Shropshire Star

Dream Stream: Ozark, The Gold, Plebs

Our latest streaming picks – from the classic to the new – to get you through the weekend:



Seasons 1-4 – Netflix

‘Family first’ – it’s a difficult motto to uphold in the money laundering trade...

Created by Bill Dubuque and Mark Williams, Ozark is a favourite among fans of crime drama, and one of Netflix’s most delicious offerings to date.

After a money laundering scheme for a Mexican drug cartel goes wrong, financial advisor Martin ‘Marty’ Byrde (Jason Bateman – also directing) proposes to make amends by offering to set up a bigger laundering operation in the Lake of the Ozarks region of central Missouri.

Marty suddenly relocates his family from the Chicago suburb of Naperville to the remote summer resort community of Osage Beach.

When the Byrdes arrive in Missouri, they become entangled with local criminals, including the Langmore and Snell families, and later the Kansas City Mafia.

Having received positive reviews from critics, with particular praise for its tone, directing, and acting, Ozark garnered 45 Primetime Emmy Award nominations during its run, with Bateman in fact winning the award for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series in 2019.

Thanks to his work on Ozark, Bateman also received two Golden Globe Award nominations for Best Actor – Television Series Drama.

With an equally fantastic performance from Laura Linney as Marty’s wife, Wendy, along with Sofia Hublitz and Skylar Gaertner as their children, Ozark is a somewhat dark but entertaining treat that will keep you hooked from the word go.

The Gold

Limited series – BBC iPlayer

The Gold

Sometimes, all that glitters is indeed gold...

Written by Neil Forsyth, The Gold is a BBC drama series starring Hugh Bonneville, Dominic Cooper, Charlotte Spencer, Sean Harris and Jack Lowden.

Produced by Tannadice Pictures and directed by Aneil Karia and Lawrence Gough, its plot is centred on the Brink's-Mat robbery of 1983, in which £26 million (equivalent to £93.3 million today) worth of gold bullion, diamonds, and cash was stolen from a warehouse near Heathrow Airport. At the time it was the biggest robbery in history.

Having premiered last month on BBC One, the full run of this one is accessible via BBC iPlayer, and makes for a delicious binge if you're looking for a bit of a crime drama fix.

As always, Jack Lowden steals the show, yet it is wonderful to see good ole' Lord Grantham himself, Mr Hugh Bonneville, with a decent meaty TV part he can really get stuck into post-Downton.

Fellow 'alumnus of the abbey' Tom Cullen also gives a worthy turn, and well-deserved applause must also go to Charlotte Spencer.

Any fans of a decent heist drama flavoured with plenty of 80s nostalgia are sure to eat this one up. One of 2023's most enjoyable and gripping offerings so far.


Series 1-5 and feature-length special – ITVX


When in Rome, do as the Romans do...

Produced by Tom Basden, Caroline Leddy, Sam Leifer and Teddy Leifer, sitcom gem Plebs first hit our screens back in 2013, and a decade later has weathered exceptionally well.

Starring Tom Rosenthal, Ryan Sampson, Joel Fry (Series 1–3), and Jonathan Pointing (from Series 4), the series focusses on the trials, tribulations and misadventures of a group of twenty-something Roman lads, trying to navigate life in the ancient city.

With flavours of The Inbetweeners and Up Pompeii about it, Plebs had a hallmark silly sense of humour, and was perfect 'watch-with-a-takeaway' fodder for chaps and chapesses looking for a bit of daft escapism.

Marcus (Rosenthal), Stylax (Fry), and their slave Grumio (Sampson) arrive in Rome looking forward to being lads about town. And just like the twenty-something gents due to populate the world 2,000 years later, their lives revolve around the ladies, scraping the rent together... and the ladies.

While Marcus and Stylax work dull day jobs at a city grain company, Grumio earns his reputation as the worst slave in the world by doing his utmost to avoid hard work of any kind.

When two young women from Briton move in to the flat next door, Marcus sets his cap at seduction, with his many efforts never failing to lead to hilarious consequences.

As with The Inbetweeners, the chemistry between this show's leading lads is golden, and is maintained surprisingly well when Fry exists and Pointing arrives in the fourth series.

A huge shout out must go out to Sampson, whose Grumio may be one of the greatest sitcom characters of all time.

With five series available on ITVX (along with a straight-to-stream feature-length finale, Plebs: Soldiers of Rome), Plebs is ready to sate your hunger for a bit of bant-tastic nonsense.

Got any streaming recommendations for our readers? Tweet me @DMorris_Star

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