Channel 4’s hit prison drama Screw has just been renewed for a second series, and it’s set to be bigger, bolder and more dangerous than ever.
In a world where TV dramas are two-a-penny, shows about prison life can always be relied upon to deliver a gripping yarn. Portraying life behind bars can offer viewers a rare insight into the realities of incarceration, as well as a chance to explore themes with universal appeal: wrongdoing, regret, hope and retribution.
Beyond that, though, a well-crafted prison drama can help us move through the world with more kindness and empathy for our fellow citizens. Just look to the poignant BBC drama Time and you’ll find that good people have the capacity to do bad things, and very often, these questions of morality stay with you long after the credits roll.
Channel 4’s Scottish prison drama Screw is one TV series that has such an effect. Created by Bafta-nominated screenwriter Rob Williams, one of the masterminds behind Killing Eve, the show follows a team of embattled prison officers and inmates at a fictional all-male prison where humour, danger and high-stakes emotion are never far from hand.
Following the success of the darkly comic show last year, Channel 4 has now commissioned a second series – and the new run promises to be “bigger, bolder and more dangerous than ever”.
After the tragic events of the series one finale, the new series sees workaholic senior officer Leigh Henry (Nina Sosanya) back on the wing with her screws, the slang term for a prison guard, who are determined to make a fresh start.
Things are anything but straightforward though, as the synopsis from Channel 4 makes clear.
“As those behind the cell doors of C Wing know only too well, moving on isn’t always simple. With changes at the very top and fresh faces both on the wing and in the staff room, Leigh’s new bond with rookie officer Rose (Derry Girls’ Jamie-Lee O’Donnell) – and the secrets they share – will be tested to the limit.
“As the whole team struggles to make a difference to the complicated lives in their care, rumours of an undercover policeman on the wing not only threatens order at Long Marsh, but could blow open a criminal plot involving at least one of our officers. And one way or another, the truth will come out”.
As well as Nina Sosanya and Jamie-Lee O’Donnell, series regulars Faraz Ayub (Line Of Duty, Suspicion), Stephen Wight (I May Destroy You, Manhunt), Ron Donachie (Titanic, Game Of Thrones), and Laura Checkley (King Gary, Detectorists) will also reprise their roles as C Wing’s prison officers.
Speaking of the recommission, Caroline Hollick, head of Channel 4 drama says:
“We’re thrilled to welcome back the staff and prisoners of C Wing. Rob (Williams) has created an iconic Channel 4 prison series with a fantastic cast and we can’t wait to jump back into the drama, humanity and humour of life behind bars in series two.”
Rob Williams added: “I’m absolutely delighted to get the opportunity to dig deeper into the complicated characters on C Wing – we have a lot more stories to tell – and to continue working with the incredible team at Channel 4.”
There’s no word on a release date yet, but we’ll keep this story updated as soon as we hear.
Images: Channel 4
Christobel Hastings is Stylist's Entertainment Editor whose specialist interests include pop culture, LGBTQ+ identity and lore.