If you thought the conclusion of Vera season 11 last week was bad news, then you're in luck: the truculent inspector is on her way back to ITV for the start of season 12 this evening.
That's right: Brenda Blethyn will once again be donning her oversized raincoat and fisherman's hat to solve more mysteries across the glorious Northumberland setting.
The 76-year-old actually confirmed filming had finished on episode 50 last September so we knew the new series was coming soon. Now, we know that the batch of new mysteries will be landing on our screens for the following four Sundays.
Read on for everything we know so far about Vera season 12, and when we can expect it on screens.
When is Vera season 12's release date?
Season 12 of Vera will start on Sunday 29th January at 8pm on ITV1.
The two previous weeks (from Sunday 15th January) fans were treated to two stories from season 11, which had earlier been delayed for pandemic reasons.
The four new self-contained crime stories have once again been inspired by the best-selling novels and characters created by acclaimed crime writer Ann Cleeves, who received the Diamond Dagger Award at the Crime Writer’s Association in 2017 for a lifetime achievement for sustained excellence.
Vera season 12 cast
Brenda Blethyn will return as the iconic detective for season 12 - and in a recent interview with RadioTimes.com, confirmed she won't be hanging up her trench coat just yet.
"I haven't got any plans to leave - at the moment, all the time I'm fit and able, I'll be visiting Vera," Blethyn explained before praising the people of the North East where she spends a lot of time filming.
"I love it, I just love it - I love the people up there, too. There is a difference between the friendliness of the north and the south, I don't care what anybody says. That's the main compliment really, that the people of the North East like Vera."
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As for the rest of the cast, this is who we'd expect to see, and who they'd be playing:
- Brenda Blethyn as DCI Vera Stanhope
- Kenny Doughty as DS Aiden Healy
- Jon Morrison as DC Kenny Lockhart
- Paul Kaye as Dr Malcolm Donahue
- Ibinabo Jack as DC Jacqueline 'Jac' Williams
- Riley Jones as DC Mark Edwards
What will Vera season 12 be about?
Season 12 of Vera is set to follow suit with past series, centring on eerie cases that have left our much loved detective perplexed.
When we caught up with Blethyn, she hinted there was going to be a coastal-themed episode on its way. "The first [episode] I've read is someone found dead on a boat... so there'll be some nice locations on that one!"
And sure enough, the first episode of the new season centres on a remote lighthouse where a body has been discovered. Elsewhere, the series will also explore the case of an ex-soldier, a notable police officer and will even see Vera in the eye of a massive storm.
Speaking further to ITV about what viewers can expect from this new 12th season, Blethyn also revealed: “There’s been a little wait but Vera fans can look forward to six new feature length episodes, instead of the usual four. To be followed by a seventh film – The Rising Tide – later in the year, which we only finished filming just before Christmas. That’s based on the latest Ann Cleeves’ Vera novel of the same name which was published in September. We began making that in November and wrapped in December."
She continued: “The six new films also include an adaptation of Ann’s previous book, The Darkest Evening, which marks the 50th episode of Vera. I feel rather proud of having reached the landmark of 50 episodes, now having filmed 51 in total. I think it’s wonderful. A great achievement for everyone involved. Ten of those 51 films are based on the books by Ann Cleeves. She has created such well defined characters, allowing the other story writers to bring them to life on screen as well."
Is there a trailer for Vera season 12?
Not yet but with season 11 wrapping up over the next couple of weeks, we can likely expect one to land soon. In the meantime, the trailer for season 11 gives us a flavour of what fans can expect over the coming episodes.
Vera season 12 airs on Saturday 29th January on ITV. To find out what else is on, check out our TV Guide or visit our dedicated Drama hub. You can buy the first of Ann Cleeves' Vera novels here.Try Radio Times magazine today and get 12 issues for only £1 with delivery to your home – subscribe now. For more from the biggest stars in TV, listen to the Radio Times View From My Sofa podcast.