Are you ready to get hooked on The Rook? Here are all the reasons why it will be a supernatural certainty of top telly this summer...
The Rook, Monday 1 July, 10pm, Virgin TV Ultra HD (CH 999). Also available in Catch Up TV
The time has come to unleash the power of new supernatural thriller series, The Rook, available exclusively on Virgin Media in the UK. Based on the bestselling book of the same name, it’s perfectly primed for television, bringing a big vision flying off the pages and onto TV screens for the Virgin TV Ultra HD channel.
When Myfanwy Thomas wakes up next to the Millennium Bridge surrounded by dead bodies, she recollects nothing and soon realises that her memory has been wiped. With some help, she also discovers she’s part of the Checquy, a secret service for people with paranormal abilities – and Myfanwy is harbouring some supernatural powers of her own.
One of the biggest things Myfanwy struggles with is who to trust, especially knowing someone is responsible for erasing her memory. And she’s not the only one… Since the series is cloaked in mystery and shrouded in secrecy (rightly so if you want to avoid any spoilers!) we’ve delved into the show as deep as we could go to look at all the reasons why you need to start playing along when it airs:
There’s an all-star cast at play
Where do we start? Against a backdrop of London’s best locations, there’s Hollywood and British stage royalty in Joely Richardson and Adrian Lester, who play the Checquy’s power couple King and Queen. There are silver screen sirens, with Olivia Munn as US Checquy equivalent agent Monica Reed, and talented newcomers in Emma Greenwell who plays our hero Myfanwy Thomas. Check out our who’s who guide for more info on their characters right here.
And the production pedigree isn’t bad either!
The show has been adapted from the book by writing royalty, with Twilight scribe Stephenie Meyer being onboard at the beginning to really get those scripts ship-shape. If that wasn’t enough to convince you of the wealth of experience involved in the endeavour, showrunners Lisa Zwerling and Karyn Usher bring production knowhow from ER and underrated sci-fi fave Flashforward and the plot-twisting writing of Prison Break with them.
Did we mention the source material?
The Rook is based on Daniel O’Malley’s 2012 debut novel, which was a major hit with critics and readers when it was released, winning the 2012 Aurealis Award for Best Science Fiction Novel and spawning a sequel published in 2016. If all goes well with this series then, fingers crossed that the team behind The Rook could very well continue for several seasons and move onto the events of O’Malley’s hit follow-up Stiletto…
All of the cool chess-based themes
The Checquy, the top secret and pretty shady government department, has a hierarchy that follows that of a chess board: King, Queen, Rook, each denoting the member’s place in the organisation. There’s also Gestalt, the name given to four siblings in the series who share the same consciousness, which is interesting considering that humans view a chess board as a Gestalt whole, or “the whole is more than the sum of its parts.”
The supernatural powers on show
As shown by Gestalt’s linked consciousness, there are more powers on show as The Rook’s story progresses, with all involved seemingly having some kind of supernatural superpower… There’s telekinesis, superstrength, mind control and more, so it’s not just the coincidental casting of X-Men: Apocalypse’s Olivia Munn that give things a bit of a Marvel/mutant feel. However, with its undercurrents of creepy crime thriller, The Rook has just as much common ground with supernatural dramas like Stranger Things or Fringe. The espionage angle also offers a more mature take on superhero mythos.
And it’s only available on Virgin Media!
As if all that’s not enough, only Virgin Media customers will be able to watch The Rook in the UK as it airs exclusively on Virgin TV Ultra HD (CH 999) from Monday 1 July. It will also be available in Catch Up TV.
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