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    Alec Hardy 

Det. Insp. Alec Hardy

Played By: David Tennant

Hardy is an experienced detective from the city who has recently arrived in Broadchurch, wanting a quiet life after a scandal-tinged work history, after having been involved with a major murder trial — in which the suspect was released free of charge after crucial evidence was lost. Initially he and Ellie are hostile to each other as he was chosen over her to head the investigation and due to their differing personalities and views.

  • Ambiguous Disorder: Even accounting for his heart condition, it’s clear that there’s something off about Hardy.
    • He clearly has issues with water— he flashes back to scenes of waves on the beach, has nightmares about drowning, etc. Understandable, considering how he found Pippa Gillespie. Combined with his self destructive behavior and flashes of aggression, it’s all but stated that he suffers from PTSD.
    • Taking into consideration his seeming inability to comprehend social cues, his emotional outbursts, his blunt nature, and his difficulty connecting with other people, it wouldn’t be too far-fetched for Hardy to be on the autism spectrum.
  • The Atoner: Hardy is still plagued by guilt over the botched murder trial he was blamed for. When asked why he's in Broadchurch if he hated it so much, he replies it's penance.
  • The Cynic: Hardy has little time for other people, showing no interest in the townspeople as actual townspeople.
  • Dark Secret: The scandal that nearly destroyed his career wasn't his fault, it was the fault of his unfaithful wife.
  • Deadpan Snarker: A fact that doesn't endear him to Ellie initially.
  • Defective Detective: Hardy's a good detective, but he's heavily burdened by his past mistakes, the public's perception of him and his recurring heart problems.
  • Determinator: Continues to work despite the fact that it's killing him.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: He and Ellie initially do not get on, with her feeling that he stole her job and him feeling that she's too naive to be a good detective. They gradually grow closer as Ellie becomes disillusioned with her town, and during Series 2 he's her biggest supporter.
  • Fish out of Water: He feels out of place in the small town where everyone knew each other and he was just an outsider. He's also absurdly awkward at interacting with people in situations that aren't related to his detective work.
  • Good Is Not Nice: Hardy has no patience for his coworkers and is barely civil to the townsfolk at the best of times. He outright admits he hates Broadchurch. But he's still quite gentle with the Latimer family, and very supportive of Ellie during Series 2.
  • Handicapped Badass: Has heart arrhythmia, which nearly kills him on several occasions; it doesn’t stop him from working around the clock to find Danny’s murderer.
  • Hidden Depths: He initially comes off as a sour, hard-bitten detective who cares about nothing more than his job, but he's a bit more human than that.
  • Hurting Hero: In a lot of pain. Not just physically.
  • Jerkass: Hardy has almost no concept of tact, especially at the start of Series 1, where he constantly berates Ellie for her naivety.
  • Knight in Sour Armour: He may present a jerkass facade, but Hardy really does have a lot of empathy both for the victims and their family, and holds firm to his moral values no matter the cost to himself.
  • Last-Name Basis: prefers this form of address for himself, and also insists on referring to his coworkers by their last name.
  • Lead Police Detective: He's given this job, though it was supposed to go to D.S. Miller.
  • Meaningful Name: Hardy is made of stern stuff. "Alec" is the Scottish form of "Alexander" or "defender of mankind".
  • My Greatest Failure: He lost a key piece of evidence that allowed a murderer to go free. The resulting scandal nearly destroyed his career and has had a massive impact on his health. It wasn't actually his fault, but he took the blame.
  • No Social Skills: On the rare occasion where he makes an effort to socialize, it quickly becomes awkward for everyone involved. He has a poor handle on social cues, and nearly everything he attempts for the sake of being cordial or friendly to others comes off like something he saw on tv or read in a book and is trying to poorly imitate.
  • Papa Wolf: When dirty photos of his daughter are spread around her school, he shows himself to be one of these.
  • The Patient Has Left the Building: Pulls this twice in Series 1.
  • Perma-Stubble: Gives him the nice scruffy detective look.
  • Ship Tease:
    • With Becca in season 1, where a couple scenes tease they might hook up. They don't on account of Becca shooting him down point-blank.
    • With Ellie in season 2, with their deepening friendship causing several townspeople to actively start teasing them or making assumptions, and even them ending up in a situation where they share a bed in a hotel. Unfortunately, their closeness leads the defense team to accuse Alec and Ellie of having an affair in hopes of discrediting them.
  • Silent Scapegoat: His wife's mistake led to the Sandbrook murder case failure. He took the blame.
  • Socially Awkward Hero: And how. He's an extremely hard-nosed detective with zero tolerance for bullshit and works obsessively, quickly, and efficiently. Outside of a work context however, he's absolute rubbish at talking to people. During the times he genuinely tries to be friendly, his attempts tend to come off sweet but pathetic: He stutters and stumbles his way through recording a message for his daughter, and when he goes over to the Miller household for dinner he comes armed with wine and flowers and chocolates all because he wasn't sure which gift would be the most appropriate. He then proceeds to spend the entire evening looking like he's constantly silently asking 'am I doing this right?'.
  • Tsundere: Type A, with him basically constantly stalking around like he hates the world and snapping at all his peers at work. But when it comes to people he cares about, he really tries; genuinely trying to reach out to his daughter whom he doesn't mince words about how much he misses and offering Ellie a hug when she's having an extremely rough time.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With Ellie, eventually. Their relationship is basically constantly a back and forth of yelling, nagging, and scathing commentary, but over time they grow to rely on each other. Doesn't lessen their bickering though.
  • You Called Me "X"; It Must Be Serious: The only time he voluntarily refers to Ellie by her first name in Series 1 is when he tells her that her husband is the killer.

