leaflitter: Leaf litter (Default)
[personal profile] leaflitter
I am a ghost of fandom; barely here in the first place and then gone all year. I hope to return to some meta about my fic Living the revolution, perhaps before another Yuletide.

Otherwise, I shall not be doing Yuletide in 2013, except possibly for treats. And only possibly. Perhaps 2014? I want to get some Australian YA fic some day!

While drifting through your reading list like barely visible fog, some thoughts on Broadchurch:

As with anything I like, I read reviews until I find ones that disliked it, and then find out how much I agree with the criticisms. Two things stand out: first, it's not clear at all to me why it had to be Ellie's tragedy. It's useful for the drama, sure, but destroying the most sympathetic/innocent character (other than, perhaps, Beth) is cheap drama. Second, more widely observed, there sure are a lot of secrets in Broadchurch that are more or less the same: pedophilia. Couldn't someone be a fraudster, or Ed Snowden, or something?

A reviewer somewhere picked up something that couldn't stop bugging me either: solicitors. No one has one until Susan hires one — it is astoundingly implausible that she wouldn't, even more so than that Jack wouldn't — and even after that, none of them speak. For heavens sake, make Alec Hardy work for it. Please.

Some of the background things bugged me too. I didn't feel ten weeks passing even when they laid on the leaves changing. In addition, Broadchurch seems to have two plumbers, one newsagent, one church which seats about 50 congregants, and yet… there's a high school? There's a police station which appears to employ at least 10 officers even before the investigation is staffed? I suppose the high school and police station are associated with the entire district, not the village.

Onto things I liked: Olivia Coleman's and David Tennant's performances. His, of course, required far less range, but there's an impressive moment when Nige is confessing all to him (I don't think I'm going to make it rich as a plumber so I thought I'd turn to… very petty crime?) where halfway through Nige's first sentence Tennant's Hardy is climbing the walls to get away from this complete waste of time. Very amusing. I watched it freeze-frame style.

I appreciated that Hardy's entitlement and rudeness is called out, and regularly so. All too often, characters with these frankly obnoxious personalities (not that I can't appreciate the appeal of Hardy's personality in fiction, but I wouldn't want to report to him) somehow either to manage to escape in-universe comment, or it's seen in-universe as the price of their genius.

Hardy also isn't, in my reading, actually an especially gifted detective (to be fair, nor does anyone expect him to be, it's a small-town job). He's competent, and the town is lucky they happen to have hired an outsider just before this particular case, and his personal style and lack of connection with the town lets him do things that Ellie can't, but he's not far ahead of anyone else. Clearly, I am rather over anything in the Dr House mode. Surly men aren't necessarily a lot brighter than anyone else, nor should they get a pass.
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