Written by Vincent O’Connell, this series commissioned by the BBC exists as a two-hour pilot and a series bible.
This is an age of madness. An age when communities are crumbling and religions becoming sidelined; a bewildering age of change and disruption, when values are fractured and support systems collapsed. It is an age in which psychiatry has evolved to replace religion, and therapists are the new priests. Just like priests, they are bound by codes they cannot always adhere to; and just like priests, they are regarded as fonts of wisdom but are as frail and flawed as any of us.
TALKING TO STRANGERS is the story of priests in an age of madness.
Set in the town of Brighton, Talking To Strangers tells of a female counsellor who works in a social-psychiatric practise which deals with people at the point of personal crisis, at the moment when a problem has become so manifest in their lives that they must deal with it. These problems may involve dysfunction in relationships, violent behaviour, profound sexual or addictive problems, and variants of psychological collapse which may loosely be defined as ‘nervous breakdown’. The patient/client comes into contact with the practise when a dramatic event has resulted in them being referred to the team: they are usually still trying to hold together the pattern of their ‘normal’ lives when this happens, resulting in dramatic stories.
The series pilot – ‘The Last Good Woman’ tells the story of an obssessive stalker who gets under the skin of our heroine counsellor as his obssessive gaze fixes upon her.