“Masterpiece Mystery!: Guilt,” season four of “Frankie Drake Mysteries” and several documentaries are among the titles coming to DVD in September from PBS Distribution.
The dark comedy series “Masterpiece Mystery! — Guilt” is due in a two-DVD set Sept. 14. In the series, a drunken drive home from a wedding lands two brothers in increasingly hot water, as they commit more and more serious crimes to hide their culpability in a hit-and-run. Mark Bonnar (“Line of Duty,” “Catastrophe,” “Unforgotten”) and Jamie Sives (“Valhalla Rising,” “Mean Machine”) star as the brothers, with Ruth Bradley (“Grabbers,” “Flyboys,” “Pursuit”) as the victim’s niece, who falls for her uncle’s killer.
Season four of “Frankie Drake Mysteries” comes out in a three-DVD set Sept. 7. The season opens with our intrepid detectives Frankie Drake (Lauren Lee Smith) and Trudy Clarke (Chantel Riley) alongside their best gal pals, Mary Shaw (Rebecca Liddiard) and Flo Chakowitz (Sharron Matthews), traipsing through the woods on a scavenger hunt that quickly turns deadly. From the wilderness to the world of high society, from an underground cabaret to a candy factory, Frankie and Trudy investigate murders, kidnappings, heists and poisonings. Using her position as a morality officer, Mary is able to snoop through police files and be privy to non-civilian discussions, while Flo lends a hand with autopsy reports, science experiments and her newly acquired medical skills. As always, amid high-stakes danger, excitement, intrigue and friendship, the women find their balance in their lives outside of work. Frankie has a European race car-driving beau; Trudy’s dreams of home-sweet-home are closer than ever; Mary falls for the wrong fellow; and Flo starts a family.
Also due on DVD in September are the documentaries Exhumed: A History of Zombies on Sept. 14; Downing of a Flag on Sept. 7; Lucy Worsley’s Royal Myths and Secrets, Volume 2 on Sept. 14; and The Mysteries of Mental Illness on Sept. 28.
The self-help title Discovering Your Warrior Spirit with D.J. Vanas comes out on DVD Sept. 14.
Coming for the kids in September are Molly of Denali: Molly and the Great One, due Sept. 14, and PBS Kids: 15 Girl Power Adventures!, available Sept. 7.
Episodes of “Professor T,” “Masterpiece Mystery! — Unforotten” and several “Walter Presents” shows are coming to the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel in July.
The subscription rate for the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel is $5.99 per month with an Amazon Prime or Prime Video subscription.
“Professor T,” based on the hit Belgian series of the same name, stars Ben Miller (“Bridgerton”) as Jasper Tempest, a professor at Cambridge teaching the science of crime. He lives a precisely calibrated and rigidly structured life, that is, until a former student, and current detective for the local police, convinces him to help her solve their most difficult cases. Six episodes of the series start streaming July 11.
The fourth season of the BAFTA award-winning series “Masterpiece Mystery! — Unforgotten” also starts streaming July 11. DCI Cassie Stuart and DI Sunny Khan return as they investigate a cold case with alarming links to the police force.
New “Walter Presents” International series streaming on the channel in July are “The Same Sky,” “The Last Wave,” “The Half Brother,” “Love, Inevitably” and “Under Suspicion.”
Due July 2 are six episodes of the German series “The Same Sky.” It’s East Germany in the spring of 1974, and Lars Weber, an East German Intelligence agent, is being relocated to West Berlin, tasked with seducing and spying on women who work in government or defense institutions for other countries. Lars is a young talent only just emerging from his espionage training program when he is assigned the case of Lauren Faber (Sophia Helin, “Masterpiece: Atlantic Crossing”), a data analyst for the British Secret Service at the Devil’s Mountain listening station. Under the strict, skeptical and somewhat twisted guidance of his handler Ralf Müller, Lars quickly proves his talent, making his first steps into Lauren’s wary and formerly closed-off psyche. When Lauren ends up in intensive care, Lars is given a new target: Sabine Cutter, Lauren’s U.S. counterpart at the listening station, who proves a much tougher target. Will he be able to fulfil his mission or will his growing feelings for Sabine lead to an evening that will forever change their lives?
