TV: Single Father \ Episode 1 \ BBC Scotland
The related links posted alongside the BBC’s website listing of this BBC One’s latest drama provides surprising context. The primetime Sunday night four-parter isn’t solely a vehicle for former Doctor Who lead David Tennant, but also an opportunity to reach out to those who have grappled with the painful reality freak accidents imposed on families, dysfunctional or otherwise. For those of us who haven’t suffered it, that dose of reality is the kind of public service reality we’ve come to expect the BBC to deliver.
David Tennant’s portrayal is engaging even if his sometime histrionics remind us too much of his sometimes over-egged performances in Doctor Who. His gaunt complexion underlines the weight of responsibility he now carries around with him. His struggle is palpable. His – and his friend’s – actions forgivable.
The drama is shot beautifully. The production values high. The performance by the lead character Dave Tyler’s step-daughter compelling. The opening sequence – up until 15 minutes in – is undoubtedly the slowest. Once the accident is done with – and it’s shocking in its simplicity – then the drama can begin. The story benefits as a result. I only hope the pace and poignancy is maintained.
As thought provoking as a grief-fuelled snog between him and his former partner is, what I don’t want to end up watching over the next three Sunday nights is a love story. Mind you, who knows. Maybe I’ll feel differently at the end of episode two.
:: Watch Single Father via BBC Programmes or BBC iPlayer. Take your pick.
:: Read a review of Episode 2