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Requiem on BBC One

Word up!

Word up!

CollateralRequiemJamestown – dramas with one-word titles are all the rage this February

We’ll keep it brief. Less is more when it comes to the titles of all these must-watch dramas heading your way 

What to watch this February

We’re all busy people these days. So it’s just as well that there are plenty of brilliant dramas with one-word titles that save us that extra bit of time when we’re waxing lyrical about them. Two-word titles? Nah, can’t be bothered to say all of that. Best keep it snappy, television executive person!

But if you think these succinctly named shows are as sparse in plot as their titles, you’d be very wrong indeed. For beneath the lack of syllables is usually a deep drama that’s full of intrigue, suspense and nail-biting tension. And that’s certainly the case in February on Virgin TV.


From gritty crime series to historical dramas, and even something a bit supernatural, this month is packed to the metaphorical rafters with brilliant telly that you really won’t want to miss. Want to know more? We’ve picked out six new and returning shows that are short on words but big on entertainment…

1. Requiem

From Friday 2 February, 9pm, BBC One/HD (CH 101/108). Watch the full series after episode 1 in Catch Up > Channels > BBC iPlayer

In a nutshell: Following a family tragedy, a young girl begins to question everything around her – including herself.


Tell me more: Promising supernatural undertones, this compelling six-parter follows the fortunes of Matilda (Ripper Street’s Lydia Wilson), a talented young cellist whose world is flipped on its head after her mother’s suicide. Seeking answers, she travels to a small Welsh village where a toddler went missing two decades earlier. And then things begin to get weird…


2. Collateral

From Monday 12 February, 9pm, BBC Two/HD (CH 102/162). Also available for 30 days in Catch Up > Channels > BBC iPlayer

In a nutshell: A pizza delivery man is shot dead in London, but is there more to his death than meets the eye? Hollywood star Carey Mulligan (The Great Gatsby) heads up the cast in this hugely anticipated thriller.


Tell me more: Mulligan plays Detective Inspector Kip Glaspie, a hard-nosed investigator tasked with getting to the bottom of what at first appears to be a senseless murder in the capital. However, as Glaspie starts digging for clues, she uncovers a murky world full of, well, murk. John Simm (Life On Mars), Billie Piper (Doctor Who) and Nicola Walker (Unforgotten) also feature in this brand new drama penned by celebrated British playwright David Hare.


3. Trauma

Monday 12–Wednesday 14 February, 9pm, ITV/HD (CH 103/113). Also available for 7 days in Catch Up > Channels > ITV Hub

In a nutshell: A tense thriller starring John Simm (Life On Mars) and Adrian Lester (Undercover) that explores just how far someone will go to get justice.


Tell me more: Simm stars as Dan, who, after his son is stabbed and later dies in hospital, holds high-flying consultant Jon (Lester) responsible. Acting on his anger, he decides to pick Jon’s life apart, bit by bit. Simm is on typically fine form as a man pushed to the limits following personal heartbreak in this unmissable three-part series.


4. Marcella

From Monday 19 February, 9pm, ITV/HD (CH 103/113). Also available for 7 days in Catch Up > Channels > ITV Hub

In a nutshell: Anna Friel is back as the eponymous detective for another series of the critically acclaimed drama.


Tell me more: Series 2 shadows the London-based crime-solver, as she investigates a brand new (and totally chilling) case. This time it’s the death of a young boy whose body is discovered years after he went missing. Intriguing, right? Throw new cast members Nigel Planer (The Young Ones) and Keith Allen (Robin Hood) into the mix and you’ve got yourself a show that’s not to be missed.


5. Jamestown

From Friday 9 February, 9pm, Sky One/HD (CH 110/109). Also available for 30 days in Catch Up > Channels > Sky One

In a nutshell: Brace yourself for more twists and turns in series 2 of the popular Sky Original period drama about the first English settlers in America and their attempt to establish a society in the New World.


Tell me more: Death! Deceit! Dodgy fashions! Yes, it’s all kicking off in the big return of Jamestown. This time around, residents of the anything-but-sleepy settlement must face up to a terrible crime that casts suspicion on everyone, while the possibility of a traitor hidden within the community heightens the feelings of distrust and paranoia. Basically, just your typical day in the colony. Max Beesley (Mad Dogs), Jason Flemyng (Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels) and Naomi Battrick (Waterloo Road) are among the returning cast. Read our story from the set in Budapest here.  

6. Strike

Coming soon to BBC One/HD (CH 101/108)

In a nutshell: The grizzled gumshoe returns in Strike – Career Of Evil, the latest adaptation of JK Rowling’s series of detective novels.


Tell me more: After a severed leg is sent to them through the post (charming!), private investigators Cormoran Strike (The Musketeers’ Tom Burke) and Robin Ellacott (Great Expectations’ Holliday Grainger) are forced to face up to some uncomfortable truths from their past. Plus, with Robin’s wedding day fast approaching, their unconventional relationship (think of it as being a bit like Ross and Rachel from Friends, but with added corpses) is put to the test.

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Image credits: Requiem © New Pictures – Photographer: Adrian Rogers, Collateral © The Forge – Photographer: Robert Viglasky, Strike – Career Of Evil © Bronte Film & TV Ltd – Photographer – Steffan Hill