Happy Valley Season 1 Episode 3 step outline


We can see that this episode is structured very differently from Episode 2

Like Episode 2, let’s explore in 5 acts.

Again, as previously, the 4 story threads are colour coded as follows:

Let’s start.

As you can see, unlike Episode 2, (we will do a comparison in another post) the entire act is dedicated to the A story (season) and the cop-murder of Kirsty.

Actually, this storyline could have its own colour code as an episode storyline, I decided to keep blue because the murder of Kirsty is a consequence of Ann’s kidnapping: A story (season).

The act is a furiously tragic depiction of the murder of Kirsty: emotional, brutal, shocking. It’s a terrific opener to Episode 3.

Many of these scenes are quick fire editing between the four characters: Kirsty, Lewis, Ann and Tommy Lee Royce.

The act break is clear, as Tommy Lee Royce leaves the body of Kirsty dead on the floor and the lights of her police van flashing.

Again, Act 2 is dedicated to the A story (season) with a slight nod to the C story of police, drugs & corruption.

The act again is clearly marked as a dramatic sequence and follows Catherine dealing with the crime scene.

Again, Act 3 is almost fully dedicated to the season A story – the kidnapping of Ann.

Again, there is a slight nod to Catherine’s day to day world of police protocol. Actually, these two scenes (44/45) depict Catherine dealing with anti-police hate speech.

Act 4, right up to minute 40 (scene 54) deals with the A story (season) the kidnapping of Ann.

Scene 54 is the first time in the entire episode we have seen any C story – Catherine’s personal life, with a slight nod to the A story of the trilogy – Ryan’s relationship with his dad Tommy Lee Royce.

Act 4 ends with a shocking line from Clare which brings Catherine crashing back to hell and hooks us to the A story for the trilogy:

“On the plus side… ” says Clare, “at least it (the murder of Kirsten) has taken your mind off Tommy Lee Royce.”

Act 5 is also dedicated to the A story of the season – the kidnapping of Ann.

Only the final scene brings us back to the A story for the trilogy – Catherine V Tommy Lee Royce.

What do you think about this structure?

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