Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 29 November 2014

Pemberton: Happy Valley responsible

Steve Pemberton starred in BBC drama Happy Valley
Steve Pemberton starred in BBC drama Happy Valley

Happy Valley star Steve Pemberton has defended the show's violent scenes, saying it stirred up a "debate worth having".

The 46-year-old actor, who played accountant Kevin Weatherill in Sally Wainwright's gritty BBC drama, dismissed suggestions the programme contained "gratuitous violence", because it showed abusive scenes against women.

"It's a debate that is obviously worth having. But you can't generalise against violence against women on television because it's got to be seen on its own merit," he said.

The fourth episode in the series, which was shown on BBC One, saw kidnapper Tommy Lee Royce - played by James Norton - assaulting police sergeant Catherine Cawood, played by Sarah Lancashire, and leaving her for dead.

Steve continued: "I think what Sally did was incredibly responsible. This crime of violence against women does exist, and I don't think it was used for cheap effect. It has got the debate out there and I don't think it was done for titillation or purely for excitement purposes."

He added: "It was really well handled. I know everyone is sensitive about it. Sally knew what she wanted to do and the effect she wanted to create."

Happy Valley, which ended its run on screens on June 3, is doing well in the pre-orders chart. It will be available on DVD from June 16.

"When I read the script, I saw it was such a strong piece and the characters were well drawn. It was done on a big scale and nothing is in black and white," Steve said.

"It's still a real surprise that it has taken off the way that it has. There's a lot of good quality drama out there but this has captured people's imaginations. Between Sally and Sarah, the rest of us were proud to be a part of it."

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting? customercare@belfasttelegraph.co.uk

Nightlife Galleries

More

Latest Entertainment News

Latest Music News

Latest Film & TV News

Latest Eating Out News

Horoscopes

Your Horoscopes by Russell Grant

Sagittarius:

Family matters occupy most of your attention. It's important to attend to domestic chores if you're going to be comfortable. Take this opportunity to straighten up, stock the pantry and prepare some meals for the week ahead. You've always had a restless nature. Easing your anxieties can be as simple as creating a comfortable household. If you're busy at work, think about hiring someone to clean once a week. Treat the expense as an investment in your happiness.More