C.B. Strike, Troubled Blood: What We Know So Far

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Tom Burke & Holliday Grainger appear in Lethal White

Great news for fans of the JK Rowling-created C.B. Strike TV series. The fifth novel in the series, Troubled Blood, will be coming to our screens soon.

Between the pandemic and the irregular intervals between books, some people were worried it might not happen (even though Rowling herself confirmed it last November on the Graham Norton Show) – but we know now that filming will begin shortly. 

What's C.B. Strike About?

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Robin and Cormoran in the adaptation of the fourth novel, Lethal White

C.B. Strike follows private detective Cormoran Strike (Tom Burke), a British army veteran and former military police investigator who left the military after losing his leg. He works alongside his initially temporary assistant (and later, partner) Robin Ellacott, a young women who's moved from Yorkshire to London to join her fiancé. Ellacott is played by Holliday Grainger, and her fiancé is played by Kerr Logan. 

Together, the pair work to turn the struggling firm into a viable business, forming a close friendship along the way. As the seasons progress, the two must also contend with their own dysfunctional relationships and past traumas. 

This is very much a character-driven mystery series, with the personal lives of the detectives as much as part of the story as the mystery. If you prefer the older-style mysteries where characters were just set pieces to serve the plot of the mystery, this may not be to your liking – but if you like an ongoing storyline and some character development, definitely give this one a try.

Where Can I Watch C.B. Strike?

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Robin and Strike

In the US, you can purchase episodes on Amazon HERE or check it out on HBO Max. If you use your local library, you might also be able to borrow the DVDs there.

In the UK, the series airs as just Strike (minus the CB), you'll find it on BBC One. 

What's Happening in C.B. Strike: Troubled Blood?

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CB Strike 

The next series – either Season 3 or Season 5, depending on where you're watching – will be based on the fifth novel in the series, Troubled Blood. It's the longest and most complicated of the novels, but I personally thought it was also the best of the group. 

Troubled Blood begins when Cormoran is down in Cornwall visiting his aunt and uncle. One night as he leaves a local pub, he's approached by a woman called Anna Phipps. She wants to hire him to investigate the case of her mother's disappearance…40 years prior.

Though there's little hope of success with such an old case, Cormoran and Robin commit to work on the case for a year just to see what can still be uncovered. The missing woman, Margot Bamborough, was a young mother and doctor in London who disappeared without a trace after work one night. 

IMDb suggests there will be four episodes in the new season, and the casting of both young and old versions of many characters suggests there will be a lot of flashbacks.

Who's in the Cast of CB Strike: Troubled Blood?

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Strike with Lorelai (who will not be returning)

Though much of the casting information has been withheld from IMDb (so far), we know Tom Burke will be back as Strike, Holliday Grainger will return as Robin, and Kerr Logan will return as Matthew Cunliffe. Ben Crompton will also be reprising his role as the delightfully dodgy Shanker, along with Jack Greenlees as Sam Barclay.

One casting decision that will likely surprise many is the return of Christina Cole as Izzy Chiswell. Though her role in the book version of Troubled Blood was extremely minor, the fact that she's coming back to the TV version means they must have changed that part a bit.

As for some of the big roles from the book version of Troubled Blood, we know the following people will be joining the cast:

  • Abigail Lawrie (Tin Star) will play Margot Bamborough
  • Jess Impiazzi (Isolation the Series) will play Gloria Conti
  • Jack Morris (The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society) will play Steve Douthwaite
  • Charlie Price will play Young Cormoran
  • Eliza Collings (Doc Martin) will play Young Janie Beattie
  • Jacob James Beswick (Giri/Haji) will play Luca Ricci 
  • Sam Woolf (The Crown) will play Young Roy Phipps
  • Phill Langhorne (Viewpoint) will play Detective Simon Layborn
  • Ian Redford (Coronation Street) returns as Uncle Ted
  • Sarah Sweeney (The Bastard Executioner) returns as Lucy

 

Read JK Rowling's “Robert Galbraith” Cormoran Strike Book Series

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The Cormoran Strike novels, as of late 2021.

If you've only seen the C.B. Strike television series, we strongly recommend giving the books a chance. As great as the TV adaptations are, every single novel adapted would have been better served by a full 6-episode season. They're long and intricate (especially Troubled Blood), and a great deal is left out of the TV version. 

They are:

You can view the entire Cormoran Strike book series with descriptions HERE

When Does C.B. Strike: Troubled Blood Premiere?

As you can see in the video below (embedded from the StrikeFans YouTube Channel), filming took place in Skegness and elsewhere during the early months of 2022. 

 

Original premiere estimates were late 2022 or early 2023, but a recent RadioTimes print issue included a photo of the series with a firm “late 2022” estimate. The series will air on BBC1 and iPlayer in the UK, and it's expected to air soon after on HBO Max in the US. 

Precise dates are still not available, but it's promising that an outlet like RadioTimes has been given a firm time range. We'll update as soon as we know more.

21 Comments

  1. Am I the only one confused about seasons/episodes/book titles? Have seen seasons 1 and 2 several times. Love both. Have pre-paid for season 3…where the heck is it? Have also subscribed to streaming channels hoping to find season 3. Sounds like some film people got money greedy and chose to screw the fans. The actors are nothing short of fantastic. Wouldn’t object to paying for the series if it was all on one channel.
    It’s really great TV.

  2. Absolutely lived every one. Great acting and cast played their roles Absolutely superb! Can’t wait for series 5! Such a fantastic series that made rewatch them again!

  3. Love both books and series, am glad the series doesn’t veer too far from the books. The actors playing Strike and Robin do a wonderful job of bringing the characters to life.

  4. Absolutely love it…love the casting, they work brilliantly together. Cant wait for season 5 but watched ghese ones over and over.

  5. Great Series but with Covid May be a longer wait!
    Hate the wait game but love Cormoran & Robin as detective partners. Partners outside of work?
    Hope so but must wait and see!

  6. I loved the TV series (found it accidentally, did not much Informationen about in Germany). Great actors! Hope there will be more episodes. P.S. Like how theme of feminism is is highlighted – really good and healthy. Thumbs up!

  7. I loved the books and I love the tv series. I hope the pandemic can give them time to film Troubled blood, because I am keen to watch it!!! And I hope J.K.Rowling keeps writing more stories about Cormoran and Robin, I hope so!!!
    Kind regards from Valencia, Spain.

  8. Loved the books and the TV series. The actors are a perfect match to the book characters. I can’t wait for more…

    • In hbo max there are four seasons, but it is divided into two seasons.
      season 1 – the cuckoo’s calling
      season 2 – the silkworm
      season 3 – career of evil
      season 4 – lethal white

    • In hbo max there are four seasons, but it is divided into two seasons.
      season 1 – the cuckoo’s calling
      season 2 – the silkworm
      season 3 – career of evil
      season 4 – lethal white

  9. Thoroughly enjoyed both books and tv series. Cant wait for more! So much better than most . Really hate waiting so long between episodes…

  10. So happy to hear there will be a new season. Couldn’t get thru even the 1st Galbraith (Rowling) novel, but the tv series is wonderful.

  11. I will be watching and rewatching
    Casting these actors in the main roles was beyond my expectations. True to my imagination while reading this great series.

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