Photo: Gentleman Jack/YouTube
Photo: Gentleman Jack/YouTube
From Chernobyl to Killing Eve, His Dark Materials to Gentleman Jack, the British Academy has spoken, releasing the nominees for their annual Bafta Television Awards. And on that note, here are 13 of those shows you can stream this weekend on Showmax and DStv Now:
Storyline: Chernobyl dramatises the story of the 1986 nuclear accident, one of the worst man-made catastrophes in history, and of the brave men and women who made incredible sacrifices to save Europe from unimaginable disaster.
Nominations: The most nominated show this year, with 14 nominations, for Mini-series; Leading Actor (Jared Harris); Supporting Actor (Stellan Skarsgard); Director: Fiction (Johan Renck); Writer: Drama (Craig Mazin); Photography & Lighting; Editing: Fiction; Production Design; Costume Design; Sound: Fiction; Makeup & Hair Design; Original Music; Scripted Casting; &Special, Visual & Graphic Effects.
Other accolades: 2020 Golden Globe winner for Best Limited Series and Best Supporting Actor (Stellan Skarsgård). Won 10 Emmys in 2019, including Best Limited Series. IMDB’s top-rated scripted series this decade. The best reviewed limited Series of 2019 on Rotten Tomatoes.
Storyline: In this adaptation of Philip Pullman’s classic fantasy novels, Lyra’s search for a kidnapped friend uncovers a sinister plot involving stolen children and sets off a quest to understand a mysterious phenomenon called Dust.
Nominations: Photography & Lighting; Costume Design; Sound: Fiction; Special, Visual & Graphic Effects; Titles & Graphic Identity.
Other accolades: Won Outstanding Character Animation at the 2020 Annie Awards. Nominated for a Satellite Award for Best TV Series: Genre; Best Cinematography at The British Society of Cinematographers Awards; Best Title Design at SXSW; and a Visual Effects Society Award, among other honours.
Storyline: Based on the novels by Luke Jennings and written by Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Fleabag), Killing Eve centres on two distinctly different women playing a deadly cat-and-mouse game fueled by their mutual fascination. Eve (Grey’s Anatomy’s Sandra Oh in a Golden Globe-winning performance) is a bored, whip-smart MI5 security officer whose desk-bound job doesn’t fulfil her fantasies of being a spy. Villanelle (Doctor Foster’s Jodie Comer in an Emmy-winning performance ) is a talented assassin who clings to the luxuries her violent job affords her.
Nominations: Leading Actress (Jodie Comer); Editing: Fiction; Original Music; Production Design.
Other accolades: Nominated for the Best Drama Television series at the Golden Globe Awards two years in a row. Nominated for 9 Emmys last year, including Outstanding Drama Series. Won Outstanding Drama, Best Actress (Jodie Comer) and Best Supporting Actress (Fiona Shaw) at the Baftas last year.
Storyline: We’re living in extraordinary times: times you want a familiar authority figure to reassure you that everything is going to be okay. Enter Sir David Attenborough and this, the most highly rated factual series to come out of the UK last year, BBC doccie Seven Worlds, One Planet. The biggest natural history series on biodiversity ever produced, it showcases utterly beautiful and simply astounding nature stories filmed across seven continents.
Nominations: Specialist: Factual; Original Music; Photography: Factual.
Storyline: Set in 1832, Gentleman Jack focuses on real-life English landowner Anne Lister (Bafta Award winner Suranne Jones from Doctor Foster) and her determination to transform the fate of her faded ancestral home, Shibden Hall, by reopening her coal mines and marrying well – but not to a man.
Nominations: Best Drama, Leading Actress (Suranne Jones).
Other accolades: Best Drama Series, Royal Television Society Awards 2020. Best Production Design, British Film Designers Guild Awards, 2019. Unsung TV Show of the Year nominee, The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics, 2019. 90% critics rating, Rotten Tomatoes. 8.2/10, IMDB.
