Your suggestions to replace DI Perez

Douglas Henshall has called time on his era in BBC murder mystery drama Shetland, leaving many people asking what will happen when season eight hits our screens. 

But the biggest question on everyone’s lips is who is going to replace Ann Cleeves’ DI Perez? 

The Shetland Times asked this question on Facebook and Twitter and the response to our question brought many great suggestions. 

Some people suggested that Alison O’Donnell, who plays Tosh, and Steven Robertson, Sandy, could step up and fill the shoes left behind by DI Perez, however there were a lot of names thrown about by our readers.

Game of Thrones and Eternals actor Richard Madden has been suggested by Wilma Brown. 

The 36-year-old, from Elderslie in Renfrewshire, has worked on many television shows, including BBC show the Bodyguard, in which he won a Golden Globe for best actor. 

Ingrid A Williamson suggested Adrian Dunbar, famous for his role as Superintendent Ted Hastings in Line of Duty

Such memorable lines as “I didn’t float up the lagan in a bubble” and “now we’re cooking with gas” brought him success in his role as the experienced leader of AC-12. 

However, is it going to be bent coppers he will be dealing with, should he take on the role? 

Another Scot was mentioned to take on the role by Lee Barratt, Perth-born Ewan McGregor. 

The actor is famous for roles as Mark Renton in Trainspotting and Obi-wan Kenobi in the Star Wars prequels. 

McGregor recently returned to screens in Disney+ show Obi Wan Kenobi, which follows the character’s life as a young Luke Skywalker grows up. 

But will we see McGregor say “hello there” in the Lerwick police station? 

Some suggestions for high profile Hollywood stars included Die Hard actor Bruce Willis, Thor actor Chris Hemsworth and Tomb Raider’s Angelina Jolie. 

Some more unlikely suggestions given on our Facebook post were Baldrick from BBCs Blackadder, Mr Bean, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who might be looking for a new job after resigning as leader of the Conservative party. 


Add Your Comment
  • Billy Lee Hart

    • July 23rd, 2022 21:15

    I am from the USA and watch Shetland for the scenery and the rare “cop show” that has some thoughtful plots and a local “feel” for the Island. Watching has perked my interest in the local history that I read “Shetland Bus” and I am planning a trip to see where such beauty and courage can come together.
    I chose Allison O’Donnell because I think she could bring continuity to the show along with knowledge of local traditions.
    Looking forward to being at Up helly aa 2023 and look forward to more of Shetland

  • Jan Livingstone

    • July 24th, 2022 4:01

    Another Scot Martin Compson from
    Line of Duty would be more than capable to step into the shoes of
    Douglas Henshall. Sad to see him go but looking forward to one last series.
    I hope they don’t kill Perez off, (he could get promoted to the Metropolitan Police
    In London so he leaves on a high!)

  • Peter Duffy

    • July 25th, 2022 10:24

    I’ve enjoyed watching (and reading) the Shetland series, here in Canada. My mother was from Cullivoe on Yell, so the desolate beauty of the settings have special meaning for me. I’ve visited several times over the years and the images of lonely trees growing sideways against the wind are etched in my memory!

  • James Jordan

    • July 25th, 2022 12:30

    Got to be Alex Norton, he’s already proved he can do police/detective roles.

  • Ranald Constable

    • July 25th, 2022 13:03

    Got to be Tosh. She is now an established sergeant and knows the islands, the people and has the experience from Perez. Alison O’Donnell is also an excellent actor. Sandy goes up to sergeant and bring in a new DC.
    A new DI from the mainland would have to spend the first and possibly second series fitting in and regaining credibility from the viewers.
    Learn from previous tv cop series like Taggart when the wimpish Mike Jardine then loudmouth Matt Burke replaced Jim Taggart. Numbers fell then programmes reduced from 2 hours to 1 hour.
    Continuity is essential so Tosh it is.

  • Susan Birkett

    • July 25th, 2022 14:57

    I was taken by surprise to hear that Douglas was going to be leaving Shetland. He has been a sterling success as Perez… I do however think that Perez should leave with him.. I would not like another actor cast as Perez as there is only one in my eyes… Tosh or Sandy gets my vote…. What happens to Perez’s daughter is she going to be written out ? … Whoever can take the lead role … I wish them the very best …Douglas may be a hard act to follow…

  • Maria Forsdike

    • July 25th, 2022 16:44

    I think sam Heughan i have watched outlander and feel that he would be great for shetland. Heard he is going to die in next series so will be available

  • Marion Harding

    • July 25th, 2022 18:45

    I don’t want to watch Shetland ever again if Douglas Hensall isn’t Di Perez!!

  • John Cope,

    • July 26th, 2022 19:42

    Ken stott, Phillip Glenister

  • Graham Galbraith

    • July 26th, 2022 22:40

    The series is called ‘Shetland’ not ‘Perez’ and I think it would be better if Perez, who -is- Douglas Henshall in all of our minds, is not replaced Taggart-style with another actor. I agree with others who say Perez should just get a ‘promotion’ which takes him away for ‘a while’ which leaves things open for the possibility of a return or even just the occasional guest appearance by Henshall as Perez. Tosh should move up to be the lead character, Sandy up behind her, and Sandy’s replacement can be the inevitable English fish-out-of-water who has to understand and warm to the local ways, there will be scope for humour in that.

    The real lead characters are the Shetlands themselves, as I can attest having visited a couple of times myself.

  • Marian Holler

    • July 27th, 2022 3:26

    I have watched each of the series more than several times because I get something out of it I previously missed. I love the scenery and all of the actors but especially Douglas Henshall. The person suggested for his role I think will do an excellent job is Ewan McGregor. I would like to see him as a new character arriving to replace DI Perez who has been promoted and moved to Australia or NZ.

  • James Glen

    • July 27th, 2022 15:38

    I think the role should definitely be taken over by another Scottish actor, it definitely won’t be the same without Douglas but unfortunately we cannot stop his decision about leaving! What about Grant Stott, David Tennant to name a couple?

  • Dr. Nancy Ras

    • August 4th, 2022 17:32

    As an avid Shetland fan here in California, it’s sad that Doug Henshall is leaving.
    Nonetheless, Shetland is just too good to let die.
    I would think that an older actor (a higher up) could be parachuted in to fill the void for a season or two allowing viewers to have a break from inevitable comparisons between whomever ultimately replaces Perez.
    My suggestions for that temporary span would be Anton Lesser or Toby Jones.
    My vote to replace Perez is Alastair MacKenzie.
    Can’t wait to see what there is coming!
    And best of luck to Doug Henshall. Just a super actor. Thanks for the great work!

  • Kat

    • August 6th, 2022 0:38

    Not sure I can watch Shetland without Perez/Henshall, but my vote goes to David Tennant, after all, the ‘new guy’ is going to be a real outsider, and he does that well 😉 in addition to being a fantastic actor.

  • Anne Hughes

    • September 9th, 2022 13:13

    Think Richard Madden would be a good fit as replacent for Douglas Henshall in Shetland . . . . .

  • GunnCat

    • September 15th, 2022 3:24

    David Tennant, obviously..


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