What makes The Fall a standout TV programme?

After the success of ITV’s Broadchurch, the BBC were always going to have do something special to try and match it and by all accounts they’ve done just that with their new show The Fal

After the success of ITV’s Broadchurch, the BBC were always going to have do something special to try and match it and by all accounts they’ve done just that with their new show The Fall. Where ITV fails with current police drama Life of Crime, the BBC hit every button with this psychological thriller.

Set in Belfast among religious and political tensions, a serial killer is roaming the streets carefully picking young, beautiful, single and professional women—stalking them for days, before eventually strangling them, leaving them for dead in their own bedroom.

DSI Gibson (Gillian Anderson aka Scully from The X-Files) arrives from London at the request she solves the murder of a young woman, however as more bodies start popping up its clear that it’s something more than a one-off but the city’s politicians and police chief aren’t too keen to link the murders and are more interested in clearing the name of an MP’s son.

The beauty of this show is the way it scares you, the way it makes you check the doors are locked just one more time before you hit the hay. The serial killer, Paul Spector played by ex-Calvin Klein model Jamie Dornan effortlessly stalks his victims for weeks on end while balancing a family (he’s actually a pretty good dad) and a job and doing so without looking anything less than the average man and then suddenly he strikes. There is violence but not in the in your face way,  if anything the murders come second to the relationships and personalities of the characters, the murders  are merely the tip of the iceberg to something else going on. 

And there is, although what that may be still remains unclear as the foundation for a link between all the main characters has been laid although not confirmed. You’ve got DSI Gibson and another policeman sleeping together who appears to be linked with the husband of the first victim, while the obstructive lawyer in his way of sending down another criminal is linked to the Spector’s third victim and you get the feeling that Gibson and the killer will meet at some point in an everyday situation.

The final ingredient to this are the similarities between DSI Gibson and the killer, both seem isolated in a busy environment with a need to be in control and a sickening attention to detail and yet both easily mould into everyday life like you or I. These traits can only mean an explosive end.

With the finale this Monday, the penultimate episode certainly set the pulses racing as killer’s latest murder didn’t go as planned and viewers were left on a knife edge as his usual perfection disappeared from his method. He was attacked by a unaccounted for boyfriend and then spotted by revellers as he tried to make his escape, the credits rolled with the words ‘its urgent’—the net appears to be quickly closing on Spector.

However with a second series commissioned by the BBC, one would assume that DCI Gibson may not catch Spector and the chase will span over another 5 episodes but regardless of how this ends, The Fall is really something special. 

It’s a wonder that it’s only on BBC2 because it is proving to be as good if not better than Broadchurch. We’ve got corruption, promiscuity, religious tension and family issues and that’s on top of a sadistic killer and the imminent heartbreak that is about to escalate.

What’s your take on The Fall? What are you looking forward to in Monday’s finale? Have your say in the comments section below, on Facebook or on Twitter.