While we're just coming to terms with the idea of summer being over, it seems that the TV world already has Christmas on the agenda. Ghosts is returning to BBC One this September with a second series as well as a bonus one-off Christmas special. Thankfully, we don't have to start planning our socially distanced Christmas dinners just yet, with six new episodes to keep us entertained as we head into autumn.
For those who may have forgotten – or entirely missed out on – what happened in the first series of Ghosts, let us get you up to speed. Having unexpectedly inherited an old stately home from a distant relative, young married couple Alison and Mike (Charlotte Ritchie and Kiell Smith-Bynoe) decide to turn it into a business venture. But the pair's aim to create a luxe hotel in the British countryside soon starts to go wrong when they discover that the property is haunted by a gaggle of ghosts.
Furious at the idea of turning their beloved mansion into a tourist attraction, the ghouls band together to dismantle the plan, which ends with Alison being pushed out of a large window. When she recovers from her two-week stint in hospital, she can see the spirits in all their glory. With no way of evicting them from their forever home, Alison and Mike are forced to make peace with sharing a house with a group of multigenerational ghosts, even if it means putting their business dreams on hold.
So what have the gang at Button Hall been up to since then? Episode one picks up as Alison and Mike are tasked with finding other purposes for the gigantic, run-down house. Strapped for cash, they decide to tap into the plethora of poltergeist enthusiasts on the internet (who call themselves "paranormal vloggers") by setting up ghost-hunting tours around the property. Enlisting the help of a neanderthal, a witch, an un-PC politician and the house’s original Edwardian owner, Alison implores the spirits to "go full ghost" when the visitors arrive. Unfortunately for Alison, some of Button Hall’s inhabitants are determined to keep their existence a secret and when the guests turn up, they interfere with her paranormal activity plans.
For those entering the world of Ghosts for the first time, the best way to describe the comedy style is probably as a grown-up version of CBBC’s Horrible Histories – which makes sense, given that the show is made by the same creators. With many of the writers also acting in the series (you'll probably spend the first 10 minutes trying to place everyone from Shouty Man to William Shakespeare), the overall feeling is that of a silly sitcom which works just as well for granny as it does your little brother, making it perfect for easy family viewing.
The appearance of the plague victims might feel a tad close to the bone in 2020 but the show is largely filled with light lols, offering historically accurate jokes and physical comedy in equal measure. Over six short episodes, season two details the fractious and friendly relationships between the homeowners and their ghostly housemates, chronicling Alison and Mike's misadventures as they try to make Button Hall a financial success. With a third series already commissioned for 2021, it seems safe to assume that the ghosts almost certainly end up getting in the way of their big business plans.
The second series of Ghosts premieres on Monday 21st September at 8.30pm on BBC One.