Benedict Cumberbatch

10 of the best Easter eggs from your favourite TV shows

(Credit: Sky)

Alfred Hitchcock was the first filmmaker to widely use them, making cameo appearances in 39 of his films.

Over the years Easter eggs have become more complex and are almost a trademark for some series such as the Marvel Cinematic Universe. On the small screen they remain prolific in shows where the writers wish to give something back to their audience.

Whether it’s secret messages, inside jokes or obscure references, we’ve got a rundown of ten of the best Easter eggs from British TV.

A tale of two cities: What's next for the Patrick Melrose producer

Benedict Cumberbatch in Patrick Melrose (Credit: Sky)

One of the standout drama launches of the year is unquestionably Sky Atlantic’s Patrick Melrose. The five-parter memorably opens in London with a heroin-addled Melrose, played magisterially by Benedict Cumberbatch, receiving news of his abusive father’s death in New York. Melrose then travels there to bring home his father’s ashes. While in Manhattan, he embarks on an epic drugs binge. Expect the erstwhile Sherlock star to win multiple awards for this astonishing performance.

Benedict Cumberbatch to star as aristocratic playboy Patrick Melrose

Benedict Cumberbatch (Credit: Sky Atlantic)

The series, based on the semi-autobiographical novels by Edward St. Aubyn, will be adapted for television by One Day and Starter for Ten author David Nicholls.

Cumberbatch, who will also serve as an executive producer on the show, stars as Melrose, a man struggling to overcome the damage inflicted growing up with an abusive father and unsupportive mother. It will track his journey from his harrowing childhood through substance abuse and to eventual recovery.

Tim Minchin and Al Murray to star at BBC Shakespeare Festival

Shakespeare, Benedict Cumberbatch,

The event is part of the BBC Shakespeare Festival which will take place in April to mark 400 years since the writer’s death.

The live television event will be hosted by David Tennant and directed by RSC Artistic Director Gregory Doran, and will feature Dame Judi Dench, Sir Ian McKellen, Joseph Fiennes, the English National Opera and more.