Debuting July 16 are six episodes of the French series “The Last Wave.” One day in Brizan, a quiet seaside resort in the region of Landes in southwestern France, everything changes with the arrival of a wave. When a surge of clouds and a supersized wave collide during a surfing competition it engulfs the participants, causing them to disappear. Five hours later, the surfers reappear unharmed, but with no recollection of what happened to them. One by one, the returning surfers discover they each possess inexplicable powers.
The Norwegian series “The Half Brother” offers up eight episodes starting July 23. Based on the novel by Norwegian writer Lars Saabye, the series follows the life of a family spanning five generations in 20th century Europe focusing on the half-brothers Barnum and Fred. On V Day, May 1945, as the continent emerges from war, Barnum’s mother Vera is raped in her attic in Oslo by an unknown man, leading to the birth of Barnum’s half-brother Fred. When Barnum is born five years later, to the man that Vera has since met and married, the Nilsen family, like Europe, is already splitting in two. Growing up together during the Cold War — Barnum with his father, and Fred searching for his — the half-brothers become estranged and Fred eventually disappears. At the film festival in Berlin in 1990, as the Wall is still coming down, Barnum learns that Fred has returned. Finally, as the true identity of Fred’s father comes to light, the two half-brothers may once again be reunited.
The Spanish and Italian series “Love, Inevitably” debuts 10 episodes July 25. It is the story of Candela and Massimo, a dancer from Seville and an entrepreneur from Rome, two complete opposites. It all starts in Prague, where Candela and Massimo meet by chance. It is hate at first sight, and yet they can’t stay away from each other. Once back in their home countries, they appear in each other’s thoughts and visions. From that moment on they will have to put up with paranormal phenomena that happen at the most inopportune moments, demanding their attention and manipulating their choices. In an effort to set these spirits and their souls at ease, they will attempt to make their love a palpable reality.
Four new “Masterpiece” programs and several international series will be streaming on the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel in January.
“Masterpiece” titles include a new adaptation of “All Creatures Great and Small,” starring Dame Diana Rigg in one of her last appearances, the newest “Masterpiece Mystery” installment “Miss Scarlet & the Duke,” “Elizabeth Is Missing” based on the acclaimed novel starring Oscar-winner Glenda Jackson, and “The Long Song” based on the award-winning novel.
The subscription rate for the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel is $5.99 per month with an Amazon Prime or Prime Video subscription.
“Elizabeth Is Missing,” debuting Jan. 3, stars Jackson as the feisty grandmother Maud Horsham, a woman desperately trying to solve two mysteries as she declines ever deeper into dementia. Maud’s only friend, Elizabeth, ominously goes missing, leaving Maud determined to find her. The other mystery in Maud’s mind is a puzzle from her past, kindled when she unearths the top of an old cosmetics compact while gardening with Elizabeth. The discovery takes Maud back to her teenaged self and like many younger siblings, Maud looked up to her big sister, Sukey, considering her the height of glamour. This childhood idyll ended with Sukey’s failure to come home one night in 1949, never to be seen again. As Maud thinks back on it, she wonders if the family’s lodger at the time, Douglas, had anything to do with Sukey’s vanishing. And the cryptic warnings from the long-ago mad woman with the umbrella only deepens the riddle. In her increasingly disoriented perception, the disappearances of Sukey and now Elizabeth get mixed up. She attacks the problem with a system she uses around the house: sticky notes, posted everywhere, documenting daily reminders to herself — mostly about locking the door or turning off the stove, but also recording her meetings with Elizabeth and chance observations. Maud’s granddaughter, Katy, helps her arrange the notes. As memories, clues, and deductions pile up, viewers come to see the world as Maud does, and solve the mystery as this tenacious, vision-haunted sleuth does.
