Guilt season 2 cast: who stars in BBC drama with Mark Bonnar and Sarah Vickers - and where to watch series 1

The BBC Two show, set in Scotland, won a BAFTA award for series one

BBC Two’s award-winning drama Guilt is back for a second series, following critical acclaim for the initial series.

Series One aired in 2019 and concluded with leading character Max (Mark Bonnar) being led off in handcuffs.

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The series won a Scottish BAFTA in 2020 for Best TV Drama, while it was described by The Independent as "the unexpected treat of the year” and a "darkly delicious tale" by The Guardian.

So, who has returned for the second series? This is what you need to know.

Mark Bonnar as Max McCall

Bonnar stars as lead character Max McCall, an ex-lawyer, who has just come out of prison after serving time for manslaughter.

He killed a man when he knocked him over while drunk at the beginning of series one.

Bonnar, 52, is best known for his role as Max in Guilt, but also starred as Duncan Hunter in Shetland, Bruno Jenkins in Casualty, Detective Finney in Psychoville and DCC Mike Dryden in Line of Duty.

Speaking to the BBC ahead of series two, he said: “What I enjoy about playing Max the most is that he can turn on a sixpence if the situation requires, and that’s a very sexy, devilish quality we all admire.”

“I think he’s very high energy and fast thinking. He is voraciously clever, manipulative and a survivor, who is comfortable in all companies,” he added.

Sara Vickers as Erin

Sara Vickers as Erin (Picture: BBC)

New to the Guilt cast is Sara Vickers, who you might recognise from her role as Joan Thursday in detective drama Endeavours and as Ms. Crookshanks, a main character in HBO’s Watchmen (2019).

Her acting credits also include BBC’s Shetland series three, The Crown and BBC drama Bert and Dickie.

For Guilt, she plays the role of Erin, who is struggling to come to terms with her family life and dodgy dealings of her father (Roy) which has had a huge impact on her mother (Maggie).

Speaking of joining the cast, Vickers said: It was a total no-brainer for me. I just loved the first series and the pressure was on to try and do as much justice to this one is as possible, which hopefully, fingers crossed, we’ve managed.”

Stuart Bowman as Roy Lynch

Stuart Bowman as Roy Lynch (Picture: BBC)

Dundee-born actor Stuart Bowman is best known for his role as head of MI5, Stephen Hunter-Dunn in the BBC’s Bodyguard.

He takes on the role of Roy for series two, formerly played by Scottish acting legend Bill Paterson (Truly Madly Deeply; Fleabag, Wives and Daughters).

Despite replacing Patterson, Bowman said he felt daunted initially but soon made the character his own.

Bowman added: “I watched the first series as soon as it came out. I was a huge fan, so it was a real joy to get into something so beautifully written.”

He plays the role of the father of Erin and estranged husband of Maggie. He is quite a mysterious character but his loyalties lie with his family and he struggles to keep his relationship with his daughter afloat.

Emun Elliot as Kenny

Emun Elliot as Kenny (Picture: BBC)

Kenny is Max’s longtime friend but Max has betrayed him in the past and Kenny has been vulnerable to such things due to his alcohol dependency.

Emun Elliot returns as Kenny, who first starred in series one. Elliot’s other acting credits include Dr. Christian King in Paradox, Richie in Threesome and John Moray in The Paradise.

In series two, we see his character sobered up and attempting to rebuild his life, including gaining visitation to his young children. Max is out of prison and desperate to get back on his feet, but Kenny is wary of supporting Max.

Emun Elliot told the BBC that he sympathises with his character, but is “not very similar to Kenny at all.”

Elliot added: “We all know what it’s like to feel betrayed. We all look up to certain people who are perhaps not the greatest influence...Kenny is a kind man. I hope my friends would say the same about me.”

Phyllis Logan as Maggie

Scottish actress Logan is best known for her role as Lady Jane Felsham in Lovejoy and Mrs Hughes in Downton Abbey.

The BAFTA award winning star is new for series two of Guild, and she told the BBC she was a huge fan of the original series.

“I watched season one and I just loved it. I mean, Neil Forsyth is such a great writer and there was everything in there and more,” she said of series screenwriter Forsyth (Playhouse; Eric, Ernie and Me).

She added: “There are twists and turns and the characters are so full on but in that completely believable but almost cartoony sort of way.  It’s so rooted in our reality of that slight underworld that’s knocking about Glasgow and Edinburgh and it just captures that so well.”

Her character was involved in a car accident and now lives in a sheltered housing care facility, but the BBC tease that everything is not as it seems with Maggie.

Rochelle Neil as Yvonne

Rochelle Neil as Yvonne (Picture: BBC)

Rochelle Neil is an actress, known for Terminator: Dark Fate (2019), The Nevers (2021) and Das Boot (2018).

For Guilt, she stars as lawyer and recent divorcee, Yvonne.

Neil said of her character: “we meet her as a woman with many secrets, trying her best to make amends.”

Yvonne is also a recovering alcoholic and the viewers first meet her at an AA meeting as she attempts to overcome her addiction and keep her job on track.

Asked why she took on the role, she told the BBC: “I was intrigued to explore how a person comes back from their rock bottom. The juggling act between heart and head. Also Neil’s writing is wonderful.”

Also, returning for series two is Sandy McDade (The Lady Vanishes), Henry Pettigrew (Line of Duty) and Robin Laing (River City).

Also joining the cast is Gary Tank Commander star Greg McHugh, as Teddy.

When is Guilt series 2 on TV?

Guilt returned to BBC Two on 14 October and airs weekly on Wednesdays at 10pm.

All episodes are now available on BBC iPlayer, series one is also available on iPlayer.