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The Bletchley Circle: San Francisco - ITV

The Bletchley Circle: San Francisco
(Image credit: ITV)

Bletchley codebreakers - Julie Graham and Rachael Stirling - return in a four-part spinoff on ITV – The Bletchley Circle: San Francisco

Bletchley codebreakers - Julie Graham and Rachael Stirling - return in a four-part spinoff  – The Bletchley Circle: San Francisco.

Good news for fans of ITV’s series about intrepid female World War Two codebreakers – this four-parter captures the spirit of the original and has already been commissioned for another run.

In the first instalment of a two-part story, Jean (Julie Graham) is now a librarian, minding her own business until Millie (Rachael Stirling), who is now a governess, spots a newspaper article about a woman’s murder in San Francisco.

They recognise the killer’s MO and fear this could be the man who murdered their friend Claire.

Determined to get justice, and bored of their mundane post-war lives, they make the journey to America to do some digging…

The Bletchley Circle: San Francisco

Rachael Stirling and Julie Graham as Millie and Jean

TV Times caught up with the pair to ask them how the series compares to 2014's The Bletchley Circle.

'The whole thing is a bit shinier and has more chutzpah,' says Rachael, who turns 53 on 24 July. 'There’s a jazz underworld that we frequent, which is heaven.

'Before we had four Miss Marples in 1950s London, but now there are new characters and storyline,' she explains. 'We go into the gay community, the Cold War and communism, we touch on McCarthyism. We’re introduced to a much broader spectrum of society. I’m really proud of the results.

'I haven’t seen anything else on telly that is just about women using their brains – there’s always other stuff at play,' she says. 'Bletchley is about bright women collaborating and the joy of the intellectual stimulation they get from each other.'

'The show has a new fresh feeling,' adds co-star Julie, 41. 'We go from drab post-war London, to vibrant San Francisco, it’s a brave new world and the themes are much more modern.'

TV Times rating: ****

Mandy Cooper
Mandy Cooper

As TV Times Highlights Editor I get to hear about all the latest TV shows coming soon. Here at TVT HQ we are in the privileged position of selecting the best programmes from across all the channels and streaming platforms. Our mission is to make it easier for our readers to decide what to watch - and give them lots of choice of genres - all the latest shows, plus some nostalgic choices we call hidden gems, too. My career began with a postgraduate degree in periodical journalism (ahem, yes old school!) in 1991 and I’ve worked in TV media since 2000.