Emily Watson and Denise Gough both excel in chilling TV psychodrama Too Close
“Grief can be its own kind of hell”
Too Close comes to ITV with Clara Salaman adapting her own pseudonymous novel and Susan Tully directing the 3-part series. And rather impressive it was too, continuing to buck the (possibly unfair) preconceived notions about ITV dramas that persist in my mind.
Emily Watson plays Dr Emma Robertson, a forensic psychiatrist returning to work after a personal tragedy, whose first case back is that of Denise Gough’s Connie Mortensen, a woman accused of a horrific case of attempted murder whose fitness to stand trial Emma must declare.
Gough is sensational as the manipulative Connie, ickily dubbed ‘the yummy mummy murderer’, as she leaves Emma (and us) guessing whether her amnesia is real, what her motives could have been, what secrets are folded into the relationships in her life, which we see explored in flashback.
And against her, Watson delivers a customarily intense performance as the psychiatrist, dealing still with her own emotions while the nuances of this case push her to the edge. The slices of upper middle class life from both their worlds speak intuitively to the way in which both women have been challenged by society and the inevitable twists and turns fall out with a chilling conviction. Great stuff.