As we approach the 60th Anniversary of Doctor Who, revisit the story of Doctor Who, the occasional series written for the 50th Anniversary, explaining the origins of the programme.

Episode 20 - An Unearthly Series - The Origins of a TV Legend: First published 19 Sep 2013

In The Flesh series 2 start date and time confirmedBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 23 April 2014 - Reported by John Bowman
The second series of In The Flesh is to start on Sunday 4th May at 10pm, the BBC confirmed today.

Starring Luke Newberry as Kieren Walker and Emily Bevan as Amy Dyer, with Kenneth Cranham as Vicar Oddie, it will comprise six one-hour episodes. Also returning are Kevin Sutton as ex-vigilante Human Volunteer Force soldier Gary Kendal and Harriet Cains as Kieren's sister Jen. Joining the cast for the new series of the zombie drama are Wunmi Mosaku as Maxine Martin, the pro-living Victus MP for Roarton, and Emmett J Scanlan, who plays the Undead Prophet disciple Simon Monroe.
We're reunited with Kieren Walker in the now seemingly PDS-friendly world of Roarton. Our hero is keeping his head down, working soul-destroying shifts in the Legion pub and squirrelling money into his "escape fund." Only problem is, he can't escape himself.

In the wider world, tensions are reigniting. The radical Pro-Living Party, Victus, is gaining government seats, prompting a backlash of PDS extremism connected to the Undead Liberation Army. Kieren is worried sick when Victus MP Maxine Martin enters the village, ostensibly offering her condolences in the wake of a brutal ULA tram attack. She can barely conceal her disappointment at what she sees in the Legion: PDS Sufferers and the Living happily rubbing shoulders. Not to mention Kieren himself behind the bar. She recoils in disgust from his cold touch. When Maxine violently clashes with Vicar Oddie, it seems Kieren was right to worry . . . Danger from the outside world is encroaching.

Kieren's overjoyed by the return of his BDFF (best dead friend forever), the irrepressible Amy Dyer - but his delight is cut short by a tense encounter with Amy's opinionated "beau", ULA member Simon. Kieren warns them both not to rock the boat in Roarton. However, they have other plans in mind, choosing to enter the Legion barefaced and wearing the clothes they were buried in. When they reveal the prejudice and hatred still bubbling under the surface in Roarton - not least from Gary Kendal - Kieren knows he needs to leave the village. Now.

A trailer for series 2 is available to watch below:

and a teaser has also been released:

FILTER: - In The Flesh

In The Flesh nominated for BAFTAs as series 2 details announcedBookmark and Share

Monday, 7 April 2014 - Reported by John Bowman
The BBC Three zombie drama In The Flesh was nominated for two TV BAFTAs today, including Leading Actor for first-time nominee Luke Newberry as Partially Deceased Syndrome sufferer Kieren Walker.

He faces opposition from Dominic West (Burton and Taylor), Sean Harris (Southcliffe) and Jamie Dornan (The Fall).

The show has also been nominated in the Mini-Series category, with Southcliffe, The Great Train Robbery and The Fall also vying for the gong, and follows creator Dominic Mitchell's nomination for a BAFTA Television Craft Award for Best Writer, which he will be hoping to win against Chris Chibnall (Broadchurch), Sally Wainwright (Last Tango In Halifax) and Dennis Kelly (Utopia).

The BAFTA Television Crafts awards ceremony takes place on Sunday 27th April and the TV BAFTAs will be held on Sunday 18th May.

Series two of In The Flesh, comprising six episodes, is to be shown on BBC Three in the first week of May, the BBC said today. The first series will be repeated on BBC Three and BBC iPlayer on Sunday 12th April.

Critically-acclaimed creator Dominic Mitchell reignites the world of teenager Kieren Walker, a PDS (Partially Deceased Syndrome) sufferer who continues in his struggle to find acceptance in the second series of the award-nominated BBC Three drama In The Flesh.

Over six episodes, In The Flesh propels us back to the hotbed of Roarton nine months on, where the living and the undead have reached a fragile peace. Partially Deceased Syndrome sufferer, Kieren (Luke Newberry) is still struggling to find self-acceptance, and is keeping his head down, squirrelling money into his "escape fund" for Paris. Only problem is, he can't escape himself.

In the wider world, fear is in the air, provoked by radical Pro-Living Party Victus and extremism linked to the Undead Liberation Army. Scarier still, there are whispers about a Second Rising.

When explosive characters from both Victus and the ULA descend on Roarton, Kieren's dreams of escape are thrown into disarray. Victus MP Maxine Martin (Wunmi Mosaku) is stirring up anti-PDS sentiment in the village, while charismatic ULA disciple Simon (Emmett J Scanlan) wants Kieren to stay for different reasons altogether.

