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Arts & Culture

THE CORONER: Season 1 (Season Finale This Week!)

(left to right) IVAN KAYE (Mick Sturrock), BEATIE EDNEY (Judith Kennedy), GRACE HOGG-ROBINSON (Beth Kennedy), CLAIRE GOOSE (Jane Kennedy), MATT BARDOCK (DS Davey Higgins) and OLIVER GOMM (Clint Holeman).
Courtesy of Mike Hogan/ © BBC 2015
(left to right) IVAN KAYE (Mick Sturrock), BEATIE EDNEY (Judith Kennedy), GRACE HOGG-ROBINSON (Beth Kennedy), CLAIRE GOOSE (Jane Kennedy), MATT BARDOCK (DS Davey Higgins) and OLIVER GOMM (Clint Holeman).

Airs Fridays, June 2 & June 23-July 21, 2017 at 9 p.m. & July 28 & Aug. 4 at 9 p.m. & 10 p.m. on KPBS TV

Crime investigations against a stunning seaside backdrop are at the heart of this entertaining drama series following a high-flying solicitor who returns to live and work in the small town she escaped as a teenager.

As coroner, Jane Kennedy’s job is to investigate sudden or unexplained deaths in this beautiful English coastal community.

With a new and intriguing case to investigate in each episode, starting with the discovery of a body, Jane finds herself having to work with old flame Davey Higgins, who is now the local detective sergeant.

THE CORONER combines mystery and potential danger with the warm, lighthearted tone of Jane’s relationships with her colleagues, family and the local community.

While Jane is talented and tenacious in seeking justice for the dead, her personal life is a bit more haphazard!

THE CORONER: Matt Bardock talks about his character

EPISODE GUIDE:

Episode 1 “First Love” repeats Friday, June 2 at 9 p.m. - Jane is woken by a call from Clint telling her that a boy Steve Kernan has been found dead at the base of a lighthouse. Jane then finds that her daughter Beth has snuck out of the house and is at a sunrise beach party.

At the scene, Davey tells Jane that a text message to Steve's mother, May, suggests suicide but a devastated teenage girl turns up at the Coroner's Office telling Jane that Steve would never have killed himself. Jane talks to Steve's parents and feels that his mother is holding something back.

Meanwhile, Davey discovers that Steve's best friend, Matt, is Beth's new boyfriend. Jane tries her best to befriend Matt while investigating Steve's death and searching for the mysterious girl who visited her.

The question on everyone's minds is - did Steve jump or was he pushed?

Oscar Lloyd as Matt Wickens in “First Love.”
Courtesy of © BBC 2015
Oscar Lloyd as Matt Wickens in “First Love.”

Episode 2 “How To Catch A Lobster“ repeats Friday, June 23 at 9 p.m. - Somewhere off the south Devon coast, funeral director Joseph performs a sea burial, watching as the coffin is lowered into the water.

Nearer to shore, coroner's officer Clint is surfing when he spots an unrecognizable bloated body on the beach. Coroner Jane Kennedy calls an emergency meeting with the local undertakers' association as this is the third body to wash up in a month.

Meanwhile Davey takes a statement from Dora who hasn't seen her boyfriend, local petty criminal Kevin Burton, in over a week since he went sailing.

Jane and Davey head to the casino where Burton worked and meet the owner, Harvey, who inadvertently reveals that Burton stole some money before he disappeared.

Davey is left convinced that the washed up body is Burton's, while Jane's instinct says it's another botched sea burial. Keen to make it interesting, Davey makes a wager with Jane over who buys dinner.

With a steak at stake, both are determined to prove each other wrong...

Film still of a sea burial from episode 2, “How To Catch A Lobster.”
Courtesy of Mike Hogan/ © BBC 2015
Film still of a sea burial from episode 2, “How To Catch A Lobster.”

Episode 3 “That's The Way To Do It” repeats Friday, June 30 at 9 p.m. - Local Mayor, Una Drake, has launched an initiative to clean up Lighthaven and Mick and Davey call her a killjoy, especially when she forcibly closes the Punch and Judy stall. That night the Punch and Judy man is found dead on the beach.

Jane meets with Una, her daughter and her estranged husband and finds the mayor rude and abrupt. That evening, Una refuses to meet to talk with her daughter and stands up her husband claiming to have an important meeting but instead we see her in a passionate embrace with Danny, a handsome, second-rate lounge singer.

In the small hours Davey and Jane are called to the scene of a second death. Una has been beaten with a bottle of champagne in her hotel room.