     Ellie Miller 

Detective Sergeant Ellie Miller

Played By: Olivia Colman

Ellie is Alec's colleague, and has a personal connection to Danny's murder, having been friendly with the Latimer family for a number of years. She has lived in Broadchurch all of her life, and her son Tom, who houses a dark secret of his own, had been best friends with Danny. Ellie is deeply affected by the murder, and resents Alec for taking the job she was promised by Superintendent Jenkinson. She acts as liaison with the Latimer family, relaying information which is given to her, and attempting to piece together the events leading up to Danny's death.

  • Beware the Nice Ones: Presented as the sweeter foil to Hardy, it doesn't stop her from beating the crap out of the killer.
  • Character Development: in her own words, the investigation makes her hardened; doubly so when the killer is finally unmasked.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Hardy. Their time working together at first is basically nothing but them gritting their teeth and trying not be in a constant screaming match. They grow closer as the events of season 1 really take their toll on Ellie and Hardy ends up becoming her most reliable shoulder to lean on.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: The responsible one to her sister Lucy.
  • Good Is Not Soft: Empathetic and gentle to the townsfolk. The killer, less so.
  • Happily Married: Says this word-for-word about her marriage with Joe. Until she finds out he killed Danny though, naturally.
  • The Heart: Constantly reminds Hardy that he doesn't have to be a jerk all the time, and was part of the glue of the town before Danny's death.
  • Mama Bear: Threatens to 'piss in a cup and throw it at him', when Hardy suggests that Tom do the reconstruction of Danny's murder.
    • At the end of Series 2, she threatens to kill the killer if he comes anywhere near Tom or Fred.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Delivers this to the killer once the latter's caught. This becomes a plot point in series 2, when his defense attorney uses it to make it look like his confession was beaten out of him, even though she attacked him after he had already confessed.
  • Took a Level in Cynic: As part of her Character Development after the killer's identity is revealed. By Series 2, Ellie is less trusting and questions everyone without exempting anyone from suspicion without proof.
  • Tsundere: Type B, with her harshness mostly directed at Hardy, although this isn't romantic in nature. Ellie is friendly and kind to just about anyone in her everyday life, but because Hardy entered her life by stealing her promotion (and in general, starts out extremely unpleasant to work with) her attitude towards him runs very negatively. When this starts to change though, she's very reluctant to admit it, and at the end of season 2 when he preparing to leave town, she point blank tells him that she will not hug him even though it's clear she's very grateful for everything he's done.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With Hardy, eventually. Initially she absolutely cannot stand him and he doesn't do anything to endear himself either, so a lot of their relationship gets filled with petty bickering. The bickering never really stops, and neither of them really know what to do for the other when they need comfort, but they end up being each others biggest supports overtime.

