In the world of police dramas, The Red King isn't quite your archetypal one as it not only blends an intriguing central case but also includes elements of cults, folklore and horror.


Airing on Alibi next week, the new drama stars Anjli Mohindra as police sergeant Grace Narayan, who is sent to the small island of St Jory as a punishment posting. There, she finds a hostile close-knit community, plenty of unanswered questions and the case of a missing local boy.

The six-parter has been created and written by Toby Whithouse, who is known for his work on Being Human, The Game and writing several episodes for Doctor Who.

Chatting exclusively to about the new series, Mohindra said: “It wasn’t what I expected. What’s so brilliant about it is it feels grounded, it feels like a world that we kind of maybe know at first – that sort of gritty, police world with characters you feel [are] very authentic to those crime dramas that we watch in this country.

"Then things take a very unexpected twisty turn and I just think what’s so great is it’s always grounded in reality but then there’s all these crazy things going on."

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Anjli Mohindra as Grace Narayan in The Red King looking stressed as she stands in the middle of a road in her police uniform, looking at something.
Anjli Mohindra as Grace Narayan in The Red King. UKTV/Alibi

She continued: "As soon as I read it, I thought that it feels accessible in the way that it feels familiar, but then it feels like everything’s flipped on its head. I really loved it, really loved the tone that Toby [Whithouse] created.”

As well as Mohindra, the cast for The Red King includes many familiar faces to the world of British dramas and boasts the likes of Jill Halfpenny (The Cuckoo), Mark Lewis Jones (Baby Reindeer), Adjoa Andoh (Bridgerton) and Marc Warren (Van Der Valk).

The series follows Grace, who previously worked as an inner-city police sergeant, but after coming into disrepute with her colleagues, is sent on a 'punishment posting' to St Jory. Although she's sent as a test of her strength, she's determined to make it a success – at least until she comes across the unsolved case of missing teenager Cai.

As per the synopsis: "Grace quickly discovers that she must overcome scarce evidence, extraordinary local characters, and the island's strange cult history to uncover the truth.

"The Red King is a character-driven mystery-thriller, that combines the powerful story of a knotty police investigation with chilling, atmospheric folk-horror through the island's eerie past devotion to a pagan God called the Red King and the cult of the True Way."

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There's certainly some major tensions in store for Grace as she navigates this small community, with Mohindra telling us more about her character.

She revealed: “What’s so brilliant about her is the way she does deal with people treating her like an outsider, not just because she physically isn’t from St Jory but because she’s a brown woman.

"I think it’s so relatable. You can see that moment that some of us have: Should I take this person to task? Is it worth it? Are they going to change? Should I ask them why they’re gawping at me? Should I ask them why they think breakfast is an Indian culture thing that we don’t have breakfast? I just think that’s so real.

"But the journey that she goes on is having to overcome her own social awkwardness, her own fear of letting people in and trusting people.”

The Red King premieres on Wednesday 24th April at 9pm on Alibi, with all episodes available to stream on Sky, Virgin and NOW.


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