Autumn's best TV

Autumn's best TV

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Friday, 16th September 2016
ITV's new drama Paranoid
ITV's new drama Paranoid

After a summer of sport, there's more first-rate television in store for autumn. From new, big budget offerings to follow-ups of acclaimed series, here are just some of the shows to forward to over the coming months.

Hooten and the Lady – Sky: Friday September 18 at 9pm

This big-budget adventure drama follows the escapades of an unlikely duo – maverick adventurer Hooten (Michael Landes) and Lady Alexandra Lindo-Parker (Ophelia Lovibond), a refined British Museum historian. They travel the globe searching for lost relics, and get into numerous scrapes along the way. The first episode sees the pair hunting the lost city of gold – El Dorado, and hints dropped by Sky suggest further episodes will be set in Egypt and the Himalayas.


National Treasure – Channel 4: Tuesday September 20 at 9pm

Credit: Channel 4

This four-part drama explores accusations of historic sexual misconduct against a fictional comedian, and what effect the trial and media indignation has on the accused and his loved ones. Robbie Coltrane plays Paul Finchley, one half of a comedy double act who is widely regarded as a national treasure. Until he receives a knock at the door from police, and his life unravels.

Julie Walters plays long-suffering wife Marie, who must decide if the latest revelation is a step too far. Andrea Riseborough plays daughter Dee, a former addict whose recovery is threatened by the accusations levelled at her father.


Red Dwarf XI – Dave: Thursday, September 22 at 9pm

Credit: UKTV

The sci-fi comedy returns for its eleventh series, after first landing on screens in 1988. The show reunites the original cast: Chris Barrie (Rimmer), Craig Charles (Lister), Danny John-Jules (Cat) and Robert Llewellyn (Kryten) as well as additional special guest stars.

In the first episode, the gang find themselves in an alternative version of America where modern technology is banned, making Rimmer and Kryten illegal. The Dwarfers' mission is to infiltrate the tech-savvy underground and bring down the authoritarian regime.


Paranoid – ITV: Thursday September 22nd, at 9pm

Indira Varma, Robert Glenister, Neil Stuke, Lesley Sharp and Kevin Doyle star in ITV’s tense new thriller. The drama, set in a fictional town in Cheshire, begins with the brutal murder of a female GP in a busy children’s playground. Detectives then embark on a journey that includes a psychopathic suspect, multiple murders and mind games.

Huffington Post writer Caroline Frost lauded the programme as “the jewel in ITV’s winter schedule.”


The Fall series 3 – BBC Two: September 29 at 9pm

Gillian Anderson and Jamie Dornan in The Fall (Credit: BBC Two)

The Fall returns to round off its trilogy after a two-year hiatus. Gillian Anderson and Jamie Dornan reprise their iconic roles, as the battle between Detective Superintendent Stella Gibson and serial killer Paul Spector reaches its terrifying conclusion.

The programme begins at the cliffhanger scene that series two ended on, when Spector, critically injured in an ambush, lay bleeding in Stella’s arms. Moments before, the tenacious investigator thought she finally had her man. Now, she realises she is losing him.


Black Mirror – Netflix: October 21

Black Mirror is the Charlie Brooker-penned anthology of dystopian horror stories inspired by technology’s hold on the modern world. Although Netflix ordered twelve new episodes, just six will be released in October, and the release date of the further six are as yet unknown.

Brooker and his team are keeping the plot details secret at the moment, but various titbits have leaked to the press, including Digital Spy’s report that an episode called Nosedive, co-written by Rashida Jones and Mike Schur, will be "a social satire about identity in the social media age."

Each episode will have a different director and a host of talented composers are on board to score the episodes, including Ben Salisbury and Portishead's Geoff Barrow, the composers of film Ex Machina.


Humans series 2 - Channel 4: October 30

The original cast of the sci-fi drama are joined by a host of new faces for a second series that will deepen the robot-inhabited world of Humans.

In series two, the intelligent synths must fight for their place in the human world, as the narrative continues to explore who deserves the right to survive. Meanwhile Joe (Tom Goodman-Hill) and Laura (Katherine Parkinson) attempt to mend their marriage, but see the past dramatically return to the door of their house.


The Crown – Netflix: November 4

The Crown is a big-budget offering from Oscar nominees Peter Morgan (The Queen) and Stephen Daldry (The Reader). Claire Foy plays Queen Elizabeth II in the biopic of her life, which begins with her 1947 marriage to Prince Philip, played by Matt Smith (Doctor Who).

An ambitious six series are planned, with the intention to re-tell the story of Elizabeth’s life right up to the present day.


The Grand Tour – Amazon Prime: November 18

The Grand Tour crew filming in an unknown location

This brand new car show reunites the original Top Gear trio, following their well-publicised exit from the BBC.

Amazon has just announced that its first episode will be available from November 18, and another will be released every Friday for the next 12 weeks.

The programme looks set to follow a similar format to Top Gear, and has taken its studio section to South Africa, the U.S and Germany. The stars' Instagram accounts shows the range of exotic locations they have filmed in – and the Sun has reported that Matt Damon and Charlize Theron will feature on an episode.


More shows to look out for:

  • Damned is a darkly funny sitcom about social workers, written by Jo Brand and Morwenna Banks (Channel 4, September 26)
  • Who Do You Think You Are returns for its thirteenth series, with guests ranging from Danny Dyer to Sir Ian McKellen (BBC One, TBC)
  • Westworld, a remake of the 70s film about an artificial Wild West theme park populated by robots, stars Thandie Newton and Anthony Hopkins (Sky Atlantic, October 4)
  • An adaptation of Zadie Smith's 2012 novel NW - a story of two friends who grew up together in north west London but now live very different lives - comes to screens this Autumn (BBC Two, date TBC)
  • All-star international collaboration The Young Pope sees Jude Law play the first American head of the Vatican (Sky Atlantic, October 27)

Get a glimpse of some the shows featured here:

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After a summer of sport, there's more first-rate television in store for autumn. From new, big budget offerings to follow-ups of acclaimed series, here are just some of the shows to forward to over the coming months.