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Better — cast, plot and all about the new crime drama by the creators of Spooks

Better on BBC1 is a crime thriller starring Leila Farzad and Andrew Buchan.
Better on BBC1 is a crime thriller starring Leila Farzad and Andrew Buchan. (Image credit: Getty)

Better on BBC One follows a corrupt policewoman fighting for a second chance. Written by the creators of Spooks and Humans, Jonathan Brackley and Sam Vincent, the series follows DI Lou Slack (Leila Farzad) a renowned and respected detective. But what her colleagues don’t realise is that 19 years ago Lou sold her soul to a very clever devil indeed – ruthless crime boss Col McHugh (Andrew Buchan). Now though, a family tragedy has forced Lou to rethink her life and she wants to reclaim the honour and honesty she handed over many years earlier. 

“Better is a brilliant fresh take on the morality tale,” says Leila Farzad. “I am excited to have the opportunity to play Lou Slack, the vehicle through which we explore the multivalent layers of good and bad. A complex, flawed yet utterly human character. I feel very lucky to be a part of such a wonderful show with an incredibly talented team attached to it.” 

Here’s everything you need about BBC One's gripping new drama Better…  

Better release date

The five-part thriller Better will be screened on BBC One. As yet we don’t have a release date but we’ll keep you posted. We’ll also let you know where US and international viewers can catch the series.  

Better plot 

Better follows DI Lou Slack (Leila Farzad) who is generally regarded as the best in the crime-solving business. But what no one knows is that Lou’s success is built on corruption. 

Nineteen years ago, when Lou was a young officer at her lowest ebb, her paths crossed with Col McHugh (Andrew Buchan), a low-ranking but ambitious and ruthless member of the Leeds underworld. The pair struck a deal that changed their lives forever, allowing Col to become the rich and powerful head of a drug trafficking gang, while masquerading as a charming businessman and property developer. In turn Lou was able to resurrect her failing career but to do so she slowly slid into corruption, helping Col here and there as a special bond forged between the pair. 

But now, a family crisis sees Lou’s conscience finally emerge and she sets out to right the wrongs she has committed. And to find redemption she must bring down the extremely dangerous man she loves like a brother.  

Better cast — Leila Farzad as DI Lou Slack

Leila, who plays the lead role of DI Lou Slack in Better, is best known for playing Naomi Jones in the series I Hate Suzie. She’s also been in The Fear Index, Landscapers and the ITV drama Innocent. Leila also voiced characters on the children’s cartoon series Peppa Pig.

Leila Farzad with Josh Hartnett in The Fear Index.

Leila Farzad with Josh Hartnett in The Fear Index. (Image credit: Sky)

Andrew Buchan as Col McHugh

Andrew Buchan is playing the charismatic but deadly gang boss Col McHugh. He’s known for playing Mark Latimer in the hit series Broadchurch and Andrew Parker Bowles in The Crown. Andrew has also starred in Cobra, The ABC Murders, The Honorable Woman, and starred with Jody Latham and Tamzin Outhwaite in ITV drama The Fixer, and BBC One period drama Garrow’s Law. He's starred in big Hollywood movies too, playing John Paul Getty II in the film All The Money In The World, about the real-life kidnapping of billionaire Jean Paul Getty’s 16-year-old grandson.

Andrew Buchan is the villain in BBC1's Better.

Andrew Buchan is the villain in BBC1's Better. (Image credit: Getty)

Andrew Buchan with Jodie Whittaker in Broadchurch.

Andrew Buchan with Jodie Whittaker in Broadchurch. (Image credit: ITV)

 Who else is starring in Better? 

The remaining cast in Better includes Peaky Blinders star Samuel Edward-Cook. He plays Lou’s husband Ceri who loves her very much but is deeply conflicted about her arrangement with Col. Zak Ford-Williams (Wolfe) is Owen, their teenage son. Cold Feet star Ceallach Spellman meanwhile plays Col's son Donal, and Carolin Stoltz (Liar) plays Col’s wife Alma. Anton Lesser (Killing Eve, The Trial of Christine Keeler) is ex-detective Vernon, and Olivia Nakintu (Vera) is DC Esther Okoye, Lou’s closest colleague on the force.

Is there a trailer for Better on BBC One?

No not yet, but watch this space and we’ll keep you updated. We can’t wait to see the drama unfold in the streets of Leeds, Yorkshire, where it’s currently being filmed.

Nicholas Cannon
Nicholas Cannon

I'm a huge fan of television so I really have found the perfect job, as I've been writing about TV shows, films and interviewing major television, film and sports stars for over 25 years. I'm currently TV Content Director on What's On TV, TV Times, TV and Satellite Week magazines plus Whattowatch.com. I previously worked on Woman and Woman's Own in the 1990s. Outside of work I swim every morning, support Charlton Athletic football club and get nostalgic about TV shows Cagney & Lacey, I Claudius, Dallas and Tenko. I'm totally on top of everything good coming up too.