'Southcliffe' Episode 3 Review: Channel 4 Drama Reveals Personal Reactions To Collective Grief

Episode 3 of 'Southcliffe' found the town's residents reeling from the consequences of Stephen Norton's random acts, in different, personal, often unpredictable ways.

While Paul Gould (Anatol Yusef) counted the cost of his loss, as well as his guilt over what a poor family man he had been - and was continuing to be - Andrew Salter (Eddie Marsan) pushed his wife over the edge with his bizarre mourning rituals for his teenage daughter.

David Whitehead is as broken as anyone he's reporting on in Southcliffe

Marsan was heartbreaking, stunned but still smiling with pride, as he remembered his daughter. But even he wasn't able to answer journalist David Whitehead's harsher questions.

Whitehead(Rory Kinnear)'s own personal demons came to bear as he pushed the residents to examine why Norton had behaved as he did. "He lived next door to you, destroyed the lives of countless others, and you know nothing," he said to Norton's neighbour, in one of his more restrained outpourings. But, by the end of the episode, Whitehead was as broken as anyone he had reported on.

Paul struggles to find a way to channel his grief for his lost family

The acting across the board was of extraordinarily high quality. Between this and the script, our sympathy was shared between model citizens and lesser folk alike, as we were reminded again, however personal the display, of the brutal democracy of grief.