Vera (TV series)

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Vera
Alt=Series title and an image of the lead character
GenreCrime drama
Based onNovels and characters created by Ann Cleeves
StarringBrenda Blethyn
David Leon
Wunmi Mosaku
Jon Morrison
Cush Jumbo
Paul Ritter
Sonya Cassidy
Tom Hutch
Clare Calbraith
Riley Jones
Composer(s)Ben Bartlett
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of series3
No. of episodes12 (List of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)Kate Bartlett
Kate Lewis
Producer(s)Elaine Collins
Location(s)Newcastle upon Tyne, Northumberland, Seaham, Sunderland, Co Durham England
Running time95 minutes
Broadcast
Original channelITV, STV, UTV
Original run1 May 2011 (2011-05-01) – present
 
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Vera
Alt=Series title and an image of the lead character
GenreCrime drama
Based onNovels and characters created by Ann Cleeves
StarringBrenda Blethyn
David Leon
Wunmi Mosaku
Jon Morrison
Cush Jumbo
Paul Ritter
Sonya Cassidy
Tom Hutch
Clare Calbraith
Riley Jones
Composer(s)Ben Bartlett
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of series3
No. of episodes12 (List of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)Kate Bartlett
Kate Lewis
Producer(s)Elaine Collins
Location(s)Newcastle upon Tyne, Northumberland, Seaham, Sunderland, Co Durham England
Running time95 minutes
Broadcast
Original channelITV, STV, UTV
Original run1 May 2011 (2011-05-01) – present

Vera is a British detective television series based on the works of crime author Ann Cleeves. It stars Brenda Blethyn and is broadcast on ITV and in the United States on public television stations.

Summary[edit]

The central character is Detective Chief Inspector Vera Stanhope of the fictional Northumberland & City Police (Northumbria & City Police in some episodes) who is obsessive about her work and driven by her own demons. If she’s lonely she doesn’t show it and faces the world with caustic wit, guile and courage, often with highly-strung bad temper. Her trusted and long suffering colleague is Sergeant Joe Ashworth (David Leon); her right hand man and surrogate son.

Cast and characters[edit]

Episodes[edit]

Series 1 (2011)[edit]

#TitleWritersDirectorOriginal air dateViewing Figures (millions)
Sourced by BARB; figures include ITV HD and ITV+1
1"Hidden Depths"Paul RutmanAdrian Shergold1 May 2011 (2011-05-01)6.75 [nb 1]
Forthright, drink-loving Inspector Vera Stanhope and her young sergeant Joe Ashworth investigate when 15-year-old Luke Armstrong is strangled and placed in a bath strewn with flowers and candles. Luke's widowed mother Julie tells them that Luke's friend Tommy accidentally drowned some months earlier and initial suspicion falls on Tommy's father. But then teacher Lily Marsh is murdered, also throttled and dumped on a beach, surrounded by flowers. The body is found by a group of ornithologists, including husband and wife Peter and Felicity Calvert, into whose beach house Lily was due to move, and Gary Wright, a womanising friend of Julie. Lily had a sugar daddy who paid money into her account and Vera learns that Tommy had photographed her with this man and had drowned trying to save his camera when it fell into the sea. She deduces that he is rubbing out evidence of the affair and believes the lover to be Peter Calvert. 
2"Telling Tales"Paul RutmanPeter Hoar8 May 2011 (2011-05-08)6.57 [nb 2]
Sentenced for the murder of Abby, precocious young daughter of her lover Keith Mantel a decade earlier, Jeannie Long escapes from prison, and after a row with her father, kills herself. News of her death brings evidence that shows she was innocent, as she had long claimed, and Vera reopens the case. At a charity event where Keith pays tribute to Jeannie, Chris Winter, son of Jeannie's probation officer Robert, is murdered, having tried to contact ex-cop Caroline Fletcher, who arrested Jeannie and later had an affair with Keith. As Abby was a friend of the Winters, Vera suspects Chris was the killer but comes to realise that he was the witness, attempting to cover up for the real murderer. When Keith is attacked after exposing the secret of another family member Vera now knows that the Winters are shielding one, if not two, murderers. 
3"The Crow Trap"Stephen BradyFarren Blackburn15 May 2011 (2011-05-15)6.58 [nb 3]
Bella Furness is lured into a barn and murdered. Her body is found by environmentalist Anne Preece, who is researching reasons to prevent a quarry being dug nearby for a company headed by Godfrey Waugh, whom Vera discovers is having an affair with Anne. Bella opposed the quarry too, but with her death, her stepson Neville, whose business is failing, can sell the house. Bev McDonald is another suspect, as she blames Bella for the disappearance of her little son Lee twelve years earlier though Bella's husband, Dougie, now a stroke victim, gave her an alibi. Vera learns from Dougie that Bella was about to change her mind and sell her house to Waugh, putting her at odds with reclusive fellow campaigner Edmund Fulwell, who has a secret of his own. Parent-child relationships hold the key to unlocking what becomes a double murder, as well as discovering the fate of Lee McDonald. 
4"Little Lazarus"Paul RutmanPaul Whittington22 May 2011 (2011-05-22)6.51 [nb 4]
A woman is murdered in a hedgerow but her son survives the attack, only to fall beneath the ice of a frozen pond as he makes his escape. DCI Vera Stanhope wades in and drags him out, and against all the odds he pulls through. As the investigation into the mother's killing unfolds, Vera finds a kindred spirit in the boy and comes to realise the key to solving the case lies deep in his memory. Detective drama, starring Brenda Blethyn, with Kerry Fox and Kieran O'Brien. Last in the series. 

