Feelings on BBC One’s Requiem? It’s still creeping the daylights out of me! However, my over-riding feeling is that it’s been shot to appear like a movie and that watching the episodes back to back would create a very long yet highly engaging movie. Here are a few highlights from the final three episodes:
As the pieces start to fit together, mirrors continue to feature as one of the methods of communication favoured by the spirits (for want of a better term!). One of the most horrific uses of mirrors came when Hal (Joel Fry) was driving and spotted something so awful in the rear view that he crashed his car. Then he went missing, and when he reappeared in the series, he was feasting on sheep! Yes – it got weird and weirder!
When Matilda (Lydia Wilson) comes to realise that whatever is wreaking havoc can be found in the caves she takes her life into her own hands to face the consequences of throwing herself into their path. What follows is entirely unnerving as she has no recollection of what’s just happened. The plot thickens.
David Morgan (Brochan Evans) is walking into danger when he is babysat by Stephen Kendrick (Brendan Coyle) and Sylvia Walsh (Tara Fitzgerald). As Matilda uncovers the truth about their involvement in her disappearance and that they were responsible for the death of another child before she was taken. It’s a race against time to get to David, but he’s part of the plan to lure Matilda to the truth, albeit unwittingly.
Walsh, Kendrick and the Satlows (Pippa Heywood and Simon Kunz) are all at the heart of the mystery, with their claim that they require a child’s innocent mind in order to contact the ‘spirits’ who they believe will bring marvels beyond wildest dreams. Walsh finally confesses that this was always about Matilda though and while David is asleep under the influence of a ‘sedative’, Matilda is sent to confront the reason behind her kidnap. Meanwhile Walsh, Kendrick, the Satlows and Nick (James Frecheville) has been dragged in to join them. We see an extraordinary transformation occur in Matilda’s eyes as she falls prey.
It feels like not much has changed at all given the build up to the finale, however, once Matilda gains consciousness when ‘the cult’ have fetched her back – we become aware that something is unfolding and there is unrest in the house. First, Matilda approaches Nick, who is apologetic for his part in it. The episode is mostly based round what we don’t see as the ‘cult’ are nowhere to be found.
The reunion with Rose (Claire Rushbrook) in hospital is glorious, beautifully played out, similarly with Matilda’s brother, David – it’s implied that they will be a family again. However, once Matilda is alone in the hospital toilets, we see the dirt on her hands and there’s a sinister turn. Leaving way for a second series? I hope so!
Writing of this calibre has been lacking in recent dramas and Requiem had me glued to the screen, running for a hiding place and gawping, frozen in abject horror at times. Cast superbly, directed like a film rather than a television drama and with a plot packed with twists, turns and uncertainties. If you purchase this on DVD (see image below for the link) you won’t regret binge watching, it’s a seamless series.