Bodyguard Season 2-Bodyguard, a political thriller that drew tens of millions of people each week, was big ratings smash for BBC One.
The first episode was the most-watched new drama in the UK in 2018, the first series was the most-watched BBC drama in a decade, and the finale – astonishingly – became the most-watched piece of TV drama in history, with 17.1 million viewers (though to be fair, like-for-like records only began in 2002).
It followed David Budd (Richard Madden), a war veteran turned Special Protection Officer, who was appointed as Julia Montague's (Keeley Hawes) bodyguard.
Budd was framed for Montague's murder when she was killed in a terrorist blast, and he was required to unravel a complex scheme involving police corruption and organised crime to clear his name.
We expect Bodyguard to return, based on the positive reviews and record-breaking box office statistics. Has it, however, received approval from the powers that be?
Everything you need to know is right here.
Is a second season of Bodyguard in the works?
Mercurio indicated in September 2018 that he was “just beginning” conversations with the BBC regarding a potential second series.
In November 2018, Madden offered us an update, confirming that he'd scheduled a meeting with Mercurio to discuss the show's future. He told Deadline, “I'm going to meet Jed in a couple of weeks to have a discussion and see what's in his great head.”
“So I'm thinking, “What could happen next?” With David, for example. Because he had a helluva time there for a couple of months. What are your plans for this guy?”
Even though we're still waiting for an official announcement, Mercurio hinted that Bodyguard might run for up to four seasons.
“It's fair to suggest that any discussion of a second series would be approached with the expectation that it would pave the way for a third or fourth,” he said. “We feel extremely honoured and fortunate that there has been such a positive response, as it allows us to at least consider doing more.”
Those BBC discussions lasted well into 2019. “We're in the process of negotiating. “We're still working out the logistics,” Mercurio said, adding, “There's no real update right now.”
Richard Madden expressed his thoughts on the future of Bodyguard once more.
“We've been talking about it,” he told The Hollywood Reporter, “and I spoke to Jed about a month after the show ended showing over in the UK, and we sat and concluded, ‘Let's give it at least a year while we figure out how to make something better.”
“You can't just leap in. After that, David Budd is going to need a vacation. Is he not going back to work? Also, due to what happened at the end of episode six, he is the most famous guy in London. He couldn't just return to work right away.
“‘Let's catch up with him 18 months later, two years later after this has happened and ask where he is now,' Jed and I both agree. ‘Can you tell me what happened to him?'”
Mercurio addressed the matter once more in 2020.
When The Guardian inquired if there will be more episodes in the future, he replied, “Well.” “Every week, there is some form of statement on the websites of some large publications. When you read the piece, however, you will notice that it is completely devoid of any factual substance.”
He continued, ” “Certain programmes are causing a bit of a feeding frenzy. Having the ability to publicly correct misinformation is incredibly beneficial. It's fine if someone made an honest mistake. If someone is being a jerk, you should just call them out all at once.”
Producer Simon Heath, who oversees Bodyguard and Line of Duty as the CEO of World Productions, was a touch more forthcoming earlier this year.
He told Metro, “Bodyguard is a massive beast to put back together.” “I'm rather certain we'll see that shortly.”
Given how busy both its creator and star are, a significant gap between series one and two was always going to happen.
Mercurio is best known for his work on Line of Duty, and he is currently executive producing DI Ray, a 2022 ITV drama series created by Maya Sondhi (who played Maneet in Line of Duty) and starring ER's Parminder Nagra as a Birmingham police officer who takes on a case that forces her to confront a lifelong personal conflict between her British identity and her South Asian heritage.
Meanwhile, Madden's career has taken off, with appearances in Rocketman, 1917, and Marvel's Eternals, not to mention the continuous talk that he may take over as the next James Bond after Daniel Craig.
He's now filming Citadel, an Amazon Prime spy series starring Stanley Tucci and Priyanka Chopra Jonas and produced by the Russo brothers, the directors of Extraction, Avengers: Infinity War, and Avengers: Endgame.
Madden stars as Citadel agent Mason Kane in “an immense and revolutionary global event including a mothership series and many local language satellite series,” with spin-off series set in Spain, India, Mexico, and Italy, and is planned to premiere in February 2022.
When the second season of The Bodyguard eventually gets underway, anticipate it to be a lengthy process.
“There was a police adviser, a political adviser, and a particular protection adviser for Bodyguard,” he explained to The Guardian about the level of detail that goes into his work.
Who will return for the second season of Bodyguard?
Given that he (largely) survived the first series, it's a reasonable bet that Richard Madden will reprise his role as David Budd.
Indeed, writer Mercurio has speculated that Budd may return to service in the second season, but this time to protect a member of the royal family or a foreign dignitary rather than another politician.
Among the other likely returnees are:
- Gina McKee as Cmdr Anne Sampson
- Sophie Rundle as Vicky Budd
- Nina Toussaint-White as DS Louise Rayburn
- Ash Tandon as DCI Deepak Sharma
- Paul Ready as Rob MacDonald
If Jed Mercurio asks, Ready would gladly return to the role of special advisor Rob MacDonald from Utopia.
He told Radio Times earlier this year, “I adored playing that persona.” “I enjoy playing characters who are ambiguous and a little sinister. I'd do it if Bodyguard came back and they wanted to script that role again.”
“It was a lot of fun for me. Playing it was a lot of fun. Jed is a fantastic writer, and I've been hooked on Line of Duty for quite some time. I had no idea how it would attract the attention of the audience. This is a really popular show. ‘I'm watching Bodyguard, don't tell me!' people would say when they saw me on the tube at the time. You're the person, but don't tell me if you did it,' which I thought was hilarious.”
