Broadchurch S3:E4 Football On The Beach Recap

Good morning everyone, I hope you’re enjoying your cuppas! It’s time to roll further into Broadchurch, let’s all brace ourselves.

Whoops, my bad, in watching the Previously On I see that I missed Cath (Sarah Paris) pushing Trish (Julie Hesmondhalgh) to catch her attacker or everyone else will be at risk. That’s lovely, Cath, pressure a rape victim to stop worrying about her own trauma and focus on what’s important… YOU not being attacked. Especially on the first visit together after the attack: just brilliant, Cath, great job being a best friend.

Because of that, we open with detectives Ellie Miller (Olivia Colman) and Alec Hardy (David Tennant) with Julie back at the Axehampton house; at least Beth Lattimer (Jodie Whittaker) is there for support. Plus Ellie, of course. Ellie’s magic at support. Ellie questions whether Julie is sure, but yes, she is, she wants to remember.



What she wants is to HELP. Nobody wants to remember an assault.

Oh and we’re getting flashbacks to the party itself as Trish walks in, that’s brilliant but also I don’t want to see anything, right? Have I made myself clear?

Beth tells Ellie about the flowers Trish received the previous evening, I wonder why Trish didn’t tell the police herself? Probably because Alec would keep asking about her mystery paramour.

She remembers walking in to the kitchen once (BABY BLUE AGA!!) and getting into it with Chas the Cook (Charles Babalola) about her being in the way. This is why they wanted her to remember! Alec lurks behind and sees a bunch of things in the hallway in a wheelbarrow; one looks like a cricket bat that would be quite handy to smash someone across the back of the head.

She takes us through the rest of the party; it’s so lovely to see her smile and be happy. Also, I think her and Ed (Lenny Henry) have a thing; he’s much more attractive when not talking. He was the last person Trish saw before she headed outside for a smoke to the visible disdain of her estranged husband Ian (Charlie Higson). She did squeeze her way right through the dance floor, so only EVERYONE saw her walk outdoors.

Alec asks after the owner of the house; he’s upstairs and out of the way and no, Ellie doesn’t remember seeing a wheelbarrow in the hallway earlier either.

Trish takes them all the way out to where she was raped and oh god. She reenacts her body positioning and Ellie and I cry as Trish is overcome and throws up. Too much, too much. She got two things out of that recreation; she smelled vodka or booze on her attacker’s breath and there was a bright light shining from the cottage across. She calls it a day with Beth as Ellie tries to recover and Alec is off in search of the light.

Thank you for not showing the attack, Broadchurch.

They look at the cottage opposite; there’s a security light but Katie (Georgina Chapman) hasn’t been able to secure them access permission from the owner yet. Katie has found a convicted sex offender released into the area 10 weeks ago however. His MO includes binding and gagging his victims.

But somebody called Trish into the wooded area; how would a stranger know her name and be prepared to that level?

In between all of that, Alec questioned the house owner about the toys in the wheelbarrow; apparently there is another cricket bat out there somewhere that could be the weapon. I still have my eye on Arthur (Richard Hope); he and his secret hiding spot down by the water.

Alec and Ellie are off; there is promising news about the threatening text message Trish received. It wasn’t sent from a phone but rather a website that logs IP addresses. Well, if they don’t use a VPN, right? I don’t know much about IT, but I do know a VPN blocks that, right? Something our IT expert convicted rapist Aaron Mayfield (Jim Howick) probably knows.

It’s interesting how they discuss sexual assault on this show; it’s clearly carefully vetted by those in sexual assault survivor support system. For example, when discussing Aaron’s rape trial, Alec says he “pleaded guilty and forced his victim to give evidence.” That is not usually how you would describe any kind of a trial; it sounds as though Alec is suggesting that Aaron assaulted his victim a second time in having her or him have to testify in court. Interesting.

Also: I thought the guy Ian gave his computer to in the middle of the night was young Leo Humphries (Chris Mason), what if it was disguy? I couldn’t see all that well.

Nope, Aaron Mayfield doesn’t look anything like the guy who took Ian’s computer and he swears he isn’t a rapist either. He sends his wife and young child out of the room with a “you don’t need to hear this” before starting his story. He met a woman at a conference, had a few drinks, had sex with her and she freaked out in the morning because she was married. As for the gagging and binding, sure… he likes to play.