Storyline: Everyone knows who won. Not everyone knows how. Oscar nominee Benedict Cumberbatch (Patrick Melrose) stars as political strategist Dominic Cummings, who leads a popular but controversial campaign to convince British voters to leave the European Union,
Nominations: Single Drama, Director: Fiction (Toby Haynes).
Other accolades: 2019 Emmy nominee for Best TV Movie. 2020 Critics Choice nominee for Best TV Movie. Gold Derby nominee for TV Movie of the Decade. Won Best Single Drama, Broadcast Awards, 2020. Single Drama nominee at The Royal Television Society Awards.
Storyline: Four very rich siblings behave very badly as they try to win their father’s approval – and control of his company, a global media empire.
Nominations: Best International Series; Writer: Drama (Jesse Armstrong).
Other accolades: 2020 Golden Globe winner: Best TV Drama and Best Actor: Drama (Brian Cox). 2019 Emmy winner: Writing and Title Theme Music. Placed third on Metacritic’s aggregated list of TV Shows Mentioned on Most Critic Top 10 Lists for 2019.
Storyline: We’re guessing you’ve heard of this one, but just in case: Based on George R. R. Martin’s A Song Of Fire and Ice novels, this fantasy series revolves around the power struggles to sit on the Iron Throne of Westeros.
Nominations: Must-See Moments (Arya Kills The Night King), Costume Design.
Other accolades: #11 on IMDB’s all-time Top Rated TV list, with a 9.3/10 rating. Won a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor for Peter Dinklage and record-breaking amounts of Emmys, among many other honours.
Storyline: All’s fair in love and war – and there’s plenty of both on Love Island, the hit reality show where if you’re not in a couple, you’re booted off the island…
Nominations: Must-See Moments (Michael recouples after Casa Amor); Entertainment Craft Team.
Other accolades: Love Island won the Bafta for Best Reality & Constructed Factual in 2018 when Stormzy’s surprise appearance also earned a ‘Must-See Moment’ nomination. Love Island also won National Reality TV Awards for Best Entertainment Show and Best Reality Competition Show in 2017.
Storyline: Untouchable tracks the rise and fall of the disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, featuring interviews with former colleagues and accusers in the wake of the scandal that shook Hollywood and catapulted the #MeToo movement to a global phenomenon.
Nominations: Editing: Factual; Photography: Factual.
Other accolades: Untouchable has an 85% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Storyline: This zany comedy sketch show features an array of oddball characters and off-the-wall situations, ranging from a misunderstood superhero to Croydon’s leading witch-doctor; a thwarted Nigerian philanthropist to a woke Barry White, and warring aunties to a Nollywood take on Love Island.
Nominations: Best Actress: Comedy (Nigerian-born Gbemisola Ikumelo) .
Other accolades: Samson Kayo was nominated for Best Male Performance: Comedy at both the 2018 Baftas and the 2019 Royal Television Society Awards.
Storyline: In this adults-only high school drama series, Zendaya (K.C. Undercover, Spider-Man: Homecoming and The Greatest Showman) stars as 17-year-old Rue, who returns home from rehab with no plans to stay clean, and strikes up a friendship with the new girl in town, Jules (played by trans superstar Hunter Schafer).
Nominations: Best International Series.
Other accolades: Zendaya won the 2019 People’s Choice Award for Favourite Drama TV Star for her role, as well as a Satellite Award for Best Actress in a Series. She was also nominated for a Critics Choice Award. The series also won the Camerimage TV Pilots competition and Best Music Supervision from The Guild of Music Supervisor Awards, and earned a 2020 GLAAD Media Award nomination for Outstanding Drama Series. Euphoria has an 8.3/10 rating on IMDB and a 82% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Storyline: Marnie is not OK. She’s had x-rated thoughts for the last 3672 days and she doesn’t know why or what they mean. When she jumps on a coach to London, she doesn’t know a soul there, not even herself…
Nominations: Breakthrough talent (Aneil Karia for episode 3, as well as Top Boy ep 10).
Other accolades: Best Sound nominee, Royal Television Society Awards, 2019. Pure has an 80% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes.