One Day (TV series)

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One Day
Release poster by Netflix
Based onOne Day
by David Nicholls
Starring
Composers
  • Anne Nikitin
  • Jessica Jones
  • Tim Morrish
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of episodes14
Production
Executive producers
Running time19–38 minutes
Production companies
Original release
NetworkNetflix
Release8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)

One Day is a British romantic drama television series based on the 2009 novel of the same name by David Nicholls as well as the 2011 film adaptation. It follows the 20-year relationship of Emma Morley and Dexter Mayhew, who meet at a graduation ball after graduating from the University of Edinburgh, and stars Ambika Mod and Leo Woodall in the lead roles.

Premiering on 8 February 2024 on Netflix as a limited series, it received critical acclaim and was the most-watched series globally during the week of 12 February, with 9.9 million views.

Cast[edit]

Main[edit]

Recurring[edit]

  • Eleanor Tomlinson as Sylvie
  • Essie Davis as Alison Mayhew
  • Tim McInnerny as Stephen Mayhew
  • Jonny Weldon as Ian
  • Brendan Quinn as Callum
  • Billie Gadsdon as Jasmine
  • Toby Stephens as Lionel Cope
  • Joely Richardson as Helen Cope
  • Amber Grappy as Tilly
  • Adam Loxley as Graham
  • Tim Preston as Gary
  • John Macmillan as Aaron
  • Rebekah Murrell as Suki
  • Jodie Price as Sonya
  • Sophie Wolff as Tara
  • Joseph Pharoah as Andy
  • Will Hislop as Toby
  • Meghan Treadway as Kate
  • Ella-Rae Smith as Naomi
  • Mathilde Thomine Storm as Tove
  • Sam Swan as Damian
  • Beth Lindsey as Sarah
  • Mark Rowley as Mr. Godalming
  • Anthony Calf as Sid
  • Edouard Chény as Jean-Pierre
  • Emily Eaton-Plowright as Candy
  • John Tueart as Andrew
  • Hannah van Vliet as Lotte

Episodes[edit]