As Kieren increasingly finds himself in Maxine and Simon's crossfire, tensions reignite within the Walker family, where schoolgirl Jem (Harriet Cains) is facing her own demons, struggling to come to terms with vivid flashbacks from her time in the HVF (Human Volunteer Force). Kieren's only saving grace is the return of his old hunting partner Amy Dyer (Emily Bevan), but has his happy-go-lucky BDFF (Best Dead Friend Forever) been radicalised by the ULA?

As the series progresses, we follow Kieren, his friends and family, as he wrestles with his identity and his own and other people's beliefs. One thing's for certain: a quiet life is no longer an option.

Video interviews with Newberry and Mitchell to promote series 2 were released by the BBC today:

The BAFTA nominations echo plaudits from other parts of the industry - the series was also shortlisted for the MIND Media Awards 2013, Best Drama Serial at RTS, Best Drama Serial at Broadcast Awards and Innovation in Multiplatform at RTS North West - while Mitchell was named one of the 17 BAFTA Breakthrough Brits last year.

BBC Three controller Zai Bennett said:
Not only is BBC Three the most-watched digital channel in the hours it's on air, we're also the most BAFTA-nominated digital channel this year with six nominations, two of which are for the extraordinary In The Flesh which returns to BBC Three next month. I couldn't be prouder of the team, the producers, storytellers, actors and presenters who make BBC Three the ground-breaking, award-winning, incredible channel it is.

FILTER: - In The Flesh - Awards/Nominations

Cool Gothic at the BFIBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 29 October 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
The BFI Southbank will be looking closely at the emergence of Cool Gothic And The New Vampire next week with a host of special guests plus illustrative clips from TV series such as Being Human, In The Flesh, Buffy The Vampire Slayer, The Fades, and True Blood.

Taking place on Monday 4th November at 6.30pm, it will feature a panel discussion hosted by film critic Danny Leigh, who will be joined by actors Anthony Head (Buffy), Damien Molony (Being Human) and Lily Loveless (The Fades), creators/writers Toby Whithouse (Being Human) and Dominic Mitchell (In The Flesh), and director Farren Blackburn (The Fades).
Ever since Anne Rice gave the vampire a conscience in Interview with the Vampire, the Gothic myth has been reinterpreted for a new generation. Here, the creative teams behind such "new Gothic" works as Being Human, In the Flesh, The Fades, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer are assembled to discuss the resurrection of Gothic myths on our TV screen and their vast appeal to today's generation. Illustrated with clips of these vastly successful shows and others, our panel will examine the whole "Cool Gothic" phenomenon.
Tickets can be bought via this link.

The event is part of the BFI's blockbuster project Gothic: The Dark Heart of Film.

UPDATE: THURSDAY 28th NOVEMBER: A clip of Buffy and Angel creator Joss Whedon talking about vampires - taken from the BFI's Joss Whedon In Conversation event of 12th June 2013 - was uploaded to the BFI's YouTube channel two days ago:

The full conversation can be seen here.

FILTER: - BFI - In The Flesh - UK - Being Human - Special Events

In The Flesh series two filming startsBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 15 October 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
Filming on the extended second series of BBC Three zombie drama In The Flesh has started, it was announced today.

The first series, which aired in March this year, ran for three episodes, but the new series is double that length.

Creator Dominic Mitchell reignites the world of teenager Kieren Walker, a PDS (Partially Deceased Syndrome) sufferer, who continues in his struggle to find acceptance in the fictional village of Roarton.

The living and the undead have reached a fragile peace, with Kieren desperately keeping his head down, squirrelling money into his "escape fund". But in the wider world, fear is in the air. The radical Pro-Living Party, Victus, is gaining government seats, with a resulting spate of PDS terrorism linked to the Undead Liberation Army. With the arrival in the village of new and explosive characters from both Victus and the ULA, Kieren's plans are thrown into disarray as both set their sights on him and he finds himself caught in the emotional crossfire. A quiet life is not an option.
Returning to the series, Luke Newberry as Kieren Walker leads the cast, together with Emily Bevan as his upbeat friend and fellow medicated zombie Amy Dyer, Harriet Cains as his feisty sister Jem, and Stephen Thompson as the aspirational parish councillor Philip Wilson.

Also returning are Kenneth Cranham as Vicar Oddie, Kevin Sutton as Gary, Steve Cooper as Steve Walker, Marie Critchley as Sue Walker, Sandra Hugget as Shirley Wilson, Gerard Thompson as Dean, and Gillian Waugh as Pearl Pinder.

They are joined by new cast members Wunmi Mosaku, playing local MP Maxine Martin, and Emmett J Scanlan, who plays Simon - a charismatic disciple of the Undead Prophet.

