Line of Duty's Craig Parkinson thinks Ted Hastings will exit this series: "He deserves a hero's death"
The gaffer is in a tricky situation heading into next week's season finale.
There's just one more episode of Line of Duty's sixth season to go and fans across the country are bracing for a dramatic climax to what has been another nail-biting series of the hit drama.
One character who finds himself in a particularly tricky situation heading into the season closer is Ted Hastings, who is being forced into early retirement by his superiors and is desperate to solve the case of the link between the OCG and police corruption before his time runs out.
And former star Craig Parkinson reckons we could be about to see Ted leave the show, with the gaffer possibly set to be killed off in the final episode.
Parkinson spoke at length about Ted with author and podcaster Elizabeth Day on the most recent episode of the Obsessed With... Line of Duty podcast on BBC Sounds, with the pair revealing they are both concerned for his future.
"There is a moment which filled me with such sadness, and it was the image of Ted not in his rightful place, not in his office," Parkinson said.
"He was reduced to working from the glass box and, for me, it was the equivalent of a child being asked to leave the class and take their desk and work outside in the corridor because they'd been so naughty. And it was just awful image for me."
"The other image of sadness that I was going to cite was Ted in the lift later on in the episode, where he's like shaking and almost crying," Day added.
"I cannot see my Ted Hastings in this glass case of emotion, it was just so painful. And you were asking about my fears and worries and my fear and worry is that Ted will not last this season."
She continued, "I think that he's at the point where he feels that... he says that thing, at one point about how sometimes you don't lose, you run out of time and I think he's running out of time.
"And maybe he realises that the role that he wanted to play is coming to an end, and what he's been trying to do – the legacy he's been trying to build, the bent coppers he's been trying to weed out – his time is running out to do that.
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"And maybe there'll be a point where he sacrifices himself, even lays his life down, for some reason. I think he's going to have a hero's exit but I do think it's going to be an exit."
Parkinson said he could not agree more with Day's theory, adding that it appears as if Ted is breaking down.
"They were signposting us that somebody is going to go and at first we thought Steve with his drink and drugs problem," he said.
"I was never worried about Kate but I think what [showrunner Jed Mercurio] was very mischievously trying to do was signpost that it could be Steve.
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"But now after this episode, with those images of what Ted's been reduced to, and physically and mentally where he is, yes, I do believe he's going to exit the show and he deserves nothing but a hero's exit."
Read our Line of Duty episode 6 recap for all the major theories and questions from last night's penultimate instalment. Also, watch the Line of Duty finale trailer here now.
Line of Duty concludes on Sunday 2nd May 2021 at 9pm on BBC One and Obsessed With… Line of Duty is available now on BBC Sounds. Take a look at the rest of our Drama coverage, or check out our TV Guide to see what’s on TV this week.