Jul 19, 2013

Young children with Belfast accents! Woo-hoo!

So the BBC NI series, The Fall, is devilishly good.  And, the Wife and I heartily recommend it to you.  It is streaming for "free" on Netflix.  It is five hours long, and stars Gillian Anderson as a detective who is called in to Belfast to review the police work on the brutal weird murder of the former daughter in law of one of the City's elders, a political heavyweight.

Jamie Dornan and Séainín Brennan in The Fall

Another murder of a similar nature occurs, and Anderson begins to link that murder, and another murder earlier, all together, and she gets put in charge of the case.

It is not a whodunnit.  And the series seems inspired by the grim brutal ubiquitous Scandinavian murder style so popular these days.  We see the serial killer at work, and his relations to his family -- wonderful wife, two kids, including an extremely sensitive and precocious daughter who is "on" to what Daddy may be doing, but obviously can not process it, and expresses her pain through night terrors and gruesome drawings made for school.  The killer, Paul Spector is the character's name, is a bereavement counsellor, and we get to see his complex nature, in that like all people, even serial killers, he is not all bad, and is quite capable of doing the right thing for his "patients" oftentimes, even if he comes across a little creepy while doing it.

Spector also has a tight rope relationship with the sex pot fifteen year old babysitter, too, which makes for a thrilling subplot.

As I said, we know that Spector is the killer, so we watch his murders and his home and work life juxtaposed, cross-cut with Anderson's hunt for him.  This is accomplished extremely well by the writer and director team of Allan Cubitt and Jakob Verbruggen.  Their continuous use of cross-cutting as the hunter and hunted go about their days takes pains to point out the many similarities between them, and lends an an objective air about the whole series.  "Everyone has their reasons", indeed.

Plus, just for fun, Cubitt -- the writer and creator -- has included a real whodunnit subplot that speaks to the still fractious Ulster politics at work in Belfast.

Anderson is good, but the real stars for me are Jamie Dornan as Spector; the lovely Laura Donnely as Sarah Kay; Gerard McCarthy as a solicitor and one of Kay's best friends; Bronagh Waugh as Spector's wife; and Séainín Brennan as Liz Tyler.

Moreover, you get to hear young children with Belfast accents! Always good in my book! And people pronounce the word person as pearson, and say hoose for house.

Great great stuff.  The series has been renewed by the way, but it could be twelve to eighteen months before we see series two.


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