     Elaine Jenkinson 

Chief Superintendent Elaine Jenkinson

Played By: Tracey Childs

Elaine is Alec and Ellie's boss, and tries to settle Alec into life in Broadchurch. Although she is aware of his past, she does not use it against him, and offers him Ellie's promotion in her absence, having been on a family vacation for three weeks. Ellie is furious when she learns Elaine has given her job to Alec, despite being promised the promotion herself.

  • Da Chief: She's the boss.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: She's patient with her detectives and let's them handle the case as they see fit though she does get irritated at all the press leaks. The Turn in Your Badge moment is both for the sake of the case and out of concern for Alec's health.
  • Turn in Your Badge: Part of the job as Da Chief. She finds out about Hardy's heart problem, and has him looked at. The issue is so severe that he's unfit for duty and she has him leave the force at the end.

     Katie Hartford 

DC Katie Hartford

Played By: Georgina Campbell

A new detective to Broadchurch in series 3, Katie is an opinionated cop who quickly butts heads with Hardy and Miller.

  • Break the Haughty: She starts her first big case rather smugly convinced that she knows everything, and gets proven wrong over and over.
  • Dirty Cop: A downplayed and somewhat sympathetic example. In her desire to keep him safe, she reveals to her father that he's a suspect in what's supposed to be a closed investigation.
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: Frequently attempts to argue with Miller and acts passive aggressive when she's shut down. In her first appearance, she insinuates Trish is lying about her assault, in spite of her lack of sexual assault training.
  • Never My Fault: She blames her father for losing her job, even though it was her own mistake not reporting the fact that she was related to a suspect to begin with.


The Latimer Family

     Beth Latimer 

Beth Latimer

Played By: Jodie Whittaker

Beth is Danny's and Chloe's mother, and Mark's wife. She works at the Broadchurch Tourist Bureau. She is completely overwhelmed by Danny's death, and struggles to cope, telling Ellie that she is further away from herself than she has ever been.

     Mark Latimer 

Mark Latimer

Played By: Andrew Buchan

Mark is Danny's and Chloe's father, and Beth's husband. He is a plumber. After Danny's death, he began desperately grieving for his son, becoming determined to find the killer.

  • Abusive Parents: Hinted at, and finally revealed in the Series 1 finale, is that he used to hit Danny.
  • Be as Unhelpful as Possible: He is evasive during the police interrogation, because of his shame about his infidelity.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: While he never acts on it, his anger over Danny's death only increases with time. He still hasn't resolved it after the Time Skip leading to his separation with Beth.
  • It's All About Me: To an extent. He has a tendency to let his own emotions eclipse Beth's (something she eventually calls him out on), and often acts on impulse without considering how his choices will affect others.
  • The Mentor: To Nige.
  • Parental Hypocrisy: he chastises Chloe for her relationship with an older boy - despite having dated and impregnated Beth when she was underage (he 17, she 15).
  • Rage Against the Heavens: When Paul Coates tries to comfort him.
    "Your God left my son for dead!"
  • Outliving One's Offspring: He outlives Danny.

     Chloe Latimer 

Chloe Latimer

Played By: Charlotte Beaumont

Chloe is Beth's and Mark's 15-year old daughter. She is a student currently studying for her GCSEs. Chloe is overwhelmed by her brother's sudden death, but her relationship with an older boy, Dean, is another source of stress.

  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: She seems to be this (although the death of her brother is at least a partial cause).
  • Teens Are Short: Chloe is a full head shorter than her (not-particularly tall) mother.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: By Season 3, Chloe has evolved into one of the nicest and most stable members of the main cast, even taking it upon herself to counsel Hardy's daughter about her troubles at school.

     Danny Latimer 

Danny Latimer

Played By: Oskar McNamara

Danny is Beth's and Mark's 11-year old only son, and the victim of the murder.

