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After a tumultuous two years, we have our fingers crossed that, thanks to the NHS’s comprehensive vaccine programme, 2022 will be a year where we can return to the “old normal”.
Finally, nights out, dinners with friends and late night parties may very well be back on the agenda, after so many months sat at home with just our televisions for company.
However, we may struggle to agree to all our social plans in 2022, as there are some truly unmissable new shows heading our way.
That dent in our sofa is set to be all the deeper as we prepare to sit back, relax and enjoy the best TV that 2022 has to offer…
The hotly-anticipated thriller sees Fifty Shades of Grey star Jamie Dornan star as ‘The Man’ – an enigmatic figure who has lost his memory after he’s ran off the road by another mysterious stranger. Stuck in the unforgiving Australian landscape, the ‘Man’ is determined to figure out who he is – and who’s out to kill him.
Written by Harry and Jack Williams, the brothers behind series such as The Missing, Baptiste and Liar, we can expect The Tourist to be a must-watch.
Airs New Year’s Day on BBC One and iPlayer
Maxine Peake stars as Anne Williams, a woman who fought tirelessly for justice for her 15 year old son Kevin, and all the other victims who tragically died during the Hillsborough disaster in 1989.
Made by the team behind Line of Duty, the series follows Anne’s campaigning, and how she would stop at nothing for justice for the 97 who lost their lives.
Air date: 2nd January, ITV
The true crime drama stars Sheridan Smith, and tells the story of Anthony Walgate, Gabriel Kovari, Daniel Whitworth, and Jack Taylor, four men killed by the serial killer Stephen Port.
Usually best known for his comedy work, Stephen Merchant plays killer Stephen Port. The real Port is currently serving a life sentence for his crimes.
He received a whole life order in September 2016, which means that he will never be released from prison.
Air date: 3rd January on BBC One and iPlayer
Fans of 00’s classic Bad Girls will adore Channel 4’s latest darkly comedy drama, which observes prison life through the officers who work there.
A synopsis of the show reads: “Inspired by the creator’s experience of working and volunteering in prisons, this series brings us a view of incarceration unlike any other. Through a vibrant and multi-layered cast of characters, Screw tackles contemporary stories head on – but always cut through with comedy, irreverence and heart.”
Air date: 6th January, Channel 4 and All4
A spin-off to favourite 00’s sitcom How I Met Your Mother, Hilary Duff stars as Sophie, who leads her friends who are all looking for true love while living in New York City.
Former Sex and the City star Kim Cattrall also stars as ‘future Sophie’ – who narrates the whole story.
Air date: 18th January 2022 - Hulu
Tapping into the zeitgeist of the #MeToo movement, Rules of the Game sees Maxine Peake star as Sam, the powerful head of a family-run company that is very much stuck in their old ways.
As a new HR director looks to shake up the company, it transpires that Sam has kept a lid on the business’s incredibly dark past – and how it impacts inappropriate behaviour in the company today.
Air date: January, BBC
Based on the true story that shocked and stunned the showbiz set in the 90s, the mini series tells the tale of how Baywatch legend Pamela Anderson and Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee and their whirlwind romance, getting married just 72 hours after they met each other.
The pair then privately made a sex tape on their honeymoon, which was infamously released to the world.
Lily James and Sebastian Stan star as Pam and Tommy, respectively.
Air date: 2nd February on Disney+
From Bridgerton producer Shonda Rhimes, Inventing Anna tells the fantastical but also true story of Anna Delvey, the Instagram famous ‘heiress’ who constructed a fake identity and infiltrated New York high society. Anna’s demeanour sees her embezzle thousands of pounds out of her “friends”, and she is exposed as the fraud she really is.
Air date: 11th February on Netflix
With Amanda Seyfried at the helm, The Dropout follows the stratospheric rise of Elizabeth Holmes, whose breakthrough health technology company, Theranos, claimed they that devised blood tests that required very small amounts of blood and could be performed very rapidly using small automated devices the company had developed.
With the company thought to be valued at $10 billion (£7.4 billion) in its peak in 2014, the world came crashing down for Elizabeth when her claims transpired to be false.
Air date: 3rd March 2022 - Hulu
The popular diaries, published by former NHS doctor Adam Kay, were a must-read when they were released in 2017 – and now, they’ve been turned to a similar unmissable drama series.
