Superintendent Ted Hastings, the head of AC-12 and all-round legend, follows the letter of the law sir, THE LETTER. So we're seriously concerned by how much Line of Duty seems to be hinting that he might actually be a corrupt officer after all. Chatting on Lorraine on Thursday, Adrian Dunbar – who plays the fella himself - revealed that Ted "comes under scrutiny" in season five. Although we don't want it to be true, the series has already dropped some serious suggestions that Hastings might not follow the letter of the law after all. Ahead of Sunday night's season five premiere, here are all of the signs that he isn't as he seems...
He killed a balaclava man
In the season four finale, a group of the balaclava men come into AC-12 after they realise that their operation has gone sideways and that Ros' lawyer, Jimmy Lakewell, has been arrested. While one of the men grabs an officer and holds him hostage, Hastings doesn't hesitate and shoots him straight away, killing him. While he ended up saving an officer's life by his actions, this can be read another way: he killed a gunman so that he wouldn't be arrested and reveal his secrets.
Will Hastings be exposed as corrupt in season 5?
Jed Mercurio has since hinted that this action will come back to haunt him, explaining: "It does leave Hastings open to the accusation that he should have done more to preserve life in that situation and preserve a key witness."
He was a suspect for the police kingpin 'H'
Ted was issued a regulation 15 notice in season four after it was alleged that he was the lead officer in charge of the corrupt police officers, known only as 'H' (his surname is Hastings after all). The only problem is, most senior officers surnames appear to begin with 'H' as well. As such, the suspicion falls to Assistant Chief Constable Derek Hilton - and it is Hastings who declares that Hilton was 'H' all along, and requests that his name be taken from the list of suspects.
Adrian revealed his character comes under scrutiny in season 5
Hastings' relationship with Dot Cottan
Although Hastings was imperative to rumbling Dot – it was the corrupt copper who alerted Kate and AC-12 to the ringleader 'H' in the first place, confirming that the network of corruption goes much higher than 'the Caddy'. Since it was Hastings who promoted Dot to AC-12, with Dot telling the Superintendent: "What can I say? I'm your man," after accepting the job officer, it does hint that Hastings might have known the truth about Dot all along.
READ: Line of Duty fans have furious reaction to the season five trailer
The season four finale
Although the showrunner Jed Mercurio is known for messing with the audience (see Bodyguard!), he left season four on an disquieting note after appearing to show Ted Hastings behind bars in his office while ominously watching his team as they work, as the epilogue reads: "[Ted Hastings] remains in command of Anti-Corruption Unit 12."
READ: Line of Duty FINALLY announces air date – and it's sooner than you might think!