Death Be Not Proud might be my favourite episode for reasons that can never be produced again in the series but I think we have yet another Masterpiece on our hands.
Pretty much the whole review is going to be a spoiler so if you want to know if it is worth watching.
It is a Masterpiece.
We start off meeting a whole bunch of different people. Seven characters, all very different, all on camera and just talking.
Talking about whatever it is they want to talk about.
We first meet Bill who is making a dating tape, then we have Nadia who talks about a couple she can’t stand who are getting divorced, next is Galen a murderer somewhere in America, Angel a vlogger, then Aidan some rather depressed sounding guy and of course Diana who just sings.
All of them talking.
At first you don’t really process the fact that this episode is so different. All of the episodes take place in one singular Number 9, regardless of what it is it’ll be the 9th of something.
Here we have people all over the place and it wasn’t until half way that I realised that it really made no sense.
Then comes the wonderful ending that makes sense of it all.
Like most of the best episodes the twist is not just a moment that makes you stare wide eyed at the TV at how brilliant the writing had been to make this entire story make sense but that was kind of real and personal as well. It wasn’t some big murder mystery, some fantastical unexplained thing or something silly.
We have a story that is so sad, it is kind of told by Bill, you get a hint of it from Nadia before everything else goes a little crazy. What the story was turned out to be something so sad, Bill is just out of prison, something we didn’t know until the end, after killing his wife. His daughter, who turned out to be Nadia, had witnessed him attacking her mother and finally killing her when she was young and had dealt with the trauma with Dissociative Identity Disorder
All the other characters bar Bill are all in Nadia’s head, there are small clues here and there in the names they use but you wouldn’t get it on first a first viewing of the episode. Some of them are there to protect her, others show the torment she has inside or a part of her personality that she hides. All are connected to the trauma in some way.
Maxine Peake was great as Nadia.
Going back you can see there is something not quite right with her. She does disassociate whilst talking, asking for simple things to be repeated like coming out a dream. At first though you think nothing of it, as everything is on a camera you think what is holding this episode together is people just talking out loud to a camera.
When the twist is revealed she perfectly plays out the end part of the episode, bringing to life characters we’d already seen portrayed by others.
It ended p being a much sadder episode then I thought it would be, wonderfully written and played out.
I really loved this episode so much.