The drama started filming on Monday 7th October and is being shot around the north-west of England.

Director Jim O'Hanlon said:
With its uniquely naturalistic take on the zombie genre, told as much from the point of view of the zombies - or PDS sufferers - themselves as that of the locals forced to live alongside them, In The Flesh is original, dramatic, funny, politically engaged, and never less than 100 per cent emotionally truthful.

It's rare to find a series that is so exciting, entertaining, and humorous, and yet has so much to say about the world we live in today. The characters have genuine verve, wit, colour, and depth, and I can't wait to get started on bringing them to life.
BBC Three controller Zai Bennett said:
I am excited that BBC Three viewers will once again have the chance to immerse themselves in writer Dominic Mitchell's intricate world, which brings such realism to the scenario of medicated zombies being reintegrated into the community. The popularity of series one is testament to the strength of the cast, production team, and conviction with which Dominic writes.
And Mitchell, who last month was named one of BAFTA's 17 Breakthrough Brits, said:
Returning to Roarton village has been a real joy, revisiting old characters and inventing new ones, entangling their lives and their loves. My hope is that In The Flesh series two will have something for everyone: with high-octane genre thrills running alongside emotional, hard-hitting domestic drama, with plenty of black humour to boot.
Meanwhile, Newberry said:
I'm very excited to continue on Kieren's journey, and am delighted In The Flesh will be returning for a second series. New characters arrive in Roarton, introducing him to further challenges and new dilemmas, as he begins to feel trapped between the living and the dead.
It is being made by BBC Drama Production North in co-production with BBC America, produced by John Rushton, and executive-produced by Hilary Martin, Katie McAleese, and Ann Harrison Baxter. The development producer is Simon Judd.

The drama was first developed by the BBC Drama Production team in Salford after Mitchell was discovered through the BBC Writersroom competition Northern Voices.

FILTER: - In The Flesh

In The Flesh Recommissioned For Extended SeriesBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 22 May 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
The BBC Three zombie drama In The Flesh has been commissioned for an extended second series, it was announced today.

A three-part serial initially ran in March this year after writer Dominic Mitchell was discovered through the BBC Writersroom competition Northern Voices, and the storyline was developed by the BBC Drama Production team in Salford.

It told of zombie teenager Kieren Walker, played by Luke Newberry, and his reintegration into both the local community and the heart of his family four years after a zombie uprising, with zombies renamed Partially Deceased Syndrome sufferers by the government in the show.
Series two revisits the cauldron of Roarton where the living and the undead have reached a fragile peace. After the shocking events of series one, Kieren is hoping to get on with his second life but the arrival of new and explosive characters throws those plans into disarray. Battle lines are drawn and all will be judged.
Mitchell said:
I am absolutely delighted and thrilled to be given this fantastic opportunity to continue exploring the characters and world of In The Flesh.
Zai Bennett, the controller of BBC Three, commented:
In The Flesh was a fantastically original and engaging drama for BBC Three. I'm delighted Dominic and the team will be able to tell more stories from the riveting characters and engaging world they created.
Kate Harwood, the BBC's Head of Drama, England, added:
It is testament to the brilliant and talented in-house drama team in Salford that In The Flesh has been commissioned as a series. I am immensely proud of Dominic's fantastic writing and can't wait to see how the stories unfold.
The first episode - on Sunday 17th March - gained 793,000 viewers and was the second-highest programme on the digital channel for that week, according to BARB. Episode two didn't make the top 10 but the final episode, on Sunday 31st March, was at number seven with 638,000 viewers.

The new series has been commissioned by Bennett and BBC drama controller Ben Stephenson.
To be made by BBC Drama Production North, with Hilary Martin and Ann Harrison-Baxter as executive producers, it will be filmed later this year and be broadcast in 2014.

It has not been confirmed yet how many episodes it will comprise, but trade publication Broadcast says it is likely to be up to six episodes long. New writers are expected to come on board for the show alongside Mitchell, who wrote all of the first series.

FILTER: - In The Flesh

In The Flesh: Know The Undead Facts And RelaxBookmark and Share

Friday, 8 March 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
The second of three pseudo-government information videos about zombies was released by BBC Three today to promote the upcoming drama In The Flesh.

In it, despite the calm tone of the narrator, the threat level has been raised from "substantial" to "severe" and it contains tongue-in-cheek advice regarding what to do regarding zombies - or Partially Deceased Syndrome sufferers, as they are known in the three-parter.

Written by Dominic Mitchell, directed by Jonny Campbell, and starring Luke Newberry as zombie teenager Kieren Walker, it begins on Sunday 17th March at 10pm.

FILTER: - In The Flesh