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Vigil season 2: Start date, cast, plot and recap for BBC drama

The Emmy-winning police procedural from the creators of Line of Duty returns…

Rose Leslie and Suranne Jones return as DI Kirsten Longacre and DCI Amy Silva in Vigil S2. (BBC)
Rose Leslie and Suranne Jones return as DI Kirsten Longacre and DCI Amy Silva in Vigil S2. (BBC)

BBC police drama Vigil is set to return for a new series following a hugely successful first outing.

Created by the production team behind the hit crime series Line of Duty, Vigil’s first batch of episodes arrived in late summer 2021 and quickly became the BBC’s most-watched drama launch since Bodyguard, with around 13 million viewers tuning in to watch detectives Amy Silva and Kirsten Longacre.

Following that feat, screenwriter Tom Edge’s thriller went on to make waves during award season, earning itself a BAFTA nomination for Best Drama Series and taking home the International Emmy across the pond.

With Vigil series two due to arrive imminently, get caught up on what happened in the show’s first series before learning all the key details about what Silva and Longacre will be up to next.


When is Vigil series 2 released?

Amy Silva (Suranne Jones), Kirsten Longacre (Rose Leslie) in Vigil S2. (BBC)
Amy Silva (Suranne Jones), Kirsten Longacre (Rose Leslie) in Vigil S2. (BBC)

Vigil series 2 will begin on Sunday, 10 December at 9pm on BBC One and iPlayer in the UK.

It will run for six, hour-long episodes.


Is there a trailer for Vigil series 2?

The first trailer for Vigil series 2 dropped in late November and transported us to a new case with a new backdrop. However, the stakes look just as high as last time, as detectives Silva and Longacre try to decipher a drone-shaped mystery.


What happened in Vigil series 1?

A woman in a red jacket and grey hat climbs up submarine ladders.
Vigil series 1 aired in 2021. (BBC)

The first series of Vigil took us deep underwater to investigate a murder in a submarine in the Outer Hebrides.

Set largely inside the HMS Vigil, Detective Chief Inspector Amy Silva was charged with getting to the bottom of a death that had taken place onboard the vessel which may or may not have been linked to a tragedy that occurred at the ocean surface when a Scottish fishing trawler mysteriously disappeared.

Watch a trailer for Vigil

By working alongside MI5, the Royal Navy, and her land-based cop partner Detective Kirsten Longacre — also her former lover — tough Scottish street cop Silva must uncover what really happened in the ocean depths.

With links to Russian espionage, anti-nuclear activists, and military whistleblowers, the series had viewers gripped with some epic cliffhangers including one where Silva found herself trapped in a rapidly-filling torpedo tube.

The series ended with the two cops rekindling their relationship, while rebuilding bridges with Silva's estranged step-daughter Poppy.


Who is in Vigil series 2?

Amy Silva (Suranne Jones) in Vigil S2. (BBC)
Amy Silva (Suranne Jones) in Vigil S2. (BBC)

Vigil series 2 sees Suranne Jones once again return as Detective Amy Silva, with Game of Thrones star Rose Leslie back as Detective Sergeant Kirsten Longacre and His Dark Materials star Gary Lewis reprising his role as Detective Superintendent Colin Robertson.

Seen as Vigil series 2 follows a brand new story, viewers can expect to see a host of new characters with the likes of Romola Garai, Dougray Scott, Amir El-Masry, David Elliot, Chris Jenks, Tommy Sim’aan, Oscar Salem, Jonathan Ajayi and newcomer Hiba Medina also due to appear throughout the show's six-episode arc.


What is the plot of Vigil series 2?

Kirsten Longacre (Rose Leslie), Daniel Ramsay (Amir El-Masry) in Vigil S2. (BBC)
Kirsten Longacre (Rose Leslie), Daniel Ramsay (Amir El-Masry) in Vigil S2. (BBC)

With series 1 heading underwater, Vigil series 2 instead takes us up into the sky where Silva and Longacre must un-pick a new murder case involving the shady world of military drones.

“Following multiple deaths at a Scottish weapons test, Silva and Longacre are tasked with finding out the cause,” says the series official synopsis.

“Entering the closed ranks of the air force in Scotland and the Middle East, the pair face the deadly warfare of tomorrow as they fight for their own uncertain future.”

According to the BBC, Vigil series two was shot both in Morocco and Scotland.

Vigil series 2 will premiere at 9pm on Sunday 10 December 2023 on BBC and iPlayer.