  • Dies Wide Open: As the series finale shows.
  • Posthumous Character: Seen only in flashbacks (except for the short scene at the cliffs at the very beginning of the series).
  • Troubled Child: His relationship with his family - and especially with his dad Mark - was very complicated.
  • Troubling Unchildlike Behavior: Flashbacks show him getting into physical altercations with adults (i.e. the postman) and having a...relationship of an unclear nature with an older man.

     Liz Roper 

Liz Roper

Played By: Susan Brown

Liz is Danny's and Chloe's grandmother, Beth's mother, and Mark's mother-in-law. She is a bursar at the local school that Danny attended. She is completely at a loss following her grandson's death, but manages to be the one who holds her family together.

  • Bus Crash: She died between the end of Series 1 and the beginning of Series 2.
  • Death by Despair: How Beth said she died.
  • The Reliable One: The only member of the Latimer family to keep her head on at all times.

     Elizabeth "Lizzie" Latimer 

Lizzie Latimer

Played By: Ava Priddis, Millie Priddis (infant), Emily Allison (toddler)

Lizzie is Beth and Mark's youngest child, born after her brother Danny's murder.

  • Daddy's Girl: She immediately bonded with her father, Mark.
  • Posthumous Sibling: Lizzie was born six-seven months after Danny's murder.
  • Replacement Goldfish: Mark is the most onboard with Beth's pregnancy, possibly seeing Lizzie as a replacement for Danny. It's initially defied by Beth, who thought she couldn't love another baby when one of her children had just been murdered. She eventually comes around though.
  • Time-Shifted Actor: Lizzie is played by a pair of twins as an infant, and by a different actress as a toddler.

The Miller Family

     Joe Miller 

Joe Miller

Played By: Matthew Gravelle

Joe is Ellie's husband, and Tom's and Fred's father. Joe is a house-husband, but before the birth of his children, was a paramedic. He does his best to support his wife throughout the murder investigation, but appears not to notice his son Tom's strange behavior.

     Tom Miller 

Tom Miller

Played By: Adam Wilson

Tom is Ellie's and Joe's elder son, and said to be Danny's best friend, though Tom denies this. He is a pupil in the final year of primary school.

  • I Wished You Were Dead: Said this to Danny after the two had a falling-out and spent most of the series trying to cover up the evidence of the fight.
  • Troubled Child: Death of a friend will do that to you.

     Fred Miller 

Fred Miller

Played By: Benji Yapp

Fred is Ellie's and Joe's younger son. Joe has been looking after Fred since he gave up his paramedic job.


     Maggie Radcliffe 

Maggie Radcliffe

Played By: Carolyn Pickles

Maggie is the editor of the Broadchurch Echo. She is furious when her junior reporter, Olly, makes the decision to tweet the identity of the murder victim and make it common knowledge. She is determined to work with the police, and wants Olly to act with integrity as a journalist.

  • Intrepid Reporter: Hunts down information on both Jack and Susan, in spite of the latter's threats.

     Olly Stevens 

Olly Stevens

Played By: Jonathan Bailey

Olly is Ellie's nephew and a budding reporter for the Broadchurch Echo. An early mistake, in which he tweets the identity of the murder victim, leads the national press to Broadchurch, a decision which alienates him from his aunt, Ellie Miller, and his boss, Maggie.

  • Ambition Is Evil: He isn't a bad person per se, but his desperation to make it big in journalism brings a lot of heartache to the town. Thankfully, he has enough moral fiber to start making the right decisions by the end of the series.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: While Maggie has a prominent subplot in Season 3, Olly is nowhere to be seen. Maggie has throw-away line about her only journalist being hired by a national newspaper, but she doesn't mention Olly by name.
  • Intrepid Reporter: He is determined to get to the bottom of the Latimer case, no matter the consequences.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: It's his article, under Karen's byline, that sets off the lynch mob against Jack Marshall, leading to his suicide. Although he didn't mean to do it, and his article was sensationalized somewhat, it's hard to believe he had no idea what might happen.

     Karen White 

Karen White

Played By: Vicky McClure

Karen is a high-flying reporter for the Daily Herald, who is determined to get to the bottom of the murder, and to uncover the whole story.

