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'Help' on Channel 4 — air date, cast, plot and everything you need to know

Jodie Comer and Stephen Graham in Help
Help will tell a heartfelt story about the coronavirus pandemic. (Image credit: Channel 4)

Help is a new one-part Channel 4 drama which tells the moving story of a young worker called Sarah in a fictional Liverpool care home. Along with her patient, Tony, Sarah finds her life torn apart by the ever challenging coronavirus pandemic. It has been penned by the award-winning writer Jack Thorne (His Dark Materials).

Killing Eve's Jodie Comer (Sarah) and This is England and Line of Duty's Stephen Graham (Tony) star in the new project. 

Speaking about the role, Graham said: “Jack is one of the greatest and most truthful writers of our generation and in Help he has crafted a profoundly important piece of social realism.

“I’ve wanted to work with Jodie for ages, and together we’re hugely passionate about shining a light on one of the biggest tragedies of our time and the people at the heart of it.”

Here's everything you need to know about Help...

'Help' star Jodie Comer: Why I wanted to work with Stephen Graham

Help release date

Help will air on Channel 4 on Thursday 16 September at 9pm. It is also available to watch now on All4. The run time, including adverts, is just over two hours.

What is the plot of Help?

After a hard upbringing spent struggling at home, in education and at work, Sarah (Jodie Comer) has finally found her calling as a carer at Sunshine Homes. She is known for connecting with the residents there, especially with Tony (Stephen Graham). He has early onset Alzheimer's, which leaves him prone to periods of confusion and sudden outbursts which the other staff struggle with.

However, Sarah steps in and the two form a real bond. But the unexpected coronavirus pandemic throws the home into disarray and Sarah and her colleagues are left poorly prepared to fight the virus. The pressure eventually proves too much for Sarah, who begins to search for a way out...

Talking about how she researched the role, Jodie says: "I spoke with a lot of carers and they were very honest about what it was like during those early days of the pandemic. There were times when I was wondering why my character wasn’t wearing a mask, but then I remembered they were told they didn’t need them at that time!"

Stephen Graham is to star in C4 drama, Help

Stephen Graham is to star in Help alongside Jodie Comer.  (Image credit: Getty)

What inspired Help?

Help writer Jack Thorne said: “30,000 people have died unnecessarily in these care homes because of the indifference and incompetence of our government. Hearing the stories of those at the frontline, having people break down in tears on Zoom in front of us has been incredibly moving and galling.

“Getting the story right will be incredibly important, we are aware of the pressure upon us, this has to be written and made with anger and precision. We hope we do it justice.”

Who stars in Help?

Jodie Comer and Stephen Graham lead the cast for this series, and will also be joined by Coronation Streets Angela Griffin, Mr Selfridge’s Mike Noble, and Brassic’s John McGrellis.

Is there a trailer?

A trailer for Help is now available, with the 20 second clip taking us inside the Liverpool care home at the height of the pandemic. It shows us patients and staff alike as they struggle to adapt to the huge change, and the risks that are presented by the virus.