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Line of Duty fans will get ‘a lot of big answers’, says star Compston


Are we going to get the Line of Duty answers we need? (Photo BBC/World Productions/Steffan Hill)

Are we going to get the Line of Duty answers we need? (Photo BBC/World Productions/Steffan Hill)

BBC/World Productions/Steffan Hi

Are we going to get the Line of Duty answers we need? (Photo BBC/World Productions/Steffan Hill)

Urgent answers required!

Line of Duty’s Martin Compston has promised devoted fans of the show that there are ‘a lot of pay-offs’ to come in this season’s finale.

As viewers still try to figure out the identity of the mysterious fourth H, the actor who plays AC-12’s DI Steve Arnott said fans who had stuck with the drama were deserving of ‘big answers’, which he said would be forthcoming in Sunday night’s episode.

Speaking to the Dublin-based podcast Shrine of Duty, Martin was asked if viewers will finally discover who’s the fourth bent copper pulling the strings of the OCG.

He replied: “I won’t quite go down the Joanne Davidson ‘no comment’ route but all I can say is that I think there are a lot of pay-offs coming; a lot of big answers and it’s deserved.

“People have stuck with us for such a long time. There comes a point where the natural story arc running all these years is coming to an end.”

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Commenting on the show’s future and whether or not there will be a seventh series, Martin said he didn’t know, and that Line of Duty creator Jed Mercurio liked to “take the emotion out of it” while studying the viewing figures and audience scores.

“There are different elements this year that we ‘re looking at in terms of do people want us back,” he said. “We don’t want to overdo it.

“At 10 years you start to think in terms of legacy. If it goes down well, in some ways that might be the perfect ending.

“We won’t do one just for the sake of it. Jed will only do it if there’s a story to be told.”

Praising the guest leads who have appeared since series one and who have been the subject of AC-12’s investigations into corrupt police officers, Martin said they had been a huge part of the show’s success. He said all the guest actors, including Keeley Hawes, Stephen Graham and this season’s Kelly Macdonald, had been “phenomenal” and that if another series did go ahead, it would be a great part for any actor to play.

Martin has become close friends with his co-stars, Adrian Dunbar (Ted Hastings) and Vicky McClure (Kate Fleming) and he also spoke about the fun the trio have on set, particularly in the long, intense interrogation scenes.

“Usually it’s about day two (of the interrogation scenes), when the mind is gone and the giggles are ready to happen because the finish line is in sight, it just takes something,” he said.

“Adrian had a bit of a brain freeze but animal themed. He was on a rant at Kelly and he had to say ‘a bunch of thugs’ but he says ‘a bunch of slugs’.

“And there was a ‘mountain of evidence’ but he said ‘a mountain of elephants coming at you’ and we were just like ‘what is going on?’. We were holding it in. When it happened before, everyone was averting each other’s eyes and pinching our thighs under the table, trying not to laugh.

“I think it was the slug one and everyone just lost it. You’re up against the time thing as well. You don’t want to be the one. People think the giggles are really self-indulgent, but they are horrible and once you start, there’s no way back.”

Martin described his character as an “arrogant wee so and so”, who liked to think he was a brilliant detective like Sherlock Holmes. But he said he was a “joy” to play and that he really cared about his job.

When asked to choose his favourite line of the entire six seasons of Line of Duty, Martin singled out Ted Hastings’ classic from last Sunday night’s instalment — “Jesus, Mary and Joseph and the wee donkey”. Following the episode, the one-liner trended on Twitter and has since spawned numerous memes, tee-shirts and Line of Duty memorabilia.

“As he says it, you just know what’s coming,” Martin said.

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