Interview extra

Richard Armitage & Hermione Norris, SpooksOctober 23, 2009

Spooks stars Richard Armitage and Hermione Norris reflect on the new series.

Richard, this is your second series so you’re not the new boy any more.
Richard Armitage: Lucas was coming into focus last year and finding his place back in the world that he left eight years ago. It was like he was in pieces being put back together which was good because that’s how I felt assembling the character. We were both on the same journey together. This year he hits the ground running and is much more like the Lucas he once was.

What are the big storylines for Lucas this series?
RA: You see more of the process that Lucas went through in prison in Russia where he built a relationship with an interrogator. It all kicks off in episode four when somebody comes back from his past to dig around and cause problems. It puts Lucas in a bad position because he has to negotiate with someone who has the potential to compromise him quite badly.

Doesn’t Lucas have a love interest this season?
RA: He does and it’s quite a dangerous one, a CIA liaison officer who is very beautiful, tall and blonde. It starts off as a power-based sexual relationship and turns into a deep love affair, but they start to double cross each other. Unfortunately Harry and Ros are monitoring him so it’s a bit of a sorry relationship because it can never truly flourish away from work.

What’s it like working on a show where anyone can die at any time?
RA: I think it’s great because as soon as a character becomes too comfortable it makes the show a bit dull. When Spooks gets rid of its characters it does it so well and in such a spectacular way that I don’t think anybody minds. The only character you couldn’t kill is Harry, you kill Harry and you kill the show.

Will you be back next season?
RA: I hope so but there’s a bit of a cliffhanger in episode eight so you don’t really know the outcome.

Were you sorry to see Guy of Gisborne killed off in Robin Hood?
RA: No, he had to go and I’m glad to have put the hair extensions and leather to bed!

Tell us about your fans, the Armitage Army.
RA: It’s grown and become a really strong thing. I think there are a lot of mums because I get a lot of motherly things, comedy underpants, cakes, honey, things like that. When I was working in Budapest on Robin Hood they sent all sorts of things for insect bites!

Hermione, are you at all like Ros in real life?
Hermione Norris: I wish I was, I bloody love Ros! I wish I had an answer for everything, I wish I was that bright and well-educated and I wish I could kick people! My life is chaotic and I never dress like Ros but she’s great to play.

It must be a tiring shoot, especially as you have two children.
HN: Yes I’m up at 5.30am and get home at 7.30pm six days a week. When filming finishes I can barely function for the first week because I’m used to being told what to do. If I’m in the supermarket I forget things and I can’t negotiate the checkout conveyor belt in Sainsbury's!

By Mary Comerford

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