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Wednesday 24 Sep 2014

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Luther: characters

Lead character outlines

DSU Martin Schenk played by Dermot Crowley (Bleak House, Spooks)

Working for Police Complaints, DSU Martin Schenk appears unassuming but is universally feared for his steel-trap mind. Deceptively observant and intuitive, he is determined to rid the force of bent coppers. Although Schenk admires his talents, that might include DCI John Luther.

In Series two, Schenk once more comes across his most worthy opponent and finds himself strangely drawn to Luther's side.

Alice Morgan played by Ruth Wilson (Jane Eyre, Small Island)

Alice Morgan, a celebrated child genius, completed her PhD in astrophysics at the age of 18. Now working at a London university as a research fellow, she has spent her life feeling different, special and freakish. For Alice, human existence is insignificant and life is futile and senseless – which is why, in series one, she felt compelled to murder her own mother and father.

Luther has never been able to convict Alice and they have subsequently formed a strange and uneasy friendship. In series two the balance has shifted and it's Alice who needs Luther's help and support.

DS Justin Ripley played by Warren Brown (Occupation, Single Father)

DS Justin Ripley is young, ambitious and eager. He studied forensic psychology and criminology to post-graduate level and has a textbook knowledge of the last 50 years of crime-solving.

In series two, Ripley remains unwaveringly loyal to his boss – but he has his own ideas about what's right and what's not. Having spent a year as Luther's wingman, he knows to his own cost that while Luther burns brightly, those who stand too close are liable to get burned.

Mark North played by Paul McGann (Withnail And I, Doctor Who)

Despite their numerous differences Mark and Luther share a bond that cannot be broken through their grief for Zoe. For months now, they have found solace and comfort in one another's company and random late night games of chess. When Luther finds himself with a problem that he can't bring into his professional world, he turns to the man he utterly and completely trusts, Mark.

DC Benny Silver played by Michael Smiley (Spaced, Burke And Hare)

Benny is more comfortable with a console than a conversation, which makes him a bit of a recluse. But he is an exemplary hacker and what he doesn't know about computers and technology just isn't worth knowing. Benny's reputation and the hours he is contracted by the SSU have sharply risen recently as technology becomes an increasingly important factor in crime solving. Rarely a case goes by when Luther doesn't need Benny's infinite knowledge of trivia and his high-tech nerdy expertise.

New characters

Caroline Jones played by Kierston Wareing (Fish Tank, The Shadow Line)

Fifteen years ago Caroline's husband accidentally murdered a prostitute, panicked and disposed of her body. Luther tracked him down and was utterly brutal in the way in which he put him away, so he killed himself. In the process, Caroline lost her wealth, her health, her friends and her happiness. Her life was hauled over the coals by the tabloids and her daughter went off the rails. She trusted in Luther to help her, but ended up as a victim on the sideline of his campaign for justice. As far as Caroline's concerned, Luther destroyed her life and her daughter Jenny's life. Luther owes her big time.

Jenny Jones played by Aimee Ffion Edwards (Skins, Being Human)

Jenny lost her way after her father was hauled to prison and committed suicide. She found herself falling into a downward spiral, unable to help herself. Her bravado hides a vulnerable, lost little girl who wants to be loved. In her relationship with Luther, she is smart and sassy, and certainly hasn't lost her teenage petulance. They are like the odd couple with their different quirks and attitudes, who find a mutual understanding and affection. Jenny is Luther's Achilles heel. If he can save her, he can prove that there is love in the world.

DS Erin Gray played by Nikki Amuka-Bird ( Small Island, Silent Witness)

Erin Gray has entered the police force on the High Potential Scheme, on a fast-track through the system. Highly intelligent and ambitious yet simultaneously young and naive, she comes from a sheltered background. Excited by her new role, she is also apprehensive about the prospect of working with a man of Luther's reputation. Determined to succeed, she makes it clear that she will not get her hands dirty or be tarnished by the same brush that tarnished Ripley. But abiding by the rules proves a much harder choice than she ever anticipated.

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