The 19th century set crime drama “Miss Scarlet and The Duke” is coming to PBS Masterpiece as part of its 50th Season celebration.
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With her inquisitive mind, Miss Scarlet has always been more interested in running her late father’s detective agency than behaving like a proper lady. But nothing has prepared her for the dangers she is about to face as a woman in the murder investigation trade.
Everything we know so far about the new British period drama is below: read on for the plot details, cast, premiere date, and the trailer.
The new period series “Miss Scarlet and The Duke” stars Kate Phillips as Eliza Scarlet, Victorian London’s first female detective. Left penniless after the death of her father (Downton Abbey’s Kevin Doyle), fearless and independent Eliza is determined to take over his detective agency. She’s been watching her father wield the tricks of his trade for years, even if she’s never had the chance to use them herself.
It’s the 1800s, a time when women are expected to marry, not work in a man’s world, and Eliza is savvy enough to know that if she is to have financial security, she’ll need a business partner. Enter Detective Inspector William Wellington of Scotland Yard. Known as Duke (played by Stuart Martin), he’s the drinking, gambling and womanizing kind. The duo’s chemistry is fiery and smoldering, and if they can handle each other, romance will get added to the partnership.
Before she took on the role of our latest headstrong heroine, Kate Phillips starred in other costume dramas: she recently played Linda Shelby in “Peaky Blinders,” Princess Mary in the “Downton Abbey” film, Susan in “The Aftermath” and Tillie Zeigler in “My Mother and Other Strangers.” Fans of “The Crown” will know her as Venetia Scott. Earlier roles in historical series include Lise Bolkonskaya in “War & Peace,” and notably Jane Seymour in “Wolf Hall.”
Period drama fans will recognize Stuart Martin from his role as Silas Sharrow in “Jamestown,” and as Lorenzo in “Medici.”
“Miss Scarlet and The Duke” also stars Ansu Kabia (World on Fire) as Moses, a useful crook from Jamaica, and Andrew Gower (Carnival Row) as Rupert Parker, Eliza’s champion and friend who helps her launch her detective agency.
The new six-part period drama was penned by “Grantchester” writer Rachael New and filmed in Dublin, Ireland. Irish born director Declan O’Dwyer (Robin Hood, Merlin) likens “Miss Scarlet” to a Victorian “Moonlighting,” adding, in an interview with Andrew Gower, that the “show doesn’t take itself too seriously – but it does expose the prejudices society put on women in the Victorian era and draws many parallels to society today.”
“Miss Scarlet and The Duke” premieres on MASTERPIECE in the US on Sunday January 17, 2021 at 8pm.
The British detective drama is co-produced by A+E International and Element 8 Entertainment, “Miss Scarlet and The Duke” will also air on UKTV in the U.K., CBC in Canada, Seven Network in Australia, Lightbox in New Zealand, RTL in German and OTE Cosmote TV in Greece.
Watch the trailer below.
If you enjoyed this post, be sure to see The Period Films List, with the best British, historical and costume dramas sorted by era.