Cape Town – Scotland’s iconic loch is the backdrop for a brand new six-part drama Loch Ness on Universal Channel (DStv 118).
The thriller follows small town detective Annie (Laura Fraser, Breaking Bad) as she investigates a serial killer in the sheltered community of Lochnafoy.
The critics praise the whodunit mystery for being intriguing and riveting.
Former Coronation Street actor Gray O’Brien plays Alan, a tour boat operator and husband to the town detective, Annie.
“Do you want me to tell you who did it?” asks O’Brien during a telephone interview with Channel24.
“No, no spoilers, please,” I exclaim.
He lets out a hearty laugh and goes on to tell me a bit more about the show.
“It’s an unusual thriller. It’s a little sleepy tourist town and then something horrible happens.”
He continues: “My character’s wife, Annie is a detective and the most police work she has ever done is investigating lost sheep. It happens in the village and affects everyone and anyone could be responsible.”
PLAYING THE EVERYMAN
What attracted O’Brien to the series was the script and that Alan was a departure from the usual characters he has played.
“My television history for the last 10-15 years has been playing nasty, bad people and Alan wasn’t. He is a husband and father and runs a tour boat. He lives a simple life and is a people’s person.”
“Alan in a way plays everyman – he is the conscious of the show – he is just a genuine, loving guy.”
O’Brien didn’t have any boating experience and to prepare for the role he had one lesson in which he was taught the basics.
The series was filmed on location in the Scottish Highlands and one of the challenges was the ever changing weather which made filming a bit hard. The only element they didn’t experience was snow remarks O’Brien.
Another challenge was learning how to play curling for a scene.
Curling is a sport in which players slide stones on a sheet of ice towards a target area which is segmented into four concentric circles. It's a bit like bowling he explains.
“That was so hard! We had never done it before and only had one day to practice!”
Why should viewers watch this show, I ask.
“I think it is a really great series – there has been a lot of buzz on Twitter as it has kept everyone guessing. It gets you hooked and I think the incredible scenery adds to the mystery,” says O’Brien.
Before we end the call I have to ask him if he believes in the loch ness monster.
“Do I believe? Well I am going to be protective of my character, so absolutely. I have to say though, while we were filming we didn’t have a drone or underwater camera but I did keep looking at the monitor for something to creep up. And I did wonder just for a moment. Maybe I was susceptible that there could be one.”
Watch the trailer here:
Catch Loch Ness Monday, 25 September at 20:50 on Universal Channel (DStv 118).