“A 21st century take on the classic 8th century hero”, new 12-part fantasy adventure series Sinbad launches on Sky1 this summer.
The cast includes newcomer Elliot Knight as Sinbad, alongside Lost’s Naveen Andrews as Sinbad’s nemesis, Lord Akbari; Orla Brady (Fringe) as the evil Taryn; Sophie Okonedo (Doctor Who) as Razia, Queen of the Water-Thieves; and Timothy Spall (Harry Potter) as Anicetus, The Old Man of the Sea.
Sunday 8th July 2012, 7pm
When street rat Sinbad accidentally kills Lord Akbari’s son, Akbari kills Sinbad’s brother Jamil in revenge. Sinbad escapes, but his grandmother Safia places a curse on him that until he atones for his sins he can’t stay on dry land for more than 24 hours.
Sinbad stows away on the Providence, but magical sea creatures attack and all on board die except for Sinbad; Anwar, the ship’s doctor; Gunnar, a Norse trader; Nala, a noblewoman on the run; Rina, a thief; and the ship’s Cook.
Sunday 15th July 2012, 7pm
The crew are captured by water-thieves, a feral tribe. Sinbad tries to seduce their fierce leader Razia (Sophie Okonedo) to save himself, but despite satisfying her, he learns she will kill him that night. Sinbad escapes with the help of Razia’s chained Roc, a giant mythical bird, and creates a diversion allowing his friends to escape.
Sinbad returns to Razia’s chamber and frees the Roc, but Razia attacks him. As his curse kicks in and is about to destroy him, the Roc swoops in and rescues Sinbad.
Sunday 22nd July 2012, 7pm
When Anwar loses The Providence in a bet to merchant Abdul-Fahim (Ashley Walters), Sinbad confides in Anwar about the curse – he will die unless they get the ship back.
The gang follow Abdul-Fahim to a gaming-house and Sinbad wins back the ship. But the twisted gaminghouse owners, twins Faris (Iain McKee) and Essam (Iain McKee), challenge Sinbad to free his friends from a series of enchanted rooms before his curse kills him. He succeeds, but his friends have to drag him back to the Providence. When he recovers he comes clean about his curse.
Sunday 29th July 2012, 7pm
Running low on water with Cook severely dehydrated, the crew find a strange old man on a deserted ship. They are unaware it is Death come to reclaim his bride, Nala, who ranaway from their ritual wedding.
Nala agrees to wed Death, believing it will bring back her dead father. Realising who the old man is, Sinbad rushes to save Nala, but in vain. It is only when Death accidentally reveals he has no knowledge of Nala’s grief that the spell breaks and Nala escapes. The rain comes, reviving Cook.
Sunday 5th August 2012, 7pm
Gunnar and Sinbad are ambushed by the Khaima, a band of warriors, who avenge injustice. Their leader, Obsidian (Carsten Norgaard), sentences Gunnar to death for his brutal Viking past.
Taryn (Orla Brady) creates a magical Stalker, which hunts down Sinbad at the Khaima camp just as Obsidian is about to kill Sinbad and Gunnar. The Khaima slash at the Stalker, but it repairs itself. As Gunnar urges, Sinbad defeats the Stalker by mastering his anger. Obsidian pardons Gunnar and invites him to join the Khaima, but Gunnar declines.
Sunday 12th August 2012, 7pm
The tables are turned this week when it’s Sinbad who requires rescuing. Following a far from friendly encounter with a snappy sea creature, he awakes in the company of his mysterious (not to mention aesthetically-pleasing) rescuer, Roisin (Georgia King).
Life at sea is lonely so you can’t blame our hero for falling for Roisin’s charms, but don’t go expecting a soft-focus romance. No ordinary girl, Roisin has a penchant for pinching memories and has set her sights on Sinbad’s, though she didn’t bank on a rat-smelling Rina.
Taryn and Akbari have also concocted another fiendish plan to snag Sinbad – and this one hits our hero where it hurts. All is not as it seems when he receives a vision of his grandmother calling out for help and heads back to Basra…
Sunday 19th August 2012, 7pm
Sinbad is back in Basra to rescue his grandmother, unaware that it’s a trap set by Akbari and Taryn. Our hero’s hometown has undergone a few changes since he set sail, and they’re not for the better. Akbari’s tyranny has forced many residents to flee and its scholars and scientists are being rounded up in witch hunts to make way for the
return of old magic; by old, read evil.
Worried about his doctor father, Anwar races off with Rina to find his parents and get them to safety. Thankfully, they’re fine. In fact, despite everything that’s happening around them, they’re acting normal – suspiciously so.
With Akbari’s coronation looming, Sinbad couldn’t have picked a worse day for a spot of heroics. Not only is Basra teeming with Akbari’s armed-to-theteeth men, but Taryn has flipped through her recipe book of nasties and summoned the Shadows, who take a particular ‘liking’ to Gunnar and Nala. Calling in a favour with a seemingly trustworthy friend, Sinbad sneaks into the palace to find Safia… and Akbari and Taryn. Their plan has come together nicely, until the latter decides to spring a lastminute
Sunday 26th August 2012, 7pm
While Sinbad and co rush into action with scant regard for the consequences, Anwar feels his more thoughtful (some would say sensible) approach to perilous situations is mere proof of his lily-livered uselessness. It just so happens that the Doc is having these doubts on his birthday, which none of them have remembered.
