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BBC Confirms "Luther" Will Return For 3rd Season + New Details On Release Structure

by Tambay A. Obenson
January 12, 2012 11:46 AM
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The second season aired last fall in the USA (earlier in the UK), but before its BBC America debut, BBC One announced that a 3rd season of Luther, the critically acclaimed psychological crime drama starring one Idris Elba, had been ordered!

Season 2 reportedly outperformed season 1, on average, attracting over 5 million viewers and was well received by critics.

Until, now, we really had no word as to what to expect with the upcoming season - like when it would air, and how many episodes it will have.

At a recent Broadcasting Press Guild Lunch in London, BBC head of drama Ben Stephenson confirmed that Luther has indeed been recommissioned, and, just like season 2, for four more 60-minute episodes

Now while I'm thrilled that the series is returning at all, I wish they'd expand each season past just 4 episodes. Season 1 was spread out over six 60-minute episodes; they curbed that number down to 4 60-minute episodes for season 2; and now we'll be getting the same deal for season 3. Try 6 episodes; or even 8 for a change.

Am I being selfish? :)

The BBC didn't reveal anything more than that, in terms of dates or content, although Idris did promise that there'd be even "more mayhem" he told Digital Spy in an interview.

And as already reported on S&A, Idris has long championed a big screen adaptation of the series, saying "the ultimate 'Luther' story will unfold on the big screen."

Given idris' schedule, I'd expect we'll see Luther season 3 sometime in mid 2012 first in the UK, and then later in the fall in the US.

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  • eugene | October 9, 2012 1:31 AMReply

    I have never took interest in shows I'm Mexican American I so I'm hard to impress with shows but Luther is a Well rounded show good cast great Stories and Very realistic. I'm sorry but this a show I do not Wish to end.

    Loyal mexIcan fan. Lol

  • blank | September 4, 2012 10:54 AMReply

    I 100 percent agree with Papa Joe Jackson and Sarah you are all raving about how good it is but moaning about the number of episodes. if there were more episodes then there would not be as much detail in each episode and plus the wait builds the suspense! :D oh and yh american things like that are shit!

  • sarah | September 4, 2012 10:45 AMReply

    "Now while I'm thrilled that the series is returning at all, I wish they'd expand each season past just 4 episodes. Season 1 was spread out over six 60-minute episodes; they curbed that number down to 4 60-minute episodes for season 2; and now we'll be getting the same deal for season 3. Try 6 episodes; or even 8 for a change."
    Typical yanks!!! thats the problem with tv series over there you want too many episodes!!! i think the rest f the uk would agree with me when i say less is more too many episodes ruins it!

  • June | July 29, 2012 8:44 PMReply

    Considering there isn't much to watch in the U.S.with all the reality shows, I am delighted to hear Luther is returning. He has quite a following amongst my friends. This show is a hidden gem. Publicize it more please, and 4 episodes in not enough.

  • amy | July 18, 2012 1:05 AMReply

    while i am also happy to see this show's return, i am *pissed* that the network would disrespect it's viewers by only offering 4 episodes. it's bs, really and truly. how in the world is it okay to wait all year for a favorite series to return, and then it only last a month. they're toying with us people! i think a "series" should take up more than 1/12 of the entire year. geez louise.

  • Rodney | June 11, 2012 10:11 PMReply

    Luther is hands down one of the best crime shows Ive watched. It would be a good look to see it have more then just four episodes, and then wait months for a new series. Amazing production along with actors!

  • Papa Joe Jackson | May 4, 2012 7:31 PMReply

    Any Luther is better than no Luther. Seriously excellent production team behind those shows, brought to the forefront by Idris' star power. Better than anything made here in the states.