  • Ambition Is Evil: She's sick of re-writing press releases and wants to get back into the field, and sees the Latimer case as a perfect opportunity to further her prestige.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Initially she comes across as a rather nice woman who genuinely wants to help the Latimer family, bringing back Danny's teddy bear before it can be stolen by creeps. Later on it becomes abundantly clear that she is mostly in this for herself, manipulating both Olly and the Latimers so she can get ahead of the story(despite knowing the hell the press will bring down onto the town) and sending out an article that drives Jack Marshall to suicide. She also may have been responsible for at least some of the hell Hardy went through, doing her best to smear his name in the Sandbrook case.
  • Determinator: Nothing will stop her from getting a story she likes.
  • Intrepid Reporter: Like Olly, she's a bold reporter who isn't afraid of consequences.
  • Pet the Dog: She advises Ellie not to talk to anyone after the fallout of discovering the identity of the true killer.
  • The Mentor: to Olly. Crosses over to Evil Mentor when she encourages him to write a smear article on Jack Marshall despite knowing full well how the town would react.

     Len Danvers 

Len Danvers

Played By: Simon Rouse

Len is Karen's boss at the Daily Herald, and is desperate to get an exclusive on the murder before any of the other national papers.

  • Bad Boss: He has no trouble exploiting his employees for his own gains.
  • Jerkass: Rude and callous.
  • Paparazzi: He's a Paul Dacre type, highly immoral and utterly callous in his desperate attempts to beat other newspapers.
  • Pet the Dog: Despite his prideful jerky nature, he does allow Karen to pursue her story. In a deleted scene he gives Olly some cynical but honest advice about how he should consider employment outside of the dying news agency, and even tells him to stick with Maggie whom he feels is far more competent.


     Paul Coates 

Rev. Paul Coates

Played By: Arthur Darvill

Paul is the resident vicar in Broadchurch. He is the first person in whom Beth confides following Danny's death. He also tutored the local computer club, which both Danny and Ellie's son Tom attended.

  • The Alcoholic: He attends AA meetings out of town.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: One of the kindest and morally upstanding characters on the show. He's the one who supervises Joe Miller's exile from Broadchurch after his acquittal, even literally walking him to the car. Everyone warns Joe not to return on penalty of mob violence, and Paul seems to have no problem with this threat.
    "After that? You're on your own."
  • The Insomniac: Coates has struggled with insomnia for many years and takes long walks at night to help combat it, which initially makes him suspicious in the eyes of the police, as his church is just across the field from the Latimers. This proves to be Chekhov's Skill when he comes across Tom Miller in the process of destroying his laptop.
  • Nice Guy: Probably one of the friendliest, most morally upright characters in the show, which makes his Shaming the Mob all the more effective.
  • Not So Different: To Jack Marshall, which is likely why he's so sympathetic towards him—they're both hiding from a history of behaving inappropriately towards a child (Paul hit a child, Jack had an affair with one) that could ruin their current careers if it's found out.
  • Sexy Priest: Young, attractive and trendy.
  • Shaming the Mob: In one of his more awesome moments, Coates furiously tears into the busybody citizens of Broadchurch at Jack's funeral, angry that they have the nerve to attend the funeral of a man who they bullied to suicide.
  • Ship Tease: With Becca. They start an affair in season 2.
  • The Vicar: Of Broadchurch.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: He delivers several of these throughout the course of the show, including to Hardy and Broadchurch as a whole, especially with regards to Jack Marshall's suicide. All are well deserved.

     Susan Wright 

Susan Wright

Played By: Pauline Quirke

Susan is a local busybody and misanthrope, a former assistant for the Sea Brigade, cleaner and a physical marketing assistant for the local tourist industry. She prefers to observe Broadchurch's day to day business from afar, but takes particular interest in Danny's death, which happened not far from her home.

