Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Shetland's Mark Bonnar reveals he shares similarities with his character 

Are you enjoying the new series?

shetland mark bonnar
Nicky Morris
TV and film writer
3 November 2021
Share this:

Shetland star Mark Bonnar has revealed that his role of Duncan Hunter in the BBC police drama is a "pleasure to play" and that he shares some similarities with the character. 

MORE: Shetland: viewers left stunned after second episode

The series follows DI Jimmy Perez and his team as they investigate crime within the close-knit island community. Mark plays Duncan, a serial philanderer and the birth father of Jimmy’s stepdaughter Cassie. Despite the previous tension between them, the two co-parent harmoniously. 

WATCH: Douglas Henshall teases major downfall of character in upcoming episode

Speaking to TripWire Magazine, Mark revealed the reason why he enjoys playing Duncan in the gripping crime drama. He said: "Well Duncan just slips off the proverbial tongue! Duncan’s always a pleasure to play because he’s kind of similar to me – a bit hapless, a bit try-hard and a bit grumpy sometimes!"

"I certainly haven’t woken up on a beach, though, and I’ve never been in prison. I did like to party back in the day but I think that’s about it!"

The fourth series has seen the return of convicted killer Donna Killick after being released from prison due to a terminal illness. Mark spoke about the complicated relationship between Donna and Duncan, saying: "Duncan starts to feel a sudden sense of responsibility for what went wrong with Donna."

MORE: Guilt's Mark Bonnar has a very famous wife - and you might recognise her!

MORE: Shetland: Everything you need to know about season six - including who is in the cast

He continued: "However, as Perez said, although she was a victim of domestic abuse, she didn’t kill her abuser, she killed a teenage girl, Lizzie Kilmuir. Duncan’s busy trying to excuse her for what she did or try to understand what motivated her to murder because he was close to Donna at one point."

mark bonnar duncan© Photo: BBC

Mark Bonnar plays Duncan in Shetland 

The actor also touched on the relationship between Jimmy and Duncan, explaining that the real-life chemistry between the actors is reflected on-screen: "Seeing two dads together is a really interesting dynamic and it’s been interesting to explore it over the years and it’s just great working with Dougie. I think our chemistry really feeds into the chemistry of the two characters."

For those who have yet to watch the compelling series, it is based on the novels by Vera and The Long Call author Ann Cleeves and follows DI Jimmy as he investigates the murder of a prominent and well-loved local figure. 

Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.

Sign up to HELLO Daily! for the best royal, celebrity and lifestyle coverage

By entering your details, you are agreeing to HELLO! Magazine User Data Protection Policy. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, please click here.