Hector, Bel and Freddie.

(Now with Part Two and new pics – scroll down – ahead of episode two tonight…Wed Nov 21.)

THE welcome clatter of typewriters is back in town tonight with the return of The Hour.

Set in 1957, the second BBC2 series is a step up from the acclaimed first season with the confidence to be even bigger and bolder in its storytelling and settings.

Presenter Hector Madden (Dominic West) is dining out – and more – on his national celebrity while producer Bel Rowley (Romola Garai) does all the work back at the BBC.

The deliciously dry Lix (Anna Chancellor) remains on the foreign beat and knows a lot more than she cares to tell, still clutching a glass of Scotch at all times of the day.

And just what is her link to the intriguing and ever so slightly OCD new Head of News Randall Brown, played by Peter Capaldi?

There’s a dramatic re-appearance for Freddie, played by new Bond star Ben Whishaw, who was fired in the first series.

And an unexpected new direction has been cooked up for Hector’s frustrated wife Marnie (Oona Chaplin).

Peter Capaldi as Samuel Kent

DOES Peter Capaldi watch himself on TV?

“I don’t really have a hard and fast rule about it,” he replied.

“I’m always disappointed, anyway. I always look much worse.”

We met in March for a small round table interview high above the South Bank in London.

When Peter was both charming and gracious.

Which just goes to show what a good actor he is when tackling roles like The Thick Of It’s Malcolm Tucker.

He stars this Easter weekend in a new two-hour ITV1 drama.

My feature is in today’s Manchester Evening News and below, along with a few extras.