This is a common trope repeated by MRA activists the world over. I’m sure there are SOME false reports that come from this sort of scenario, but think about what it means for a woman to subject herself to the kind of physical and external probing that comes from taking a rape case to trial. To TRIAL, not just telling her husband she didn’t consent, but the kind of life-altering world-upending exposure that comes from trying to have a case like this prosecuted. It’s not done on a regular basis to excuse a hickey or extra-marital bounce.

AND, while I’m sure there are a bunch of random hookups involving tying up and gagging; that is certainly not the norm for BDSM. From what I’ve heard, it’s a trust-based practice that involves fully informed consenting adults, not a couple of drunk conference attendees trying to get their wobblies off.

Aaron’s alibi is weird. He spent all night fishing on Saturday night, alone, on the beach. He does this every Saturday night and while I have extremely lame weekend nights myself, it strains credulity. He does give enough details that it can be properly checked out.

Alec checks out the garage, where pudgy Aaron likes to work out surrounded by pictures of mostly-undressed young women, just like Leo Humphries. Alec wants to know everything about this man.

Ian calls his daughter Leah (Hannah Millward) to creepily dig for information about what Trish remembered and hey! Can he get mum’s computer in the middle of the night for two hours? He must have key-logging software or something on it.

I will say that Ian is displaying a bunch of the characteristics of an estranged parent doing everything they can to undermine his child’s relationship with the other parent. Asking Leah about what her mum’s doing; asking her to lie to her mum and steal from her, etc.

Alec and Ellie have a nice moment in the car; she’s had a nightmare about the rape and he suggests he go home an hour early tonight but it’s so awkwardly done that she can only comment on it in surprise. “Is that you doing supportive boss?”

Ellie and Alec are in to see Cath, who’s….planning a party? They’re going to celebrate Trish’s attack? Not arrange a candlelit vigil where they Take Back The Night, but rather a football party so everyone can have a bit of a laugh and shake off these terrible “my best friend was raped” blues? Does she think Trish would think that was an awesome idea?

Cath is the worst best friend in the world I’ve decided

Cath takes the detectives through the night of the party, her “Ed would spend all night with Trish if he could” brings Ellie’s and my ears up, but it’s this that drives the remainder of the conversation. Trish talked to everyone

She describes her marriage to Jim (Mark Bazeley) as “loveless” and hey, she doesn’t know where he was for the remainder of the party.


Ed’s lurking outside Beth’s house when she comes out; he freaks her out and then asks for a bunch of personal information about Trish and when that doesn’t work asks her to pass on a message, which she won’t do either.

Three things:

  1. Ed is very attached to Trish
  2. He has a problem understanding social boundaries and what it’s like to be four feet tall (sorry Beth but you totes are) and run up on by a 6 foot plus man.
  3. He called Beth by her name to get her attention, as Trish’s attacker did, even though he doesn’t know Beth

Mark Lattimer (Andy Buchan) didn’t listen to his family at all; he’s gone ahead with trying to find Joe Miller, and private investigator Nick Foulkes (Simon Cook) has the goods. He gives Mark a 50% discount in light of his circumstances.

Ah Mark, don’t let Joe Miller take you down too

Time for the football match; it’s a party and everyone’s there! Ed and Jim get into another shoving match; do you suppose it’s because of Trish? Ed grabs the ball out of Jim’s hands in a very clear “MINE” move. The woman herself appears and everything stops

Cath breaks the awkward silence; “it’s just Trish!” and runs over to give her a hug. Every!single!suspect is there! Maybe this stupid football match wasn’t such a bad idea after all. Lindsay Lucas (Becky Brunning) is there watching Clive (Sebastian Armesto) and their son Michael (Deon Lee-Williams); it’s not going well for either.

Reverend Coates (Arthur Darvill) joins her at the concession window; she’s worried that Clive isn’t enough of a father to Michael; he didn’t even tell her about Michael’s suspension. “How can you be a good parent when you’re still a child yourself?”

