I've been really into our girl, which has just finished in the last week or two (shown BBC One, Sundays, 9pm). Rivalling the Downton Abbey ITV slot I didn't ever watch it live. That said, it was perfect viewing for a cosy night in, with a glass of wine.
I watched the TV film last year, so was really happy to see it had been commissioned into a series. Lacey Turner is fantastic as our girl, Molly Dawes. Never having watched Eastenders, I took her afresh. She was such a believable, likeable character.
That could be said for the two other members leading the cast, Ben Aldridge and Iwan Rheon. Aldridge and Rheon have been cast so perfectly, portraying the handsome, responsible league-above man, and the constant joker, kinda cute best friend. This comes to a head in the penultimate episode. There is such strength and determination in their characters, making us as viewers want to dig deeper in our own personal battles.
It focuses on elements of war I hadn't even considered - Two Section is deployed on a mission to escort children to school. It really puts things in perspective. Our world may not be perfect but we are so so lucky to have the lives we do. The contrast between Molly and Bashira's home lives really proves this to be true.
Though, in my opinion, the pairing of Private and Captain wasn't as well thought through at the beginning as it could've been, the programme has enough to keep us absorbed, and by the end we really are rooting for them. It shocks, excites and informs us of the realities of life in the army.
Creator Tony Grounds said his inspiration for the series came from a real encounter with a female army medic, and how people from all walks of life come to join the forces. As for creating a bond for Two Section, Grounds states:
They honestly became like a real section. They were thrown together for six months, not having met before, and, as with the army, what happens in that six months could change their lives. They went through a short but intense period of training to get their heads into army life, and had to retain that focus throughout the shoot. They had to get on, bond and work together so that they became like a real platoon. We tried to utilise their youthful energy and it definitely worked to our advantage.
The final episode had me absolutely stunned, despite the fact many may have seen it coming. It has stuck with me ever since. It demonstrates so well that cannot take anything for granted.
The series ended in a rounded way, but I really hope this is not the last we see of Molly Dawes.