Daniel Howell Murray Speers
Andrew Buchanan Jack Erdis
Lisa Buchanan Sophie Mellotte
Businessman Shasi Rami
Patient Katy Gleadhill
Dental receptionist Ruth Jennings
Adapted By Stuart Urban
Director Nick Murphy
Executive Producer Mark Redhead
Producer Jonathan Curling
Writer Deric Henderson
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