Landscapers Tuesday, Sky Atlantic HD, 9pm
When the bodies of an elderly couple, William and Patricia Wycherley, were found buried in the back garden of their house in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, in 2013 – after lying undiscovered for 15 years – one of the most outlandish crimes in British history suddenly hit the headlines.
This week, Sky Atlantic’s darkly comic four-part drama Landscapers explores the story behind the macabre crime, and how the couple’s daughter Susan Edwards, played by The Crown’s Olivia Colman, and her husband Christopher, played by Harry Potter’s David Thewlis, came to be convicted of the 1998 murders.
The story begins in France, where, after stealing the Wycherleys’ money and forging documents to pretend that their victims were still alive, Susan and Christopher have fled to start a new life. But after spending a fortune on film memorabilia, the couple find themselves short of funds, and when the police are alerted by Christopher’s stepmother, they return to the UK and give themselves up.
The drama, created and written by Colman’s husband Ed Sinclair, shows the couple being questioned by the police. And as the story they had devised about how the Wycherleys died starts to unravel, fantasy sequences show the unassuming couple seeking refuge from real life in their love of the golden age of cinema.
We joined Oscar-winner Colman, 47, for a video chat to find out more about the series…
What was the appeal of starring in Landscapers for you?
I like a mixture of something funny and sad. And I know the writer quite well! There was a piece about the case in the paper and Ed got sucked into this world and found it fascinating. He wrote to Susan and Christopher and said he wanted to tell their story. And then I read the scripts and loved them. It was a real dream.
Why did the case intrigue you, too?
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