“Those in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones” – or so the saying goes, but Dawn French’s character in this new ITV drama had never paid attention to that cautionary adage.
Set in a “picturesque small coastal town with a close-knit community,” six-part drama The Trouble with Maggie Cole (originally titled Glass Houses) stars French as dangerous village gossip Maggie Cole.
It also co-stars Mark Heap, Julie Hesmondhalgh, Vicki Pepperdine and Patrick Robinson.
Here’s what you need to know about the drama:
When is The Trouble with Maggie Cole on TV?
The Trouble with Maggie Cole aired February-March 2020 on ITV in the UK.
The Trouble with Maggie Cole airs on Sundays at 8/7c on PBS in the US.
The drama initially went into production in spring 2019 under the working title “Glass Houses”, shooting on location in Devon and Cornwall.
What is The Trouble with Maggie Cole about?
Created and written by Mark Brotherhood (of Benidorm and Mount Pleasant), the drama follows busybody Maggie Cole (Dawn French) in the fallout of a seriously indiscreet radio interview, which sends ripples through her close-knit community.
According to ITV, “Maggie is a central character in town who makes it her business to know a bit about everyone’s lives. When a radio journalist interviews her for a small reportage piece about local life she gives him far more detail (and embellishment) about the locals and their personal lives than he was counting on.
“In the days and weeks following the show’s broadcast, Maggie sees the butterfly effect of how her very public gossip-fest affects various figures around the town and disrupts their lives.”
ITV’s Comedy Controller Saskia Schuster said: “Glass Houses is a new drama in the tradition of Doc Martin and The Darling Buds Of May, full of warmth and intriguing characters. This new series will embrace its beautiful idyllic South Devon setting as we meet the villagers of Thurlbury and find out how an innocent afternoon spent indiscreetly gossiping has a domino effect on the whole village.”
Dawn French, who serves as an executive producer alongside Sophie Clarke-Jervoise of Genial Production, added: “Sophie and I have been developing Glass Houses for some time and I can’t wait to finally get started in front of the camera. It’s such a good story with a fantastic funny, touching script by Mark Brotherhood. Let me at it!”
Who is in the cast?
Dawn French leads the cast as Maggie. Best known for The Vicar of Dibley and French and Saunders, the actress has recently starred in the TV series Delicious.
She is joined in the cast by Mark Heap, who plays Peter – a local headmaster, and her husband of nearly 40 years.
Other notable residents of the village include Maggie’s best friend Jill (played by Julie Hesmondhalgh), Brian the publican, school secretary Karen (played by Vicki Pepperdine), the town’s GP Carol, local shopkeepers Emil and Roxanna, Kelly at the hair salon, and part-time resident Marcus (Patrick Robinson), who rents a cottage to write his best-selling novels.
Read our guide to the full cast for more.