Dramatic Wanamaker

(Above: Zoë Wanamaker in Acorn TV’s ‘Girlfriends.’ Source: Acorn TV)

Two British dramas — Amazon’s Britannia and Acorn TV’s Girlfriends — will make their streaming debuts this Friday and Monday. Although involving distinctly different time periods, they both feature the same renowned actress – Zoë Wanamaker, who played Princess Marie on Mr. Selfridge, among many other roles.

On Friday, January 26, Amazon Prime subscribers can watch Wanamaker in the nine-episode “period” piece, Britannia. Britannia takes place in 43AD, when the Roman army sought “to crush the Celtic heart of Britannia, a mysterious land ruled by wild warrior women and powerful Druids who can channel the powerful forces of the underworld.”

If the trailer is any guide, Britannia offers a real kick-ass take on ancient history:

A co-production of Amazon Studios and Sky, the series, filmed in Prague and Wales, also stars True Detective’s Kelly Reilly, The Walking Dead’s David Morrissey, The Killing’s Nikolaj Lie Kaas and The Enfield Haunting’s Eleanor Worthington-Cox.

Prime members can stream Britannia online or via the Amazon Prime Video app for connected TVs and other devices.

Amazon Prime costs $12.99 monthly, with a free 30-day trial.

Then on Monday, January 29, Wanamaker fast-forwards 2,000 years to modern Britain, the setting for Acorn TV’s six-part drama Girlfriends.

Wanamaker is one of “three friends struggling with the responsibilities that come with being a modern woman of a certain age.” Downton Abbey fans will recognize Phyllis Logan, who as Linda, is struggling to cope with the sudden death of her husband of 30 years, Micky. Linda, Gail (Wanamaker) and Sue (Miranda Richardson) deal individually with a range of problems including a pending divorce, “the loss of a high-powered job through age discrimination, (and) juggling the endless responsibilities of their grandchildren and aging mothers.”

Then things get real interesting, “as questions over the circumstances of Micky’s death start to be asked, accusations reveal secrets, deception and doubts that tear” at their friendship.

The cast also includes Anthony Head, known to American audiences for Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Taster’s Choice coffee commercials, and Harry Potter’s Matthew Lewis.

The first episode will debut on January 29, followed by a new episode every Monday through March 5.

Acorn TV costs $4.99 monthly or $49.99 for a year, starting with a seven-day free trial. You can stream the service online, on Apple TV, Roku, iOS, Android and Chromecast. For more info or to subscribe, visit acorn.tv.

About Larry Greenberg

A former local beat reporter and film critic, co-founder Lawrence Greenberg has more than 25 years’ experience as a writer and public relations executive.

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