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Vigil’s Martin Compston didn’t even tell his family about that savage twist: ‘It’s a real wow moment’

Martin Compston blindsided us all (Picture: BBC/World Productions)

*Warning: This article contains major spoilers for Vigil, episode one.

While Line of Duty fans may have been gagging to see Martin Compston in Jed Mercurio’s new BBC thriller Vigil, they were given the crushing blow his character was killed off within minutes.

Vigil follows DCI Silva’s (played by Suranne Jones) investigation into the death of Craig Burke (Martin) who was found dead on board a Navy submarine from what appeared to be a heroine overdose. However, he was later confirmed to be a Navy whistleblower working with a peace group campaigning against the use of trident missiles.

Silva is suspecting murder, but has a battle on her hands with an uncooperative captain and his equally frustrating officers.

Speaking about the gruesome twist, the star best known for playing Steve Arnott in Line of Duty discussed his ‘red herring’ part.

‘I was having dinner with Simon Heath, who’s the executive producer on that and Vigil,’ he recalled.

DCI Silva investigates Burke’s death (Picture: BBC)

‘Out of the blue he mentioned that World Productions and the BBC had this wonderful ‘red herring part’ coming up on a new series that everyone was really excited about, Vigil, and he said to me ,‘Do you want to do it?’

‘When Simon told me the cast already on board and the idea behind Vigil, it all really appealed and I think I said yes there and then. There were six or seven days before I was due to start work on Line of Duty when Vigil was also filming, so I spent them up in Glasgow on the HMS Vigil set.’

Naturally, then, Martin was sworn to secrecy while taking part in the show’s enormous campaign trail.

‘You just can’t give these things away – nobody wants a spoiler, and I wouldn’t want to kill the surprise for anybody,” he said. “Even my family and people close to me who knew I wasn’t away filming Vigil for very long, I just told them I had a ‘limited’ role.

‘Alongside Vigil’s cast and premise, this was another element that attracted me to the role of Burke – I found it intriguing to be the surprise death for once. I was chuffed to be asked. What I found especially intriguing was that Burke dies and – just when you think you’ve seen the last of him – it turns out that, no, he’s still got more to give and more to say and he’s made it so he hasn’t gone down without a fight.

‘When he appears back at the end of episode one on the recording, it’s a real wow moment I think.’

As for all the questions we have about Burke’s death, Martin is also none the wiser.

‘I’m excited to watch it live each week and find out who or what killed Burke at the same time as everyone else does,’ he added.

Vigil continues tonight at 9pm on BBC One. 

Credit: Original article published here.

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