Years and Years, by Russell T Davies, is an epic saga that takes an ordinary family and catapults them through the next 15 years. As society changes, faster than ever, the Lyons will experience everything we hope for in the future, and everything we fear. They’ll fall in and out of love and grow old, fall apart and come back together, while constantly looking forward.
Each episode propels us a year or two ahead, following the lives of Daniel (Russell Tovey), Stephen (Rory Kinnear) and his wife Celeste (T’Nia Miller), sisters Rosie (Ruth Madeley) and Edith (Jessica Hynes), Gran Muriel (Anne Reid) and the family’s children, as they navigate a world made unstable by politics, the economy and technological advances.
But this isn’t a dark, fearful show. It’s full of wit, warmth, and hope.
Years and Years is about family. It shows how we survive against the backdrop of a political world in which you can’t tell right from left any more. The tone is fierce, funny, heartbreaking and, ultimately, shows one family’s determination to survive the future.
Vivienne Rook (Emma Thompson)
Businesswoman and entrepreneur, Viv’s a familiar face on modern media, always ready with a quote. But when she stands for Parliament and forms her own party, she begins an inexorable rise to power. She’s adored for speaking her mind, but what are her actual policies? And how far will she go to achieve them?
Muriel Deacon (Anne Reid)
Muriel Deacon (Anne Reid). Sharp as a knife. Wise, but opinionated. Proud and independent and defying the passing of time. She doesn’t sleep much. Enjoys a whisky. Her house is large, rambling and dilapidated. Mother to the late and much-missed Jennifer, she’s a devoted (and critical) grandmother to her beloved Lyons clan.
Stephen (Rory Kinnear)
Stephen Lyons (Rory Kinnear). The eldest. Lives in London while the rest of the Lyons stayed in Manchester. A financial adviser, he worked at home to bring up the kids while his wife Celeste went out to work. He’s the peacemaker, a calm, smiling man. Though he can afford to be - he’s rich. What will he become when his world is rocked?
Edith Lyons (Jessica Hynes)
The second child, she’s tough, wry, earthy, a bit of a hippy as a teenager. Always knew where to get hold of some weed. As an adult she’s become a fearless campaigner and something of an anarchist, with skills her family would find dodgy. She’s been travelling the world, but shocking events bring her home for good.
Daniel Lyons (Russell Tovey)
A housing officer in Manchester. He’s friendly, diligent and hardworking. Loves his family. Has a strong social conscience, but finds that hard to maintain in an ever-changing world. Daniels is going out with Ralph, and they’re about to get married, but maybe Daniel said yes too soon...
Rosie Lyons (Ruth Madeley)
The youngest Lyons, spirited, sharp, born with spina bifida. Single mother to Lee and Lincoln, by two different dads. Works as a chef manager in a local comprehensive school. She’s great fun and binds the family together, but Rosie will never forgive her dad for walking out on the Lyons family when she was young.
Celeste Bisme-Lyons (T’Nia Miller)
Married to Stephen. Chief Accountant, smart, stylish. A marvellous snob. Exasperated by modern technology. But she’s a proud mum to two daughters, Bethany and Ruby, and they have a comfortable life in a nice house in Barnsbury. One day, that life will feel like a distant dream.
Ralph Cousins (Dino Fetscher)
Primary school teacher. Always on his phone. Ralph’s the fun one, Daniel’s his straight man. They’ve been together for 18 months, married two years later. The end comes quicker and more brutally than Ralph could ever have predicted, and he takes a terrible revenge.
Viktor Goraya (Maxim Baldry)
Ukrainian refugee. Tortured in Ukraine for information about his friends. Nevertheless, he’s a kind, smiling man, a great survivor of his hardships, always looking for the positive side. Full of strength and laughter, Viktor is a source of great joy to Daniel, and will become the love of his life.
Bethany Bisme-Lyons (Lydia West)
Bethany Bisme-Lyons (Lydia West). Daughter to Stephen and Celeste. A brilliant student, Bethany is shy, quiet, withdrawn. But her introspection hides her secret passion. She’s obsessed with transhumanism, the culture of integrating humans with technology. But her ambition is in danger of taking her too far.
Ruby Bisme-Lyons (Jade Alleyne)
Daughter to Stephen and Celeste. Ruby’s fun and great company, enjoying everything the 21st Century has to offer. She’s a bit spoilt, unaware that her world is about to come crashing down.
Lee Lyons (Noah Wride, Blake Woods, Callum Woolford and Adam Little)
Rosie’s first-born son, his dad now lives in Slough with a new family, though that doesn’t cause Lee any grief. He’s a nice, home-loving lad, but as the estate he lives on gets rougher, Lee finds himself going outside the law.
Lincoln Lyons (Jett Moises, Aaron Ansari & Aiden Chan)
Rosie’s half-Chinese son. Lincoln is born in episode one. And as he grows up and watched the Lyons family changing around him, his story, over the next 15 years, is set to be the most radical and exciting of all.
Cast and Crew
Vivienne Rook - Emma Thompson Muriel Deacon - Anne Reid Stephen Lyons - Rory Kinnear Daniel Lyons - Russell Tovey Rosie Lyons - Ruth Madeley Edith Lyons - Jessica Hynes Celeste Bisme-Lyons T’Nia Miller Bethany Bisme-Lyons Lydia West Ruby Bisme-Lyons - Jade Alleyne Lee - Callum Woolford Lincoln - Jett Moises, Aaron Ansari and Aiden Chan Ralph Cousins - Dino Fetscher Viktor Goraya - Maxim Baldry
Nicola Shindler - Executive Producer Michaela Fereday - Executive Producer & Head of Production Russell T Davies - Executive Producer, Creator & Writer Karen Lewis - Producer Simon Cellan Jones - Director, Executive Producer Lisa Mulcahy - Director