Fans of the new BBC prison drama Time have been praising the performance from lead actor Stephen Graham and the rest of the cast following the season finale last night.
The crime drama, written by Jimmy McGovern, saw the Scouse actor take on the role of prison officer Eric McNally, while Game of Thrones star Sean Bean portrayed Mark Cobden, a teacher, husband and father who is handed a four year sentence after killing an innocent man in an accident.
But when his own son is sent to prison, Eric does whatever it takes to protect him from violence behind bars, with the devoted officer even being forced to commit crimes himself after he is delivered a sinister threat from one of his own inmates.
The heart wrenching finale saw the two main characters in opposite circumstances to how they started – Eric was caught out for smuggling drugs into his prison and sentenced to four years behind bars. Mark, on the other hand, serves two years of his four year sentence, and makes amends (kind of) with the wife of the man he killed.
While the show has been available to binge in one go on BBC iPlayer (guilty), many admirably patient fans have been watching along week-by-week, so many had only just got round to watching the finale when it aired on BBC1 last night.
Reacting to the ‘utterly fantastic’ ending, people said that both actors deserved ‘all the awards’ for their performances throughout.
“Sean Bean, Stephen Graham, Jimmy McGovern and everyone involved in #Time deserve every award going,” one person wrote on Twitter.
Another wrote: “Devastatingly good. #JimmyMcGovern never an easy watch but so powerful. Deserves every award this year.”
Time has been aired as a limited series, but many fans are now keen for a second instalment, now that the roles of the two main protagonists have reversed – fingers crossed!
Gogglebox’s Jenny missed last episode as she was in hospital, co-star and friend Lee confirms
Fans of the pair were worried by their absence during Friday night’s episode
Gogglebox favourite Jenny Newby ‘isn’t very well’ and is in hospital following an operation, her co-star and friend Lee Riley has confirmed.
Jenny and Lee have been a staple part of the Channel 4 show since 2014, and have gained a loyal fanbase thanks to their antics and comical television commentaries from their caravan in Hull.
However, fans were concerned on Friday (May 6th) when the pair were absent from the evening’s episode, with many taking to social media to ask where the beloved duo where.
And on Sunday, Lee then appeared alone at the Bafta awards, where he gave an explanation for Jenny’s absence from the show.
Speaking to the Daily Star from the red carpet, Lee confirmed that his friend ‘isn’t very well’ having recently undergone an operation in hospital.
He explained: “She is not very well, she is having an operation, a mini one, but she is recovering well though.
“She was invited but the appointment was in Bafta week. You can’t turn down an NHS operation down can you? But she is doing well.”
Lee also told The Sun that Jenny’s operation was ‘minor’ and that ‘she’ll be watching [the Bafta Awards] from her hospital bed’.
Gogglebox went on to win the prize for Best Reality and Constructed Factual show at the Bafta Awards at the Royal Albert Hall.
Following the win, Lee took to the stage with a number of other cast members to give a speech, where he paid tribute to those who lost their lives, saying the award was for the ‘past and present families who have been on Gogglebox… it is an honour to get it for them’.
Following Gogglebox’s win, Stephen Lambert, chief executive of Studio Lambert, then addressed the UK government’s plan to privatise Channel 4.
He said: “Gogglebox might have ended when it started nine years ago as it got modest ratings, but a publicly owned risk-taking Channel 4 believed in it and they stuck with it.
“If the government go ahead with its destructive plan to end Channel 4, these kinds of risks will not be taken and a big part will have ended for no good reason.”
Stephen Graham praised for ‘powerful’ speech following his BAFTA win
‘I swear on my ma’s life, we really weren’t expecting this’
Fans have praised Stephen Graham for his ‘powerful’ speech after prison drama Time picked up up the TV Bafta for Best Mini-Series.
The three-part BBC series saw Graham take on the role of prison officer Eric McNally, while Game of Thrones star Sean Bean portrayed Mark Cobden, a teacher, husband and father attempting to navigate and survive life behind bars.
Yet while the show was met with wide-spread praise, the cast were visibly shocked when it was announced as the winner, with Graham later confirming in his speech that he was not expecting the win.
Taking to the stage with his fellow cast members, Graham said: “I swear on my ma’s life, we really weren’t expecting this.”
He went on to praise the ‘phenomenal cast of young working class men’ who were ‘absolutely outstanding’, saying: “It was an absolute joy to be a part of.
“I just want to say, this is the reason that I wanted to be an actor as a kid, to tell stories which had a social commentary.”
In a nod to the other nominated series, which included Channel 4’s It’s A Sin and Landscapers, Graham added: “I just want to say, this isn’t a game of footy, so there shouldn’t be a winner or a loser.
“We’re all winners because we’re all doing exactly what we want to do.”
He then quipped: “I was just want to say as well, it was an absolute honour to get to act with my wife!”
Despite the cast’s own shock, fans were delighted to see the series win at the awards evening, with many praising Graham not only for his performance, but for his ‘brilliant’ speech.
One Twitter user wrote: “Just when you can’t love this man anymore @StephenGraham73 he makes a speech like that. So happy for #Time it was brilliant”.
Another commented: “Finally Stephen Graham the UK’s best actor wins a Bafta…”.
Time is available to stream now on BBC iPlayer.
BBC to air Hacienda documentary for 40th anniversary with rare and unseen archive footage
The documentary will show never-before-seen footage from the legendary nightclub
The BBC has commissioned a one-off documentary about the Haçienda to mark the fortieth anniversary of the nightclub’s opening.
The documentary will combine rare and unseen archive with first-hand testimony from those who were involved during the Haçienda’s heyday to tell the story of how the famed nightclub transformed the UK’s music scene.
The documentary will air on BBC Two, though a broadcast date is yet to be confirmed.
Also celebrating the milestone anniversary is a new book curated and compiled by a team headed up by Rebecca Hook and written by James Anderson, titled Haçienda Threads.
The book will feature rare and never-before-seen photographs from the nightclub, its regulars and international music icons alike.
The team behind the upcoming book have put out a request to anyone who attended the Haçienda, any of its associated club nights or any of the Haçienda Classical events to submit their personal photographs to be included in the book.
The deadline for submission has now been extended until Sunday May 15th, which is one week before the Haçienda’s fortieth anniversary.
To submit any of your own photographs, you can email any Haçienda memory recollections and/or images to: threads@fac51-thehacienda.
The Haçienda, founded by Tony Wilson’s Factory Records and New Order, was at the forefront of Manchester’s music scene throughout the 1980’s and early 1990’s, and has been credited for the success of globally renown bands like The Stone Roses, Happy Mondays and Chemical Brothers.