The Essex Serpent Release Date, News & Update: Tom Hiddleston, Claire Danes Drama Centers On Monster That May Or May Not Exist

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A new trailer reveals the dread and suspicion at the core of Apple TV+'s upcoming series The Essex Serpent, starring Claire Danes and Tom Hiddleston.

The Essex Serpent, based on the critically praised 2016 gothic Victorian novel of the same name, stars Danes as Cora, a recently widowed woman who moves to a small village in the East of England to investigate allegations that a giant serpent is stalking the locals.

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The Essex Serpent trailer

The show's trailer gives a sense of the superstitions and customs that can get in Cora's way. From the start, there's a genuine sense of imminent danger, as the apparently mythical serpent has everyone in Aldwinter's tight-knit community running afraid.

Everyone, that is, except Hiddleston's vicar Will Ransome, who is adamant in his view that the snake is nothing more than a symptom of the times. Those convictions, however, may not last, as there are clues that the presence of Cora in Aldwinter may question his faith.

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Cora's fascination with the so-called "blackwater beast" stems from her passion and curiosity. But the longer Cora stays in Aldwinter, the more it appears like her presence — as well as that of the mythical beast — is having an effect on the community, which is surely otherworldly.

The Essex Serpent release date

The Essex Serpent appears to be the latest in a stellar lineup for Apple TV+ that includes Ted Lasso and The Afterparty.

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Clio Barnard, who directed the series, is one of the most outstanding British filmmakers working today, while writer Anna Symon has already been nominated for a BAFTA and a Writer's Guild award.

Whether or not the trailer's more melodramatic components mesh with Barnard's typically low-key approach remains to be seen, but the show will undoubtedly be one to watch when it premieres on May 13.

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Check out the trailer for The Essex Serpent here.