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Having tackled the Tudors, the BBC is taking on the Yorks and the Lancasters in what promises to be an epic BBC1 drama about the War of the Roses.

In a twist on the male-dominated lens through which history is frequently viewed, the epic serial about one of the bloodiest periods in English history will be told from the point of view of powerful women who "shaped their men and who shaped history in the process".

They include queens, mothers, lovers and "witches" and the drama reminds viewers that at the time women could still be burned at the stake for sorcery.

The War of the Roses is an adaptation of Philippa Gregory's best-selling series of books The Cousin's War and is part of a renewed focus on BBC1 drama.

The BBC said that it is yet to cast the drama or decide the number of episodes.

Witches are also the subject of BBC1's traditional festive treat for children.

Following the success of airing author Julia Donaldson's children's books The Gruffalo and The Gruffalo's Child in the past two festive seasons, BBC1 and Magic Light Pictures are bringing another one to life this December called Room on the Broom.

Also on the cards for Christmas is a three-part adaptation of what TS Eliot called "the first and greatest of English detective novels", Wilkie Collins' The Moonstone.

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X marks the spot

After losing her boyfriend and some of her mojo, The Vampire Diaries‘ resident witch Bonnie will soon find herself gaining a mom and a possible new love interest. But first, she’ll help her undead friend Caroline ring in her 18th birthday in this Thursday’s episode (The CW, 8/7c). TVLine chatted with Kat Graham about her character’s impending showdown with Klaus, long-awaited family reunion and more!

TVLINE | This week is Caroline’s birthday. How does the gang celebrate the big day?
In an unpredictable way. And where it takes place and what happens during the birthday is also a surprise that I don’t think has been revealed yet. It’s not a normal birthday.

TVLINE | Caroline is struggling as she turns a year older. What’s going on with her?
Getting older is hard, especially if you’re a vampire. She’s facing new thoughts that she hadn’t necessarily considered before. Everything’s kind of triggered it. She’s also in a slump because of what happened with her and Tyler.

TVLINE | It’s been a while since we’ve had some good Bonnie/Caroline or just friendship scenes. Does this episode give you a chance to have more girl time?
Absolutely. Girl time is so important. We have this powerhouse female as a writer, Julie Plec, who’s just so girl power in everything she does. You’ll definitely get to see some scenes of us together.

TVLINE | What’s Bonnie going to do about her coffin dreams in upcoming episodes?
If she feels like anything is going to benefit everyone in the town or benefit Elena and their lives, she’s going to do it. When she realizes what they mean, she is going try and go after it and solve the mystery.

TVLINE | Will she be partnering with Stefan against Klaus?
[Pauses] Yeah. … [She and Stefan] have a really cool dynamic. He knows he’s just been off the deep end, so she’s going to be a little trepid with anything he presents to her. She’s going to want to really look into it for herself before she commits to anything.

TVLINE | If Bonnie is getting caught up in the coffin business, does that mean there’s another showdown with Klaus in store for her? The last one was pretty scary.
She is going to have to face him. You are going to see more scenes of Klaus and Bonnie, and her having to deal with him, but it might not be in the way you’d expect. Her motive is to try and get him killed. If she is in normal Bonnie mode, then she should be OK. If she’s weakened by anything or in any way, it could make for crazy, crazy times for Bonnie.

TVLINE | Could Bonnie find it in her heart to forgive Jeremy?
Yeah, but not forget. I’d like to see Bonnie with somebody who matches her more. Because she’s grown so much and gone through so much. I’d love to see her character with somebody who shares that. The Jamie character is perfect. Those scenes could be electric. But it depends on which way they’re writing it.

TVLINE | What’s Jamie (pictured on left) like?
You see him in [Episode] 312. It’s so interesting how they brought him in because we don’t know if he’s good or bad throughout the episode.

TVLINE | They’re also introducing your mom (pictured on right) soon.
Played by Persia White, which is really exciting because I love her! I loved her in Girlfriends. Everything’s pointing to Bonnie’s mother, and she has to go and find her and have a reunion with her. It’s not the kind of reunion she always thought it would be. It’s interesting, her mother’s stance on everything, and even if she would help Bonnie. Maybe she’s excited to see her, maybe something kept them from each other…. Her mom hasn’t been seen for 15 years, so we don’t know what happened to her.

TVLINE | What’s coming up for Bonnie and Elena?
A lot of cool stuff. Elena’s going to be going through her own thing with Stefan, and at some point, I’m going to have to be honest with Elena, even if it’s like, “I’ve been lying to you.”

X marks the spot

Fringe‘s uncertain future was a hot topic Sunday at the Television Critics Association press tour, with both the president of Fox and executive producer J.J. Abrams weighing in on what is and what might need to be.

But when TVLine spoke with EPs Jeff Pinkner and J.H. Wyman earlier this week — after screening the show’s winter premiere (airing Friday, Jan. 13) — they shared their exit plan (or absence of one) should this turn out to be the final season.

“The answer to that question is the same every year,” Pinkner started when asked if and when they’d need a heads up to wrap things up. “Worst case scenario, if this were the last aired season of Fringe — and as we’ve said before, there are other outlets where we could continue our stories, be they graphic novels or webisodes — we know what the end of this season is going to be, and it can function as a series finale.”

Pinkner said that last season’s capper likewise could have served as an apropos out for the sci-fi saga. “Had Peter, the lynchpin for the reason the show existed, been the one to sacrifice himself heroically to save the two universes and the woman he loved, it would have been a very authentic end.”

Fox president Kevin Reilly, when fielding questions about Fringe‘s fate, said the show has been a “point of pride” for him, as boss of a network that famously has let down genre-TV fans. Alas, Fringe is “an expensive show” that is not yielding a profit, he noted, “and we’re not in the business of losing money.”

Reilly said that conversations with Fringe‘s creative team and production studios have yet to take place. But Abrams, for one, says he’s “crossing [his] fingers” that the story of Peter, Olivia, Walter et al “gets to continue — and if not on Fox, maybe somewhere else.” (With reporting by Vlada Gelman)

Fuck you Fox not giving this show the chance it deserved. Why not air it with Alcatraz instead of the Friday slot of death?


The fact that Emma listens to Sonic Youth made me like her a little bit.

ABC’s Once Upon a Time resumes its freshman run this Sunday at 8/7c, and to whet your appetite here’s a look at the hour’s first eight minutes (season-recapping intro included).

The clip kicks off in the fairytale land that was, as Rumplestiltskin frets that his soon-to-be-14-year-old son will be drafted against his will into the ogre wars. That flashback also offers a glimpse at a mysterious character referred to as “The Dark One” — how might he factor into Rumple’s transition from meek farmer to power player?

We then cut to Storybrooke, where Mr. Gold, weeks after Graham’s passing, shares his condolences with Emma — and then nudges her to assume a promotion to sheriff. But as you will see, Regina is so not on board with that bump up the ladder.

Also, below this clip you will find a few new cast photos of Ginnifer Goodwin, Josh Dallas and others.

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X marks the spot
The premiere of Fox’s Alcatraz is still two weeks away — Jan. 16, to be precise. But already, we are trying to unravel the series’ mysteries.

Today, our sleuthing has taken the form of checking out the show’s spanking new website and watching (and rewatching) this exclusive interview with executive producer J.J. Abrams. (Hey, you never know what you’ll hear by listening between the lines!)

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