Life sucks…and then you die…and after that…things get a bit unpredictable

The Fades is about the world itself being an extraordinary thing and how you battle it. This old school fantasy element combined with some pretty original characters - I hope is what will make people want to watch.”Jack Thorne
Date: 19.12.2011     Last updated: 18.03.2014 at 18.14
Category: BBC Worldwide
The Fades, the coming of age fantasy drama from writer Jack Thorne (This is England ’86, Skins, Shameless), earned critical acclaim in the UK and is now set to premiere in the US on January 14 as part of BBC AMERICA’s Supernatural Saturday. Seventeen-year-old geek Paul (Iain De Caestecker, Young Herriot) is haunted by apocalyptic dreams that his therapist can’t explain. Neither can best friend and fellow social outcast, Mac (Daniel Kaluuya, Johnny English Reborn), or unsympathetic and much cooler twin sister, Anna (Lily Loveless, Skins). But trying to fit in becomes the least of Paul and Mac’s worries, as Paul’s horrific dreams become a reality and they are embroiled in a battle between the living and the dead. The Fades premieres Saturday, January 14, 9:00pm ET/PT on Supernatural Saturday.

Natalie Dormer (The Tudors, Captain America: The First Avenger), Johnny Harris (Snow White and the Huntsman), Joe Dempsie (Game of Thrones, Skins), and Tom Ellis (Merlin) also star in this smart new series that embraces both comedy and horror. 

Paul and Mac love comic books, video games, riding bicycles and talking about - but not particularly with - girls. Their stats are on par with your average social outcasts. But for a long time, Paul’s mind has been filled with dark nightmares of an abandoned world where the sky rains ash.  Worse still, Paul has started to see things - horrible creatures that aren’t human. Then late one night, his dreams start to become real. As fate would have it, Paul meets Neil (Johnny Harris) and his nightmares - though still terrifying - start to make more sense. Neil explains that the things he can see are Fades.  Paul is special - he’s one of a small group of people who can see them.

Fades are the ghosts or spirits of human beings. Everyone who dies becomes a Fade. They cannot be seen, heard, smelt or touched by the living, and they are completely unable to interact with our world. The Fades should ascend, but for some reason, that isn’t happening. They’re trapped in a world they can’t experience.  And now an embittered and vengeful Fade has found a way to break the barrier between the dead and the living.

Soon the fate of humanity rests in the hands of two best friends who already have enough trouble surviving high school, let alone saving the world.

Creator Jack Thorne on the series: "What makes The Fades different is that it is a fantasy show rather than a science fiction show. It's about fairly ordinary people, none of these people act or behave like they're superheroes. The Fades is about the world itself being an extraordinary thing and how you battle it. This old school fantasy element combined with some pretty original characters - I hope is what will make people want to watch.”

"I think The Fades is a love story between Mac and Paul. As a kid I didn't have a best friend that I could share everything with and could be a team with, and this show is about a kid that's got one – it's a love story about two best friends.”

Following The Fades premiere on BBC AMERICA, the next special of The Nerdist premieres at 10:00pm ET/PT and features host Chris Hardwick’s interview with star Lily Loveless in London.

Note to editors

Twitter: @BBCAMERICA Hashtags: #TheFades




Paul                                         Iain De Caestecker (Young Herriot, River City)

Mac                                          Daniel Kaluuya (Skins, Johnny English Reborn)

Neil                                         Johnny Harris (Snow White and the Huntsman, Whitechapel

Jay                                            Sophie Wu (Kick-Ass, The Other Man)

Sarah                                       Natalie Dormer (The Tudors, Captain America: The First Avenger)

Mark                                       Tom Ellis (Merlin, EastEnders)

Helen                                       Daniela Nardini (This Life, Reckless)

Anna                                        Lily Loveless (Skins, Bedlam)

Meg                                          Claire Rushbrook (Whitechapel, Ashes to Ashes)

Natalie                                     Jenn Murray (The Day of the Triffids)

PC Phillip Firth                         Theo Barklem-Biggs (The Inbetweeners Movie, EastEnders)   

DC Armstrong                         Robbie Gee (Snatch)

Writer                                     Jack Thorne (This is England ’86, Skins, Shameless)

Director                                   Farren Blackburn (Survivors, Silent Witness)

Director                                   Tom Shankland (The Children, Clocking Off)

Executive Producer                  Susan Hogg (Waking the Dead, Lark Rise to Candleford, Survivors

Producer                                  Caroline Skinner (Doctor Who, Five Days)



Episode 1

Paul struggles with home and school life as apocalyptic visions haunt his dreams and a supernatural creature stalks his home town. When he crosses paths with an outcast loner named Neil, who can explain what Paul is seeing, his life is transformed. Episode 1 premieres Saturday, January 14, 9:00p.m. ET/PT.

