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Review: Sophie Rundle Shines in ITV1’s After The Flood

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After the Flood

Viewers are taken on a gripping and suspenseful ride in After The Flood, the thrilling six-part drama on ITV1. Written by Mick Ford, the actor turned writer who has been involved in the recent Harlan Coben adaptations for Netflix, the show offers a surprisingly complex mystery thriller that will keep viewers engaged from start to finish.

The story revolves around the discovery of a dead body in the lift of an underground carpark, initially believed to be a victim of the flood. However, as the episodes progress, it becomes clear that his death is linked to a larger reckoning for the town. Ford’s plot is brilliantly engineered, the series carries a large number of plot strands weaving a tangled web of secrets and revelations that all manage to be resolved by the end of the series.

Leading the charge to uncover the truth is Jo, played by the talented Sophie Rundle (known for her roles in Peaky Blinders and Gentleman Jack). Jo is a heavily pregnant police officer with aspirations of becoming a detective, following in the footsteps of her late father and her husband Pat, played by Matt Stokoe. The dynamic between Jo and Pat adds an extra layer of tension to the story, as Jo’s determination to solve the murder case clashes with Pat’s concerns for her well-being and their unborn child. Pat also seems to be keeping a few secrets of his own.

The series does an excellent job of exploring the impact of climate change, highlighting that flooding is not just a problem for islanders in the Indian Ocean but a pressing issue for all of us. Ford’s message about the reality of climate change is communicated in a way that shocks viewers, without overwhelming them.

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The series is set in the fictional Yorkshire town of Waterside (in reality the village of Old Glossop) but a purposely built set near the Trafford Centre saw 20 stone terrace houses being built using plasterboard to faithfully replicate the architecture found in Glossop. These structures were then ingeniously lined with rubber and filled with water to authentically recreate the flood effect.

The ensemble cast delivers strong performances, with Lorraine Ashbourne standing out as Jo’s widowed mother, Molly. The always excellent Philip Glenister as developer Jack Radcliffe also scores as does Jonas Armstrong as the misguided Lee who begins the series performing a heroic act in saving a baby from the floodwaters. The characters feel authentic, and the relationships between them are convincingly portrayed, adding depth to the story. The town itself is brought to life with great attention to detail, creating a sense of community.

While the series starts with a thrilling sequence of the flood, it truly shines in the aftermath, as it delves into the lives of the townspeople and their secrets. The murder investigation serves as a catalyst for exploring these characters and their motivations, keeping viewers engaged and invested in the story. The plot twists and turns, leaving audiences with more questions than answers at the end of each episode.

One aspect that may require some suspension of disbelief is Jo’s recklessness and willingness to break the law in her pursuit of uncovering the killer but this is a TV drama so we can accept it. The series does come to a natural conclusion but is certainly open enough to potentially allow for another season if ITV decides to continue the story.

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After The Flood is available on ITVX.


Andrew Martins, reviewer, deep diver, scifi specialist. Thinks Blakes 7 is better than Star Trek. Yes I do go to fan conventions and no I don't dress up. Well okay maybe I do a bit.

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