Broadchurch: A spoiler-free guide as series 3 starts tonight

Picture: ITV
Picture: ITV
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Cancel any exciting plans you had for tonight – because Broadchurch is back!

DS Ellie Miller (Olivia Colman) and DI Alec Hardy (David Tennant) return to our screens next week, tasked with investigating a serious sexual assault in the Dorset community.

It’s a departure from the show’s previous storyline, which revolved around the murder of Danny Latimer.

But the past has most definitely not been forgotten. Here’s a spoiler-free look at what’s to come in series three (though with spoilers for seasons one and two).

Picking up the pieces

When we last left Broadchurch, Joe Miller had been found ‘not guilty’ of Danny’s murder.

The verdict devastated the Latimer family, and the two detectives on the case were deeply affected too. This season, DI Hardy returns to Broadchurch CID after spending time away.

He finds himself investigating a sexual assault, and is determined to find the attacker.

As with the Latimer case, though, the toll of his work starts to weigh on his personal life.

Will his relationship with his daughter survive another lengthy, emotional investigation?

DS Miller also finds herself struggling to balance the stress of the job with her home life.

Still reeling from the Latimer verdict, she is back on the team at Broadchurch CID.

She’s also powering through life as a single mum, while taking responsibility for her elderly father’s care.

The Latimers, meanwhile, are in very different places in their lives. Beth (Jodie Whittaker) has a new job, where she hopes to put her painful experience to good use.

But Mark (Andrew Buchan) is unable to move on, and wants nothing more than justice for his son’s murder.

Some interesting new faces

Farm shop worker Trish Winterman (Julie Hesmondhalgh) is the victim of the sexual assault. As Miller and Hardy work to solve the case, her priority is putting her life back together.

Trish and her schoolteacher husband Ian (Charlie Higson) were separated six months ago.

After leaving Trish for another woman, he must now come to terms with the realities of the attack and his new relationship. Also joining the cast is Lenny Henry, who plays Trish’s boss Ed Burnett, while Sarah Parish takes on the role

Going out in style?

Speaking about this third and final series, creator and writer Chris Chibnall says a lot has changed. “Lives have moved on. Some people have left, some have arrived – and there’s a new case to test this old partnership. “There are new suspects, new revelations and fresh truths to be confronted. “I hope it has enough twists and turns, laughter and tears to go out in style.”

Broadchurch starts at 9pm tonight on ITV

*This story was first published at inews.co.uk