Ed hovers nearby while Trish makes her escape; he gives her a questioning thumbs up and gets a head shake in return. Ellie’s checking out the goal, tied with blue twine made by Leo Humphries’ company; Ian runs over and now the detectives know how close one of their main suspects is to one of their other favourite jerks.

Alec’s gotten approval for surveillance on Aaron; Katie is dispatched and when she asks why, Alec makes me and Ellie laugh when he says “because I don’t like him.”

Alec’s off before everyone else, what? No, he’s doing nothing

Young Chloe Lattimer (Charlotte Beaumont) has come to see Daisy Hardy (Hannah Rae), what? She heard what happened and figured Daisy could use someone to talk to. WHAT? Does this have anything to do with the three young men that came looking for Daisy when she wasn’t there? Or the porn video the lads were watching? WHAT’S GOING ON??

Alec’s thing He Totally Isn’t Doing is a blind date with Zoe (Ellen Rhys) who is pretty and gives him top marks for effort for the suit he’s wearing. I wish he’d gone home instead, although I completely understand the itch.

They’re both crazy nervous; it’s Daisy who set up his profile and it seems she left out the part that Alec has a child. That may be a deal breaker, but for now they move past it and it’s kinda cute.

Beth gets home to find Mark cooking supper and looking for a chat like “mates.” She handles it far better than I would, not throwing anything and calmly explaining that he just can’t let himself in and start cooking. Get that locksmith on speed dial, Beth! In the meanwhile, she’s ready to talk a bit since he’s there and there is food made. I’m pretty sure he was he one accusing her of creating false hope; he’s doing this all to himself now. He lies and says he’s given up all that nonsense about finding Joe Miller; we JUST saw you with a PI!

I love Alec and Ellie together, even more so when they startle each other walking through the paths and she gets to ask all kinds of impertinent questions like “was she nice? Did you KISS HER” and then they’re off to Atwell Motors because they’ve gotten the results of the DNA swabs.

Back at the station, we find out that Jim is Mr. Saturday Morning, which I’d suspected previously so no biggie there. And Cath doesn’t know, which is why Trish was adamant in her refusal to tell the police his identity. Ellie is all crossed arms and judgement.

Trish and Jim both say it was “just sex” and is there really such a thing? Really?

And it was Ian’s credit card that paid for that text message to Trish. He denies it but Sarah (Charlotte Lucas – her name drove me crazy trying to remember where I knew her from and then I realised: Pride and Prejudice, duh!) pops in just then and cops to it. What? Alec is flabbergasted but I’m confused: if Sarah sent it before she knew Trish had been raped, then what did she want Trish to shut up about?

Mark grabs Reverend Coates walking away from the match; does he wanna come see what he found?! The Reverend wants nothing to do with Joe Miller or whatever Mark’s up to, fanks.

A young woman in a call centre is doing a good job of keeping it together, but you can see the stress on her face as she stares at the newspaper while she’s talking on the phone. The front page is about the rape.

Katie’s still sitting outside Aaron’s house but her partner isn’t with her. Aaron is fully aware she’s watching and jumps into her car to make some lewd comments. “I wouldn’t mind being inside a police girl” and I’m sure he meant woman, right? He’s over the top creepy and I think Katie makes a mistake in NOT running him in, don’t give a guy like that one inch of leeway or he’ll splooge all over it.

We go to the police station now, where that same young woman from the call centre is waiting to speak to someone. She’s reluctant at first, I think because Alec is there, but eventually she comes out with it: two years ago she was bound, gagged and raped. And we’re out.

SO. That changes everything; that means the attack on Trish could have been a crime of opportunity and probably was not specifically targeted. I’m trying to remember the exact timeline of Aaron’s release into Broadchurch, I think he was in jail until 10 weeks or 10 months previous, either way it couldn’t have been him. That just leaves literally every other man in Broadchurch.

I can’t even contemplate whatever it is Mark thinks he’s doing, so I’ll move on to Sarah’s text to Trish. WHAT could that have been about if she didn’t know Trish had been raped? Shut up about what? I hope Daisy’s okay.

Here I was thinking Cath was a shite friend (to be honest I still think that) but Trish isn’t winning any friendship awards either, sleeping with her best friend’s husband. Small towns. Until next time!