Jed Mercurio says Line of Duty’s AC-12 trio are never safe: ‘There’s a sword hanging over every one of them’

The series creator revealed that none of the series' detectives are exempt from being killed off.

Adrian Dunbar, Vicky McClure and Martin Compston in Line of Duty

Line of Duty creator Jed Mercurio has revealed that none of the AC-12 team are exempt from being killed off in future series of the BBC detective drama.


Speaking to during an exclusive live Q&A with the Line of Duty cast and writers, the writer said that DS Steve Arnott (Martin Compston), DI Kate Fleming (Vicky McClure) and Superintendent Ted Hastings (Adrian Dunbar) are all at risk of getting the chop as none of the iconic trio are safe.

When asked who would his dream guest star on a future series of Line of Duty, Mercurio said: “Well to be honest, my dream is to carry on working with Martin and Vicky and Adrian.”

However, when asked whether that meant that their three characters weren’t getting killed off in the future, he added: “No, there’s a sword hanging over every single one of them.”

“All they need to do is help themselves to seconds at dinner time and that’s it, they’re out!” he joked.

While each series of Line of Duty has featured a new case with a different police officer under investigation, one constant of the show has been the detectives within AC-12 – Arnott, Fleming and Hastings – who have been its stars since series one.

During the Q&A, which also featured Martin Compston, Vicky McClure, Adrian Dunbar, Lennie James, Simon Heath and Craig Parkinson, Mercurio also said that he always intended AC-12 to join forces and become the iconic trio they are today.

Line of Duty

“The plan was that they would collide, that they would come together and create a kind of critical mass. So it was just really part of the story-telling process that we have them all separated at the beginning and then through the plot development, they end up forming a trio and certainly by the end of the series, it was very clear that the interpersonal character dynamics were going to work very well,” he said.

He continued: “So when we were fortunate enough to be successful and to find out we were gonna get a second season, it was absolutely a very straight forward decision that we would want to build a second season around those three characters.”


The Line of Duty cast and crew were four weeks into filming series six when the coronavirus pandemic forced production to shut down in March, however Mercurio revealed that he is hoping to wrap the season by Christmas in order for it to air in 2021.’s Q&A with the Line of Duty cast and writers is available to watch on our Facebook page. Line of Duty is available to stream on BBC iPlayer. If you’re looking for more to watch, check out our TV guide.