ITV Vera fans distracted from Brenda Blethyn drama as fans 'cannot deal' with newcomer feature: 'Oh dear'

ITV Vera fans distracted from Brenda Blethyn drama as fans 'cannot deal' with newcomer feature: 'Oh dear'

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Alex Davies

By Alex Davies

Published: 15/01/2024

- 09:14

Updated: 16/01/2024

- 15:54

Brenda Blethyn's DCI Vera Stanhope faced a new mystery on Sunday evening

ITV viewers who tuned into Sunday evening's Vera were treated to the second feature-length instalment of the 13th series.

This time around, Brenda Blethyn's DCI Stanhope had to get to the bottom of a young girl's death, stumbling across a murky past filled with lies.

Gabi McSwain (played by Emily Kathryn) was the young girl who was found dead by the side of the railway after spending the past few months befriending Julia Sawalha's Helen Rushden.

The youngster had feigned that she was suffering from cancer prior to her grisly demise and had used the facade to lull Helen into a friendship.

All of these revelations came to the forefront of the drama within the episode's opening half-hour and while several viewers were hooked by the twists and turns, some fans had their attention diverted.

Many couldn't quite get on board with Sawalha's character Helen donning a Geordie accent, given the actor was born in London and sounded entirely different on Ab Fab.

Julia Sawalha

Julia Sawalha made her Vera debut on Sunday


Minutes into Sunday's episode, one viewer took to X, formerly Twitter, to say: "If you like me are watching Vera I simply cannot deal with Julia Sawalha with a Geordie accent, it’s like a whole different person #vera."

A second also spotted the feature: "Oh dear ...accent alerts... They try but stage school southerners cannot do a Geordie or Mackem accent #Vera."

Another weighed in: "Must be hard being cast in Vera and then realising you have to attempt a Geordie accent [laughing emoji] some of them are not bad to be fair #Vera."

While a fourth praised the episode - but still had their attention drawn from the drama: "Seriously think the Xmas one apart this has been the best #Vera yet - even with a plethora of wonky Geordie accents."

And a fifth was full of praise for Sawalha: "Another fab episode of #Vera. Nice to see @JuliaSawalha1 back on the telly. And her Geordie accent isn’t half bad either!" (sic)

Sawalha became a household name in the '90s after taking on the role of Saffron alongside Joanna Lumley and Jennifer Saunders in Ab Fab.

Since leaving the iconic sitcom, she's enjoyed cameos in Midsomer Murders, Marple, and Remember Me.

She also landed a recurring role in Lark Rise to Candleford between 2008 - 2011.

Brenda Blethyn

Brenda Blethyn's Vera will be back for the final episode of series 13 next week


Blethyn and returning star David Leon's Joe Ashworth will be back next week for the third and final film of the 13th series.

Titled Salt and Vinegar, the synopsis for the next week's instalment reads: "DCI Vera Stanhope investigates when the body of the co-owner of a chip shop is found in his own freezer.

"A seemingly successful entrepreneur and dedicated family man, Vera uncovers secrets, lies and some unforgivable behaviour as she tries to unwrap the case.

"Once the investigation begins, it soon becomes apparent that our enigmatic entrepreneur has left behind debts, broken promises, ruined lives and seriously interfered in family business that was not his own. Who is responsible for this unsavoury chip shop assault and battery?"

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