Brenda Blethyn thinks she knows at least one reason why her straight-talking detective alter-ego Vera is a hit with viewers - she's not a threat.
The actress is about to begin filming the fourth series of the ITV show, with the third instalment about to hit our screens.
"I couldn't believe they commissioned another one, I thought 'Cor, that's really nice'," she said.
The show focuses primarily on crimes, revealing little about the police squad's lives.
Brenda said: "Vera isn't a threat to anybody. The husbands aren't thinking, 'Phwoar, I'd like to give her one!'."
But the actress admitted: "Although I have had a few letters."
She said of working with Cutting It's David Leon, who plays Vera's sidekick Detective Sergeant Joe Ashworth: "I don't think he knows he's handsome... He's a very clever chap."
From The Fall to Broadchurch and Scott And Bailey, female TV detectives appear to be going through a golden period, but the Secrets And Lies actress added: "Somebody asked me if it's nice to see women come back. I said, 'What do you mean, come back? We've been here all along!'."
:: Vera returns to on ITV on Sunday August 25.