The nation’s favourite comedy channel, Gold, expands the popular murder-mystery scripted comedy franchise written by Jason Cook with a brand-new three-part series Murder They Hope (3×60″). Produced by Shiny Button and following on from last year’s hit feature Dial M for Middlesbrough, Sian Gibson and Johnny Vegas will reprise their roles as Gemma and Terry, in a trilogy of new adventures, with more casting to be announced later this year.
After their trip to Middlesbrough turned a little more explosive than they thought, Gemma (Sian Gibson) and Terry (Johnny Vegas) finally decide to pack up the smouldering remains of their coach tour business and set out on a new adventure as fully-fledged private detectives. Given all their experience with solving cases (sort of), that mysteriously fall into their laps the duo are confident that it won’t be long before they get the chance to put their skills to the test. Sadly, the cases don’t come rolling in and the duo find themselves moving in with Gemma’s sister Monica and praying business picks up soon.
Sure enough the first case that hops into their laps comes via a local car boot sale, where a mysterious red eyed rabbit figurine causes a bidding war and attracts the attention of the dreaded, but appropriately named, Bunnyman. Episode two sees Gemma and Terry heroically graduate from bunnies to bakers, when they are tasked with getting to the bottom of poisoned pastry scandal as two rival baking families turn up the heat on a long-standing feud. The final instalment of the trilogy sees the intrepid duo lured back into their old world of coach tours as they help the local police in a county-wide hunt for a bus-based serial killer.
The Agatha Christie-inspired whodunnits have been huge hits for Gold in recent years. Jason Cook’s first outing Murder on the Blackpool Express attracted 1.8 million viewers during its first week and the channel has enjoyed success since with Death on the Tyne and Dial M for Middlesbrough.
The series is commissioned for UKTV by Pete Thornton, head of scripted, and ordered by Gerald Casey, channel director for Gold. Steve North is genre general manager for comedy and entertainment and Richard Watsham is director of commissioning. The series is written by Jason Cook (Dial M for Middlesbrough, Murder on the Blackpool Express).