“All Creatures Great and Small,” debuting Jan. 10, is based on the autobiographical books by James Herriot and tells the adventures of a veterinarian in 1930s Yorkshire. The series takes place in 1937, when James Herriot, fresh out of Glasgow Veterinary College, follows his dream to become a vet in the magnificent Yorkshire Dales, one of England’s most beloved and beautiful landscapes. He soon discovers that treating the animals is as much about treating their owners, and the Dales’ farmers are a tough crowd to please. At Skeldale House, James gets to know his newly formed dysfunctional family: his chaotic and erratic boss Siegfried Farnon, his wayward brother Tristan and the shrewd Mrs. Hall, who is endlessly steering the ship. When local beauty Helen Alderson attracts James’s attention, he finds another, more enduring reason to stay in the Dales. The late Dame Diana Rigg plays Mrs. Pumphrey, the delightfully eccentric owner of the overly indulged Pekingese Tricki Woo.
“Miss Scarlet & the Duke,” coming Jan. 17, is set in the same 1850s London society that gave rise to Jack the Ripper. The Victorian detective drama features a fearless, independent heroine played by Kate Phillips (“Peaky Blinders”). With her inquisitive mind, Miss Eliza Scarlet has always been more interested in running her late father’s detective agency than behaving like a proper lady, much to the chagrin of family friend Inspector William Wellington of Scotland Yard (Stuart Martin, “Jamestown”). But nothing has prepared her for the dangers she is about to face as a woman in the murder investigation trade.
“The Long Song,” due Jan. 31, is an adaptation of the award-winning novel by Andrea Levy set during the final days of slavery in 19th century Jamaica. The story follows the strong-willed, young slave July on a sugar plantation owned by her odious mistress Caroline Mortimer. When a charming new arrival to the island, Robert Goodwin, becomes the new overseer, July and Caroline are both intrigued by his seemingly revolutionary determination to improve the plantation for the slaves and mistress alike.
“As Time Goes By: Reunion Specials,” available Jan 26, is the continuation to the long running series “As Time Goes By.” “Reunion Specials” follows up as Jean Pargetter’s (Dame Judi Dench) great anticipation for grandchildren is revealed much to husband Lionel’s (Geoffrey Palmer) dismay. With son-in-law Alistair and daughter Judy having problems things don’t look too promising. But will Jean’s dream of becoming a grandmother come true when their other daughter Sandy and her husband Harry return from Canada?
Also due in January are five “Walter Presents” series.
The French series “Walter Presents: Due North” is streaming starting Jan. 1. Set on the verge of the 20th century, “True North” is the untold story of the colonization of the Laurentian mountain rage in Quebec known as the “Wild West.” The series explores the turbulent period of the settlement and development of this northern region of Canada as the territory wreaks havoc on the new colony and an array of colorful characters try to make their mark
The German series “Walter Presents: The Nordic Murders” is coming Jan. 8. On the secluded island of Usedom off the north shore of Germany, former district attorney Karin Lossow has just been released from prison after serving a six-year sentence for shooting her husband. Her daughter Julia is the Detective Chief Inspector and their fragile relationship is put to the test as they team up to investigate criminal cases on the island.
The French-language series “Walter Presents: The Wall” is coming Jan. 15. In the remote Canadian mining colony Fremote, in the endless frozen hell that is the far North, the body of a young exotic dancer is found. The Quebec City police sends one of their toughest, most experienced detectives, Céline, to the colony to investigate. She is always up for a challenge. Being cooped up in the massive structure that is the colony which the inhabitants call “The Wall,” soon presents her with some challenges that exceed her investigative efforts. Not only does everyone here seem to have a secret and a connection to the victim, Céline’s own past has a way of catching up with her. Her estranged daughter Sophie has built a life of her own in the very same icy middle of nowhere where Céline is currently working. As Céline comes under increased pressure to find the killer of the dancer, she has to connect the dots to the suspicious death of a young boy three years ago. The inhabitants of the mine each think they know exactly who the culprit is, creating a sense of distrust and alarm among the community, but one fear is always present: will the murderer strike again soon?