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal release date
1"Episode 1"Molly MannersNicole Taylor8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
In July 15 1988 (St Swithin's Day), Emma Morley and Dexter Mayhew meet at a graduation ball after finishing their undergraduate studies at the University of Edinburgh. Emma is a working-class girl from Leeds while Dexter comes from a privileged family in London, and the two have little to nothing in common with each other. Nonetheless, they are interested in each other and spend a platonic night together in Emma's flat, talking about their future plans after university. In the morning, Dexter is in a hurry to meet his parents, but then chooses to spend some more time with Emma on Arthur's Seat (pretending to Emma that he has left a message for his parents). As they leave, Dexter asks Emma to have a drink with him at his flat. They exchange a look and start to run, but Dexter’s parents are there. Dexter runs after her and asks for her number to keep in contact.
2"Episode 2"Molly MannersBijan Sheibani
Nicole Taylor
8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
A year has passed and Emma is indecisive whether she should stay with her stage director in a traveling theatre troupe or move back to Leeds with her family. She decides to move in with her best friend Tilly in London. Broke and miserable, she ends up working in a Mexican restaurant where she meets Ian - a self-proclaimed comedian. Dexter spends a year in Italy. His mother regularly asks about his future plans, and is dismissive when Dexter mentions being a photographer. Dexter learns that his mother has terminal cancer, which leaves him in disarray. Dexter and Emma keep up their friendship through letters and postcards.
3"Episode 3"Molly MannersNicole Taylor8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
In 1990, Dexter begins his career as a television presenter on a raucous late-night show while Emma begins to feel increasingly uneasy with her job at the restaurant. Dexter comes into the restaurant to see her, bringing his girlfriend. After her shift ends, her co-worker Ian, a comedian, asks whether she would come to see one of his gigs; Emma tells him that she already has plans with Dexter. Emma then spends the evening with Dexter on Primrose Hill where they chat about their friendships. While his mother’s health is clearly still weighing on him, he does get to tell Emma some hard truths about how she gives up on herself and reminds her why she's "one in a million".
4"Episode 4"Kate HewittNicole Taylor8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
As their friendship gets stronger, Emma and Dexter decide to take a holiday to Greece where they spend the summer eating and swimming in the sea. Emma gives Dexter a set of rules of which they cannot break, one of which is not sleeping together. However, they are forced to break this rule as their room only has a double bed. During their dinner together, Emma and Dexter play a game where they tell each other secrets that the other doesn't know. Dexter states that he has kissed a guy under the influence of alcohol while Emma tells Dexter that she used to have a massive crush on him when they first met in Edinburgh. Dexter brushes it off and tells her that it needs to be a secret implying he already knew Emma loved him from the start. Dexter also says that he used to have a crush on her too, but says he "fancies everyone" and that he isn't looking for anything serious. The two go skinny dipping in the Aegean Sea where Dexter attempts to kiss her, and suggests a no-strings-attached, casual situation, which Emma rebuffs by dunking Dexter under the water. Emma then gets out of the water and realizes that Dexter was stringing her along all the time.
5"Episode 5"Kate HewittAnna Jordan
Vinay Patel
8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
In 1992 an intoxicated Dexter visits his parents. He brings his mother a gift from Emma. When his mother asks about their relationship Dexter replies that they are just friends. She then confronts him on how unimpressed she is with his lifestyle and tells him that he has not reached his potential. He carries his ill mother up to her bedroom and sleeps through supper which he had promised to attend. His father, having hidden his car keys, drives him to Radley station and tells him to never come back to the house under the influence. Emma has her own house and is in a relationship with Ian who tells her that Dexter has always taken her for granted. Dexter, upset over his visit to his parents, phones Emma from a public telephone at the station and says that he needs her; he then remembers that Emma has a date with Ian.
6"Episode 6"Kate HewittBijan Sheibani8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
In 1993, Emma's role as a teacher is praised by many, including the school headmaster who seems to have taken an interest in her. Before a drama performance she comforts Sonya, her pupil, who is scared and hesitant about her ability to sing and dance in the show. Sonya recovers from her stage fright. Emma, who had been nervous about show, receives a standing ovation for her teaching. On the other hand, Dexter is adored by many of his fans, primarily girls, and has earned the moniker "sexy dexy". However, he is also criticized by many for his apparent hostility and called "the most annoying man on telly". This critique deeply upsets Dexter, as he is also grieving for his mother. Afraid and anxious about the show, Dexter intoxicates himself to make him "loose", and attempts to bring alcohol to the show by filling up an empty water bottle with booze. His bottle gets mixed up with Suki's, his co-host and apparent girlfriend, and he attempts to reclaim it with no success. The show turns into a disaster when Suki drinks the alcohol and starts coughing, and Dexter is unable to perform as co-host.
7"Episode 7"John HardwickNicole Taylor8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
The following year, Dexter is even more enthralled with his fame and wealth. Emma is unhappy with her writing career as well as her uncomfortable relationship with Ian. She meets Dexter and the two go out for a dinner in a fancy restaurant. As they order their food Emma begins to feel uneasy over Dexter's apparent change in style and behaviour. As she tries to tell Dexter about her situation, he appears ignorant and leaves the table to get high on cocaine and flirts with the cigarette girl. He gets progressively hostile and cruel towards Emma saying that teaching is for those who can't do anything else. A disappointed Emma slams the dining table and leaves the restaurant. Dexter follows her and attempts to make up for the situation. Emma tells him that he used to make her feel good about herself and now makes her feel like "shit". She also says that they have outgrown each other and that their time has passed. Emma goes home to be comforted by Ian.
8"Episode 8"John HardwickAnna Jordan8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
