By Darren Chadwick-Hussein
It used to be the major hurdle of creating original content was getting it finished. Then getting it distributed. Now that YouTube and the like are here the major hurdle isn’t getting it finished but getting it seen.
When I first heard about Forgive Me Father my initial reaction was, ‘Oh come on…’ A twenty-six(!) part dark ‘serial drama about obsession, desperation and murder’ I wondered how the creator, Colchester based
Simon Goodway, could have created such an undertaking without it appearing on my radar. So it was with some initial hesitation I decided to check out this mammoth undertaking and realized a show like this is why the democratization of the web exists.
Following the story of David Grange, a man who’s hit rock bottom and yet somehow continues to dig, it redefines simplicity. Each episode is a monologue delivered by David (Goodway himself) in a confessional booth. And that’s it. That’s how you can do twenty-six episodes and not bankrupt yourself. The first episode sets up everything you need to know about the character and the love of his life, Elizabeth, whose rejection has forced our (anti-)hero to an attempted suicide. A quirk of fate saves him and in his warped eyes gives him a new purpose and vision: that he must protect Elizabeth at all costs. All this told in the unreliable-narrator style where David sees himself as The Knight in Shining Armor. To reveal any more would be to spoil the twists and turns that await you.
To say the ratings for the show are currently poor is an understatement and this is heartbreaking as the show is genuinely gripping and Goodway’s heartfelt performance is frankly touching as he squirms and stutters (and occasionally subtly glances at an offscreen prompt sheet?) through the material. However, audiences are suffering for not letting David Grange in to their lives – just not in the way Elizabeth does. Goodway and his channel Clever Dicks should not agonize over the audiences’ lack of attention span, though the running times (averaging eight minutes) are most likely responsible, putting the casual observer off.
The series, ongoing though the final episodes, will be available shortly, but with so much to already to enjoy I can recommend a binge-viewing session. Goodway also handily provides recaps every seven episodes in case you may have missed something subtly seeded in a previous episode. The show itself also serves as a prequel to the darkly comic crime novel Killing Elizabeth – where we see the story not from the ‘heroic’ stalker but rather his victim – which is available as paperback or as a download.
You don’t want to let someone like David Grange in to your real life – yet watching him onscreen is horrifically fascinating. Watch episodes of Forgive Me Father on CleverDicks Channel on YouTube.