In his first screen drama, best-selling British novelist Patrick Gale tells two gay love stories, 60 years apart – stories linked by family, and by a painting that holds a secret that echoes down the generations.

As part of the BBC’s Gay Britannia season, it will be showing the mini series Man In The Orange Shirt on BBC 2. The show features a cast which includes Oscar-winning actress Vanessa Redgrave, David Gyasi, Oliver Jackson-Cohen and James McArdle.

What is Man In An Orange About?

Man in an Orange Shirt charts the challenges and huge changes to gay lives from the Second World War to the present: In 1944, British Army Captain Michael Berryman (Oliver Jackson-Cohen) meets war artist Thomas March (James McArdle) in Southern Italy while chaos reigns all around them. Despite having a young fiancé, Flora (Joanna Vanderham), waiting at home for him, straight-laced Michael finds himself falling for Thomas’ bohemian charms. In 2017, an ageing Flora (Redgrave) looks on as her grandson, Adam (Julian Morris), tentatively forms a relationship with his client Steve (David Gyasi) in a more accepting world. But while the external obstacles have fallen away, a minefield of internalised issues and dangerous temptations still line the road to happiness.

When will Man In An Orange show on BBC 2?

The first of two episodes of Man In An Orange Shirt will be broadcast on BBC 2 on July 31 at 9 pm. It will be available shortly after on BBC’s iPlayer.

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The show was commissioned by the BBC to mark the 50th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality in England and Wales.