On the last day of teaching term in 1995 Emma has sex with the school headmaster who gives her a Nokia mobile phone to keep in touch with him. Arriving home Emma is confronted by Ian who is in her flat even though they have broken up. He accuses her of cheating with Dexter throughout their relationship. Emma explains that she has not kept in touch with Dexter for a year. She is outraged when she finds that Ian has been through her diaries and found pictures of her with Dexter. They argue but finally talk calmly. Ian then asks Emma if she actually loved Dexter, and she replies that she used to love him years ago in Edinburgh. He tells her to publish her diary stories as he thinks they are good. After Ian leaves Emma looks at her new phone and reminisces about Dexter as he had promised to buy her dinner when she got a mobile phone. She then goes out and buys cigarettes and alcohol and runs into her former student Sonya who tells Emma that she got into the University of Edinburgh to study English. Feeling inspired Emma goes home and starts to write her novel.
9"Episode 9"John HardwickBijan Sheibani8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
In 1996 Dexter has met a woman named Sylvie and is invited to her house to meet her family. Her family is clearly unimpressed by his career and television shows. His agent calls him to break the news that he will not be contracted for a second season of his video-game-review show Game On!. After dinner the family play a game which involves hitting each other with a rolled-up newspaper; they find it hilarious. They pressure him to take a turn which ends in him almost breaking Sylvie's nose by accident. Her family is furious with him which leaves him feeling even more insecure in their presence. Dexter asks Sylvie to forgive him which she does. But when he attempts to sleep he sees Sylvie's room resembling that of Emma's flat in Edinburgh when they had their first platonic night together. Dexter begins laughing and wishes that he could tell Emma about his day.
10"Episode 10"Luke SnellinNicole Taylor8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
In 1997 Emma and Dexter attend the wedding of their university friend Tilly to Graham. Sitting with Sylvie Dexter keeps looking at the back of the church to see whether or not Emma is there. Emma arrives with friends and sits at the back of the church but she and Dexter see each other. At the reception Dexter is approached by his old flatmate Callum (now a multimillionaire) who offers him a job. Feeling humiliated Dexter confronts Callum about the ethics of giving a job to a friend while Sylvie attempts to persuade Dexter to take it. Emma makes a toast to the bridal couple and later once the dancing has started Dexter finds her and they talk while walking around a maze. Emma has been given a large enough advance from a publisher to write full time for a while. Dexter tells Emma that he is engaged and getting married soon and that Sylvie is pregnant. Emma is shocked but regains her composure and says she is happy for Dexter. The two promise to remain "best friends".
11"Episode 11"Luke SnellinNicole Taylor8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
In 1998 Emma and Dexter frequently call each other to catch up with their lives. Dexter (now a father) is working in one of Callum's coffee shops. At home Sylvie is unhappy and exhausted as baby Jasmine doesn't sleep and the house renovations are stressful. Dexter is bothered by Sylvie's parent's nosiness about his career plans and tells Sylvie to not keep telling her parents. Sylvie then leaves for a hen party, something she's been looking forward to for weeks. Dexter spends the night with Jasmine and discovers an old mixtape he and Emma used to listen to. He calls Emma asking her to come over but she is with Tilly and Graham. Later Sylvie calls Dexter and asks about him and Jasmine. The two have a meaningful conversation in which Dexter promises her that he's trying to figure everything out. However Sylvie is with Callum having cheated and lied to Dexter about going to a party.
12"Episode 12"Luke SnellinNicole Taylor8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
In 1999 Dexter files for a divorce from Sylvie and goes from London to Paris to see Emma, where she's doing research for her second book. Emma meets him at Gare du Nord and the two talk in a café. They then go to Emma's flat where Dexter attempts to kiss her. Emma rebukes him saying that she is now seeing a Frenchman named Jean-Pierre. Dexter gets defensive and questions why she never told him about it explaining that he came to Paris to talk about the sex they had right after he and Sylvie got divorced. Emma then tells him that not everything that happened was because of him and that she doesn't need his permission to be seeing someone new. In the middle of their argument Jean-Pierre arrives as Emma has arranged a dinner for the three of them together. A heartbroken Dexter bails out from the dinner plan and tells them that he picked up tonsillitis. A regretful Emma eventually comes back to the flat where the two have sex again. Dexter then promises Emma that he's never going to hurt her and tells her that he knows she could not get him out of her head.
13"Episode 13"Luke SnellinDavid Nicholls8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
In 2000 Emma and Dexter are a couple. Dexter wants a new start and persuades his father to allow him to use the money his mother had left him to turn an old fish market into a café. Emma tells Dexter's father that she has 100% confidence in the venture. By 2001 Dexter and Emma are planning their wedding and Emma's fourth novel is ready to be published. The two spend time with Jasmine and Emma tells Dexter that she wants a baby - something Dexter has been waiting for her to say. A year later Emma has not become pregnant. After an argument Dexter tries to comfort her with talk about a house they might buy. Emma spends the day writing and then goes for a swim. She leaves Dexter a message apologizing for being angry at him and telling him that she loves him and that she’ll be five minutes late to their appointment to view the house. It is a rainy St Swithin's Day and on the way to meet Dexter Emma is hit by a reckless car driver and dies - exactly 15 years after their encounter in Edinburgh.
14"Episode 14"Molly MannersNicole Taylor8 February 2024 (2024-02-08)
Emma's death has taken a big toll on Dexter. He goes back to self-destructive behaviour - getting drunk and high on cocaine. After getting beaten up Dexter passes out on Sylvie’s floor. His father takes him home where he winds up sobbing uncontrollably in his childhood bed. In 2004 Tilly, Graham, Sylvie, Ian and his father visit and attempt to comfort him. Ian, now happily married with children, tells Dexter how happy he made Emma. When everyone leaves Dexter sits in the room where he stores Emma's belongings and starts imagining her beside him. Ghost Emma tells him that he won’t always feel like this as tears roll down his face. In 2007 Dexter, Jasmine and his father go to Edinburgh where he visits the places he and Emma went on their very first day. Outside her old apartment he reminisces about their first night together. Jasmine asks Dexter if they can climb Arthur’s Seat, and he trails behind her the same way he did Emma. Finally he reminisces about their kiss on the city steps.

