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'The Witchfinder': all you need to know about the historical comedy starring Daisy May Cooper and Tim Key

'The Witchfinder' on horseback with Tim Key and Daisy May Cooper.
'The Witchfinder' on horseback with Tim Key and Daisy May Cooper. (Image credit: BBC/Baby Cow)

The Witchfinder on BBC2 will take us on a road trip through plague-ridden England in 1647 which is gripped by the Civil War and famine. But as the travelling companions are played by Tim Key as a pompous witchfinder and This Country star Daisy May Cooper as an incredibly opinionated suspected witch, their amazing journey promises to be full of laughs.

The Witchfinder is created by Neil and Rob Gibbons, the writers and directors of This Time With Alan Partridge. Kate Daughton, Head of Comedy Commissioning says: “In The Witchfinder, the Gibbons brothers have managed to create a timelessly compelling odd couple, forced together on a journey through one of the most baffling moments of English history. Tim Key and Daisy May Cooper are two of the UK’s funniest people and I can’t wait to see them tackle gender politics, male privilege and bees… on horseback.”

So here's all you need to know about The Witchfinder coming to BBC2...

'The Witchfinder' release date

Although there's no official air date yet for The Witchfinder on BBC2, we do know it will be shown in early in 2022, so there isn't long to wait. We will update as soon as we hear, plus give you its US and worldwide release date too.

Is there a trailer for 'The Witchfinder'?

No trailer for The Witchfinder has been released by the BBC, but it's imminent so we'll post it here as soon as it arrives.

'The Witchfinder' plot

In The Witchfinder it's the year 1647 during the English Civil War when fear of witchcraft is rife. Puritanical Christianity, deep-seated superstition and a willingness to scapegoat outsiders have created a tinderbox of suspicion in which few are safe.  The career of 'witchfinding' has flourished, as self-appointed witch experts achieve hero status by investigating accusations of witchery and extracting confessions. A failing but careerist witchfinder (Tim Key) transports a suspected witch (Daisy May Cooper) across 1640s East Anglia to a trial that could change his fortunes for ever. But his captive is the worst possible travel companion. She's an inquisitive, uncouth woman whose ability to prick his pomposity and ask uncomfortable questions turns a straightforward journey into a life-changing ordeal.

'The Witchfinder' cast — Tim Key on playing the title role

Tim Key, who plays the title role of the witchfinder himself, says: “I’m delighted to be working with the mercurially talented Gibbons brothers again, particularly on something set in 17th century England - which they seem to have a fairly loose grasp of - and I'm excited to do a road trip but on horses (I can’t ride a horse). I love the idea of Daisy May Cooper being a pissed-off witch anyway so the fact that I’m playing her antagonist is the icing on the cake. Can’t wait to saddle up.”

Tim is an actor, writer, and performance poet who plays Sidekick Simon in the Alan Partridge franchise and has appeared in The Double, Inside Number 9 and Peep Show. More recently he has been seen in Pls Like, Greed and The End Of The F***ing World. He's won the Edinburgh Comedy Award, and been nominated three times for the Barry and once for the Malcolm Hardee Award for Comic Originality. Tim’s radio show Tim Key's Late Night Poetry Programme has run for years on BBC Radio 4, with a fifth series recording this Autumn. Tim also starred in Art At The Old Vic and continues to write and perform his own five star live shows. Most recently he made the critically acclaimed Megadate which he performed at The Old Vic before adapting it into a BAFTA-nominated BBC1 comedy short, Wonderdate.

Tim Key (at back) in 'This Time With Alan Partridge'.

Tim Key (at back) in 'This Time With Alan Partridge'. (Image credit: Baby Cow)

'The Witchfinder' cast — Daisy May Cooper on playing the suspect witch

Daisy May Cooper says: I cannot wait to be starring in The Witchfinder with the absolutely brilliant Tim Key. I've always wanted to be a witch, my mother says I've got the nose and chin hair for it. I dabbled a bit in witchcraft when I was in my teens and ended up accidentally inviting an incubus into my house. He was an absolute prick."

Daisy was born and brought up in Cirencester in the Cotswolds, along with her brother Charlie. She went on to attend RADA, studying for a BA in acting. While there her brother Charlie moved to London to stay with her. With very little money and missing home, the pair began to talk about the characters they had grown up with back in the Cotswolds. From this the comedy This Country and character of Kerry Mucklowe was born 

This Country became a huge hit on BBC3, written by and starring the siblings. This Country racked up numerous awards including the BAFTA for Female performance in a Comedy Programme for Daisy May. Daisy May has recently starred in Armando Iannucci’s The Personal History of David Copperfield and written and performed in his HBO and Sky Comedy series Avenue 5.

This Country siblings Daisy May and Charlie Cooper as cousins Kerry and Curtain.

'This Country' siblings Daisy May and Charlie Cooper as cousins Kerry and Curtain. (Image credit: BBC)

'The Witchfinder' — who else is starring

When more cast members of The Witchfinder are announced we'll add the information here.

'The Witchfinder' — what else we know

The Witchfinder is written and directed by Neil and Rob Gibbons (This Time with Alan Partridge, Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa, Mid Morning Matters, Veep). The producer is Dave Lambert and the executive producers are Christine Langan and Steve Coogan. The Witchfinder is a Baby Cow production for BBC2.

Christine Langan, CEO of Baby Cow Productions says: “Baby Cow is thrilled to be bringing the Gibbons brothers hysterical-heretical-historical epic The Witchfinder to BBC Two. Rob and Neil have put a truly modern twist on this macabre moment in time, as Daisy May Cooper’s modern-day everywoman gets dragged to trial by Tim Key’s inept, chauvinist, careerist witchfinder. In Daisy and Tim we have one of the best double-acts in British comedy and we can’t wait for you to see them fight their way across East-Anglia.”

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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.