The BEST Episodes of Vera

Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!

Last Updated: Nov 8, 2019

Network: ITV

DCI Vera Stanhope is obsessive about her work. With her caustic wit and guile, the unorthodox but brilliant detective investigates chilling crimes set in Northumberland with her trusted colleagues.

The Seagull

#1 - The Seagull

Season 9 - Episode 4

Vera must open up a cold case to find the connection between a skeleton discovered underneath the site of a notorious burnt-out night club and a present-day murder.

star 8.17
145 votes
Directors: Declan O'Dwyer
Blood and Bone

#2 - Blood and Bone

Season 8 - Episode 1

DCI Vera Stanhope is called to a chilling murder scene when the charred remains of a body are discovered in an abattoir incinerator. With limited forensic evidence, she is disturbed to identify the body as DC Harry Fenton, a respected police officer from the Northumberland & City Fraud Unit.

star 8.01
232 votes
Directors: Paul Gay
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Paul Matthew Thompson
Dark Road

#3 - Dark Road

Season 6 - Episode 1

Vera investigates the mysterious murder of a fifty six year old grandmother, discovered by a young girl on the desolate Northumberland moors.

star 8.01
291 votes
Directors: Marek Losey
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Martha Hillier

#4 - Cuckoo

Season 9 - Episode 2

Vera is confronted with the tragic scene of a teenage boy's murder. His body is found in a shipyard in the sleepy coastal town of Peyton-by-the-Sea. As he isn't recognized locally, it's not immediately apparent who he is. Eventually, Missing Persons records reveal that troubled Caden Lennon had absconded from the care of his support worker six weeks previously. With few leads thrown up by the Newcastle estate where Caden came from, Vera looks to the Peyton locals to throw some light on the investigation. Beneath the quaint facade she discovers that there is a growing drugs problem. But, with local dealer Tony Briggs now apparently going straight, it's not clear why. Vera begins to question whether Caden's connections to Newcastle and Peyton run deeper, and whether the lack of leads points to a ring of silence with darker forces at play. Vera must uncover the missing link to find Caden's ruthless killer.

star 7.96
161 votes
Directors: Lawrence Gough
The Blanket Mire

#5 - The Blanket Mire

Season 7 - Episode 4

Surveyors out on the Northumberland moors make a shocking discovery: the body of a young woman buried beneath the soil. On the scene, assumptions are that this is the body of local teenager, Mia Hinkin, who disappeared six weeks ago. DCI Vera Stanhope is forced to deliver the terrible news to a broken family, desperate for answers.

star 7.92
334 votes
Directors: John Hayes
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Martha Hillier, Paul Matthew Thompson
Old Wounds

#6 - Old Wounds

Season 5 - Episode 2

Following the discovery of the remains of a teenage girl half-buried in a Northumberland wood, Vera and her team end up looking into a thirty-year old mystery.

star 7.91
208 votes
Directors: Daikin Marsh
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Martha Hillier
Blind Spot

#7 - Blind Spot

Season 9 - Episode 1

DCI Vera Stanhope investigates the murder of a trainee forensic psychologist found dead on a Northumberland landfill site.

star 7.90
178 votes
Directors: Paul Gay
Writers: Paul Logue
Tuesday's Child

#8 - Tuesday's Child

Season 6 - Episode 2

Vera investigates the death of a young man whose remains were found in remote caves.

star 7.89
276 votes
Directors: Jill Robertson
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Glen Laker
Death of a Family Man

#9 - Death of a Family Man

Season 4 - Episode 4

The detective investigates the mysterious death of businessman John Shearwood, found floating in the water under the Gateshead Millennium Bridge when he was supposed to be on a golf trip to Ireland. The man's wife Stella and brother Luke are baffled to discover he was working as an informant for HM Revenue and Customs. Chief Revenue investigator Owen Preece reveals John's business manager Mark Donovan has been running an alcohol scam through their haulage firm and the deceased had agreed to offer information in exchange for immunity from prosecution. Was his cover blown? Owen doesn't think so, and Mark has an alibi - unlike John's wife.

star 7.87
218 votes
Writers: Gaby Chiappe, Paul Rutman, Ann Cleeves
The Sea Glass

