Southcliffe

Southcliffe Channel 4 review | What a waste, army dreamers

Published by jamdog on 4th August, 2013.

 Southcliffe Channel 4 review

Channel 4

It’s just a market town is Southcliffe, a sleepy one at that (in my experience there are two kinds of market town – sleepy and bustling, nothing in-between.) So the very last thing you’d expect there is the kind of balls-out spree killing you see on the news once a year. And yet that’s exactly what we’re about to witness. It all starts so innocently with local gun nut Stephen Morton (Sean Harris last seen in The Borgias as cutthroat assassin Micheletto or in Danny Dyer‘s Outlaw with Ned Stark being “bullied and raped by coonts like Blair”) taking proper grown-up soldier Chris Cooper (Joe Dempsie last seen as shit for brains Chris on Skins or Gendry King Robert’s blacksmith’s boy bastard on Game of Thrones) out to the woods on a silly buggers military training exercise. Two of our returning heroes out on manoeuvres together – what in the world could be wrong with that?

 Well your first problem is that Morton is a fantasist – telling Chris he was engaging in Special Ops in Afghanistan. That kind of thing can rile a working soldier and when the military exercise turns into a harum-scarum dash through the woods with Chris running for his life with Stephen’s bullets whizzing around him he’s not in the mood to let that shit slide.

When the military exercise turns into a harum-scarum dash through the woods with Chris running for his life with Stephen’s bullets whizzing around him he’s not in the mood to let that shit slide.

Later Chris brings his SAS uncle along to the pub to confront Stephen. Nunc’s done a bit of digging and discovered that Stephen failed SAS selection and is very happy to tell him so. It’s awkward and Stephen leaves. It’s not over. Later that night Chris and Uncle SAS roll up in a jeep and chase Stephen through the woods like the shitbird in the Karma Police video. Once they run him to exhaustion they get out and put an ass whipping on him that would shame convicted sex offender Marlon King if he wasn’t such a worthless unrepentant slimebag filthy Nose.

It’s still not over. Uncle Festeringsenseofresentment pisses on him like he’s Batiatus in Spartacus. Poor old Stephen – bullied and raped by coonts like Gendry. I know he’s a bit of a knob but no need to bust his face then hose it down with piss. Talk about overreaction!

About that overreaction – we’ve got one more to come. The following day Stephen gets his two assault rifles and shoots 15 people dead.  When the bullets start flying his mum and the dog get it first. It’s grey early morning  – misty, eerie, appalling. The Shipping Forecast plays on Radio 4 punctuated by sporadic gunshots. When the blanket media coverage comes it will point out that Stephen was a full-time carer for his senile mom, generally disappointed with life and had no pussy in years. Honestly, there should be headlines every day “No Incel Man Killed a Bunch of Shitbirds Today – Police Baffled”.

Stephen was a full-time carer for his senile mom, generally disappointed with life and had no pussy in years. Honestly, there should be headlines every day “No Incel Man Killed a Bunch of Shitbirds Today – Police Baffled”.

And leading the media charge is a guy who grew up in Southcliffe. David Whitehead (Rory Kinnear last seen in Black Mirror making sweet love to a pig to save a princess) is now a TV reporter. His broadcast paymasters send him to cover the tragedy in his hometown, follow-up on the slaughter, grief and misery. Why wouldn’t you? I’m quite confident that it will be a very personal journey for Pigfucker back to Southcliffe and that many of the town’s residents will view him with suspicion, regarding him as just another scumbag hack eager to feast on their suffering.

I’m quite confident that it will be a very personal journey for Pigfucker back to Southcliffe and that many of the town’s residents will view him with suspicion, regarding him as just another scumbag hack eager to feast on their suffering.

You can keep your oil rig conflagrations, nuclear reactor meltdowns and mining disasters – there’s nothing like a spree shooting to get the blood pumping. After Run and The Mill Channel 4 completes a impressive misery trifecta with Southcliffe and this looks clearly the best of the three. Performances are strong with Sean Harris compelling as ever and Gendry putting in a solid shift too. The scripting is sharp, the direction muted and a quiet gloom gradually descends as we await the horror’s descent, a downpour as inevitable and unwelcome as the jets of piss that fell on Stephen’s Morton’s fucked up head. 

The verdict: Shot through the heart! And you’re to blame. Baby you give spree killing a bad name.

Marks out of 10: 8

Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
Southcliffe Channel 4
Author Rating
4

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