Twists and turns in this week’s Silent Witness kept viewers on the edge of their seats right up until the final minutes, but it wasn’t just the case that had them gripped, it was the sad death of Clarissa’s mother.
The forensic scientist realised she had to let her mother go and the scenes left viewers praising actress Liz Carr’s moving performance.
The two-parter had started out looking like a straightforward cold case, as joyriders disturbed a concrete post that happened to have the remnants of a skeleton in it.
Then it was discovered that the dead man had a 12-year-old daughter, Hope, who was being cryogenically frozen after her death.
First, it looked as if the dead man’s wife, Sue Marshall, might have killed him, or at least covered up his apparent suicide. Then Sue herself was murdered.
Eventually, the finger of suspicion seemed to point at Adam Brockham, the charismatic boss of the company which was preserving her body.
Meanwhile, Clarissa was contending with her own struggle. Her mum was being treated for cancer, and this episode saw her finally admit that perhaps the treatment wasn’t working, and she would have to say goodbye.
“I feel so at home here among the dead,” she told a sympathetic Nikki, played by Emilia Fox. “But no one warned me this would be so difficult.”
No wonder she told Adam Brockham that he was exploiting the hopes of grieving families by promising to bring them back from the dead.
With nights at her mother’s hospital bedside and days with the Lyell team, it seemed the strain was getting to Clarissa.
She was overtaken by a panic attack, while the dead man’s sister Ann was visiting the Centre to find out about his remains.
As Ann comforted the distressed Clarissa with all the confidence of a trained nurse, something became clear to the forensic examiner. Only someone with medical experience could have administered the injection which killed Sue…
Clarissa soon found evidence which confirmed her suspicions – Ann was behind the murder of Sue, not Adam.
An emotional final sequence showed Clarissa face losing her mother in heartbreaking scenes which moved some viewers to tears.
We all need a Jack.
“This was heartbreaking tonight,” one wrote on Twitter.”Clarissa and Jack just so lovely. We all need a Jack. The mum scenes were raw but beautiful #SilentWitness”
“That was just beautiful #SilentWitness. I didn’t want it to end,” wrote another.
Many sang Liz Carr’s praises for her performance, and called for her to win awards.
“Got to say that #thelizcarr gave an amazing performance tonight and told a truly emotional story of dealing with parental illness and eventually death. Hope she gets the recognition she deserves,” one tweeted.
Some said the personal storyline was more captivating for them than the crime plot. “For the first time ever with #SilentWitness I cared more about a personal storyline than the crime procedural storyline. Really emotional stuff,” one Tweeted.
That was heartbreaking tonight. Clarissa and Jack just so lovely. We all need a Jack. The mum scenes were raw but beautiful #SilentWitness
— mel wing (@MelMelwing12) January 28, 2020
That was just beautiful #SilentWitness I didn’t want it to end
— Spencer Hastings 🌹 (@allwillbewell79) January 28, 2020
— Linda-Anne Locking (@linda_anne_8791) January 28, 2020
Got to say that #thelizcarr gave an amazing performance tonight and told a truly emotional story of dealing with parental illness and eventually death. Hope she gets the recognition she deserves #SilentWitness
— Philip Davies (@Philip040962) January 28, 2020
— Looking for sci-fi in all the wrong places (@DaveGolder) January 28, 2020
In a separate tweet, Liz thanked them for messages of praise and support.
Blown away by the lovely words about #SilentWitness @BBCOne this wk. Incredibly proud that our whole team created something that has touched so many. Thank you for your tears, love & for sharing your stories of loss with us ❤️
I brought my real mum to watch us filming the ep… pic.twitter.com/AY6dbp7chS
— Liz Carr (@thelizcarr) January 29, 2020
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