Your essential Autumn TV dramas

What to watch from all the big stars, big concepts and big action lighting up screens this year

Being able to wear a jumper again isn’t the only reason autumn is the best season! There’s also all the amazing TV drama to enjoy…

Autumn TV drama round-up

This year the cooler weather brings a particularly juicy crop of new television dramas, with an exciting schedule of intriguing series that are going to make us gasp, or cry, or dig our fingernails into the sofa, or huddle around the water cooler trying to figure out what happens next.

 

If you’re a fan of costume epics you may already have read about the glossy new adaptation of Vanity Fair – but that’s just the tip of the entertainment iceberg. There’s a wealth of contemporary shows covering everything from crime to family feuds to genocide, and even a mission to Mars. Read on to find what you’ll be watching this season…

Wanderlust

Tuesdays, 9pm, BBC One/HD (CH 101/108). Also available for 30 days in Catch Up > Channels > BBC iPlayer

Toni Collette and Steven Mackintosh star as a married couple facing midlife temptations in this multigenerational family drama. Also starring Zawe Ashton (Fresh Meat) and William Ash (Waterloo Road), it’s a funny, moving and above all insightful look into a long-term relationship.

 

No Offence

Thursdays, 9pm, Channel 4/HD (CH 104/141). Also available for 7 days in Catch Up > Channels > All 4

Joanna Scanlan is back as DI Viv Deering, and in this third series of Paul Abbott’s award-winning police drama things are getting political. After a local election and an arson attack lead to a threat of race riots, Deering’s team will have their work cut out – which means thrilling viewing for us.

 

We went behind the scenes to find out everything there is to know about the new series of No Offenceread it here!

 

Black Earth Rising

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

Chewing Gum’s Michaela Coel plays lawyer Kate, a survivor of the Rwandan genocide brought up in Britain. But when she takes a politically loaded human-rights case, her past threatens her future. Also starring John Goodman, this drama from Hugo Blick (The Honourable Woman) is explosive in more ways than one.

 

Trust

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

If you watched last year’s Oscar-nominated film All The Money In The World and thought, “Interesting, but I’m sure there’s more to it”, then this new drama is for you. The ten-part series from Danny Boyle and Simon Beaufoy (the creative team behind Slumdog Millionaire and 127 Hours) stars Donald Sutherland and reveals more about the rich and troubled Getty family.

 

The First

Coming soon to Channel 4

It’s the 2030s, and the first manned mission to Mars is about to get under way – if mission boss Tom Hagerty (Sean Penn) and aerospace magnate Laz Ingram (Natascha McElhone) can get it off the ground. Brace for lift-off in what looks like a thrilling story of exploration.

 

Butterfly

Coming soon to ITV

When 11-year-old Max tells his mum, Vicky (Anna Friel), that he wants to live life as a girl, she has to figure out how best to support her child, in this transgender family drama. Expect a moving, heartwarming and pertinent look at identity and family.

 

Dark Heart

Coming soon to ITV

Originally Dark Heart aired as a one-off drama on ITV Encore back in 2016, and after receiving rave reviews, it’s back for a full series. Written by Chris Lang, creator of Unforgotten, the show follows Tom Riley’s detective Will Wagstaffe as he tries to overcome the trauma of his parents’ murder while solving his own cases. 

 

The War Of The Worlds

Coming soon to BBC One

The chances of anything coming from Mars are a million to one, they said. But still, they come… In this Edwardian-set adaptation of HG Wells’ novel, Rafe Spall and Poldark’s Eleanor Tomlinson try to survive the alien invasion, with Robert Carlyle as an astronomer who warns of the menace.

 

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