Will Jane and Davey be able to find the link between these two deaths?

Tilly Blackwood as Una Drake in episode 3, “That's The Way To Do It.”
Courtesy of Mike Hogan/ © BBC 2015
Tilly Blackwood as Una Drake in episode 3, “That's The Way To Do It.”

Episode 4 “The Fisherman's Tale” repeats Friday, July 7 at 9 p.m. - Judith and Mick are among the crowds to see local business man PB Bradsaw, and his glamorous wife, Joy, re-open their flagship restaurant. There is great shock when PB is shot dead, by a sniper, in the middle of the event.

Davey takes an early lead on the case, suspecting a connection with PB's international business, but Detective Inspector Ben Marshall from the Metropolitan Police is swift to take over the case, undermining Davey in the process.

Ben takes a shine to Jane and invites her out for dinner. Jane tends to agree with Mick that the motive lies in PB's personal life, especially when she sees video footage of an interview between PB and a student and notes strong sexual chemistry.

Is this flirtation at the root of his murder?

Alex Felton as Michael Larkin and Claire Goose as Jane Kennedy in a scene from episode 4, “The Fisherman's Tale."
Courtesy of Mike Hogan/ © BBC 2015
Alex Felton as Michael Larkin and Claire Goose as Jane Kennedy in a scene from episode 4, “The Fisherman's Tale."

Episode 5 “Gilt” repeats Friday, July 14 at 9 p.m. - A small group of treasure hunters scour the fields by the clifftops. As the weather worsens Ray suggests they stop, but Errol refuses. The rest are about to leave when Errol's detector beeps - he reaches into the soil and pulls out a gold coin.

In The Black Dog, Debs and Anthony suggest sharing the loot equally but Errol insists on keeping the coins with him and reporting it properly as he dials the coroner's office. That night, a fearful Errol thinks someone is outside his house.

In the morning the police arrive to find him in a locked house, dead in his armchair, still clutching the box of coins. Davey thinks he died of natural causes but Jane's not so sure and takes the box of coins for analysis to Professor Tal Greening who tells Jane that the coins are fakes, before asking her to lunch.

Later Jane wonders if Errol was actually 'dead' before he arrived home and her suspicions are confirmed at the mortuary; Errol had been poisoned...

Claire Goose as Jane Kennedy and Matt Bardock as DI Davey Higgins.
Courtesy of © BBC 2015
Claire Goose as Jane Kennedy and Matt Bardock as DI Davey Higgins.

Episode 6 “Capsized” repeats Friday, July 21 at 9 p.m. - Jane, Judith and Beth wake to the news that a cargo ship has washed up ashore and that locals are pilfering the goods. Jane views this as theft but Judith, Mick and Beth believe that this bounty belongs to the community by ancient law and tradition.

Detective Sergeant Davey has a hard time keeping order. In the midst of this, a man, Ian Igby, is found dead in one of the containers, apparently looting jewelry. His girlfriend Abby is devastated but her father, Grantham is not surprised. Ian, an ex-con, was a bad lot in his opinion. Jane wants to find answers for Abby.

Was Ian the good man that she saw? And what surprising cargo has Mick found?

Naomi Ryan as Andrea Matteo and Charles Babolola as Ian Igby in episode 6, “Capsized.”
Courtesy of Mike Hogan/ © BBC 2015
Naomi Ryan as Andrea Matteo and Charles Babolola as Ian Igby in episode 6, “Capsized.”

Episode 7 “The Salcombe Selkie” repeats Friday, July 28 at 9 p.m. - On a misty morning at the beach, a teenage girl emerges from the sea. Peter and Molly return home from visiting the grave of their daughter Leah and are stunned to find her standing alive and well in their driveway.

At the cemetery, Jane and Clint discuss Leah's remarkable return; though they now have unanswered questions about the identity of the person buried in her grave. Jane talks to pathologist George, who blames the mistaken identification on the stress of his wife's IVF treatment at the time.

Later Jane learns from Davey that Leah is suffering from a form of amnesia and from the marks on her wrists he thinks someone held her against her will.

At her welcome home party Leah has a heated row with her godfather Tim, and then tells Jane and Davey that she recognizes a painting on the wall - similar to one she saw when she was held captive. Suddenly, they have a lead...

Film still of Christopher Villiers as Tim Morris and Holly Bodimeade as Leah Walker in episode 7, “The Salcombe Selkie.”
Courtesy of Mike Hogan/ © BBC 2015
Film still of Christopher Villiers as Tim Morris and Holly Bodimeade as Leah Walker in episode 7, “The Salcombe Selkie.”

