David Morrisey wielding a very out-of-focus pistol as Tyador Borl√ļ in The City and The City.
Image: BBC

The BBC is taking a crack at adapting one of China Mi√©ville‚Äôs most beloved and mindbending novels, The City and The City‚ÄĒand our first look gives us a bit of insight into how we‚Äôll see two wildly different societies mix... even when they‚Äôre not supposed to.

The four-part series casts The Walking Dead‚Äôs David Morrissey as Tyador Borl√ļ, an inspector from the city of BesŇļel, a worn down city-state that actually occupies the same physical space as the city of Ul Qoma, a similar (but more wealthy) city that has a completely different language and culture. The citizens of both cities are taught from childhood to consciously ignore the existence of the other city, creating two distinct societies that mostly live blissfully unaware of the other.

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‚ÄúBreaching‚ÄĚ the barriers between the two cities by ignoring the separation is a serious crime‚ÄĒso when a young girl from Ul Qoma shows up dead in BesŇļel, Borl√ļ is thrust into an investigation that finds him not just entering the other city he‚Äôs been taught all his life to ignore, but hunting down a legend that there may even be a third city in the mix altogether.

The City and The City is one of Mi√©ville‚Äôs most surreal novels, so it‚Äôs going to be interesting to see how it translates to the small screen‚ÄĒUK-based fans won‚Äôt have to wait long to find out how though, as The City and the City begins on BBC 2 April 6. Unfortunately, there are no details on if it‚Äôll be making its way to US shores just yet.

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[The Verge]