Broadchurch series two, episode three: five burning questions

Who sent Claire the bluebell? What's on her phone? And when will Miller and Hardy act on all that sexual tension...?

1. What’s Claire hiding? 

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Mrs Ashworth has been shifty from the start, but tonight’s episode saw her evasiveness step up a notch. First there was that creepy kiss with Lee where her eyes shifted to Hardy (does she have feelings for him? Is she trying to convince him she’s scared?) and then there was her defensive responsive when Alec tried to question her about the bluebell tucked away in her cupboard. We already know she’s lying – the flashback to the night of the Sandbrook murders told us as much – but does her claim that Lee drugged her ring true? His voicemail suggests she will “need” him at some point. Could her husband be trying to protect Claire and her guilt? If so, Hardy’s right to keep a close eye on his star witness…

2. Who sent Claire the bluebell? 

Someone out there certainly thinks she’s guilty, going to the lengths of posting Claire a dried flower – presumably a means of reminding her she’s still not safe from the law. We’ve already speculated what it means, but who sent it? Lee is, of course, suspect number one, but his bewilderment when Alec posed the question was certainly convincing. “Do bluebells even grow in France?,” he asked. A quick Google confirms they do, but our hunch is there’s a third party behind the mystery mail. Could it be Ricky or David Gillespie, the two brothers mentioned in the evidence Lee gathered? How about the man hanging around Sandbrook before the two girls disappeared? Or perhaps even Hardy himself in an attempt to spook Claire into confessing? 

3. What’s on Claire’s phone? 

Ellie proved she’s a detective at heart when Claire’s trip to the ladies on the pair’s night out gave the policewoman the perfect opportunity to scan through her phone. With just moments until her wingwoman’s return, she rifled through her pockets, found her mobile and quickly jotted down some digits – but who did they belong to? There were two separate numbers on Claire’s call history – we know Lee’s been ringing her so can assume one is probably his, but who else has been speaking with Claire? And, further to that, Ellie also found a few seconds to scroll through her search history, and what had Mrs Ashworth been looking up? “Lee Ashworth – guilty”, “Lee Ashworth – trial”, and “Lee Ashworth – pendant”. Why is Claire so fascinated by what the internet’s been saying about her husband, eh? 

4. What is Sharon’s son in prison for? 

After two weeks of wondering just what is up with the two QCs, tonight we finally got some answers. Jocelyn was seen calling on an elderly patient in a care home – presumably her mother – while Sharon we watched visit her son in prison. But what has he done? We know from their conversation that his sentence lasts for another six years and that Sharon is planning to appeal, but is her child innocent? “How do I stay positive?” he asks her, confirming it was him on the end of the phone last week to a distressed Sharon. During that conversation, she told him: “You can’t change what’s happened, now it’s about what happens next and that’s down to you.” Guilty or not guilty? You decide… 

5. When will Miller and Hardy act on all their sexual tension? 

Even Sharon Bishop exploited all those unspoken feelings during tonight’s episode. Yes, we know what you’re going to say – any romance would ruin the series. This is a detective drama not a mushy rom-com – come off it, Radio Times. But bear with us a moment and examine the details… They bicker like a married couple, go to each other when they’re in need, support one another in times of crisis. Heck, Ellie Miller must be the only person Alec Hardy’s ever offered to hug. “What is the point in you, Miller?” Hardy yelled at her tonight, but he knows full well. And she’d better make her move pronto – all that manic running around is doing his dodgy ticker no favours. 

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Will we get some answers? Tune into Broadchurch next week at 9pm on ITV