IT’S the ideal pick-me-up on cold, dark winter evenings.
And as Death In Paradise returns this week, star Sally Bretton says there’s no great mystery about the success of the Caribbean-filmed series.
“It’s just the perfect tonic,” Sally told iN10. “The storyline carries you through, it’s not stressful or anxious and there’s a nice bit of humour.
“It looks beautiful and it feels good for you. That’s certainly the way I feel when I watch it.”
Sally plays Martha, who has appeared before and is back as a bit of love interest for Kris Marshall’s bumbling-but-brilliant detective, DI Humphrey Goodman.
This is the sixth series and it is one of the BBC’s biggest, most dependable drama hits.
Fictional Saint Marie is, in fact, pretty as a picture Guadeloupe. And Sally says it’s just as gorgeous as it appears.
“It’s a fantastic job. Kris has been doing it for years and he was out there for much longer than I was, but it’s sheer heaven.
“It’s gorgeous, the most wonderful place. I had enough downtime to hire a car and have a good look round the island.”
If there is one downside, it’s filming in what can be searing temperatures, made even worse by the hot TV lights still required.
“Kris would shoot a scene and actually strip in between takes so his clothes didn’t get all sticky,” explains Sally.
“Then he’d climb back into them for the next take. And at lunch, everyone would wear as little as possible.”
Guest starring on Death In Paradise is high on any actor’s list of dream jobs, but Sally knows all too well that it’s not the norm.
And one job earlier in her career quickly comes to mind when the conversation turns to less glamorous locations.
“My character had been stabbed in the face and I had to lie in a freezing car park wearing nothing but a little dress.
“It was horrible, just deeply unpleasant and I remember thinking that I’d rather be anywhere else warm.
“So trust me, I really did appreciate Death In Paradise.”
Sally is best-known for BBC sitcom Not Going Out and she’ll be doubling up on our screens this month with that also starting a new series.
Such is the BBC’s confidence in it that two more series have just been commissioned.
Sally plays Lee Mack’s partner, Lucy, with things having moved on seven years since the last series screened a couple of years back. They now have three young kids and, as a mum-of-three herself, that’s hardly a stretch for Sally.
“People just really love Lee’s humour. There are a lot of gags in Not Going Out and I think viewers will still enjoy that with the new set-up.
“Lee has a family of his own and I think that’s what he wanted to write about.
“It’s much more like we both are in our lives now.”
When it comes to theatre work drama is more Sally’s forte, but she admits screen comedy suits her nicely.
“I love both but you do laugh a lot making a comedy.
“You’re surrounded by people who tell good stories and jokes and you spend a lot of your time belly laughing.”
Death In Paradise, BBC1, Thur, 9pm.
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