Line of Duty

Anatomy of a Hit: Line of Duty

The critically acclaimed second series hit our screens in 2014 and realising they had a hit on their hands, the BBC commissioned two more that year. Having become the most popular drama series broadcast on BBC Two in the multi-channel era, Line of Duty made the jump to BBC One.

 With filming for series five underway and fans eagerly anticipating the return of the AC-12 team in 2019, Line of Duty is widely recognised as the decade’s best British drama series.

New series to look out for in 2021

The Serpent

BBC One

Release Date: New Year’s Day


Jenna Coleman as Marie-Andrée Leclerc and Tahir Rahim as Charles Sobhraj (credit: BBC)

The seventies-set international crime thriller The Serpent follows the true story of global efforts to capture Interpol’s most wanted man, the murderer Charles Sobhraj (Tahar Rahim, A Prophet).

Line of Duty will return to BBC One in early 2021

Vicky McClure, Martin Compston and Adrian Dunbar in line of Duty (credit: BBC)

Filming for the new series started up again in September and is still ongoing, with Adrian Dunbar, Vicky McClure and Martin Compston reprising their roles as detectives Superintendent Ted Hastings, DI Kate Fleming and DS Steve Arnott.

AC-12, the anti-corruption unit, will be met with a new, inscrutable adversary called DCI Joanne Davidson, played by Kelly Macdonald (Giri/Haji),

The series will pick up a year and a half after the closure of Operation Pear Tree, with Hastings returning to head up the unit after his exoneration at the end of series five.

An accidental career: Jed Mercurio headlines the RTS Midlands Careers Fair

Line of Duty creator Jed Mercurio decided he probably should learn to write – after he’d already penned a hit BBC drama series. “I did it backwards,” the former medic told the RTS Midlands Careers Fair 2020.

Mercurio had been a junior doctor working in Birmingham hospitals when he replied to an advert in the British Medical Journal. It had been placed by a production company looking for drama ideas.

Line of Duty stars and Craig David join Gogglebox for Stand Up to Cancer

Adrian Dunbar, Vicky McClure and Martin Compston (credit: Channel 4)

The Line of Duty big guns Ted Hastings, Kate Fleming and Steve Arnott will pause hunting down bent coppers to become experienced channel hoppers, with co-stars Adrian Dunbar, Vicky McClure and Martin Compston joining the show.

Adrian Dunbar commented: “It’s an honour to be part of the esteemed Gogglebox line up especially when it’s raising money for the phenomenal work Stand Up To Cancer do.”

ITV commissions new thriller starring Vicky McClure

Set in contemporary London, the six-part series portrays the death-defying and life-saving work of the Metropolitan Police Bomb Disposal Squad, also known as “Expo”.

A summer terrorist campaign wreaks havoc on the capital, and it’s up to Expo to defuse a series of improvised explosive devices.

Vicky McClure (Line of Duty) plays the experienced but reckless operative Lana Washington. As Lana begins to suspect her unit is the bomber’s true target, she sets out on a desperate search for proof and the bomber’s identity.

Filming begins on Line of Duty series six

Series six of the police procedural will rejoin AC-12 a year and a half on from the closure of Operation Pear Tree, following the Unit in their investigation of Detective Chief Inspector Joanne Davidson (Kelly Macdonald), who is working on an unsolved murder case.

“DCI Joanne Davidson will prove the most enigmatic adversary AC-12 have ever faced,” said writer and showrunner Jed Mercurio.