The man behind the world-renowned TV shows Line Of Duty and Bodyguard is back with a new cold case drama set in Northern Ireland.

Jed Mercurio knows his way around a crime drama, introducing us the incredibly tense Bodyguard – one of the only shows I know my dad has watched to the end – and Line of Duty, which has just been renewed for a sixth season.

It’s pretty exciting then that the producer is back with the rather forebodingly named Bloodlands, written by Chris Brandon and starring James Nesbitt.


Nesbitt will be playing the detective, Tom Brannick, who discovers a suicide note in a car in Strangford Lough, which before soon, he connects to another infamous cold case with a lot of personal baggage.

Just once I’d like to see a police show where the lead doesn’t have some personal connection to the victim or the culprit or something. Just people doing their jobs and not making a big thing of it.



Come to think of it, if I were the head policeman(???) of a particular policeman branch(???) and the fella on a particular case had a connection to the victim, I’d instantly get someone else to do it. Nothing sensational would happen on my watch.

line of duty bloodlands

Anyway, with the aforementioned case that James Nesbitt happens across, he’s then led on a huge cat-and mouse chase with a legendary assassin, through Strangford Lough and Belfast.


Nesbitt spoke of his new role with glowing praise for Bloodlands, saying:

It’s great to be back making a drama in and about Northern Ireland, which now has a film and television industry as good as any in the world.

We have compelling scripts from a brilliant young writer who was raised in County Down, which are very exciting and psychologically complex. I can’t wait to start.


james nesbitt bloodlands


Writer Chris Brandon also commented, saying:

I’m absolutely delighted that the first opportunity I get to tell a story on this scale, it is one that is so close to home and the people and places that raised me.

On top of that, to be telling it with James Nesbitt, Jed Mercurio and the incredible team at HTM is a total privilege.”

How lovely. I’ve got to say, it’s good to see a drama set in Northern Ireland that isn’t about the IRA. There’s more to that country than that.


Something to look forward to then.

Images via BBC