Given the outcome of the first series (see below), the following characters look to be less likely to return. When it comes to Mercurio, however, you never know…
- Vincent Franklin as Mike Travis
- Richard Riddell as Tom Fenton
- Michael Schaeffer as “Richard Longcross”
- David Westhead as John Vosler, the Prime Minister
- Stuart Bowman as Stephen Hunter-Dunn
- Stephanie Hyam as Chanel Dyson
- Matt Stokoe as Luke Aikens
- Pippa Haywood as Chief Superintendent Lorraine Craddock
- Nicholas Gleaves as Roger Penhaligon
Meanwhile, the following characters can categorically be ruled out of a second season. Mostly because they're no longer alive.
Julia Montague is played by Keeley Hawes (sorry, conspiracy theorists!)
The actress admitted that she is still asked if Julia is still alive.
She told The Guardian, “Someone mentioned it to me this morning.” “Total denial,” says the speaker.
Even if she's dead, there's a potential she'll show up in flashback form if Mercurio feels the need.
Mercurio told RadioTimes about the choice to kill off such a pivotal character: “I remember watching TV as a youngster and being able to reassure myself that the hero was a ‘can't-die' character and that everything would be fine. Even if you'd just watched Mr Spock strangle Captain Kirk to death [in Star Trek], you'd know that a few minutes later, there'd be some strange twist involving the time-space continuum, and Kirk would be alive aboard the Starship Enterprise.”
That was not the case in this case…
- Tom Brooke as Andy Posted
- Shubham Saraf as Tahir Mahmood
- Claire-Louise Cordwell as Kim Knowles
Anjli Mohindra, who played the devious bomber Nadia Ali, has also stated that she will not be reprising her role in the sequel to Bodyguard. “I would return if requested,” she told Radio Times, “but I don't believe Nadia has any more of a voyage to explore.”
Indeed, Mercurio has hinted that similar to Line of Duty, Bodyguard may include a new supporting cast each year, with only a few regular characters carrying over from season to season.
He told Radio Times, “We certainly weren't the first [show] to rotate casts… but Line of Duty demonstrated that it worked well.”
Pippa Haywood, who played Lorraine Craddock, David Budd's boss, has indicated she will not return for a second season: “I'm not going to give any spoilers, but I think we can count me out.”
When will the second season of Bodyguard be released?
The fella, on the other hand, has to write it first. And make a movie about it. So there's nothing to report on that front at the moment.
“I spoke to the producer a month ago and he guaranteed that there will be a second series, and he guaranteed that he has no idea when it's going to be,” Nicholas Gleaves, who played Conservative Party Chief Whip Roger Penhaligon in season one, told Radio Times January 2019.
He continued, ” “Roger can undoubtedly make a comeback, in my opinion. It all depends on what Jed Mercurio comes up with in terms of storey, but I enjoyed that role.
“I thought it was fantastic, and he exuded a lot of enthusiasm anytime he appeared on the screen. So, if I could get back to Roger, that would be great.”
What will the second season of Bodyguard be about?
Julia Montague was slain by Luke Aitkens (Matt Stokoe) and his goons in the first series of Bodyguard.
What is Aitkens' motivation? To keep her from becoming Prime Minister and giving the security services more power, which would have allowed MI5 to keep an eye on the shady dealings that brought the crime lord his money.
After his acts were discovered, Aitkens was arrested, along with Budd's Lorraine Craddock, a crooked detective who provided Aitkens with Julia's itineraries and security details in exchange for money.
Nadia, the would-be train bomber, was also revealed to be a crafty bombmaker rather than a defenceless victim. Nadia and her terrorist comrades once again collaborated with Luke Aitkens for financial benefit — this time to make more bombs and further their cause.
David Budd sought assistance for his mental health difficulties and mended his relationship with Vicky and their two children after being cleared of any role in Julia's death.
Is this the end? A sequel to Bodyguard may revisit some of the characters from the first series and tie up some loose ends…
The country's leader, as well as MI5 commander Stephen Hunter-Dunn, were forced to retire after Anne Sampson disclosed the Kompromat, which contained damning material about the Prime Minister (Stuart Bowman).
However, the shady MI5 grunt known as “Richard Longcross” – who was involved in attempting to cover up Julia and MI5's conspiracy to depose the Prime Minister – managed to elude capture. Is it possible that he will return?
Similarly, Montague's replacement, Mike Travis, stayed on to ensure that her contentious law RIPA '18 – which would have given the government new powers to monitor communications in the UK – was repealed.
Mike and the Chief Whip – also Julia's ex-husband – Roger Penhaligon (Nicholas Gleaves) had earlier devised a plot to destabilise Julia as devoted allies of the Prime Minister. Could their deception have ramifications?
All of this is feasible, though Mercurio claims he didn't lay seeds for future series in the first six episodes of Bodyguard. “I think it's really difficult to achieve that,” he told michigansportszone.com, “especially because there are no guarantees that something would be recommissioned.”
“You just don't know, so it's something that's best done in retrospect, in my opinion. If you're in the fortunate situation of having a second series, or a third, or whatever, and there's something from the past that may serve a purpose, I believe that's the best way to go.”
However, according to Richard Madden, the highly publicized events of the first season would undoubtedly have an impact on Budd's future. “David Budd wanders about London with a bomb on his head — I mean, everyone knows his face now,” Madden remarked. “He won't be able to return to his old job as a cop. So, how did his life turn out after that?”
When can I see the trailer for the second season of Bodyguard?
The threat is closer than you think…
Bodyguard. Coming soon to BBC One.
— BBC One (@BBCOne) June 18, 2018