Production[edit]

Development[edit]

Netflix ordered a new One Day adaptation in November 2021 from Drama Republic. The writers' room was led by Nicole Taylor and consists of Anna Jordan, Vinay Patel, and Bijan Sheibani.[1] Executive producers included Nicholls and Taylor as well as Roanna Benn and Jude Liknaitzky. Molly Manners was attached to direct the series.[2]

Actress Ambika Mod said in November 2022 that the series would cover more of the novel than the 2011 film adaptation.[3]

Casting[edit]

In June 2022, it was announced Ambika Mod and Leo Woodall would star as the leads Emma and Dexter respectively.[2] Eleanor Tomlinson and Essie Davis joined the cast as Sylvie and Alison respectively, as announced in July and October.[4][5]

Filming[edit]

Principal photography began in London on 4 July 2022 before moving to Edinburgh on 18 July. Filming took place on location at the University of Edinburgh's Old College, as well as the city centre, West End, and Old Town.[6][7]

UK filming finished on 19 January 2023 in Islington, London.

Release[edit]

One Day premiered on 8 February 2024 on Netflix as a limited series.[8]

Reception[edit]

The series received critical acclaim and was the most-watched series globally during the week of 12 February 2024, with 9.9 million views.[9]

As of 28 February 2024 review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported a 93% approval rating based on 44 critic reviews. The website's critics consensus reads, "Chronicling the passage of time with well-observed sweep, One Day is by turns giddy and somber but always swooningly romantic".[10] Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned a score of 76 out of 100 based on 19 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[11]

It was a breakthrough for the careers of leads Ambika Mod and Leo Woodall.[12][13][14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ritman, Alex (30 November 2021). "Netflix Orders 5 U.K. Series, Including Adaptation of David Nicholls' 'One Day'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 30 November 2021.
  2. ^ a b Whittock, Jesse (23 June 2022). "'The White Lotus' Actor Leo Woodall & 'This Is Going To Hurt' Breakout Ambika Mod To Lead Netflix Drama 'One Day'". Deadline. Retrieved 23 June 2022.
  3. ^ Hibbs, James (16 November 2022). "One Day star Ambika Mod says Netflix series will cover more of book". Radio Times. Retrieved 23 November 2022.
  4. ^ Whittock, Jesse (7 July 2022). "'Poldark' Star Eleanor Tomlinson Boards Netflix Drama Series Adaptation Of David Nicholls Novel 'One Day'". Deadline. Retrieved 23 November 2022.
  5. ^ Ritman, Alex (17 October 2022). "Essie Davis Joins Netflix Adaptation of David Nicholls' 'One Day' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 23 November 2022.
  6. ^ Young, Iona (6 July 2022). "Edinburgh Netflix show One Day drone filming times and parking restrictions". Edinburgh Live. Retrieved 23 November 2022.
  7. ^ Ferguson, Brian (21 March 2022). "Edinburgh to star in new Netflix series adapted from best-selling love story One Day". The Scotsman. Retrieved 23 November 2022.
  8. ^ "Shows A-Z – One Day on Netflix". The Futon Critic. Retrieved 27 December 2023.
  9. ^ Seitz, Loree (20 February 2024). "One Day, Love is Blind Season 6 Lure Netflix TV Viewers". TheWrap. Retrieved 22 February 2024.
  10. ^ "One Day: Season 1". Rotten Tomatoes. Archived from the original on 27 February 2024. Retrieved 28 February 2024.
  11. ^ "One Day". Metacritic. Retrieved 8 February 2024.
  12. ^ "'One Day' is one of this year's defining cultural moments". Glamour UK. 9 February 2024. Retrieved 17 February 2024.
  13. ^ Barr, Sabrina. "Wondering why One Day actress playing Emma has you sobbing? Here's why". Retrieved 18 February 2024.
  14. ^ Mussen, Maddy (12 February 2024). "Introducing Leo Woodall: The White Lotus's Essex boy turned One Day dreamboat". Evening Standard. Retrieved 19 February 2024.

External links[edit]