  • Be as Unhelpful as Possible: Her general attitude: when questioned, she's hostile and irritated. She also doesn't share possible evidence.
  • Cynicism Catalyst: The sexual abuse of her daughter and the subsequent investigation in which she was blamed.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Susan used to be Elaine Jones, who was oblivious to her husband's sexual abuse of her daughter. The resulting investigation was very damaging.
  • Hidden Depths: She has a tragic past.
  • Jerkass: Susan is a rude, irritable loner who stays away from almost everyone.
  • Pet the Dog: She loves her dog, and refuses to share crucial evidence until the police find it.
  • Red Herring: There's a great deal of time invested in making the audience think she's the killer.

     Steve Connolly 

Steve Connolly

Played By: Will Mellor

Steve is a telephone engineer, who initially stumbles upon the investigation when he is called to add extra telephone lines in the police station.

     Jack Marshall 

Jack Marshall

Played By: David Bradley

Jack is the owner of a local newsagent's shop where Danny used to have a paper round.

  • Acquitted Too Late: When the true facts of his sex offense come to light, the media and townspeople have already decided to smear him.
  • Age-Gap Romance: When he was 39, he had an affair with a 15-year-old girl just shy of being legal. When he got out of prison, he married her.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: It's heavily alluded to, but turns out not to be overly dark. He did spend time in prison, but that's as dark as it got.
  • Driven to Suicide: By the media who paint him as a monster, drag his name through the muck and finally go after his deceased family. Humiliated and distraught, he kills himself.
  • Hot for Student: He had an affair with his student when he was a music teacher.
  • Trauma Conga Line: Starting with the police's suspicion of him, Jack is bullied, tormented and humiliated. He even has the memory of his dead family insulted on a national level by the tabloids, and he subsequently commits suicide.

     Nigel Carter 

Nigel Carter

Played By: Joe Sims

Nigel (called Nige) is Mark Latimer's employee at his plumbing firm and is also his best friend. He is very close to the Latimer family, and often helps out with everyday activities such as cooking and cleaning.

  • Demoted to Extra: Barely appears in Season 3.
  • Hot-Blooded: He tends to act before he thinks. Then again, he doesn't ever get around to the thinking part.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: His idiotic fear-mongering and relentless ill-thought Pedo Hunt lead to the death of Jack Marshall. Later, he finds himself in the negative spotlight of a scoop-hungry press.
  • Pedo Hunt: Instigates one against Jack Marshall, which ultimately leads to Jack's death.
  • Red Herring: Like Susan he's framed as suspicious, deflecting the investigation from him, him owning numerous weapons, some secret with Susan which culminates in her identifying him as the killer. After they find the real killer the detectives note the many similarities he shared with Joe.

     Becca Fisher 

Becca Fisher

Played By: Simone McAulley

Becca is the owner of the local hotel, where Alec is staying during his time in Broadchurch.

  • Demoted to Extra / Put on a Bus: After playing a fairly substantial supporting role in the first series, Becca's screen time and relevance to the plot is greatly reduced in series 2, and she is not seen or even mentioned in the third and final series.
  • Ship Tease: Slightly, with Hardy and the Rev. Paul. She actually starts an affair with the latter.

     Dean Thomas 

Dean Thomas

Played By: Jacob Anderson

Dean is a sixth form student studying for his A-levels and is also Chloe Latimer's boyfriend. He is two years older than Chloe.

  • Not So Different: Although he's too dim to realize it, Dean is in a similar situation to Jack Marshall's. Both are have difficulty dating younger women who are on the cusp of being legal.

     Lucy Stevens 

Lucy Stevens

Played By: Tanya Franks

Lucy is reporter Olly's mother, and Ellie's sister.

     Trish Winterman 

Trish Winterman

Played By: Julia Hesmondhalgh

A middle aged woman who finds herself the victim of sexual assault at her friend's birthday party.

  • Broken Bird: Was apparently, by all accounts, a social butterfly with numerous friends. The assault breaks her spirit entirely.
  • Really Gets Around: Which, unfortunately, leads various people to suggest she was Tempting Fate.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Her friendship with Cath falls apart after Trish confesses that she slept with Cath's husband.

     Daisy Hardy 

Daisy Hardy

Played By: Hannah Rae

Alec Hardy's estranged daughter.

     Ed Burnett 

Ed Burnett

Played by: Lenny Henry

     Clive Lucas 

Clive Lucas

Played by: Sebestian Armesto

A taxi cab driver who regularly drove Trish Winterman before her rape.

