Belfast Telegraph

TV Preview: What are the shows to watch in 2020?

From a double instalment of Love Island to period drama Belgravia, we round up the best of what’s to come next year.

Jodie Whittaker returns in Doctor Who and Himesh Patel stars in The Luminaries (PA)
Jodie Whittaker returns in Doctor Who and Himesh Patel stars in The Luminaries (PA)

By Kerri-Ann Roper, PA Entertainment Editor

From period dramas to thrillers and returning favourites, the small screen has a host of viewing treats lined up for 2020.

Here is a look at a few of next year’s TV offerings:

– Love Island

The first half of the TV viewing year kicks off with the first of two series of Love Island.

Dubbed “Winter” Love Island, ITV has said it will air in early 2020 from a villa in South Africa. The series will be hosted by Laura Whitmore. Later in the year the summer series returns as the search for love begins again from a destination in Europe.

– Belgravia

The six-part ITV series will be one of 2020’s big period dramas. From Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes, it is described as being set in the “upper echelon of London society in the 19th century”. It stars Tamsin Greig, Alice Eve, Philip Glenister, Dame Harriet Walter and more.

– Normal People 

Based on the bestselling novel by Sally Rooney, the 12-part BBC series will star Cold Feet actress Daisy Edgar-Jones and newcomer Paul Mescal. The series is described as “an exquisite and compulsive modern love story about how two people can profoundly impact each other’s lives”.

– Deadwater Fell

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Tom Kendrick (David Tennant)

Doctor Who star David Tennant will star opposite actress Cush Jumbo in the Channel 4 series. He will play a local GP in the four-part series, described as a psychological story of suspicion.

The series is set in a small fictional Scottish town, which is rocked by the murder of a family. It has been penned by Grantchester writer Daisy Coulam and has been filmed entirely on location in Scotland.

– The Luminaries

The BBC series stars Eva Green in the adaptation of Eleanor Catton’s prize-winning novel The Luminaries. Catton won the Booker prize in 2013 for the love story set during the New Zealand gold rush.

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Programme Name: The Luminaries – TX: n/a – Episode: n/a (No. n/a) – Picture Shows: Lydia Wells (EVA GREEN) – (C) * – Photographer: Kirsty Griffin

Eve Hewson plays the principal character Anna Wetherell, with Green playing the other lead, Lydia Wells, and it also features Himesh Patel. The story centres on Hewson’s character travelling to New Zealand from Britain, and is mapped on the movements of the zodiac.

– Doctor Who

Jodie Whittaker is back in her role as the ground-breaking female Time Lord when the BBC favourite returns for its 12th series in 2020.

The new series will also see Robert Glenister return to Doctor Who after appearing in the show more than three decades ago. Other guest stars for the new series include Sir Lenny Henry and Stephen Fry.

Whittaker returns as the Thirteenth Doctor alongside co-stars Tosin Cole, Mandip Gill and Bradley Walsh.

– All Creatures Great And Small

The Channel 5 series will document the real-life experiences of James Herriot from his books. In the works is a TV series and Christmas special to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the original publication of the books. Veterinary surgeon James Alfred Wight published his books under the pen name James Herriot.

– After Life

Ricky Gervais’ dark comedy returns for a second instalment on Netflix with a six-episode run. The first series introduced viewers to journalist Tony Johnson, played by Gervais, who is trying to make sense of his life following the death of his wife.

After contemplating taking his own life, he decides instead to live long enough to punish the world by saying and doing whatever he likes.

– Sex Education

The Netflix show about socially awkward high school student Otis (Asa Butterfield) and his sex therapist mum Jean (Gillian Anderson) is returning with eight new episodes in 2020.

– Bridgerton

Based on the Julia Quinn novels, the series marks Shonda Rhimes’ first collaboration with Netflix. Described as being set in the “sexy, lavish and competitive world of Regency London high society”, it will follow the trials and tribulations of the Bridgerton family.

The cast boasts the voice of Dame Julie Andrews, as well as Phoebe Dynevor, Jonathan Bailey and Vanity Fair star Claudia Jessie.

– RuPaul’s Drag Race UK

After crowning its first winner in November 2019, the colourful BBC Three series is back for more drama, fashion and runway magic.

The show’s creator and presenter, RuPaul Charles, welcomed “another season of love, laughter and light!” The first UK series featured judges RuPaul and Michelle Visage as judges, with Graham Norton and Alan Carr starring as rotating judges.

Celebrity guests included Maisie Williams, Geri Horner and Stacey Dooley.

– The Trial of Christine Keeler

Sophie Cookson, James Norton and Emilia Fox star in the BBC One drama about the Profumo affair. The six-part series, titled The Trial Of Christine Keeler, will feature Cookson as the model at the centre of one of the UK’s biggest scandals of the 20th century.

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Programme Name: The Trial of Christine Keeler – TX: n/a – Episode: n/a (No. n/a) – Picture Shows: Christine Keeler (SOPHIE COOKSON) – (C) a – Photographer:

Her affair with Tory cabinet minister John Profumo and a Russian diplomat at the same time, when the Cold War was at its height, dominated headlines in the 1960s and nearly destroyed Harold Macmillan’s government. The series has been written by novelist Amanda Coe and directed by Andrea Harkin.

– Star Trek: Picard

The much-anticipated series sees Sir Patrick Stewart reprising one of his most famous roles when he returns as Jean-Luc Picard, a character he first played in 1987. The series will air in the UK on Amazon Prime Video.

PA

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