Upcoming Things of Interest

BAFTA-Winning Drama Last Tango in Halifax Coming to PBS Stations This Fall!

Our PBS Annual Meeting took place in Miami this week – complete with lots of new programming announcements, previews, and other goodies. One of the most exciting bits of news to emerge from our annual conference is that acclaimed British drama Last Tango in Halifax will be coming to a PBS station near you this Fall! The series, which just won the 2013 BAFTA Award for Best Drama last weekend, has been quite popular in the UK, ranking as one of 2012’s top ten highest rated dramas.

The six-part series stars Sir Derek Jacobi and Anne Reid as childhood sweethearts Alan and Celia, who are both now widowed and in their 70s. The two rediscover one another via the magic of the internet and fall in love all over again. It also stars Nicola Walker, Tony Gardner, Dean Andrews and Nina Sosanya, among others. The series was written by Sally Wainwright, who was inspired by witnessing the happiness her mother's second marriage brought her late in life. Read on for more details.

The Bletchley Circle Premieres April 21 on PBS!

Critically acclaimed mystery series The Bletchley Circle is making its way to PBS stations around the country (ours included!) starting Sunday, April 21. The three-part series follows the lives of several women who were code-breakers at decryption facility Bletchley Park during World War II. The four returned to civilian life following the war, but are reunited when a string of ghastly murders baffles the police and presents the ladies with a different sort of deadly pattern to solve.

The drama stars South Riding’s Anna Maxwell Martin alongside Rachael Stirling, Sophie Rundle and SurvivorsJulie Graham (though I expect a lot of you will really recognize her from her guest appearance on Doc Martin).

Sound interesting? Watch the PBS preview for the new series below – which shows you a bit more about what the series is like.

An Extended Look at the First Full Series of Endeavour

Inspector Morse prequel Endeavour is back this year with its first proper full length series. (The first episode actually premiered last night in the UK, so let’s try and not be too jealous of our British friends, difficult as that is.) The four new feature-length episodes will follow the ongoing escapades of a young Endeavour Morse in the early days of his career, after leaving his Oxford college without taking a degree and joining the police.

The original one-off film aired early last year, in honor of the 25th anniversary of the original Morse mysteries. It was picked up for a full series before the original film even aired in America, thanks to some impressive ratings across the pond.

The series’ four new episodes – entitled Girl, Fugue, Rocket and Home – will continue to explore Endeavour Morse’s life back before he became the famous Inspector we all know and love. All four new installments have been written by Inspector Lewis creator and former Morse writer Russell Lewis, who also penned last year’s pilot film.

Shaun Evans is back as young Morse, accompanied once again by the always awesome Roger Allam as Morse’s senior partner Fred Thursday, and James Bradshaw as Dr. Max Debryn. They’ll be joined by Sean Rigby as a young PC Strange – the character played by James Grout in the original Morse series.

ITV has released an extended trailer promoting Endeavour’s UK premiere and it’s really quite fantastic. The show looks excellent!

The First Full Series of Endeavour: Coming in 2013

Excellent news for mystery fans – you can now get your first official look at the upcoming full series of Inspector Morse prequel Endeavour. Shawn Ryan is back as a young Endeavour Morse, who is now just a new constable cutting his teeth on solving crimes in Oxford in 1965.

Endeavour premiered as a one-off film last year and was given the greenlight for a full series before it even reached our TV screens here in America (Which is always a relief!). This time around, young Morse will be back for four feature-length episodes, dealing with a variety of cases and hopefully featuring many more of those lovely in-episode nods to longtime fans that popped up all over the film. Want a look at the new series? The first trailer's under the jump.

ITV Previews Series 3 of Scott and Bailey

Fans of female detective drama Scott & Bailey – a recent addition to our WETA UK lineup here in the Washington, DC area – will be pleased to know that an official trailer for drama’s third series has been released. The show follows the personal and professional lives of two female detective constables who are close friends with very different personalities.

Series 3 will be comprised of eight new episodes. Actresses Suranne Jones and Lesley Sharp are both returning and they will again be joined by Amelia Bullmore, who has also apparently written two installments of the upcoming series. We're currently only on Series 1 on our air here - and we'll probably have to wait a bit for Series 3 to become available - but it's stll nice to see! Give it a look below.

