Broadcast Magazine has details of a leaked email which suggests that ITV chiefs are poised to axe prison drama Bad Girls.

Part of the broadcaster’s schedules since 1999, running annually, Bad Girls follows the lives of troubled women ‘banged up’ on G Wing at fictional women’s prison, Larkhall.

The prison staff also feature heavily with evil screw Jim Fenner central to most of the show’s storylines. The baddie – played by Jack Ellis – finally got his just deserts last year when he was stabbed to death with an ice dagger after pushing one inmate too far. Other notable characters include long-running ‘Top Dog’ Yvonne Atkins; kitchen mainstays Julie S and Julie J aka ‘the two Julies’; and bad-tempered warder Sylvia ‘Bodybag’ Hollamby.

Fans have suggested that the show’s soon-to-conclude eighth series has lacked something but the drama still draws a respectable audience and there is scope for a refresh should ITV be inclined to recommission it. However, the signs aren’t looking good…

Simon Shaps, the director of television at ITV, asked in an email “Should we be planning to announce Bad Girls comes to an end this series?” The controller of drama at the network, Laura Mackie, replied “It comes down to what choices we have,” but the email was sent to a rival television company instead of Mr. Shaps!

The possible axing would follow the cancellation of Footballers Wives earlier this year, another Shed Production.

Piece of work Jim Fenner.
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