#10 - The Sea Glass

Season 6 - Episode 4

A fisherman's body is found tangled up in a North Sea trawler's net. Vera and her team investigate with the help of the local harbourmaster, and find the dead man's sons pointing the finger at the owner of a fish market, with whom they have a long-running feud. Retracing the dead man's steps, Vera discovers when he drowned and tracks down a waitress who may have been one of the last people to see him alive. However, the case becomes more complicated when a witness runs away and a boat belonging to the dead man's sister-in-law goes up in flames.

star 7.86
241 votes
Directors: Paul Gay
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Rob Gittins, Martha Hillier, Paul Matthew Thompson
Prodigal Son

#11 - Prodigal Son

Season 3 - Episode 4

Vera and Joe are brought in to investigate when a former Met police officer is stabbed to death outside a nightclub in Newcastle. The team initially suspects a crime of passion after it emerges the victim had recently rekindled his affair with his childhood sweetheart, whose husband has a history of violence. However, Vera uncovers evidence pointing to a more complex case involving inside information and the hostile takeover of a brewery. What did the deceased find out that cost him his life?

star 7.86
211 votes
Writers: Marston Bloom
Young Gods

#12 - Young Gods

Season 3 - Episode 3

Vera delves into the past of extreme sports enthusiast Gideon Frane after he plunges from a cliff in a ball of flames. A scan of the files reveals a long list of stalking complaints against an ex, and an anonymous letter to the victim spelling out Burn in Hell is linked to one of her friends. Aided by DC Shepherd and the newly appointed DC Edwards, the team tries to track down Gideon's old gang to uncover a lifetime of bullying and an unexpected story of rough justice.

star 7.85
212 votes
Directors: Dusan Lazarevic
Writers: Gaby Chiappe
Muddy Waters

#13 - Muddy Waters

Season 5 - Episode 3

Vera investigates the death of an unidentified man dredged up from a slurry pit on a remote Northumberland farm.

star 7.85
201 votes
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Martha Hillier
Dark Angel

#14 - Dark Angel

Season 7 - Episode 2

When the body of a drug addict is found face down in a river, DCI Vera Stanhope is forced to delve back into an old case in order to unmask the killer.

star 7.84
353 votes
Directors: Louise Hooper
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Paul Matthew Thompson

#15 - Protected

Season 4 - Episode 2

The detective is called in when David Kenworthy, the son of a prominent local family, is found murdered on the beach at Whitley Bay. A witness spotted arcade owner Larry Crowe arguing with David on the night of the killing, and a search of the suspect's property uncovers a bloodied baseball bat. However, Larry has a cast-iron alibi and it's clear he wasn't the only person the victim met that night. A second death then leaves Vera facing mounting pressure to crack the case, and struggling to answer the question of why David was drawn to the seafront on the evening of his father's retirement.

star 7.84
209 votes
Directors: Daikin Marsh
Writers: Martha Hillier
Broken Promise

#16 - Broken Promise

Season 7 - Episode 3

DCI Vera Stanhope (Brenda Blethyn) is called to the University of Northumberland when Jamie Marshall, a young, promising journalism student, plummets to his death from the top of a disused faculty building. With no eyewitnesses and no immediate leads, Vera turns to friends and family to glean all she can about Jamie, and to discover who might have wanted him dead.

star 7.83
333 votes
Directors: Lee Haven Jones
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Robert Murphy

#17 - Home

Season 8 - Episode 3

Quiet life in suburbia takes a dark turn when a woman is is discovered murdered, found lying dead in her back garden. When DCI Vera Stanhope discovers that the neighbours aren't all that they seem, buried secrets must be unearthed in order to catch the killer.

star 7.81
211 votes
Directors: Chris Baugh
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Paul Logue
Castles in the Air

#18 - Castles in the Air

Season 3 - Episode 1

Young physiotherapist Lizzie Faulkner is shot dead while enjoying a holiday at a luxury country retreat. The resulting murder investigation unearths betrayal, guilt and the desire for atonement - as Vera moves quickly to avoid another tragedy, and Joe tries to make amends with the demons of his past.

star 7.81
237 votes
Directors: Will Sinclair
Writers: Paul Rutman, Gaby Chiappe
Black Ice

