Confused Shakespeare & Hathaway fans all saying same thing as season 4 abruptly ends

BBC Daytime fave is over too soon

Shakespeare & Hathaway season 4 finally landed on BBC One on Monday, February 14 with an amazing cast.

But how many episodes are there?

The Stratford-upon-Avon-based series stars two of Britain’s best-known faces and a plethora of guest stars.

Here’s all you need to know about season 4.

Shakespeare & Hathaway season 4
The Shakespeare & Hathaway cast is led by Mark Benton and Jo Joyner (Credit: BBC)

How many episodes of Shakespeare & Hathaway season 4?

Alas, it’s another short run of the immensely popular series – just nine episodes. The final new episode aired on Thursday, February 24.

Viewers were gutted. One wrote on Twitter: “On today of all days the last episode in the new series of Shakespeare& Hathaway was the perfect antidote.

“Everyone in it is great but a special mention to Patrick for his funny undercover disguises. You all look like you are having fun.”

Another said: “Another fab series. Great stories and fab cast. Love all the Shakespeare references. When is series 5 coming?”

Some were confused about the number of episodes…

One said: “Is there an ep 10 in this season of Shakespeare and Hathaway orrrr i’m confused.”

Another echoed this: “I thought there would be 10 eps? Why only 9?”

And a third noted: “Is there a tenth episode? If so where is it? When will it be shown? IMDb says it’s titled “No More Desire a Rose”?

Previous series have featured 10 episodes.

Fans can still get their fix – there’s a repeat from series three airing on Friday, February 25.

Frank and Lu are hired to investigate a fire at an award-winning salon, with owner Odette convinced that her old friend and now rival Isobel is behind the blaze and a number of other acts of sabotage.

The episode features a guest appearance from Sally Lindsay.

And from next Monday, February 28, the whole of season one will be repeated.

Will there be Shakespeare & Hathaway Season 5?

Well, sadly nothing has been confirmed yet. But cross those fingers and we will keep you posted.

Hopefully the commissioning suits will take one look at the feedback on social media and make that right decision!

Jo Joyner and Mark Benton’s bond

Former EastEnders star Jo Joyner and former Waterloo Road and The Syndicate star Mark Benton reprise their roles as Luella Hathaway and Frank Shakespeare respectively.

Read more: Ex EastEnders actress Jo Joyner: Who is she and how did she leave the BBC soap?

In an interview with ED! and other journalists, Jo said: “Mark is an incredibly generous actor with no huge ego. That always makes it easier because you’re on an equal footing.

Mark added: “Jo is amazing, too.”

Shakespeare & Hathaway season 4 - who are the guest stars?
Sebastian in one of his disguises (Credit: BBC)

Who are the regulars in Shakespeare & Hathaway?

Aside from Frank and Lu, there are other characters that appear on a regular basis.

As ever they’re joined by their undercover assistant and master of disguise, Sebastian Brudenell.

Sebastian is played by Patrick Walshe McBride, who has also appeared in Lewis and Dracula.

“He’s the third cog in the wheel,” Mark says.

In the past Roberta Taylor (Irene Raymond in EastEnders) and Tomos Eames were also part of the recurring cast.

Former Casualty star Charles Dale in Shakespeare and Hathaway
It’s Big Mac! (Credit: BBC)

Shakespeare & Hathaway season 4 guest stars: Episode 1, If It Be A Man’s Work

The opening episode – If It Be A Man – sees former Hollyoaks star Jonno Davies guest star as a CEO whose company is hit by a cyber attack.

Also appearing in the episode is Arther Hughes (from The Innocents) and Naomi Yang, who recently appeared in Sky’s forensic crime drama Wolfe.

And look out for Charles Dale – who played Big Mac in Casualty for years.

Ruthie Henshall and Danny John Jules in Shakespeare and Hathaway
Ruthie and Danny in episode two (Credit: BBC)

Shakespeare & Hathaway season 4 guest stars: Episode 2, If Music Be The Food Of Love

In this ballroom-themed episode, former I’m A Celebrity campmate and West End musical star Ruthie Henshall plays a dance school owner.

Former Strictly star Danny John Jules also appears alongside Charlotte Avery, who played Tina Stewart in EastEnders in 2005.

We also saw Leila Mimmack (Love, Lies and Records, and Home Fires) who can be seen in the upcoming BritBox series Murder In Provence.

Rosalind Halstead in Shakespeare and Hathaway
Rosalind’s character meets an unfortunate end (Credit: BBC)

Shakespeare & Hathaway season 4 guest stars: Episode 3, Too Much Water

Former Waterloo Road, Holby City and Agatha Raisin star Jamie Glover plays boat hire businessman Jonathan in this episode.

Another former Holby star – Rosalind Halstead (who also appeared in The Trial of Christine Keeler) – plays Jonathan’s unfortunate wife, Ophelia.