Series 2 (2012)[edit]

Episode 3 was due to be broadcast on Sunday 13 May, however ITV gave the following reason for it not being shown as scheduled: "We regret the late change to the schedule and the non-appearance of Sunday’s episode of Vera. The storyline of this episode concerns the death of a soldier in Afghanistan. Following the news of the deaths of two servicemen in Helmand province, it was considered appropriate to delay the broadcast of this particular episode"

#TitleWritersDirectorOriginal air dateViewing Figures (millions)
Sourced by BARB; figures include ITV HD and ITV+1
1"The Ghost Position"Paul RutmanPeter Hoar22 April 2012 (2012-04-22)6.12 [12]
When an old colleague of DCI Vera Stanhope, Sergeant Stuart Macken, commits suicide at the hospital where his daughter lies critically injured after his home had been fire bombed, the investigation leads to a number of suspects: the daughter's stepfather, a missing protester Sergeant Macken had under surveillance, the protester's pregnant girlfriend and an art teacher. Furthermore, a senior officer's affair with Macken comes to light and a second attempt on the daughter in hospital breaks the case wide open to explain the sergeant's suicide. 
2"Silent Voices"Gaby ChiappePaul Whittington29 April 2012 (2012-04-29)6.53 [nb 5]
When a respected senior social worker, Jenny Lister, is murdered by drowning while swimming in a reservoir a number of suspects emerge from one of social services past cases about an infamous case involving the death of a child drowning in a bath. The child's mother was jailed, a junior social worker was pilloried and when Lister's missing laptop is found containing a book she was writing gives Vera a prime suspect until they too are murdered by drowning. 
3"Sandancers"Colin TeevanJulian Holmes3 June 2012 (2012-06-03)5.83 [nb 6]
Revenge is behind the clinical murder of Staff Sgt Deverson, a soldier in charge of a bomb disposal unit; The Sandancers. Deverson's second in command, Ollie, was killed in Afghanistan by an improvised explosive device was having an affair with his wife. The wife, Ollie's family, and other members of the unit all come under suspicion and the death of another unit member confuses the investigation which is not helped by the army closing ranks. 
4"A Certain Samaritan"Paul RutmanEd Bazalgette20 May 2012 (2012-05-20)6.98 [nb 7]
A shoe found in Newcastle matches another found on a dead body found in a skip in Portsmouth. The victim had traces of heroin in his bloodstream, a wallet containing £300 and another man's credit card which seem at odds with his character. The investigation includes a possessive mother, a girlfriend, a homosexual beekeeper dying of leukemia, and a local drug dealer later found dead on a beach. Vera's private memories about her dead father are also stirred when Joe gives her an address for her father's mistress. 

Series 3 (2013)[edit]

In August 2012, Vera was renewed for a third series of 4x100 minute episodes with both Brenda Blethyn and David Leon returning for the new series.[22] Series 3 was estimated to be completed in January–February 2013, however it will air some months later from 25 August – 15 September.[citation needed] The first episode will air from 8pm-10pm, whilst the remaining three episodes will air from 9pm-11pm.

#TitleWritersDirectorOriginal air dateViewing Figures (millions)
Sourced by BARB; figures include ITV HD and ITV+1
1"Castles in the Air"Paul Rutman & Gaby ChiappeWill Sinclair25 August 2013 (2013-08-25)6.29
While Vera investigates the brutal murder of young physiotherapist Lizzie Faulkner, gunned down at a luxury country retreat, Joe has to face a part of his past he'd rather forget. 
2"Poster Child"Paul RutmanPaul Cotter1 September 2013 (2013-09-01)6.74
When Dan Marsden, a surgeon, is found dead and his daughters, Mira and Karen, abducted, Vera and the team have to track down the killer to save them. 
3"Young Gods"Gaby ChiappeDusan Lazarevic8 September 2013 (2013-09-08)6.54
Extreme sports fanatic Gideon Frane plunges from a cliff in a ball of flames. Police finds out he was stalking an ex-girlfriend, Izzy Rawlins. 
4"Prodigal Son"Marston BloomThaddeus O'Sullivan15 September 2013 (2013-09-15)6.54
Vera and Joe investigate the fatal stabbing of an ex-Met officer, John Warnock, outside a nightclub. During investigations, Vera finds out the victim was in a secret relationship with Eva, daughter of his sister's fiancé, to spy on the brewery for a multi-national company. 