Paddington star Ben Whishaw stars as Adam, who finds himself battling his way up the NHS hierarchy as well as trying to balance his social life with a hugely demanding work schedule.
Airdate: Early 2022, BBC
There’s been a distinct Line of Duty hole in our lives since the high octane corrupt copper drama drew to a (disappointing) end in April – but the makers of the prestige BBC drama have earned themselves a reprieve with their upcoming thriller coming to ITV.
Vicky McClure stars as Lana Washington, a bomb disposal operative who is working alongside close fried Joel Nutkins as they battle a terrorist campaign in London. With Jed Mercurio at the helm, we can expect the series to be as high octane as Line of Duty.
Air date ITV 2022 – TBC
For those of us who were fans of The Fall, The Suspect follows a similar vein: the thriller sees Aidan Turner as Dr Joe O’Loughlin, who appears to have an idyllic life.
The medical professional has a loving family and is at the top of his game career-wise, having secured a publishing deal and even going viral after saving a young man’s life.
When a young woman is found in a shallow grave in a west London cemetery, police officers investigate whether it was a suicide or a murder. Joe offers his expertise in the case – but it quickly appears there’s far more to Joe than meets the eye.
Air date: ITV 2022 - TBC
Loosely based on Dolly Alderton’s best-selling memoir, Everything I Know About Love, the series follows the story of best friends Maggie and Birdy, who move to London together and live “their best lives”.
However, when Birdy gets a boyfriend, Maggie finds herself wondering whether their tight friendship is breaking apart.
The series has been described as a “millennial Sex and the City” – so fans of the 90s HBO series should be sure to tune in.
Air date: BBC 2022 – TBC
Normal People proved itself to be a smash hit in 2020, and now, Sally Rooney’s first novel is being adapted for the small screen. Newcomer Alison Oliver, and American Honey star Sasha Lane star as Frances and Bobbi – lovers turned best friends who perform poetry. They become entwined with successful, older couple Nick (Joe Alwyn) and Melissa (Jemima Kirke) when they take an interest in them.
Air date: BBC 2022 - TBC
A psychological thriller for the social media age. Erin Doherty stars as Becky, who works as a temp, and lives with her mother with early on-set dementia. Dissatisfied with her own life, she finds herself constantly comparing herself to those on Instagram – with Chloe’s account one she becomes obsessed with. When Chloe dies suddenly, Becky goes to extreme measures to find out how and why...
Air date: TBC, BBC
The controversial drama sees Steve Coogan play prolific paedophile Jimmy Savile, and document his rise to fame from his working class roots. It will also focus on Savile’s extensive and horrific abuse, which was exposed after his death.
The series will overlook his career with the BBC, to his final years when he fought against rumours which threatened to expose his vile and sickening secrets.
Air date: TBC, BBC
Hotly anticipated on Netflix’s ‘coming soon’ roster, Anatomy of a Scandal focuses on the high profile marriage between Sophie and powerful MP James, who is accused of a terrible crime.
Barrister Kate is convinced James is guilty of what he stands accused of, and is determined to see him sent down.
Starring Sienna Miller, and based on the 2018 hit novel, this may very well be one of the biggest hits of 2022.
Air date: TBC, Netflix
This five part prestige drama is not for the faint hearted, with This Sceptred Isle a dramatized retelling of how the UK responded to the first wave of Covid-19 in 2020.
Kenneth Branagh stars as Prime Minister Boris Johnson, with the series based on testimonies from senior figures in government, members of SAGE, as well as people who work in care homes.
Air date: Autumn 2022 on Sky
A must-see drama for fans who love a psychological thriller; Vicky McClure stars as Stella Tomlinson, whose 14-year-old daughter Maisy, is found dead at their family home with the bloodied, hooded figure of Charles Stone standing over her.
Some years later, Stella hears that Charles wants to makes amends for his crimes – but when she goes to visit him in prison, she is aghast at what he has to say.
Air date: Late 2022, ITV
Having been touted as Britain’s answer to Succession, Riches follows smart businessman Stephen Richards', whose business empire is at stake after he suffers a stroke.
As children from his two marriages rush to be by his side, and a business empire potentially up for grabs, things start to get ugly very, very quickly.
Air date: Late 2022, ITV
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