Lavish Indian-set drama is out on DVD

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Whatever the weather, sustained heat is now available at the touch of a button with the DVD release of Channel 4’s Sunday night drama series, Indian Summers, writes Tony Spittles.

The second series of this must-see lavish costume drama ended on Sunday, but you can re-live all the action, political intrigue and steamy romance, set against the waning influence of the British Raj, on this two-disc release on RLJ Entertainment’s Acorn label.

As with the previous series, the British administrators are escaping the heat of the Indian lowland for the cooler climes of the foothills of Simla where political tensions and a rising revolution are reaching fever point.

The inimitable Julie Walters reprises her role as the manipulative doyenne of high society, Cynthia Coffin, as does Henry Lloyd Hughes (The Inbetweeners) as Ralph Whelan, the charming private secretary with a chequered past; Jemima West (The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones) as Alice’s, Ralph’s sister, and Nikesh Patel (Bedlam) as Aafrin Dalal, a rising star in the Indian civil service and Alice’s true love.

Other big names joining the cast are Art Malik (Homeland), James Fleet (Agatha Christie’s Partners in Crime), Rachel Griffiths (Six Feet Under) and Blake Ritson (Da Vinci’s Demons).

The second series continues the story three years on in 1935, an important time for Ralph Whelan as he tries to bolster his career and at the same time cover up the truth about the earth-shattering events of 1932.

There are also family problems to keep him busy as his brother-in-law has followed his wife to India, but his continuing campaign of hatred against wife Alice sends her running into the arms of Aafrin Dalal.

Against this fast-moving backdrop, the Dalals enjoy a newfound status with Aafrin moving up the career ladder, although this success seems at jeopardy as he becomes even more deeply involved with the violent wing of the Congress Party.

The two-disc set for series two runs for 450 minutes and is now on sale at £24.99. The complete series, running for 958 minutes, is also available on a four-disc set, price £31.99.