The Terror: Season premiere will air for free on YouTube

Tobias Menzies and Ciaran Hinds on deck in The Terror. (AMC)

After months of waiting, the season premier of AMC’s new psychological thriller The Terror is now agonisingly close.  The new show from executive producer Ridley Scott is set to launch on the AMC channel in the UK, which is currently only available for users of BT TV and  Sky TV (if subscribed to the BT Sports Pack).

For anyone without access to either of these two TV providers of course, there was the very real danger that they they might miss out on the show completely. Earlier this week however, BT TV threw us all an unexpected lifeline. The company has confirmed via press release that the show’s season premiere will air for free on their YouTube channel:

In a UK-first BT is giving the public a chance to watch the first episode of AMC’s suspenseful thriller “The Terror” for free, live on YouTube next week.   The first episode of BT TV’s latest drama series will be available to watch on YouTube for 24 hours from 00:01am on Tuesday, 24 April for anyone in the UK, with a double episode also available for free on the AMC channel. This is the first time a pay-TV show has launched in the UK on YouTube before it has been broadcast on television….


…The first episode will be shown on BT’s YouTube channel at  

It’s a bold move from BT TV, but one which makes also makes a lot of sense. It will hopefully tempt non-subscribers to splash out on the relevant package to watch the rest of the series, while also giving existing subscribers a timely nudge to make sure they check the show out.

The icy depths pose a major problem for the crew of HMS Terror. (AMC)

For those in two minds as to whether or not The Terror will be for them, the debut episode will clear things up for you in emphatic fashion. It’s an absolute storming start to the series and you’ll soon be hooked by the show’s searing drama, sense of creeping dread and rapidly-escalating tension.

Based on Dan Simmons’ novel of the same name, the show chronicles an ill-fated real-life Royal Navy expedition from 1845 which set out across the Arctic Ocean to try and find a Northwest passage. The two ships on the expedition, HMS Terror and HMS Erebus, went missing in mysterious circumstances and the crew were never heard from again.

The captains of the two ships are Captain Sir John Franklin (Ciaran Hinds) and Captain Francis Crozier (Jared Harris). Both men have wildly different personalities with markedly different approaches to the nature of exploration. Hinds’ Franklin is a devout Christian who passionately believes the voyage will prevail, while Harris’ Crozier is a far more grounded and skeptical officer. The pair’s personal history and their strained working relationship becomes increasingly more evident as events unfold.  

While Hinds and Harris both sublime in their respective roles, the rest of the crew are also all vital elements of the story. Tobias Menzies’ Commander James Fitzjames also stands out as a cocksure and arrogant younger officer who has a particularly lukewarm relationship with Captain Crozier.  The dynamic among the men, both the rivalries between leadership and animosity between officers and crew, grows increasingly tense as the fight for survival pushes them all to the limit. 

Jared Harris’s Captain Francis Crozier holds court below deck. (AMC)

When the expedition runs into trouble, the crew faces a perilous battle for survival. You feel every icy breath and frosty shiver as the punishing environment becomes a character all of its own. As well as the Arctic conditions being against them, something far more deadly appears to be stalking them from the icy wastes. It’s this unseen supernatural element that gives the show a distinctive extra edge. 

The unforgiving depths of the arctic ocean have never looked more chilling. (AMC)

As well as being incredibly tense and nerve-wracking, The Terror is also visually very impressive. The showrunners have developed a striking aesthetic that is driven home via some stunning cinematography that captures the stark beauty of the unforgiving landscape perfectly. It’s a strangely picturesque and immensely atmospheric supernatural thriller that will chill you in more ways than one.

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