Series 4 (2014)[edit]

On 22 April 2013, ITV renewed Vera for a fourth series even before the third series had aired. The fourth series is currently being filmed in the North East and is due to be aired in 2014.[23]

#TitleWritersDirectorOriginal air dateViewing Figures (millions)
Sourced by BARB; figures include ITV1 HD and ITV1 +1
1"Harbour Street"Paul RutmanThaddeus O'Sullivan2014 (2014)Not aired yet
Vera investigates the mysterious death of pensioner Margaret Krukowksi on a busy Newcastle Metro train at the height of rush hour. It leads her to a quiet street in a run down seaside town, where she discovers a tight knit community living in the shadow of a long-held, explosive secret. There's a key role for Joe, too, as he struggles to maintain a professional distance when his daughter is named as key witness in the case. 
2"Protection"Martha HillierDaikin Marsh2014 (2014)Not aired yet
3"The Deer Hunters"Richard DavidsonWilliam Sinclair2014 (2014)Not aired yet
4"Death Of a Family Man"Martha HillierDavid Richards2014 (2014)Not aired yet

Ratings[edit]

The first series attracted an average consolidated audience of 6.60 million (25% share) over four episodes. The show was subsequently recommissioned by ITV for four more episodes. The second series attracted an average consolidated audience of 6.36 million (25% share) over four episodes. Vera was later recommissioned for two more series.[24]

International broadcast[edit]

DVD releases[edit]

Complete SeriesRelease dates
123/5/2011
228/5/2012
316/9/2013
42014

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ 6.465 million on ITV and ITV HD[1] and 285,000 on ITV+1.[2]
  2. ^ 5.71 million on ITV,[3] 480,000 on the ITV HD simulcast,[4] and 374,000 on ITV+1.[5]
  3. ^ 5.90 million on ITV,[6] 463,000 on the ITV HD simulcast,[7] and 212,000 on ITV+1.[8]
  4. ^ 5.87 million on ITV,[9] 484,000 on the ITV HD simulcast,[10] and 154,000 on ITV+1.[11]
  5. ^ 5.75 million on ITV,[13] 461,000 on the ITV HD simulcast,[14] and 318,000 on ITV+1.[15]
  6. ^ 5.14 million on ITV,[16] 445,000 on the ITV HD simulcast,[17] and 240,000 on ITV+1.[18]
  7. ^ 6.08 million on ITV,[19] 461,000 on the ITV HD simulcast,[20] and 436,000 on ITV+1.[21]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Weekly Top 30 Programmes: ITV w/e 1 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  2. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV+1 w/e 1 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  3. ^ "Weekly Top 30 Programmes: ITV w/e 8 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  4. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV HD w/e 8 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  5. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV+1 w/e 8 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  6. ^ "Weekly Top 30 Programmes: ITV w/e 15 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  7. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV HD w/e 15 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  8. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV+1 w/e 15 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  9. ^ "Weekly Top 30 Programmes: ITV w/e 22 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  10. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV HD w/e 22 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  11. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV+1 w/e 22 May 2011". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 
  12. ^ "Consolidated figures: 16–22 April 2012". Broadcast. 2012-05-03. Retrieved 2012-05-05. 
  13. ^ "Weekly Top 30 Programmes: ITV w/e 29 April 2012". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 8 May 2012. 
  14. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV HD w/e 29 April 2012". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 8 May 2012. 
  15. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV+1 w/e 29 April 2012". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 8 May 2012. 
  16. ^ "Weekly Top 30 Programmes: ITV w/e 3 June 2012". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 12 June 2012. 
  17. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV HD w/e 3 June 2012". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 12 June 2012. 
  18. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV+1 w/e 3 June 2012". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 12 June 2012. 
  19. ^ "Weekly Top 30 Programmes: ITV w/e 20 May 2012". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 28 May 2012. 
  20. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV HD w/e 20 May 2012". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 28 May 2012. 
  21. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV+1 w/e 20 May 2012". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 28 May 2012. 
  22. ^ http://allthingslawandorder.blogspot.co.uk/2012/08/itv-renews-law-order-uk.html
  23. ^ Munn, Patrick (Arpil 22, 2013). "ITV Renews ‘Vera’ For Season 4". TVWise. Retrieved April 23, 2013. 
  24. ^ "ITV recommissions four new dramas for ITV". ITV Press Centre (London). 26 July 2011. 

External links[edit]