BBC One’s The Responder Returns 5 May for a Second Series

The Responder Series 2

Liverpool Responder Chris Carson Tries to Go Straight, but DCI Barnes Has Other Ideas.

BBC One’s The Responder returns for a second series on Sunday, May 5, with Martin Freeman reprising his role as crisis-stricken, morally compromised police responder Chris Carson. The new series sees Chris attempting to get his life back on track, but when DCI Barnes tricks him into doing a dodgy car stop, he finds himself drawn into a drug war between two of Liverpool’s top dealers.

The first series of The Responder, which aired in January 2022, followed Chris as he struggled to balance his home life and the extreme pressures of his work. The show received critical acclaim, with particular praise for Freeman’s performance as a man on the verge of a mental health crisis due to the stress of his job.

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The series is written by former Merseyside Police officer Tony Schumacher, and while the storyline is fictional, Schumacher has said that the character of Chris has “a lot to do” with him and the struggles he faced as a police officer.

In an interview, Schumacher said, “I feel that I am The Responder to a degree and that this is my story… The Responder is in me; it’s in my writing and in my script.” He added that writing the series felt like “paid therapy” as it allowed him to explore the pressures of police work and the toll it can take on mental health.

The new series will see Chris trying to get his life back on track after the events of the first series, which included his demotion from inspector to constable and a strained relationship with his wife, Kate. However, when DCI Barnes tricks him into doing a dodgy car stop, Chris finds himself drawn back into the dangerous world of Liverpool’s criminal underworld.

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The first series also introduced us to Chris’ rookie partner, Rachel Hargreaves (Adelayo Adedayo), who will be returning for the new series. Rachel is an idealistic officer who wants to play by the rules, but as she spends more time with Chris, she begins to question her own beliefs and whether she wants to help him or destroy him.

Other returning cast members include MyAnna Buring as Chris’ wife, Kate Carson, and Ian Hart as mid-level drug dealer Carl Sweeney, whose stash of cocaine was stolen by local drug addict Casey (Emily Fairn) in the first series.

Series 2 Premieres at 9.00pm on Sunday 5 May at 9.00pm on BBC One.

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Isabelle aka Izzy Jacobs is the UK previews specialist at memorabletv.com. Isabelle is particularly drawn to crime dramas, but she also has a not so secret love for all things reality TV. In addition to her work at memorabletv.com, Isabelle is also an avid traveler and a devoted foodie.