The slightly rubbish spies at Slough House back to take on the missions nobody else wants. This darkly funny espionage drama follows a team of British intelligence agents who’ve made career-ending mistakes and been consigned to the dumping ground department of MI5. Led by their brilliant but irascible leader, the notorious Jackson Lamb (Academy Award winner Gary Oldman), they try their best to defend the realm against sinister forces.
This season sees a romantic liaison in Istanbul exposes a long-buried secret. When Lamb and his misfits are dragged into the fight, they become embroiled in a conspiracy which threatens the future of the entire security service.
THE DOLL FACTORY
Fri 1 Dec // Paramount+
It’s London in the 1800s, where Iris paints dolls for a living and dreams of becoming an artist. Silas is a taxidermist who hopes to find an item so unique he will be catapulted to fame. Louis is a member of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, still searching for his next muse.
In a city humming with anticipation for the Great Exhibition, these three worlds collide. Iris is offered an opportunity to start a new life, but she must sacrifice her reputation and launch into the unknown. She finds herself challenging patriarchal beliefs, exploring her sexuality, and experiencing the things she only dreamed of. But soon a story of dark obsession begins to unfold.
Mon 25 Dec // BBC One/iPlayer
In just a few days, the 2023 Christmas special of Doctor Who, titled “The Church on Ruby Road,” will debut, featuring Ncuti Gatwa as the Fifteenth Doctor and Millie Gibson as his new companion, Ruby Sunday. This episode marks a significant moment in the series, following the three specials commemorating the 60th anniversary of Doctor Who. The final special of this trio, “The Giggle,” showcased the transition from David Tennant’s Fourteenth Doctor to Ncuti Gatwa’s Doctor.
Ncuti Gatwa takes over as the Doctor in this upcoming episode, which not only introduces us to his version of the character but also features the first meeting between him and Ruby. They face a unique challenge as they contend with goblins operating from a skyborne pirate ship.
This episode is notable for being the first Doctor Who Christmas special since 2017’s “Twice Upon a Time.” Following that special, the series had shifted to New Year’s Day specials during the era of the Thirteenth Doctor.
THE SERIAL KILLER’S WIFE
Fri 15 Dec // Paramount+
The murder of a local young woman sends ripples of shock and gossip through an idyllic community. When respected village doctor, Tom Fairchild, is arrested, all prying eyes turn on him and his wife, Beth. Her background is very different from those of the affluent community, and she is determined to protect her family and their reputation above everything.
When Tom is exonerated, Beth uncovers proof of her his double life and dark sexual proclivities, forcing her to re-examine everything she knew about her husband. As Beth peels away the layers of her perfect life, she is forced to confront disturbing questions about herself and her marriage.
Sat 16 Dec
Two brothers (Ben Foster & Toby Wallace) were raised in very different worlds, until one fateful summer sees them reunited as adults over a fateful summer. Set against the backdrop of commercial fishing, the story takes on primal stakes when desperate circumstances force the brothers to strike a deal with a violent Boston crime gang.
Things become even more complicated when a young woman (Jenna Ortega) finds herself caught perilously in the middle of everything. Soon, sacrifices must be made, as the bonds formed between brothers, friends, lovers and a father (Tommy Lee Jones) and his son are all put to the ultimate test.
PERCY JACKSON AND THE OLYMPIANS
Weds 20 Dec // Disney+
There’s trouble up on Olympus, as the first of Rick Riordan’s much-loved books gets an action-packed small-screen adaptation. Our titular teen (played by The Adam Project’s Walker Scobell) is in trouble, after being accused of stealing Zeus’s lightning bolt.
He’s dispatched to Camp Half-Blood, where he hones some formidable skills and discovers his own place in the world. But, it’s not long before he’s tasked with retrieving the missing bolt. Grabbing his two new pals, Athena’s daughter Annabeth Chase (Leah Sava Jeffries) and satyr Grover Underwood (Aryan Simhadri), he sets off on a mission to prevent a war amongst the gods.
THE WINTER KING
Thurs 21 Dec // ITVX
Based upon Bernard Cornwell’s novel trilogy, The Warlord Chronicles, we get a gritty and uncompromising look at the story of King Arthur. Iain De Caestecker (Agents Of SHIELD, The Control Room) plays the ancient legend, who finds himself in charge of an unstable kingdom at a time of incredible turmoil.
There are serious threats on all sides. Not only are his people fighting amongst themselves, but the might of the Saxons also threatens to invade from the east. The only thing which can save his nation is everyone unifying to defend their homeland. But is Arthur capable of holding on to such a fragile alliance?
Tues 26 Dec // Paramount+
Sisters Lori and Erin embark on the holiday of a lifetime in Fiji. After a huge fight, Erin doesn’t board the flight to their resort which never arrives at its destination. Months later, with no plane or survivors having been found, Lori’s credit card is suddenly used in a corner shop in a remote village in Fiji.
Erin then recognises the plane’s pilot on CCTV footage. She sets out on a journey to find him and discover the mystery of what happened to her sister. Action jumps between the two sisters’ perspectives, as Erin undertakes a perilous mission to uncover the truth, while Lori and her fellow castaways struggle to survive.
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