#19 - Black Ice

Season 8 - Episode 2

DCI Vera Stanhope is called to the scene of a violent car crash. With her typically sharp skills of observation, Vera quickly realises that the crash was not accidental and that another driver tried to kill victim, Faye Wakeland. When she dies in hospital shortly after, Vera suspects that Faye's murder might be connected to the recent suicide of a local man. She is a popular and well-loved member of a coastal community. But, Vera and Aiden find it difficult to get to the truth when everyone that they encounter seem to be protecting a secret. Vera must continue to delve into the lives of the people that Faye lived amongst, as well as the links she had with her past. Joined by her faithful team including DC Kenny Lockhart, as well as new recruit DC Jac Williams, Vera attempts to find the missing link that will lead to Faye's killer.

star 7.81
220 votes
Directors: David Leon
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Martha Hillier
Shadows in the Sky

#20 - Shadows in the Sky

Season 5 - Episode 4

A dock worker plunges from the roof of a multistory car park whilst picking up daughter from her school prom and everything points to foul play.

star 7.81
212 votes
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Martha Hillier
The Ghost Position

#21 - The Ghost Position

Season 2 - Episode 1

Vera's reunion with her first-ever sergeant, Stuart Macken, occurs under tragic circumstances when his house is petrol-bombed. Stuart is badly burned by the attack and his 18-year-old daughter Stella is left fighting for her life in intensive care. Vera is shocked to see that Stuart is a shadow of the man she knew 20 years before and, when her investigation uncovers unpleasant revelations about his personal life, she is faced with some long-buried memories of her own.

star 7.80
255 votes
Directors: Peter Hoar
Writers: Paul Rutman, Ann Cleeves
Cold River

#22 - Cold River

Season 9 - Episode 3

Successful business-woman Lisa Varsey throws a lavish boat party for her family and friends on the River Tyne. But it goes horribly wrong when her sister Dani is found dead in the water. Lisa has an empire of beauty salons in Newcastle and a caring family in husband, Ross, and sister Sadie. At first the family believe that Dani's death was an accident but DCI Vera Stanhope and pathologist Malcolm Donahue (Paul Kaye) know that the forensics point to murder. Vera and the team alight on concerning rumours that Dani could have been in an abusive relationship and questions whether this could have led to her death. But, the investigation takes a turn when evidence points to the fact that something was rotten in another area of Dani's life. Vera begins to believe that Dani was going to expose an unpalatable truth. Vera must unpick the tightly-woven threads that hold the family together to discover who killed an innocent woman.

star 7.79
145 votes
Natural Selection

#23 - Natural Selection

Season 7 - Episode 1

CI Vera Stanhope is drawn into a suspicious death on Ternstone, a remote and inaccessible island off the coast of Northumberland, home only to numerous species of birds and the rangers who observe them. The last thing anyone expected to see was a body, cruelly washed up on the shore.

star 7.79
370 votes
Directors: Jamie Childs
Writers: Ann Cleeves, Helen Jenkins
Poster Child

#24 - Poster Child

Season 3 - Episode 2

Respected surgeon Dan Marsden is shot dead days before his retirement and his teenage daughters Mira and Karen are abducted. Joined by a new addition to the ranks, Vera investigates a mysterious parcel and a connection to the Iraq War as she races against time to catch the killer and save the girls. However, the case soon takes a violent and unexpected turn, striking at the heart of the team.

star 7.76
222 votes
Directors: Paul Cotter
Writers: Paul Rutman
The Deer Hunters

#25 - The Deer Hunters

Season 4 - Episode 3

The body of a man killed by a single gunshot wound is discovered on the moors and a burnt-out truck containing the remains of a deer is found a mile away. Joe is convinced the case is a poaching war gone wrong, but for Vera, the truth is never that straightforward. Delving into the victim's story, she unearths a sad childhood in the country and a troubled life in the city, scraping by as a novelist. Following the recent death of his grandfather, he returned to Northumberland after a 15-year absence to sell his inheritance to a wealthy couple - but pulled out of the deal at the last minute. Could his death be linked to a dispute over land?

star 7.76
199 votes
Directors: Will Sinclair
Writers: Steve Coombes