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Tissues Ready: Coleman BBC Drama – The Cry

The BBC’s brand-new drama The Cry is set to take over the Sunday night slot and will tell a revised story of the acclaimed Helen FitzGerald novel of the same name. Have your tissues to hand as this four-part tear-jerking series, staring local girl and hit period drama Victoria’s Jenna-Louise Coleman.

The premise of the story is the disappearance of a baby from a small coastal town in Australia is the catalyst for a journey into the disintegrating psychology of a young couple as they deal with an unthinkable tragedy under both the white light of public scrutiny and behind closed doors.

The question that we’re all asking though, is The Cry based on a true story?

The drama follows the novel by FitzGerald, released in 2013.

It’s believed according to Reading Matters Blog that the novel was actually ‘inspired’ by real events – not just one but several cases. It says, “The plot borrows heavily from all manner of missing children cases — Azaria Chamberlain immediately springs to mind, as does Madeleine McCann — particularly in the ensuing media coverage.”


Tissues Ready For Coleman BBC Drama – The Cry


The story follows a couple, Joanna and Alistair, who rent a car after a long-haul flight with their restless baby son Noah after travelling from Scotland to Australia to fight for custody of the husband’s daughter. Joanna is struggling with life as a new mum, and the flight to Melbourne is a huge strain.

Their baby son Noah cries the whole way. Exhausted and emotional from the whole journey, the couple finally arrive in Australia. After leaving the car unattended whilst visiting a shop in a quiet Australian town, the couple return to the car to realise to their horror that Noah is missing. What follows is every parent’s nightmare – an international police investigation and in this day-and-age it goes viral in the white light of public scrutiny – changing their lives forever.

Already we’re asking huge questions? Why would someone leave a baby in a car? Is there something about Alistair we’re not aware of yet?

The Independent gave insight into what viewers can expect from the new drama: “Time and time again, just when you think circumstances can’t get any worse, they do — much worse. Alistair’s cold and calculated response to the trauma is at odds with Joanna’s descent into hell and madness.”

The Cry premiered on Sunday (30 September) on BBC One.


Coleman BBC Drama The Cry

Jenna Coleman BBC Drama The Cry.  © BBC


Lead character Coleman (Joanna) returned to the BBC following her role in Doctor Who. The Cry also stars Ewen Leslie as Joanna’s husband Alistair, Markella Kavenagh playing Chloe (Alistair’s daughter), Asher Keddie as Alexandra (Alistair’s ex-wife) and Stella Genet as Elizabeth.

Coleman in a recent interview with The Guardian, said: “I spent a good first chunk of it just thinking they’d completely miscast – and why on earth me? I’m not a mother.

“I really kind of hit myself over the head with it. I felt there was obviously something I wouldn’t be able to capture. It was something so, well, primal that I haven’t literally experienced. And I’ve really struggled with that.”

In both his career and his private life, Alistair wants the best and most perfect life. When tragedy strikes Alistair’s life changes and he must find a way to navigate the treacherous world of the media and an exhaustive police investigation with a partner who is crumbling at the edges.

Alistair is a pragmatist. Someone whose moral compass swings according to the most effective outcome. He cares deeply for his son Noah, his partner Joanna and his daughter Chloe. He just wants them all to live happily ever after – but is that all really true?

We learn as a youngster Alistair was often ill at ease with his peers, but as he grew up he learned the value of a social network. However, there remains a dispassionate core to Alistair which reveals itself occasionally despite his outward warmth and charm.

Actor Ewen Leslie (Alistair) said of the series “One of the things the show hopes to do is deconstruct a lot of the myths of motherhood. There’s a lot of people – men included – that have babies and really struggle.”

Coleman has a close connection to Blackpool’s Grand. Born in Blackpool in 1986, Jenna was a member of the youth theatre company ‘In Yer Space’ which rehearsed and performed at Blackpool’s Grand Theatre.

Discover more famous people from Blackpool on a recent Blog.



© Main Image Coleman BBC Drama The Cry | Synchronicity Films Ltd | Photographer: Lachlan Moore.