The Killer

    The Killer (SPOILERS) 

The Killer (Joe Miller)

Played By: Matthew Gravelle

Danny Latimer's murderer.

  • Accidental Murder: While trying to stop Danny from telling anybody about them, Joe strangles him to death by accident.
  • Affably Evil: For a child killer, he is a pretty friendly and amiable guy, never dropping the act even after his identity as Danny's killer is revealed and even having the decency to ensure Mark (who constantly blamed himself for Danny's death) that it wasn't his fault and that there was no way he could have prevented Danny's murder from happening. He also appears to care about his family and makes sure his son doesn't take the fall for the murder.
  • Age-Gap Romance: In his twisted, ill mind, Joe thinks romance and love is what he had with Danny as opposed to him taking advantage of a preteen boy. He later tells Hardy he was 'in love' with Danny.
  • Bald of Evil: Joe is the real killer. This is considered earlier when Nigel is suspected, as they are both bald and have similar builds and shoe sizes.
  • Beneath Suspicion: As Ellie's husband, Joe remains off the radar while being very close to the case.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The £500 and the mobile he gave Danny.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: Joe is a detective's husband who's Beneath Suspicion due to his marriage, innocuous nature and lack of involvement in the case. Joe is basically a background character.
  • The Exile: In the series 2 finale, he's acquitted of Danny's murder...but his former friends and family members banish him from the town on penalty of death.
  • Hidden Villain: He stays shrouded in mystery until the first season finale.
  • Idiot Ball: Engaging in a wildly immoral illegal activity even before he kills Danny comes as particularly foolish, but not as foolish as perpetrating a murder when your wife is a cop, and worse, the detective in charge of the investigation.
  • Implausible Deniability: Pleads "Not guilty" in the trial despite an earlier confession and all the evidence.
  • Never My Fault: Since he killed Danny by accident, he refuses to arcknowldge any responsibility.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: Joe manages to game the system and gets away with a "Not Guilty," but is effectively banished from Broadchurch, or else he'll face some very well deserved mob justice.
  • Surprise Creepy: Joe is rather fond of hugs, which makes it rather creepy in hindsight after the reveal that he's the killer, as he gave Ellie a hug in the first episode exactly like the one he gave Danny before he killed him just hours before.
  • Twisting the Words: Danny came to Joe in search for solace and consolation as a close friend to the family; Joe turned it way too far into something creepy and according to Hardy, no one will know if he would had stopped at that before killing Danny.
  • Would Harm A Child: He killed Danny, an 11 year-old.

The Rapist

     The Rapist (SPOILERS) 

Leo Humphries

Played by: Chris Mason

A salesman for his father's fishing business. The rapist of multiple women and Trish Winterman's attacker

  • The Corrupter: Lures Michael in with booze and porn in order to groom him into a fellow rapist.
  • Hate Sink: Leo is easily the most detestable character in the entire series. He is an arrogant bastard who raped three women in the past, forced his "best friend" to commit rape, and then tried to frame an innocent man for his crimes. He cruelly gloats about how empowered rape makes him feel without caring the slightest bit about all the lives he ruined to achieve this pleasure. Overall, he is horrible enough to make characters like Joe Miller tolerable in comparison.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Is ultimately exposed as a result of a poorly conceived plan to frame Ed Burnett.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Convinces Michael that he's a nice guy, has a disturbing degree of control over his girlfriend, and does a decent job of faking remorse when confessing that he helped Trish's ex put spyware on her computer.
  • Smug Snake: His cocky attitude leads Ellie to suspect him almost instantly, even when she can't connect him directly to Trish. And in comparison to Joe or Michael, Leo has absolutely no regrets or qualms about his actions.

Michael Lucas

Played by: Deon Lee-Williams

Son of Clive Lucas and friend of Tom Miller. The rapist of Trish Winterman.

  • Anti-Villain: He was abused by his father and manipulated by Leo Humphries, and he was clearly horrified by what he'd done.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Gets a suspiciously large amount of screen time before The Reveal, despite seeming to be a minor character.

How well does it match the trope?

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