At the end of Broadchurch series one, we really wanted more. But when second series finally arrived, it was a disappointment. Just because a drama deserves another series doesn’t mean it’s actually a good idea.
Just like Broadchurch, The Affair lost its punch in season two. And I’m worried about The Missing and Doctor Foster losing their power the second time around. Sometimes it’s far better to let the drama lie and move on rather than rinse it until its dry. And boring.
And this Happy Valley series closed on such a poignant note – some sense of the future but uncertain enough to be true to real life – that it would be a worthy full stop for the BBC1 drama.
Of course I’d love to see Catherine Cawood again, but I’m also fearful about a watery third series diluting the brilliance of the first two.
Then again, I have more faith in Sally Wainwright than I do in any other TV writer. It’s hard to see her milking the BBC’s hit show for a third series – or bowing to pressure from the channel – unless she was sure she had more plot to give, more tension to weave. She seems to care too much about her characters to write another series just for the sake of it.
The pressure comes from us viewers too. I can’t quite bear the thought of not seeing Catherine and Clare drinking their mugs of tea before tackling yet another difficult day. Unusually for a drama, the second series of Happy Valley proved even better than the first. Maybe a third would raise the bar again?
So, despite my fears about great dramas being rinsed for all they’re worth, I hope there is a third series of Happy Valley — but only if Wainwright really feels she needs to keep telling Catherine’s bleakly brilliant story.