It’s been just a little over a month since Worzel Gummidge was last on our screens, but fans have nothing to “grumble grumble” about, as the Bonfire Night special Guy Forks is being followed by two more specials, airing over the festive season.
Twitchers sees a flock of choughs turns up at Scatterbrook Farm, with Worzel’s plan to scare such a rarely seen bird scuppered when a group of avid birdwatchers moves in, while in Calliope Jane, a travelling fair comes to Scatterbrook, with Worzel telling his young friends John and Susan the legend of a fair with an enchanted organ that sends humans to sleep so scarecrows can enjoy the rides without being seen…
But when exactly will these two new episodes air? And who are the guest stars set to join the likes of Sir Michael Palin and Paul Kaye in joining Mackenzie Crook’s Worzel on-screen?
Read on for everything you need to know about the Worzel Gummidge Christmas 2021 specials.
Worzel Gummidge: Christmas specials 2021 release date
The first of three Worzel Gummidge episodes to air this year premiered on Saturday 6th November at 5:45pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer, telling a story inspired by the festivities of Guy Fawkes Night.
Two more episodes are still to come: Twitchers will air on Tuesday, 28th December at 7.15pm on BBC One, with Calliope Jane following the next day – Wednesday, 29th December – in the same time-slot.
Worzel Gummidge cast
Of course, Mackenzie Crook will be back in the title role as walking, talking scarecrow Worzel Gummidge, while he also takes writer-director duties on this passion project of his.
Thierry Wickens and India Brown will also return as his young friends John and Susan, who will no doubt be helping him out of a number of scrapes in these new episodes.
Reigning Strictly Come Dancing champion Bill Bailey will appear as Mr Peregrine in an episode titled Calliope Jane, with Nneka Okoye in the eponymous role.
Toby Jones played six roles in the Guy Forks episode, portraying the entire Village Committee: the Baker, Butcher, Mayor, Postmaster, Publican, and Alderman.
Returning members of the Worzel Gummidge cast include Steve Pemberton as Mr Braithwaite, Rosie Cavaliero as Mrs Braithwaite, Vicki Pepperdine as Aunt Sally.
Worzel Gummidge 2021 episodes
The BBC has released synopses for the three Worzel Gummidge specials airing this year – titled Guy Forks, Twitchers and Calliope Jane.
Guy Forks takes place on the build-up to bonfire night in Scatterbrook, where Worzel finds himself in peril after an argument results in him agreeing to swap jobs with his cousin, a Guy Fawkes effigy.
The BBC synopsis reads: “With The Bonfire Night Committee distracted, Guy convinces Worzel to swap places, but it soon becomes clear that Worzel has bitten off more than he can chew. With Worzel stuck on top of the bonfire, John and Susan turn to Aunt Sally for help, but can they find a way to rescue Worzel before time runs out?”
The second episode, Twitchers, sees a flock of rare birds arrive on Scatterbook Farm, giving Worzel an opportunity to challenge his scaring skills, but those plans are quickly ruined when a group of birdwatchers move in.
The BBC synopsis adds: “To make matters worse, the twitchers’ arrival forces Mr B to come to face to face with his old birdwatching rival, Lee Dangerman.
“With the twitchers refusing to leave, can the children come up with a plan to help scare the choughs and save Worzel and Mr B from embarrassment?”
Last but not least, Calliope Jane will see FR Peregrine’s travelling fair arrive in Scatterbrook, which Worzel desperately wants to attend but can’t risk being seen by the humans of the village.
So, he seeks out a magical organ which legend says has the power to send humans to sleep, allowing scarecrows to enjoy everything the funfair has to offer.
The BBC synopsis concludes: “At the museum, Aunt Sally finds herself agreeing to go on an adventure with another ex-fairground attraction, Calliope Jane, and it turns out Worzel isn’t the only scarecrow who wants to attend the fair…
“As the scarecrows descend, the risk of being seen intensifies, but will the legend of the enchanted organ turn out to be true?”
Worzel Gummidge 2021 trailer
Though an official trailer for Twitchers/Calliope Jane is yet to be posted online by the BBC, you can watch two preview clips exclusively on RadioTimes.com.
In the first clip, Worzel can be seen showing off his scarecrow handbook to Susan (India Brown) and John (Thierry Wickens), as he attempts to identify an interesting feather that John has discovered.
Meanwhile, the second clip sees Worzel try to surreptitiously communicate with John and Susan through a closed window, while Mrs Braithwaite (Rosie Cavaliero) rants about slugs overrunning her home.
Worzel Gummidge returns to BBC One on Tuesday 28th and Wednesday 29th December. Looking for something else to watch? Check out our TV Guide to see what’s on tonight.