NATIONAL TELEVISION AWARDS 2023: SERIAL DRAMA
The NTAs are to broadcast live on Tuesday 5th 2023. In charge of events will be Joel Dommett, who returns for his third time host the annual ceremony at the O2, London.
Death in Paradise offshoot Beyond Paradise won over eight million viewers and earns a place in the New Drama category, where it competes against bracing police drama Blue Lights, the sumptuous spin-off Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story and the gothic delights to be found in the crazy and kooky Netflix hit Wednesday.
The Traitors, one of TV’s most talked-about hits thanks to its backstabbing twists, features in the shortlist for Reality Competition, the brand new award for shows that spotlight strategising and skill. It faces competition here from dating favourite Love Island, the globetrotting Race Across the World and the gruelling SAS: Who Dares Wins.
Souls were bared and bravery shown in Authored Documentary, with Deborah James: Bowelbabe in Her Own Words charting both her phenomenal fundraising efforts and tragic decline. Equally candid were Lewis Capaldi: How I’m Feeling Now and Matt Willis: Fighting Addiction, while Rob Burrow: Living with MND revealed the realities of life with this rare, debilitating condition.
New to the NTAs is TV Interview. Louis Theroux Interviews… and Piers Morgan Uncensored were bold new ventures for established interrogators – and both make the grade for this prize. Providing a light-hearted alternative is The Chris & Rosie Ramsey Show, with The Graham Norton Show continuing to be the one to watch on Friday night for your fill of Hollywood A-listers.
They’ve faced off against each other in character, but now Happy Valley stars Sarah Lancashire and James Norton continue their epic battle in the Drama Performance category. They face stiff competition from Vera’s Brenda Blethyn and Call the Midwife’s elder statesperson Judy Parfitt (aka Sister Monica Joan), alongside India Amarteifio’s star-making turn as young Queen Charlotte in the Bridgerton prequel.
Can anyone stop Ant & Dec bagging the TV Presenter crown for a truly extraordinary 22nd year running? Hoping to snatch the prize away from them are daytime queen Alison Hammond, quiz show king Bradley Walsh, Traitors puppet-master Claudia Winkleman and the financial lifesaver that is Martin Lewis.
The much-missed Paul O’Grady receives a posthumous nomination for the final series of For the Love of Dogs. The beloved Battersea series vies for the Factual award where fellow nominees are the agricultural delights found on Clarkson’s Farm, the decluttering tips featured in Sort Your Life Out and the cash-saving advice offered up in The Martin Lewis Money Show Live.
Happy Valley gave us one of TV’s most incendiary and emotionally satisfying finales in its third and final series. So it’s a worthy entry in the Returning Drama category, where it competes against the fourth season of the thrilling Stranger Things, as well as Sunday-evening crowd-pleasers Call the Midwife and Vera.
Having recently announced that they’re taking a break from the big weekend hit, Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway makes the Shortlist for the Bruce Forsyth Entertainment Award. Joining them are those caustic Gogglebox critics, the concealed crooners from The Masked Singer and the I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! campmates, now back in Australia for the most recent series.
Providing much-needed melodrama and escapist thrills over the past 12 months have been the soaps, and competing for Serial Drama are the well-loved favourites of the genre. EastEnders brought Cindy Beale back from the dead, Emmerdale poignantly explored male mental health, Coronation Street featured a visceral acid attack plotline, while Hollyoaks gave us a kidnapping and a heart-breaking demise.
But plotlines would count for nothing were it not for the actors bringing them to life. And the quartet up for Serial Drama Performance moved many to tears during 2023. There was Danielle Harold’s exit from EastEnders, Dominic Brunt’s portrayal of Paddy’s depression in Emmerdale, Charlotte Jordan giving us Daisy’s guilt in Coronation Street, while her colleague Maureen Lipman allowed us to see Evelyn’s vulnerability when she lost her pet dog.
Testing our brainpower were four different shows that each offered a unique spin on the Quiz Game Show format. Back for a second successful run was The 1% Club, which competes here against fellow Saturday-night favourite Michael McIntyre’s The Wheel. Also proving enticing was Richard Osman’s House of Games, while Bradley Walsh ensured the pace never flagged in The Chase Celebrity Special.
Cutting through in a crowded field of fresh soap stars is Benjamin Chivers, who chilled in Prime Video’s eerie The Devil’s Hour. He’s up for Rising Star alongside Bobby Brazier (who proved himself to be an instant hit on EastEnders), as well as Corrie’s Channique Sterling- Brown and Emmerdale’s Lewis Cope.
Meanwhile, can This Morning successfully defend its Daytime crown against The Chase, the ever-outspoken Loose Women and the feelgood pleasures of The Repair Shop?
There’s Comedy across a wide spectrum, with laughter-makers from terrestrial, satellite and streaming all represented. The spectres from Ghosts take on the sporting heroes of Ted Lasso, with further competition coming from child prodigy Young Sheldon and the career criminals of Brassic.
Talent Show endures as one of the few genres guaranteed big audience figures as viewers gather to watch winners crowned and losers ejected at the time of broadcast. Where would Saturdays be without the likes of Strictly Come Dancing or Britain’s Got Talent? And thank goodness for the midweek break from our cares in the form of The Great British Bake Off and The Great British Sewing Bee.
You can vote free online at www.nationaltvawards.com or by phone on 0905 647 2023 Calls cost 25p per minute plus your network access charge and should last no longer than seven minutes. Votes must be in by midday on 5th September 2023.