Get Your First Look at the New Foyle's War

Popular mystery series Foyle’s War is returning with new episodes for the first time in three years and fans everywhere are eagerly awaiting the chance to see stars Michael Kitchen and Honeysuckle Weeks back in action again.

The new season will be comprised of three new feature-length episodes, the first of which is apparently called The Eternity Ring. The trailer for the new series of Foyle’s War has just been released by ITV, giving us our first real look at footage from the new episodes as well as a sense of what the show will be like now that Christopher Foyle has become a Senior Intelligence Officer for MI-5.

This trailer is, quite frankly, awesome. And just judging from what we can see in this minute-long clip, it doesn’t look as though the drama is going to have any problems transitioning to a post-war setting.

More Parade's End Goodies: HBO Releases New Trailer, Cast Conversations

Premium cable network HBO has released some more goodies for those of us who are eagerly anticipating the American broadcast of Parade’s End, starring Sherlock’s Benedict Cumberbatch alongside Rebecca Hall.

Am I spamming you guys about Parade’s End? I feel like I might be. But, I so want everyone to watch it and get swoony with me and I’ve been swooning in a fairly limited bubble since October so my basic feeling on this topic is hurry up, HBO! The five-part drama premieres on February 26 and will air over three consecutive nights.

However, HBO apparently approves of my at least being quasi-spammy about it, as they keep releasing new things for us all to look at. Click through for a look at a new trailer and a new cast conversations clip where the stars and production team discuss the project.

Sherlock’s Lara Pulver: From Irene Adler to Bond Girl (Sort Of)

Sherlock guest star Lara Pulver, who stock has risen considerably in the wake of her turn as an often intriguingly dressed (or not) Irene Adler in A Scandal in Belgravia, will soon star as another rather infamous woman. Pulver has been tapped to portray the wife of James Bond creator Ian Fleming in a new drama for Sky Atlantic.

The new-four part series, tentatively titled Fleming, will explore the life of the 007 scribe, which was frequently as dramatic as any Bond film. According to Variety, the series will be set during World War II when British Naval Intelligence recruited the future author for its undercover campaign against the Nazis. Fleming’s wartime experience provided much of his inspiration for Bond and in true art-imitating-life fashion, Fleming himself was also a bit of a womanizer with a taste for alcohol. (What do you want to bet he liked his martinis shaken, not stirred?)

Supernatural Drama Being Human is Back for Series 5: Your First Look

Supernatural drama Being Human returns for its fifth series this winter with a whole new feel thanks to the fallout from last year’s cast changes. Damien Molony, Michael Socha and Kate Bracken are back as the central trio of vampire Hal, werewolf Tom and ghost Alex, but this season will be the first without any of the original core Being Human cast members taking part. Dun dun dunnnn….

If you think that feels like a reboot, well, you’re probably right. Given the strange limbo feeling of last season, which tried its best to mix the old and the new Being Human together and threw in an apocalypse on top, it’s a move that’s probably for the best. It’s still a pretty big change to take in though, especially for those of us who’ve been here since Series 1. It’s going to take some adjusting. However, in the good news department, Phil Davis, formerly of Whitechapel and Sherlock, joins the cast as new (fairly disgusting) bad guy Captain Hatch. The first full trailer for Series 5 has also just arrived and even skeptical me has to admit that it looks pretty good. Here’s hoping!

A Little Bit of Sherlock in 2013: New Two Hour PBS Doc to Explore the Great Detective’s Cultural Impact

Though it would be lovely if this post were actually about the Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss-produced brilliance that is the BBC adaptation of Sherlock (trust me – I wish!), it’s not. However, as we round the anniversary of a year since the UK transmission of The Reichenbach Fall, there is at least a tiny bit of happy news on the horizon for all us Holmesians out there. (And, no, it’s got nothing to do with Elementary.)

During their session this week at the Winter Television Critics Association Press Tour, PBS announced the premiere of a new two-hour documentary, How Sherlock Changed the World, which will explore the real-world impact of history’s most famous fictional detective. (It may surprise you to know that this goes way beyond our modern day Sherlock’s obsession with his Blackberry!) This special will explore the effect that Holmes has had on the development of real forensic and investigative techniques and will feature noted forensic scientist Dr. Henry Lee. Want details? Read on.