2020 TV show preview: This could be the most exciting year of UK telly ever
From nuclear crisis and dystopian devastation, to revelations and revenge, the last year of telly has been an absolute thrill ride.
Game of Thrones bowed out for good, there were power struggles in Succession and The Crown, Sharon and Rob disappeared into the ocean in Catastrophe, murderous Villanelle joined forces with Eve, Mum got her happy ever after in the romantic sitcom, and a hot priest had the nation flustered in Fleabag.
Meanwhile, shows like Chernobyl and Years and Years terrified us to our very core.
But that’s all behind us now and it’s time to look ahead to what could be the most exciting year of telly ever.
With the billions of Amazon and Netflix forcing all broadcasters to up their game, TV drama is set to hit new heights.
Hit shows are coming back – like ITV’s Liar – starring Ioan Gruffudd and Joanne Froggatt, and the BBC’s Killing Eve.
Long time favourites Homeland on Channel 4 and ITV’s Cold Feet are all coming back, and here’s our round-up of other new shows you definitely won’t want to miss in 2020…
Secrets, lies and corsets – what more could one possibly want from a drama? Downton Abbey creator
Julian Fellowes brings us this gloriously sumptuous period drama that will fill the void left by the Crawleys and their staff.
Starring Tamsin Greig, Harriet Walter and Alice Eve, it’s the story of secrets and dishonour amongst the upper echelon of London society in the 19th century.
A first look trailer reveals grand sets, costumes and intrigue as a voice declares: “We chose a life of lies.
Now those lies have returned to haunt us.”
It’s basically posh people getting up to no good – so like the real world, but with bonnets.
C4, Friday (Jan 10)
David Tennant is again playing a doctor, but nothing like the one we knew and loved who time travelled in a TARDIS.
He stars in the noir crime drama, about a community reeling after a house fire which kills the doctor’s wife and children.
What at first looks like a devastating tragedy quickly becomes a whodunnit, with the village turning against the GP.
Tennant teased: “Nobody really knows what’s going on behind the net curtains.”
The Good Wife star Cush Jumbo plays the doctor’s wife, Kate.
From Mike Bartlett, the writer of Doctor Foster, this six-part drama follows the stories of the residents of a large house in Manchester, divided into four flats.
As each of the separate strands unfold, they tell a larger tale, exploring love, loss, birth, death and everything in between.
Producers have promised the epic tale is about seemingly ordinary people who turn out to be anything but.
Watch out for a stellar cast, including Alison Steadman, Peter Davison, Adrian Lester, Rachael Stirling, Elaine Paige and Susannah Fielding.
It begins as Gail (Steadman) is about to celebrate her 70th birthday when a chance encounter throws her whole life into question.
Line Of Duty: Season 6
Jed Mercurio’s gripping thriller about police anti-corruption unit AC-12 left us hanging yet again after we discovered “H” was never just one person, but four.
With three of them revealed, who is the fourth? Could the final bent copper be Superintendent Ted Hastings?
Kelly Macdonald has been cast as Detective Chief Inspector Joanne Davidson in this series, with Mercurio revealing: “She will prove the most enigmatic adversary AC-12 has ever faced.”
Secret guest stars have been promised, as well as regulars Adrian Dunbar, Vicky McClure and Martin Compston, who on receiving his script recently teased: “Guys… I’m scared.”
God give us strength, fella.
He usually plays for laughs, but this thriller – originally to be called The Barking Murders – stars Extras’ Stephen Merchant as you’ve never seen him before – as a terrifying serial killer.
He plays the real life murderer Stephen Port, who killed four men and committed multiple rapes, seeking out his victims on dating app Grindr between 2014 and 2015.
Sheridan Smith plays Sarah Sak, the mother of one of his victims, 23-year-old Anthony Walgate.
The series aims to tell the story of the murders from the point of view of the victims’ families and their fight to uncover the truth amid a highly-criticised police investigation.
A picturesque tiny coastal town with a tight knit community – a place where everyone knows each other’s business. So probably best to follow that old adage about people in glass houses…
However, Maggie, played by Dawn French, does no such thing, and an incident occurs when her gossiping goes very public, has enormous ramifications.
