07/10/2008. Contributed by Jessica Martin
The Quattro's running and fashion sense has been binned as filming begins on the second series of BBC One's odd scifi time travelling police drama Ashes To Ashes.
DI Alex Drake (Keeley Hawes) is back with a bang in 1981 when series two kicks off in 1982 where leg warmers are cool, fluorescent is the colour of choice, Thatcher is in her element and bullish DCI Gene Hunt (Philip Glenister) is back, policing the streets in his politically incorrect and loud-mouthed style.
Though no nearer to getting back to her daughter, Alex believes she is suspended in time and finally understands how the world around her works, but when she starts hearing news from 2008, she realises nothing is as it seems. Clinging on to fast fading hope, she discovers she may not be alone in her predicament. It seems unlikely, but is there someone in 1982 who can help her?
Produced by Kudos Film and Television in association with Monastic Productions the second series also sees the return of Gene and Alex's top team: DS Ray Carling (Dean Andrews), DC Chris Skelton (Marshall Lancaster) and WPC Sharon "Shaz" Granger (Montserrat Lombard).
Chris and Shaz couldn't be happier. He's still trying his best to be the perfect "feminist" boyfriend and wants to take their relationship to the next level, but predictably Ray continues to tease him about his romantic gestures. Ray is also struggling to contain his emotions about the Falklands War, blaming the "Argies" and throwing his weight fully behind Maggie Thatcher.
Producer, Beth Willis, told SFcrowsnest, "We are so pleased to be coming back for a second series with the same brilliant cast. The new series moves in a slightly different direction and we're really looking forward to developing the characters and Alex's journey further. Gene and Alex's relationship is so complex; it is very sparky and they obviously care for each other in a grudging manner so it'll be interesting to see how this evolves. Ray and Chris are still by Gene's side, but when force legend DS Supermac Macintosh (Roger Allam) starts working with the team it looks as if Gene's equilibrium could be broken."
The arrival of Supermac seems like a blessing to the team because he's been hailed as a star within the force and someone not to be reckoned with. However, it's not long before Gene's gut instinct tells him something isn't quite right. Could this cop legend be up to no good?
Ashes To Ashes is written and created by Matthew Graham and Ashley Pharoah, two of the creators of Life On Mars.
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Stephen Hunt's novels - USA