Episode 8 “Napoleon's Violin” repeats Friday, July 28 at 10 p.m. - Donald Sidwell, an aristocratic, elderly gentleman, races home in his vintage car to Sidwell Hall and attempts to drag his agoraphobic daughter Olivia outside as shock treatment. Meek employee, Terence Brooks, summons the courage to tell him to stop.

Later the family, including Olivia's brother Edward and niece Lily, find Donald repeatedly stabbed to death behind a locked door. When Davey and Jane arrive to interview the family, they all claim to have been together when Donald was killed.

Local gossip from Jane's Mum, Judith, together with Jane's careful questioning, begin to show the cracks in this family's story. And where is their priceless family heirloom, Napoleon's violin?

Maya Gerber as Lily Sidwell in episode 8, “Napoleon's Violin.”
Courtesy of Mike Hogan/ © BBC 2015
Maya Gerber as Lily Sidwell in episode 8, “Napoleon's Violin.”

Episode 9 “The Deep Freeze” repeats Friday, Aug. 4 at 9 p.m. - When ice cream factory manager Rose finds owner Robert frozen to death in one of his walk-in freezers, Jane and Davey are called in to investigate. Rose is adamant that Robert wouldn't have killed himself as he was in the process of selling up and retiring.

Davey questions Robert's beautiful new young wife Christine at her stunning seaside home, why didn't she mention that she went to the factory last night?

Christine blames the shock and deflects on to Robert's son Andrew, who only yesterday told Robert to drop dead after his allowance was stopped. Davey is charmed by Christine but Jane is left suspicious.

When the post mortem reveals that Robert was sedated before his death, Davey pursues Andrew as his prime suspect. However Jane learns from Rose that both Christine's previous husbands had died under suspicious circumstances - could Jane be dealing with a black widow?

Peter Gunn as Robert Talbot and EMma Campbell-Jones as Christine Talbot in episode 9, “The Deep Freeze.”
Courtesy of Mike Hogan/ © BBC 2015
Peter Gunn as Robert Talbot and EMma Campbell-Jones as Christine Talbot in episode 9, “The Deep Freeze.”

Episode 10 “Dirty Dancing” repeats Friday, Aug. 4 at 10 p.m. - Judith and Mick get into the spirit of a Latin American dance festival run by Paula Barranco and her much younger Hispanic husband Yordan. Meanwhile Issabella Martinez staggers into a crowd and falls down dead.

Jane identifies Issabella as the Cuban guest dancer at the festival. Paula suggests that Issabella's brother Romario identify the body but he finds the idea of a post mortem abhorrent.

While at the club that evening, Jane meets Mel, a charming Egyptian doctor who teaches her to dance. Jane is shocked to learn that Issabella's body has been stolen from the mortuary, and when the body is found her stomach has been cut open and drugs have been removed.

Issabella's brother is the main suspect but Jane is ever more drawn towards Mel - is this smooth doctor all that he seems?

Carla Mendonca as Paula Barranco and Juan Pablo Yepez as Yordan Barranco in episode 10, “Dirty Dancing.”
Courtesy of Mike Hogan/ © BBC 2015
Carla Mendonca as Paula Barranco and Juan Pablo Yepez as Yordan Barranco in episode 10, “Dirty Dancing.”

REVIEWS:

“Gritty, well-acted and something that you can really get your teeth into. Plus it’s shot on the stunning Devonshire coast, so it’s also pretty to look at.”Mirror

“That combination of humour, warmth and dramatic tension is incredibly difficult to pull off without at least one element suffering. But Abbott has hit the sweet spot.”The Guardian

CREDITS:

A BBC production. Starring: Claire Goose (WAKING THE DEAD, CASUALTY, MOUNT PLEASANT), Matt Bardock (CASUALTY, NO ANGELS), Grace Hogg Robinson ("Birdhouse"), Beatie Edney (POLDARK, THE TENANT OF WILDFELL HALL), Ivan Kaye (VIKINGS, THE BORGIAS), Oliver Gomm (HOPE SPRINGS). Creator and Writer: Sally Abbott (CASUALTY, EASTENDERS). Directors: Ian Barber, Matt Carter, Niall Fraser, Adrian Bean. Producer: Sandra Maciver. Series Producer: Sam Hill (FATHER BROWN, BRIEF ENCOUNTERS, LAND GIRLS). Executive Producer: Will Trotter (FATHER BROWN, LAND GIRLS, DOCTORS)

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