Although I’m generally all about the Oscars this time of year, I happened to be watching the Golden Globes and was intrigued when I saw Elisabeth Moss pick up an award for a miniseries I had never heard of, Top of the Lake.
When I saw that it was streaming on Netflix, I decided to check out the first episode. Boy was I glad I did. Part Twin Peaks, part Winter’s Bone, all in the beautiful setting of New Zealand’s Lakes District, this brooding, atmospheric series created by Jane Campion is the very definition of must-see-TV.
The seven episodes revolve around the search for a missing twelve-year-old girl, with Moss playing a detective home from Sydney who takes a special interest in the case. The brilliant Peter Mullan plays the girl’s creepy father, David Wenham (aka Faramir from The Lord of the Rings) plays Detective Al Parker, and Holly Hunter appears from time to time in the role of GJ, a sort of life guru for a makeshift women’s commune.
—You’re a long way from any help.
—I am the help.
As one might imagine for a crime mystery set in a backwater town, family secrets, relationships, and the idea of community play a huge role in the self-contained story (Campion has already stated that there will be no more).