It’s a case of once more into the breeches this week with the arrival of a sumptuous new British period drama (story page 4). Vanity Fair, Thackeray’s 1848 satirical novel about Regency society, has been a firm favourite with filmmakers for more than 100 years. It hit the silver screen for the first time in 1911 as a 30-minute silent movie and since then film actresses to take on the role of the book’s heroine, Becky Sharp, range from Myrna Loy in the 1930s to Reese Witherspoon in 2004. TV has also seen its share of famous faces with Susan Hampshire and Natasha Little just a few of the stars to play the sharp-witted social climber. In this latest adaptation, Olivia Cooke is cast as the redoubtable Becky and she plays the role very much as a woman for the new millennium. Period dramas have been riding a wave of popularity since Colin Firth emerged dripping from the lake in 1995’s Pride And Prejudice. There might not be any such scenes in Vanity Fair but it does feature Doc Martin star Martin Clunes – which makes it must-see TV in my book.