Episode 2

Neil goes underground to begin planning his fight back against the Fades and as Paul's terrifying visions continue, Neil takes him to see an ancient Fade, who foresees Paul's importance in the looming battle. Realizing how high the stakes have become, Paul decides the upcoming school dance will be his farewell to his old life. Meanwhile, Detective Constable (DC) Armstrong continues to investigate the growing number of missing persons cases in the town, completely unaware that they are being slaughtered by the Fades. Episode 2 premieres Saturday, January 21, 9:00p.m. ET/PT.

Episode 3

As Paul's powers manifest themselves, his friendship with Mac and relationship with Jay are pushed to the breaking point. Meanwhile, a host of new Angelics arrive in town just as the Fades' plans evolve in a chilling new direction. Episode 3 premieres Saturday, January 28, 9:00p.m. ET/PT.

Episode 4

Up is down and black is white as Paul's family and friends struggle to cope in the aftermath of his accident. Meanwhile, the Angelics are torn apart by moral compromises and a strange new man with deadly intentions moves relentlessly through town. Episode 4 premieres Saturday, February 4, 9:00p.m. ET/PT.

Episode 5

Paul came back to life for a reason, but he's just not sure what that reason might be. Meanwhile, more Fades are being reborn and nothing can stop them. As they infiltrate the town, Paul's home life and Angelic life are put on a collision course. Episode 5 premieres Saturday, February 11, 9:00p.m. ET/PT.

Episode 6

A town left deserted, an Angelic on the edge of desperation, a Fade on the cusp of victory and a reluctant 17 year-old boy with visions of the apocalypse—it all leads to this final showdown. People will die. Ash will fall. It is inevitable. Episode 6 premieres Saturday, February 18, 9:00p.m. ET/PT.



“Fantasy series The Fades joins Misfits, Skins and Being Human in demonstrating that youth drama is among the most bold and innovative on TV.” – Guardian

“It’s the chemistry between Iain de Caestecker’s Paul and Daniel Kaluuya as Mac that lifts The Fades above your standard ghost-busting romp.” – Metro

“This battle between good and evil exerted a mighty grip, demanding repeat viewing as soon as the credits faded away...How often can you say that about a TV show? The good news? The pearly gates were left open, hinting at a second series." – Independent


Paul played by Iain De Caestecker

At 17-years-old, Paul’s one of those kids who’s never quite figured out how to fit in. But, beneath his geeky exterior lies something quite extraordinary and beautiful...if the word “ethereal” was meant to describe someone, it would be Paul. Other than to his best friend Mac, he talks only when he needs to, feeling as though anything he might say would probably be under-appreciated. He’s always known he was different, wishing he could just be normal and fit in. In some ways his journey through the series is the journey of someone who learns being different can be great. Paul is special; it’s as simple and as complicated as that.

Mac played by Daniel Kaluuya

Unlike Paul, Mac has no problem talking. A hive of knowledge and theories, he is almost a walking encyclopedia of geeky film quotes. Mac has a lot to communicate and seemingly not a lot of time. The son of a police detective under pressure, Mac would always say he’s cool with his place in the world. The truth is, Mac doesn’t want to be this invisible person that people walk through. Mac and Paul have always been a double, but as Paul develops his Angelic powers, Mac feels increasingly left out. He may not have any special powers, but Mac is also our hero – he’s Paul’s wingman and right at the heart of everything.

Anna played by Lily Loveless

Paul’s twin sister – and far from identical. She’s witty, acerbic and the leader of the popular crowd. For Anna, being related to someone like Paul does not come easy – in fact, it’s a total embarrassment. Anna has always put fitting in above everything else, so to have someone twinned with her who clearly doesn’t fit in – well, it’s annoying. Anna is a teenager, she’s fierce, she’s uncompromising and she’s kind of wonderful.

Neil played by Johnny Harris

Afraid of nothing and afraid of everything, Neil is perhaps the unlikeliest warrior in the world. Generally unwashed and unshaven, Neil is an orphan who has left the conventional world behind to commit himself entirely to the Angelic cause. He lives on the edge and quite likes it there, because he can see everything. Teacher, learner, helper, Angelic, and a surprising mentor for Paul.

Sarah played by Natalie Dormer

Sarah is beautiful, complicated and damaged. Cursed by her powers and torn from the comfort of her loving home and family, she eventually managed to rebuild her life and find solace with her ex-husband, Mark –  before things went wrong all over again. Sarah can be tough and determined and is incredibly loyal. She is Juliet to Mark’s Romeo – hopelessly in love but always just out of reach.

Jay played by Sophie Wu

Jay makes the world better just by being in it. She’s one of those people who everyone likes. Good friends with Anna, she’s always been part of the popular, beautiful crowd. But, unlike Anna, she’s not afraid to do things differently...step outside of her circle of friends. She and Paul may be worlds apart in terms of social-standing and street-cred, but she sees something in him that she’s drawn to.

Helen played by Daniela Nardini

An Angelic with the ability to heal in one life, a vicar in her other - Helen is a powerful combination of strength and spirituality. She’s strong, determined, and a rock to Neil and Sarah. Wise and uncompromising at all times.


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