If you're a fan of unorthodox investigative series, then don’t miss out on Vera, season eight. The ITV Choice crime show is giving viewers huge doses of Brenda Blethyn in the lead role as DCI Vera Stanhope, in four two-hour long episodes that started on January 10.
The series, which has once again been inspired by the best-selling novels and characters created by acclaimed crime writer Ann Cleeves, will investigate more chilling crimes with Vera’s logical right hand man, Detective Sergeant Aiden Healy - who has worked hard to earn her respect and prove his worth on the team, Jon Morrison as DC Kenny Lockhart, Riley Jones as DC Mark Edwards and Kingsley Ben-Adir, who plays Pathologist Marcus Summer.
“Viewers can expect more great stories from very talented writers. Vera and her team are challenged in many ways with a mysterious car crash; there’s also a murder investigation, which takes place in a suburban back garden and the death of a teenage boy.
“The themes this series are loyalty, corruption, rejection and isolation,” said Blethyn about the new season.
Since Blethyn is the only member of the team who has been with Vera from the start, she says she keeps a very watchful eye on the Vera’s development to ensure she stays true to Cleeves creation.
“Our paths don’t cross very often as we are both extremely busy, but it’s always a delight to see and spend time with Ann. We all attended the Harrogate Crime Writers Festival in the summer to support Ann. It’s a wonderful event and I’d recommend it to anyone,” she said.
With the new season, comes a lot of newcomers as well as established actors like Carolyn Pickles and Ian Puleston- Davies who act alongside Blethyn.
“It’s always so gratifying to have the very best actors making guest appearances. In the new series we have established actors like Rita Tushingham, and then actors who are just starting out in their careers. It’s a lovely mix which keeps the episodes interesting and fresh,” she said.
Blethyn said the highlight of filming season eight was that she could work with her two side-kicks, Kenny Doughty and David Leon, at the same time. However, the downside was that she was challenged because this time around as Vera was a very demanding role and she did not think she had the stamina to carry it through.
She said the locations in Northumberland where the show was filmed experienced a tourism boost since the start of the airing.
“All the locations in Northumberland are standout. From the seascapes, landscapes, beautiful moorlands and cities. I’m told tourism has increased by 25 percent since Vera started airing,” said Blethyn.
* Catch Brenda Blethyn on Vera on ITV Choice (DStv Channel 123), Wednesdays at 8pm.