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McDonald & Dodds: Meet the cast of the detective drama

Series three aired earlier this year...

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Emmy Griffiths
TV & Film Editor
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ITV detective drama McDonald & Dodds returns this weekend, and we're so excited to see what series two has in store.

MORE: The Voice's Anne-Marie reveals she walked off set in tears during filming for new series

The show follows Jason Watkins and Tala Gouveia as an unlikely duo thrown together to solve complex crimes  – and discover that they need each other more than they ever expected. So who are the lead actors and where have we seen them before? Here's all you need to know...

WATCH: Did you watch series one of the murder mystery?

Tala Gouveia as DCI McDonald

As an ambitious, driven police officer, Tala said that it was a "fantastic" part to play. Speaking about her character she said: "She is a great female lead and as a young woman of colour, is the boss of a middle-aged white man.

"That's partly what drew me towards it. It's a little bit different and not necessarily the representation I have seen growing up or watching detective shows." Tala has previously starred in Go Jetters, Cold Feet and Plebs.

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Tala Gouveia as McDonald

Jason Watkins - DS Dodds

Jason Watkins plays DS Dodds, a quiet and unassuming officer with a clever mind who has the opposite approach to McDonald. Viewers will recognise the actor from his many crime drama roles including Line of Duty, Des and Safe House. He also played Prime Minister Harold Wilson in season three of The Crown.

However, he received a BAFTA for his role as Christopher Jefferies in the ITV mini-series, The Lost Honour of Christopher Jeffries. He's also known for his comedy role in W1A.

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Jason Watkins as Dodds

Opening up about his character's working relationship with McDonald in series two, Jason said: "Dodds and McDonald learn from each other. Dodds learns that trying to be assertive is not a bad thing, and maybe she has to take her foot off the gas and think, 'Is there another way around this?'"

James Murray as Chief Supt John Houseman 

James Murray plays the role of John Houseman, McDonald and Dodds' boss. When viewers first met him in series one, he was keen for Dodds to take early retirement and isn't exactly the most supportive character on the show. 

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James Murray as Chief Supt John Houseman 

As James explained: "He is one of those people who will throw anyone under the bus. He can turn everything to his own advantage. Seamlessly." James has previously appeared on Death in Paradise, Age Before Beauty, New Tricks and Him.

Jack Riddiford as DC Darren Craig 

Jack plays police officer Darren and has previously starred in Dunkirk and Murder on the Orient Express. He has also had a successful TV career and has played Billy Pendrick in Doctor Martin and Jago Martin in Poldark.

Jack Riddiford

Jack Riddiford as DC Darren Craig 

Lily Sacofsky as DC Milena Paciorkowski 

Sanditon actress Lily Sacofsky joined the cast in series two as new police recruit DC Milena Paciorkowski. Creator Robert Murphy said of the character: "We wanted to introduce a Polish officer because we tried to reflect contemporary Britain.

Lily Sacofsky

Lily Sacofsky as DC Milena Paciorkowski 

"The characters we come across try and reflect the world we are in."

McDonald & Dodds has welcomed a number of guest characters onto the show throughout the three seasons. Audiences have been treated to cameo appearances from a range of actors including Martin Kemp, Rob Brydon, Patsy Kensit, Kelvin Fletcher and more.

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