‘Shetland’ trailer reveals first look at ‘Downton Abbey’ star in new season

The BBC has released a trailer for the next season of Shetland!

10 years on from when the BBC’s hit crime drama debuted in 2013, the series returns this autumn.

Six brand new episodes began filming on location around Scotland and on the Shetland Isles earlier this year, with a big change in the cast.

It was revealed last year that Douglas Henshall would be departing his role as DI Jimmy Pérez, and we’ve now got our first look at Ashley Jensen has as his replacement.

You might recognise Jensen from her roles in ExtrasUgly Betty and Agatha Raisin.

The 54-year-old Scottish actress will be playing Met Police Detective Inspector Ruth Calder, who returns to her native Shetland to retrieve the vulnerable witness to a gangland murder.

She’ll be joined by a familiar Shetland face, Alison O’Donnell as Tosh, who must pause her investigation into a string of mysterious animal deaths to help DI Ruth Calder find the witness before it’s too late.

However, we’re told that “Calder’s hostility to Shetland will challenge Tosh’s view of her adopted home, and their journey into the darker recesses of Shetland’s past and present will test this fragile new partnership.”

Also returning from previous seasons are Steven Robertson as DC Sandy Wilson, Lewis Howden as Sgt Billy McCabe, Anne Kidd as Cora McLean, Angus Miller as Donnie, Conor McCarry as PC Alex Grant, and Eubha Akilade as PC Lorna Burns.

Watch the Season 8 trailer here:

Eagle-eyed TV fans will have spotted Phyllis Logan, better known as Mrs Hughes from Downton Abbey, in the trailer!

She’ll be reuniting with her Guilt co-star Jamie Sives, alongside other new cast members Dawn Steele (Holby City), Don Gilet (Sherwood), Ann Louise Ross (River City), and Lorraine McIntosh (Outlander).

Commenters on YouTube seem concerned that the show “won’t be the same without Douglas Henshall,” but others are pleased to note that “fortunately the scenery stays the same!”

When’s the release date?

Season 8 premieres in the UK on BBC One and streaming on BBC iPlayer from Wednesday 1 November, with new episodes airing weekly.

American fans of Shetland will be able to watch the new season on BritBox later this autumn.

Meanwhile, you can catch up on every episode so far with a free 7-day BritBox trial here!

Based on the award-winning novels by Vera creator Ann Cleeves, Shetland has aired 37 episodes over the past decade, with the previous season averaging an incredible 7.2 million viewers.

Vera will also be back soon on ITV, with Brenda Blethyn’s titular detective joined by returning original cast member David Leon as Joe Ashworth.

Shetland is available to watch on BritBox.