Blood returns to our screens tonight (27th April) with a highly-anticipated series two following a successful opening run in 2018.
Line of Duty star Adrian Dunbar leads the cast in this Irish crime drama and is back for more as the mysteries continue to unfold among his estranged family.
Creator and writer Sophie Petzal spoke to RadioTimes.com about the success of series one and what to look forward to in the second run of the show, airing across five nights on Channel 5.
The 29-year-old is feeling the nerves ahead of the return of Blood but has been delighted by the response to the show so far.
She said: “It’s a bizarre one, I take unending pleasure in the hard work of our cast and crew being put out into the world, but for me it’s a sort of existential horror.
“In every kind of writer there’s an egotist who just wants to be liked, you just want people to like your thing, especially now there’s a burden to cheer people up a bit.
“In the grand scheme of things this is all very not important, but at the same time it’s like… I don’t want to make things worse!”
Blood spearheaded Channel 5’s move into original drama when it first aired in 2018 and the positive response quickly led to the commissioning of a second run.
“It was really exciting, it was a really pleasant surprise, not because we didn’t believe in it or didn’t think it was good, it just felt like such an underdog.
“It was a tiny show that had broadcast on a channel in Ireland, and Channel 5 wasn’t know for its drama at all. It could have just flown under the radar entirely and that wouldn’t have been surprising, so to not only do really well figures-wise but the positive reaction felt like a really pleasant surprise.
“In some ways the pressure is a little more intense this time. The second series of anything is tricky, especially when the pitch for your story the first time round was a self-contained story.
“For us we were keen to avoid ‘sequel-itus’ and rehashing old plot points, so we are branching out and developing those characters a year from now.
“There are echoes of the past and influences of series one into series two – none of this would have happened without series one – but it’s a new mystery and a new story.
Petzal teased a little of what fans can expect in series two with a key role for Grainne Keenan as Fiona Hogan and what is in store for Dunbar’s character Jim.
“What was particularly exciting for us was seeing how brilliant Grainne (Keenan) was and how much she brought to the character Fiona who could have felt two-dimensional.
“She’s an incredibly flawed, interesting and vulnerable character. She’s the sibling who had this other life, it felt like a really fertile starting point to begin a year on from series one.
“Jim is walking into his daughter’s family and his basically taking the Cat-figure perspective of looking in and witnessing problems and mysteries and having to make sense of it all, walking into this warped family dynamic and being caught in the middle, while Jim’s main priority is to put things right and do the right thing.
“Jim has been humbled, having been a man of very high status within his community is now someone who is shamed, disgraced, talked-about in a way that he doesn’t like and his identity, his career and his family have been taken away from him.
“He is now someone who is trying to make things right, his daughter Fiona is deteriorating from the same condition that killed her mother and Jim is eager to not make the same mistakes, but as is always the way, Jim has walked into a dynamic that is evolving at a pace that he doesn’t understand and finds himself caught in a s*** storm.”
Blood series 2 and the 1-2 Box Set are out on DVD & digital on 11th May