Just in case we thought it was a quickie first-episode ratings puller that saw Joe Miller change his plea to the gasps of the gallery, we had the formidable Jocelyn to lay it all out for us - Charlotte Rampling's steely-eyed barrister making it clear that the bloody kicking he'd received at the feet of an emotional DS Miller (Olivia Colman) could all but unlock his prison doors. And Miller had only had a Scotch egg and a Kit Kat to eat all day. Could it get any worse?
In a word, yes. Because suddenly everyone else was on trial in that courtroom, from DI Hardy (David Tennant) forced to relive the day of the arrest, to the Latimers having to rip off the band-aid over their fractured marriage.
Then, with a sinking sense of inevitability, we watched as the worlds of Sandbrook and Broadchurch collided with chaotic results, Beth's waters breaking like something out of a sitcom but here with much more sinister consequences for both her, Ellie and a freshly devastated Hardy.
Meanwhile, Everyone else was still tending their own secrets, despite Beth's claim, "None of us have got anything left to hide." Not so fast. For example…
Why was the vicar still seeing Joe Miller in secret? Why was that defence barrister getting upset on the phone? When would Mark stop blaming himself, and take his wife on a hot date beyond the extractor fan?
And, still amidst all this, little titbits of humour continued rising to the surface - particularly with DS Miller's sweet attempts to get her private life back on track, and her admiration of Jocelyn's house. "How long have you lived here?" No answer. If Joe Miller's guilt or otherwise keeps us on the edge of our seats, it's these kind of everyday interludes that make us care.
PS Never mind all that, have you ever seen a real-life vicar with a haircut as crisp and 21st-century as that on the Reverend Coates' head?