Also in this episode is Marcella star Ben Cura and Tamla Kuri, who we’ll see next in ITV’s new version of The Ipcress File.

Former star of The Crown in Shakespeare and Hathaway
Caroline O’Neill starred in The Crown (Credit: BBC)

Episode 4, Most Wicked Speed

Canadian actor Kerry Shale plays a US private investigator who calls Frank and Lu for help on a case.

Former star of The Syndicate Sally Rogers appears, as does former Corrie actor Craig Gazey (he played Graeme Proctor in the soap).

Endeavour actress Caroline O’Neill (who plays Win Thursday in the ITV crime drama) also pops up.

Tracy-Ann Oberman and Wendy Nottingham in Shakespeare and Hathaway
Tracy-Ann and Wendy (Credit: BBC)

Episode 5, Hunger For Bread

We venture into the world of slimming clubs in episode five, and playing club owner Val, is musical star Jodie Prenger, best known as the winner of BBC talent show I’d Do Anything.

But wait… another big name appears in this episode. Former EastEnders legend Tracy-Ann Oberman plays Lu’s sister, Lia.

Abhin Galeya (who can be seen in BBC One medical drama This Is Going To Hurt as Dr Chowdry) and This Way Up star Ekow Quartey are also in the episode. As are Peaky Blinders actress Wendy Nottingham and Ackley Bridge star Sally Power.

There’s a lot going on in this story!

Former Ripper Street star Clive Russell in Shakespeare and Hathaway
Clive plays a sci-fi writer (Credit: BBC)

Episode 6, Die We Must

Clive Russell – who has appeared in Ripper Street (as Inspector Abberline), Game Of Thrones, and more recently in Lee Mack sitcom Semi Detached and Code 404 on Sky with Stephen Graham and Daniel Mays – plays a sci-fi author.

Former EastEnders star Tayla Kovacevic-Ebong (who played Charlie Savage in the soap), and experienced character actor Christopher Fairbank (who has been in LOADS of things) round off the guest cast.

Actress Gabriella Leon in Shakespeare and Hathaway
Gabriella in Shakespeare and Hathaway (Credit: BBC)

Episode 7, Some Cupid Kills

Gabriella Leon – who played Jade in Casualty – takes centre stage in this episode, along with another former Casualty star, Emily Woof (she also played DS Kerr in Corrie).

We also get star of The Crown, Marion Bailey (she played The Queen Mother).

Episode 8, And Rarest Parts

Barry Aird (Jonty Dunmore from Corrie) plays trainspotter Owen in this episode.

There’s also Katherine Bennett-Fox, Frankie Fox and David Nellist.

This Is Going To Hurt actress Yasmin Wilde in Shakespeare and Hathaway
Yasmin is also in This Is Going To Hurt (Credit: BBC)

Episode 9, Time Decays

Former Brookside star Choy-Ling Man and former Corrie star Paul Courtenay-Hyu play a couple, ahem, celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary.

Episode nine also features Yasmin Wilde (who’s in This Is Going To Hurt at the moment, as Benilda), as well as former Holby actress Elizabeth Cadwallader.

Shakespeare & Hathaway season 4 - who are the guest stars?
Timothy West in Shakespeare & Hathaway (Credit: BBC)

Who else has appeared in Shakespeare & Hathaway?

You can always guarantee that Shakespeare & Hathaway will have rafts of recognisable names as guest stars.

And a scan through previous episodes reveals some very famous faces.

Series three had some great names.

Former EastEnders star Tamzin Outhwaite appeared as a “feisty tiger mum”.

Read more: Ackley Bridge star Jo Joyner reveals why she quit and details EastEnders reunion plans

More Albert Square alumni also appeared in that third series – Josie Lawrence, Steve John Shepherd and Madhav Sharma.

And comedian Vic Reeves said of his role in the show: “It was one of my best acting experiences of last year, working with one of my best friends Mark Benton. And my new friend Jo Joyner.”

But that wasn’t all for series three – All Creatures Great And Small legend Christopher Timothy guested, as did former Corrie legend Sally Lindsay.

Rewind to series one, and there was veteran actor Timothy West, Gray O’Brien (who starred as Tony Gordon in Corrie).

Also in that series was comic actress Morgana Robinson and former This Life star Ramon Tikaram, former Emmerdale star Karl Davis (Robert Sugden) and Casualty favourite Chizzy Akudolu.

On to series two, and we loved appearances by Corrie’s Ray Fearon and Sian Reeves.

Shakespeare & Hathaway is on BBC One at 2.15pm on Monday, February 14.

Luella Joins Frank to Become a Private Investigator | Shakespeare & Hathaway: Private Investigators

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Nancy Brown
Associate Editor