The news that Kris Marshall has packed his suitcases and departed Guadeloupe for the final time has left the sand clear for a new investigator on this sandy isle – enter DI Jack Mooney, played by Irish actor Ardal O’Hanlon.
Viewers of this series have already met Jack, during the double episode following the murder enquiry, which brings DI Humphrey Goodman and his team to England. He’s very different from the clumsy Humphrey, according to Kris Marshall, who tells Radio Times:
“He’s a lot more anecdotal, so the way he goes about things is different. He’s also been recently widowed – and he has a daughter in her early 20s. So that’s a whole different dynamic.”
What else for the character preparing to step into the sand-filled shoes of Humphry and his predecessor Richard Poole, played by comedian Ben Miller?
He’s “a sad-sack Met officer working in a dank basement who gets this gig looking after visiting Caribbean officers,” according to Ardal, who’s about to embark on one of the most coveted gigs in television, filming ‘Death in Paradise’ on the island of Guadeloupe for six months of the year.
DI Jack Mooney will be different from his predecessors, according to Ardal. “Ben’s character was uptight. Kris’s was more clumsy and, I suppose, with me, they’re going for something a little bit quirky on the island,” he says.
“I’ve tried to bring a certain kind of a warmth to it. Mooney is quite friendly, quite genial and slightly underestimated because of it. Maybe there’s some of the naivety that I’ve brought to other characters before.”
The one piece of advice given to him by his predecessor Kris Marshall…
“Know your lines for the wrap-up scene backwards, because it’s all filmed in one day and the heat starts to get unbearable.”
It’s a tough job…
Read the full interview with Ardal O’Hanlon in next week’s Radio Times, on sale now. ‘Death in Paradise’ continues on Thursday evenings on BBC One.