As a brand new year begins, so does the new television season and once again it’s dominated by healthy competition from online streaming services. In 2017 the heavyweight streaming service Netflix gained a further 5.7 million subscribers proving that our television tastes and habits are rapidly changing at a faster rate than ever before. This in turn has made the mainstream television channels raise their game in a bid to preserve the traditional small screen. In the age of 360 content, it’s difficult to imagine a world without on demand facilities but as we look forward to the TV highlights of 2018 it’s obvious that there’s still an appetite for ‘appointment to view’ television and I believe the following programmes will be shining examples of this:
From the producers of Doctor Who comes a fantasy drama starring Alex Kingston, Matthew Goode and Teresa Palmer & Louise Brealey. An adaptation on the works of author and academic Deborah Harkness, this family drama centers around historian turned Witch Diana Bishop, who discovers an ancient, bewitched manuscript and begins to fall for an enigmatic vampire.
Sky One – 2018
Join Fred Siriex as he plays Cupid to more hopefuls looking for love and should they click, they get the opportunity to take things a little further. Each singleton gets the opportunity to check into the hotel for a maximum of 48 hours and if their restaurant date goes well they have the second day to take part in an activity of some description. Think Blind Date minus Cilla and “Our Graham!”
Monday at 10pm on Channel Four
Join Clarkson, Hammond and May as they once again push the boundaries of entertainment to bring you extreme challenges and reviews of some of the most sought after cars and gadgets in the world
Available since December on Amazon.
Though the Peaky Blinders found a rare moment of peace at the end of s4, they have a lot ahead of them.Tommy is surely going to meet a lot of political resistance, with many of his fellow MPs being unwilling to look the other way when it comes to having a gang leader in Parliament.His promise to give up communist leaders to the government is also a risky move, and what if he gets too close to Jessie Eden? Will there be repercussions from mafia families allied to Changretta’s? And will we actually get to see Al Capone?
BBC Two – Spring 2019
Idris Elba reprises his role as the rough diamond John Luther as he attempts to solve more hard hitting cases, sometimes at the cost of his own sanity. Far removed from the fictional nature of other cop dramas such as “Heartbeat” and “Midsomer Murders”, this gritty drama reveals the harsh life of a 21st century murder squad in some of the most formidable areas of London.
BBC One – Date TBC
Sarah Lancashire stars in Jack Thorne’s moving four part series surrounding the abduction of a young girl. Miriam, a social worker is the subject of a police investigation when a young girl goes missing whilst on a supervised visit. With a supporting cast including Sue Johnston this hard hitting drama is certainly set to get Britian talking.
Channel 4 – 10th January 9pm
After over a decade in the wilderness, Alan Partridge has finally been given the opportunity to return to the BBC. But how long will it last?
BBC One – Spring 2018
Child abducting seems to be a hot topic among 2018 TV production and here we have another one as Suranne Jones and Steven Graham star in the emotive drama about a couple desperately searching for their daughter. From the makers of Line of Duty, this promises to be an edge of your seat drama.
Sky Atlantic – 2018
Keeley Hawes plays Home Secretary Julia Montegue who requires protection from War Veteran David Budd played by Richard Madden (Game of Thrones) resulting in a close liason.
BBC One – TBC 2018
Whoever sais there weren’t parts for middle-aged women? Because “Girlfriends” stars three women right at the top of their game; Zoe Wanamaker, Phyllis Logan and Miranda Richardson as they cope with the challenges of being a middle-aged woman.
ITV – Wednesday’s at 9pm or On Demand at the ITV HUB
Dawn French and Emilia Fox star in the bittersweet comedy drama about life after the death of a lover.
Available On Demand or Thursdays at 10pm on Sky One
Set in 43AD, David Morrisey, Mackenzie Crooke and Zoe Wanamaker star in this captivating, anarchic drama following the Roman army as they return to crush the Celtic heart of Britannia, a mysterious land led by warrior women and powerful Druids who claim to channel the powerful forces of the underworld.
Sky Atlantic and Amazon – January 18th 2018
A semi autobiographical sitcom based on the life of Lisa McGee (Writer of BBC Three’s “Being Human”) surrounding the outrageous antics of Northern Irish School girls on the backdrop of 90’s Northern Ireland.
Channel 4 – Thursday’s at 10pm
Hugh Grant stars as disgraced MP Jeremy Thorpe in Russell T Davies’ period drama surrounding corporal punishment and homosexuality.
BBC One – TBC 2018
From the writer of “The Night Manager” comes an 8 part epic, retelling the Battle of Troy. A co-production between the BBC and Netflix marks a watershed in the development of television drama.
BBC in the UK, Netflix Internationally – 2018
So, a lot to look forward to in 2018 and in an age where television is constantly being scrutinised for being the poor relation of film, surely the shows above all illustrate that the TV industry is alive and thriving. Happy viewing!