The series also stars ex-Corrie actress Julie Hesmondhalgh, alongside Vicki Pepperdine, Mark Heap and Patrick Robinson.
Set in South Devon, expect all the warmth and beauty of Doc Martin or Darling Buds, with a healthy dose of rumour and gossip that brings drama and humour in equal measure.
Noughts + Crosses
Malorie Blackman’s best-selling novel was aimed at teenagers but is a book loved by all ages.
Now it has been adapted into a series set in a dystopian Britain, where white people – the noughts – are the underclass oppressed by a black ruling class – the crosses.
Jack Rowan, who starred in Peaky Blinders, and newcomer Masali Baduza, play the Romeo and Juliet-esque star-crossed lovers in this drama.
It’s also got the celeb-factor, with rapper Stormzy appearing as a newspaper editor in a role created especially for him. He said: “As a diehard fan of Malorie’s novels, being a part of this important show is a dream come true.”
Michael Sheen has undergone yet another transformation for a role, this time in the form of Who Wants to be a Millionaire? host Chris Tarrant.
He donned a strawberry-blonde wig and applied plenty of fake tan to portray Tarrant for the three-parter, based on the infamous coughing scandal.
In 2000 Major Charles Ingram and accomplice Tecwen Whittock duped the show by cheating their way to winning the top prize.
The drama has been written by James Graham and based on his play, also called Quiz.
Is new host Jeremy Clarkson in it too? No – and that’s our final answer.
The Pale Horse
Fans of Agatha Christie rejoice – The Pale Horse has been adapted into a two-part drama starring Rufus Sewell as Mark Easterbrook.
There’s something afoot when his name appears on a mysterious list found inside the shoe of a dead woman.
Easterbrook heads to a country village to solve the mystery where he finds a former inn called The Pale Horse, rumoured to now be the home of witches.
If nothing else, screenwriter Sarah Phelps said viewers can swoon over Sewell looking dapper.
“Rufus Sewell looking incredible in a suit in a beautiful vintage car is always a good thing, isn’t it? Let’s be honest,” she said. Skins star Kaya Scodelario plays Hermia.
The North Water
Brace yourselves for this bleak series full of beards set in the Arctic, with plenty of drama on the high seas.
Stephen Graham, Tom Courtenay and Peter Mullan join Colin Farrell and Jack O’Connell as the crew of a ship, set in the ice floes of the Arctic in the late 1850s.
The brave cast shot some of the series in Svalbard, a Norwegian archipelago in the Arctic ocean, travelling as far as 81 degrees north to film sequences in the pack ice.
It tells the story of a disgraced ex-army surgeon who joins a whaling expedition.
But it’s an ill-fated journey with a murderous psychopath on board and a struggle for survival. We’ve got chills already
On Digital TV
THERE really is too much on TV these days.
Not only is it impossible to miss shows thanks to catch-up TV, and possible to watch all your terrestrial favourites again with Britbox, but Sky, Netflix and Amazon Prime Video are pumping billion of pounds into creating new TV shows.
One of the first to appear will be Sky’s action-packed original drama Cobra, starring Hamish McBeth’s Robert Carlisle as the UK prime minister, and based on the political committee which comes together at times of crisis.
It launches on January 17.
A week later – on January 24, Star Trek: Picard will be available on Amazon, with Patrick Stewart playing his starship captain for the first time in 18 years.
Yet another subscription service, Disney+, is pinning its hopes on the success of another space series, this time from the Star Wars universe.
From March 31 The Mandalorian will tell of the adventures of a bounty hunter and feature a baby Yoda.
Meanwhile the biggest player, Netflix, has been busy too.
Spooks star Richard Armitage leads the cast in eight-part nail-biting thriller The Stranger, adapted from Harlan Coben’s twisted novel and available from January 30.
It follows Adam Price, who seems to be living the perfect life, until a stranger approaches him at a bar and reveals a shocking secret about his wife.
Also starring are Siobhan Finneran as police officer DS Johanna Griffin and Hannah John-Kamen as the mysterious stranger who exposes people’s secrets.
Later in the year Netflix will also launch Ratched, a prequel to the classic film One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, and Bridgerton, from the creator of Grey’s Anatomy, about marriages and high society in Regency London and starring Derry Girl’s Nicola Coughlan.
Source: Read Full Article