Season three of the Italian series “Walter Presents: Rocco Schiavone” starts streaming Jan. 22. Deputy Police Commissioner Rocco Schiavone finds himself more and more alone, in the increasingly colder and inhospitable city of Aosta, forced to come to terms with everything that has happened. His best friend, Sebastiano, is under house arrest and refuses to speak to him as he’s convinced that Rocco had him arrested before he could kill Enzo Baiocchi, the man who murdered his wife. Rocco’s future doesn’t look great after Sebastiano escapes house arrest and everything in Rocco’s life starts to fall apart. It appears that he has no choice but to escape, leaving no trace of his whereabouts.
From the acclaimed novel by Louise Edrich comes the adapted historical German drama “Walter Presents: The Master Butcher,” due Jan. 29. After the social and financial destruction caused by World War I in Germany, a German butcher, and former military sniper, attempts to create a better life for himself and his family by moving to the United States. As the family struggles to acclimate to their new surroundings, many unexpected events occur, necessitating their plans and their lives to drastically adapt.
“Masterpiece Mystery! Van der Valk,” “Masterpiece: Flesh and Blood,” Islands of Wonder, and season one of “Cobra” are coming to DVD and digital in October.
Available now is Islands of Wonder, in which viewers journey to three of the most exotic, mysterious and remote islands on Earth: Madagascar, Borneo, and Hawaii. These isolated and iconic tropical islands harbor remarkable wildlife and human castaways found nowhere else on Earth. In a rapidly changing world, these fragile islands are a vital gauge for the health of our planet. Ancient Madagascar is the strangest and oldest island in the world, famed now for its lemurs. Though, over millennia it has given rise to more unique wildlife than any other island, Borneo’s rich coral reefs, lush jungles and mountainous landscapes reveal it is no paradise, and the struggles to survive are the secret to a greater variety of life, from orangutans to sun bears and flying snakes. Hawaii, the most remote island chain in the world, is a wondrous archipelago that has offered sanctuary for all life that have reached its tropical shores. From humpback whales to waterfall-climbing fish, carnivorous caterpillars and even albatross. All these islands are home to an extraordinary wealth of diverse wildlife and stunning, yet seldom seen, natural backdrops.
Due Oct. 13 is “Masterpiece Mystery!: Van der Valk,” which follows Piet Van der Valk, played by Marc Warren (“Beecham House,” “The Good Wife”), an engaging, unapologetic, and street-smart detective, as he leads his dynamic team in solving a raft of mysterious crimes. Brilliant, but cynical Piet Van der Valk solves these baffling crimes in and around 21st-century Amsterdam, which is more prosperous, cosmopolitan, and crime-prone than ever — at least that’s the way steely-eyed cop Van der Valk sees his murder-infested beat. Van der Valk and his team tackle high profile cases in the worlds of art, politics, addiction, mysticism and fashion.
Coming Oct. 20 is the drama “Masterpiece: Flesh and Blood,” in which the already dysfunctional lives of Helen, Jake, and Natalie are thrown into disarray when their recently widowed mother Vivien (Francesca Annis) declares she’s in love with a new man, retired surgeon Mark (Stephen Rea). Their suspicion of the newcomer triggers events in the siblings’ own complex love lives, which begin to spiral out of control. Next door neighbor Mary (Imelda Staunton) has known the family for years and tries to support them all with wise counsel, but seems powerless to stop the events from escalating. As the mystery unravels, this dark yet deliciously witty thriller explores family dynamics, modern relationships, love, loyalty, and betrayal, while keeping viewers guessing up until the very last moment.
Due Oct. 20 is season one of “Cobra,” an action-packed political drama that follows the British Prime Minister and his emergency committee as they navigate a major crisis and its political and personal fallout. On the brink of a geomagnetic solar storm, a team comprised of Britain’s leading contingency planners and senior politicians assemble under the name COBRA (taken from its meeting place in Whitehall’s Cabinet Office Briefing Room A) to guide the country through turbulent times.