We're so glad we're getting lots of Kierston Wareing on our screens at the moment. After her performance in BBC Two's magnificent The Shadow Line earlier this year, the brilliant actress is turning her attentions to Hackney for Channel 4's gritty new drama Top Boy.
The show - written by Hackney resident Ronan Bennett - focuses on the gangs and drugs in London. But who is Kierston playing? And what else can we expect from the show?
We gave her a ring to find out, so read on to see what she had to say about starring in Top Boy, working with non-actors, and her upcoming BBC show Inside Men...
So, to start off with, can you tell us what Top Boy is about?
"Oh God, I only really concentrate on my part! It's gangland, and I think everyone's just trying to fight to get out of this estate called Summerhouse. I know my character is because she's pregnant."
What can you tell us about your character Heather?
"She's pregnant, and she wants to get out of Summerhouse, this estate, so she sets up her own weed business - this cannabis farm. She gets this 15-year-old involved. She knows his mother but his mother's mentally ill - she's gone into hospital and is not very well. She hasn't seen the mother for quite a time.
"And she gets this 15-year-old Ra'Nell involved and they're sort of friends. She's not bossing him around, she's not using him. She's very naïve. He's probably a bit more streetwise than her - she kind of asks his advice. And Heather's based on a true character. It happened to someone out there."
Did you meet the person Heather is based on?
"I tried to get in touch with the lady. I said, 'Can I speak to her?' and they said, 'Oh yeah, we'd love you to'. And we were going to meet and then we couldn't because I had a meeting. And I said, 'Can we do it next week?' but then she didn't want to know, really, for obvious reasons."
Was it interesting to play someone based on a real person?
"Yeah, it was great, because I didn't realise that when I went for the part. When you're told that, it's even more exciting. You can't be any more true to life than that."
What else did you like about playing Heather?
"It was good to play a cannabis farmer! It was different - I haven't done that before! Anything that's different, anything that's new, I enjoy. But I don't know, really. I just enjoyed the script. I couldn't put it down.
"I liked her character, I liked all the other characters in it. I just thought it was a classy drama, and I've seen episodes one and two and I think it's turned out very classy. So I'm proud to be a part of it."
Can you talk a bit more about Heather's relationship with Ra'Nell?
"It's kind of a friendship. They think a lot of each other. She's naïve, she listens to him and takes his advice. She's never really done this before - it's not as though she's some gangster, it's just a one-off thing, and that's all she's planning to do.
"She trusts him. And I think he trusts her. He looks at her as, 'Yeah, alright, I'm earning money', but also probably as a friend as well."
You've said that Heather isn't using Ra'Nell, but do you think she feels any guilt at all?
"Only one part when she meets up with the mother, but other than that, no, I don't. And I don't think it's because she's nasty - I think it's because she's naïve and she just thinks, 'Well, he needs money'.
"His poor mum's away in hospital, he needs money, he's earning from this, [Heather] needs to get out - this is all good. I think it's really as simple as that until she meets up with his mother and the mother says something about the drugs on the estate. My reaction was to quickly change the subject. I think it was like a blink of guilt, but it's too late now, she has to carry on."
A lot of people in Top Boy are untrained or brand new actors - what was it like working with them?
"Fantastic. To work with non-actors... they're so real. Everything's just so real that it's hard to keep up with them sometimes, to stay as real as them! I think obviously the ones they've chosen they've taken a lot of time over, and they've all got a hell of a lot of potential and they've got a career out there for them.
"Obviously, I haven't worked with all of them but I did work with Ra'Nell (Malcolm Kamulete) and I'm trying to push him into carrying on with the acting even though he's not too keen."
He's great in the show.
"Yeah, he is. He's got an amazing natural talent. The other boy I worked with was Giacomo [Mancini, who plays Gem]. He wants to carry on with the acting so I've given him my agent's number and told him to go out and make his own choice of agencies and stuff.
"I think they're fantastic. It was also a laugh. And also, they bring things to it. Because they're from the street, they know what's going on and all the words. They're adding to the script all the time with these fresh, urban words, so I think that's what makes it very real."
Do you think Top Boy will be quite controversial - especially after the riots and everything? Do you think it will spark discussions?
"Yeah, I think it probably will. I hope so. Probably on the internet - definitely people will have discussions at least and arguments, I'm sure, over the net. I mean, yeah, it probably will. I definitely feel that's going on out there. It is all real to life. That does all go on in certain pockets of London."
Ashley Walters is in Top Boy and you're also working with him on an upcoming BBC One drama Inside Men - what can you tell us about that?
"It's about a heist, and these guys get together and do this heist, Ashley being one of them.
"I don't know if I'm putting this right, but my character's husband, played by Warren Brown - he's part of the heist, but they're all kind of doughnuts! They're idiots! They're not like Freddie from The Take. Definitely my husband is [a doughnut]. He's a likeable character, but he's a dreamer.
"I'm a hairdresser and I get involved in the whole thing, so I'm the only woman doing this robbery. But I would say I'm probably a bit more shrewd - I'm the boss in the relationship! It's more light-hearted for me, I smile a lot more than usual!"
Is it nice to do something a bit more light-hearted? You do a lot of heavy stuff.
"Yeah. I mean, some of the parts might be heavy in it, but my part is quite light-hearted. There's a few scenes, but most of it is. And I've got crazy hairdos because I'm this hairdresser, so really fun hairdos and really fun costumes."
Did you have fun dressing up?
"Oh yeah, it was great fun! All different nails and crimped hair and plaits everywhere and the old '80s pineapple... Completely different styles all the time, so it was good fun!"
So why should people tune in for Top Boy?
"I just think it's a classy drama. It's realistic and hopefully all round it's good acting and everything. Hopefully! I'll probably get slated by the press now - 'God, she was awful'!
"But what I've seen of it - and this is excluding myself - I think the acting's fantastic. And what I've seen of it in episode one and two, I think every actor and every non-actor in it is fantastic and real. But that's excluding myself - I don't want to put myself in that category!"
Top Boy begins on Monday at 10pm on Channel 4.