BBC’s Happy Valley returned this month after a highly acclaimed first series in 2014. Written by Sally Wainwright, the show stars Sarah Lancashire as Catherine Cawood, a fantastically competent, if harried West Yorkshire police officer. The first six part series told the story of a bungled kidnapping, serial killer Tommy Lee Royce and Catherine’s dogged pursuit of the criminals.
What made the show stand out was definitely Lancashire’s wonderful performance and Wainwright’s taut plotting and blackly comic dialogue. There was also some pretty disturbing and shocking violence that really kept you on the edge of your seat. There was also a wonderful cast of characters including Siobhan Finneran as Catherine’s recovering addict sister Clare, Steve Pemberton as hapless criminal mastermind Kevin Weatherall, James Norton’s charismatically scary Tommy, George Costigan and more.