Things look up, though, when the gang enjoy a spot of treasure-hunting on an island, with Anwar making the biggest find in the form of a great big box. Counting their chickens, they imagine riches beyond their wildest dreams so are surprised when the box reveals itself to be a teenage girl called Kuji (Hannah Tointon).
Sorry not girl, God. The ragtag crew, understandably, are stumped by Kuji’s revelation that she is, in fact, a deity, an Almighty claim that Sinbad, Gunnar and Rina immediately dismiss. Anwar, however, doesn’t judge so snappily, rightfully so when an army appears demanding Kuji’s return by sunset the next day. Or else.
Sunday 2nd September 2012, 7pm
Following Kuji’s couldn’t-be-vaguer musing that he must prepare for a big journey, Sinbad is eager to find out exactly what the future holds. Handily, a stone exists that predicts just that. Not so handily, the mythic MacGuffin is hidden away in a deadly maze protected by a group of guardsman known asthe Order of the Stone and some poisonous darts.
Somebody else hungry to get their hands on it is Riff (Lee Ingleby, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban), the son of Azdi (Mark Lewis-Jones, Stella)head of the Order. Tired of his dad’s reluctance to share the predictive powers of the stone, Riff bumps into Sinbad and the gang and agrees to get them into the maze using a key stolen from his father.
That’s when the trouble starts. Azdi is none-toopleased to see our young hero and understandably so – the stone revealed that Azdi would meet his maker via the pointy end of a sword handled by a killer bearing a striking resemblance to Sinbad. Throw in Tiger (Tuppence Middleton, Sirens), a bounty hunter hired by Taryn, and it’s an especially eventful episode of the homegrown epic.
Sunday 9th September 2012, 7pm
Tiger is proving to be a worthy addition to the team. Not only does she have information on how to get to the Land of the Dead, but the bounty hunter has secured Sinbad and co a lucrative deal to transport a professor to her desired destination. Hand luggage is permitted and hers is a giant egg.
Any hopes that it’s a chocolate one are dashed when the professor reveals that it requires regular washing. Anwar probes a little deeper and discovers that she’s planning to use the object to bring life to a barren island, but suspicions arise after the island is revealed to be inhabited already.
Consider these suspicions fully aroused and completely justified, then, when Anwar misses his dousing shift and wakes up to find a lot of egg shell, the food store ransacked and a terrifying snake-like demon in their midst. OK, maybe Tiger missed the mark with this one…
Sunday 16th September 2012, 7pm
Sinbad and the gang make their way to a monastery in the hope that Tiger’s friend, Brother Angelico, will point them in the right direction of the Land of the Dead – unsurprisingly, an awkward place to find. Wanting no part of the mission, Gunnar turns his hand to silk trading instead. Even that proves troublesome when the Providence’s toughest crewmate falls for the charms of Lara, a new widower whose husband met a grisly end courtesy of the Fiend, a beast which, according to the islanders, comes with the wind. And it’s about to get decidedly breezy…
Bitten by an altogether different monster of the green-eyed variety, a jealous Father La Stressa (Dougray Scott) spots Gunnar and Lara kissing and weaves a tall tale that frames Gunnar as the Fiend. It falls to Sinbad and his friends to prove their comrade’s innocence by finding the real culprit.
Could it be that Taryn has turned over a newleaf and started to atone for her sins? You’d be forgiven for thinking so when the sorceress is spied at the same monastery dressed up as a nun.Alas, it is merely a disguise and an even more out-of-character one awaits when Taryn tries to hitch a ride.
Sunday 23rd September 2012, 7pm
Flashbacks help explain even Taryn’s most morally dubious/diabolical actions. A grieving mother, the sorceress will do anything to reach the Land of the Dead and bring back her daughter Alehna, played by Harry Potter favourite Evanna Lynch. On board the Providence and Taryn – still in the guise of Tiger – is closer than ever to reaching the destination when Sinbad and the crew find the entrance: the vortex of a whirpool. Well, it was never going to be a simple rat-a-tat-tat on your everyday door.
Finding themselves in the City of Limbo, they soon realise that they’re not alone. The City is monitored by gigantic creatures called Guardians, who latch onto and ‘enlighten’ lost souls, forcing them to recognise the truth of their death. In our young hero’s case, this involves a disconcerting trip to an alternate, much more unpleasant Basra, where friends Gunnar, Anwar and Rina, and even brother Jamil, have no idea who he is.
It falls to Taryn, knocked out of Tiger’s body by Gunnar (quite literally), to work her magic and save Sinbad. Still dazed and confused, Sinbad decides to take drastic action, until a much-missed face comes to his rescue… Jamil. The brothers are reunited once more and, paying it forward, they help Taryn find Alehna. This is no happy ending, however, and only one loved one will make it out of the Land of the Dead, and, even then, they’re not quite who they seem to be.
What do you think of Sinbad so far? Let us know below…