Finding something decent to watch of a weekend can be just as trying as the chores. With no new episodes of Doctor Who and no big talent shows airing at the moment we’re stuck mostly with repeats, old movies and sports. Fortunately, BBC One are throwing us a lifeline this Sunday: From the creator of Emmy-winning mini-series House of Saddam comes a new one-off drama called Stolen (airing at 9pm).
The first indication that this human-trafficking thriller is more than just another mundane drama came with the announcement of those involved. As well as being created by Stephen Butchard (who also wrote Five Daughters and Vincent) it stars recent BAFTA winner Vicky McClure and Band of Brothers star Damian Lewis. In fact, this is Lewis’ first British TV role since he found Stateside success with his own crime series, Life.
Lewis is again leading the cast in Stolen, this time playing DI Anthony Carter, a caring policeman who gets personally involved with his cases. While the show sees a number of children trafficked into the UK it only follows the difficult paths of three (who can all conveniently speak and understand English): Rosemary, from Africa, who’s scared when she’s offered safety; Georgie, from Ukraine, a hard worker who’s taken advantage of; and Kim, from Vietnam, who dreams of escaping his captors.
The tales are inspired by real-life cases encountered by anti-trafficking teams. The drama aims to raise awareness as well as entertain, with a message at the end warning: “child trafficking is one of the fastest growing crimes in the world.” Some may find it preachy, but when the cause is this important and the drama this good Stolen’s easily forgiven. Now when can we expect more decent drama to arrive on our weekend schedule?