  • Crystal-Lynn | March 19, 2012 1:18 PMReply

    It is extremely hard to find anything worth watching on TV these days. Being from Canada, when I found BBC Canada and Luther !!! I've been glued to the chanel and TV watching/waiting for the next episode. I even watch the reruns !!!! Please bring Luther back for more than just season 3. Guys, I love Idris, the way he plays Luther (and the entire cast of course). He has a certain flare that I havent seen for a long time on TV. Idris, please dont throw in the towel !! I am a true fan of the entire (most shows) BBC. Im in Luther withdrawl !

  • Vicky | May 4, 2012 7:23 PM

    Luther is such a good show, I know what you mean about withdrawl. In the meantime, I've been watching Whitechapel - really liking that show also. Found another British show from a few years ago, and really got into that too - Blood in the Wire. Happy watching!

  • Shantee | February 1, 2012 1:52 PMReply

    I cannot wait for this show to come back. Is their an exact day for the new season?

  • Cindy Linck | January 16, 2012 12:13 AMReply

    LUV LUV LUV Luther!!!! Soooo happy Idris Elba won the Golden Globe award tonight!! I agree, 4 episodes are not enough!!! We were spoiled by season 1. We want to see more of Luther!

  • Richard | January 13, 2012 7:32 AMReply

    The BBC has been having to make massive budget cuts during the last 2 years. TV drama has been especially badly effected, and standard drama series lengths have dropped from 6 episodes to 4. Shows with 90-minute episodes - like Sherlock - have always been 2 or 3 episodes long.
    Doctor Who gets 13 episodes because it's a US co-production, so has a much higher budget.

  • BEBE | November 10, 2012 8:37 PM

    Love Luther so happy to see it return as for dr. who have bigger budget booo , they need to transfer funds :D

  • Nicole | January 12, 2012 9:04 PMReply


  • slb | January 12, 2012 1:46 PMReply

    They're killing me with the 4 episode seasons. I would love to see more.

  • illthoughts | January 12, 2012 1:46 PMReply

    I love the show Luther. While I don't think we're clamoring for a 20 plus season I do believe we should have more than four. I think the minimum should be at least 6.

  • Dankwa Brooks | January 12, 2012 1:37 PMReply

    I think the episode commitment is just fine for all the reasons stated below PLUS, I'm one of the people who thought the Season One wrap was too quick and not paced. Luther wrapped up EVERYTHING in like one episode and it seemed rushed.

    Also, the American system of 23 episodes leads to A LOT of filler storylines. I'd rather have a tight set of stories featuring the main characters than some ancillary characters no one really cares about.

  • Jug | January 12, 2012 12:45 PMReply

    The irony of it is it's not entirely by design. While they do focus on character more than episodic plotlines built for commercial act breaks, the UK just doesn't have the industry to sustain 23 episodes of shows, so they have these short seasons. I mean, for real, the last season of LUTHER was 4 episodes. 4! They have that in the can before a show premieres here in the states. So these actors get to do multiple shows & films a year, plus theatre. But the flip side is they aren't getting paid like that, so they come to H-Wood. But I'm in total agreement, love LUTHER & Benedict was a monster in SHERLOCK, he destroyed. He was great in TINKER, TAILOR too.

  • Jai | January 12, 2012 12:22 PMReply

    I would love to see more than 4 episodes as well but as Josh already stated this is the norm for british tv.

  • starfishncoffee | January 12, 2012 12:14 PMReply

    Agreed. In the short season done right, you get the intensity, a tight narrative arc, and no throwaways. Just good story. Then the stars can have the time to go and do the other stuff they do. A longer season would keep Idris from being able to work on other projects.
    And yes, Josh, Sherlock is divine. Moffat, Gattis, Cumberbatch and Freeman are killing it in three long episodes.
    So so glad Luther is coming back.

  • Josh | January 12, 2012 11:50 AMReply

    Small season's are typical of British tv. I love it, ensure's quality. I highly reccomend you watch "Sherlock".

  • slb | January 12, 2012 1:47 PM

    @Josh: Sherlock is great. I caught season 1 on Netflix streaming back in November and was hooked. It's a great show. Haven't caught any of season 2 yet though.

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