Death in Paradise’s Neville Parker has ‘a lot to cope with’

Ralf Little walks down muddy track at location of Death in Paradise

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Death in Paradise series 11 ended at the beginning of this year and fans have been eager to get their favourite crime-fighting detectives back on their screens. They won’t have to wait long as the Christmas special is set to bring them some criminal joy, with season 12 following shortly.

Neville Parker actor Ralf Little recently opened up about what it will be like for his character to return to the island without Florence Cassell (played by Josephine Jobert).

Florence left the Caribbean island to go on an undercover mission and left fans devastated at her departure from the show.

Opening up on how Neville has changed since the last series, Ralf explained: “In the second half of the last series, he was trying to get over the loss of Florence.

“He’s still a little burned by that. He may be a superhuman sleuthing mastermind, but he’s still a human!

“Workwise, he’s mostly settled in, but in his personal life, he’s not quite sure how he feels about trying to move on from that, or whether he wants to move on and carry the idea of Florence with him.

“He has a lot to work out. That sets the foundation for his journey in the Christmas special. We can’t let him get too settled.

“He loves life on the island, he’s got a great group of friends, his job’s going well – it can’t all be smooth sailing, so there’s a lot this year that he’s got to cope with. More than ever.”

Florence’s departure comes after Neville was brutally friend-zoned by his deputy after she told him they were “just friends”.

On her departure from the series, Josephine explained to Digital Spy: “Yeah, she’s been through a lot and she’s been shot once, almost died the second time.

“She lost her husband and is still grieving, but I mean, she’s getting better and better. I think it’s good for her to leave for good.”

The festive special, which will air on Boxing Day at 9pm, will be a 90-minute episode full of the latest on-goings from sunny Saint Marie.

Touching on the “spooky” storyline, Ralf admitted: “The nice thing about a Christmas special is that everyone understands that you can be a bit more playful or experimental – or special, even – with the tone.

“We have ninety minutes instead of an hour, so we can give storylines time to develop. They went bold this year with the script.

“Don’t worry, it’s not a massive departure from the usual Death in Paradise story. We still know what people enjoy about the show, but it’s a good old-fashioned Christmas ghost story with clever twists.

“It has a scary tone, but it’s in keeping with the world of the show. It was fun to film and I think people are going to enjoy it.”

After the Christmas special, there will be the start of season 12 to look forward to as the first episode kicks off on January, 6 at 9pm.

The synopsis for the premiere instalment reads: “We meet a bunch of Preppers digging in for the apocalypse on a Saint Marie hillside when the end comes dramatically early for one of them.

“An impossible killing on a boat takes the team to a beautiful beach under threat, and an apparently straightforward domestic murder twists into what could be Neville’s greatest ever challenge…”

Don Warrington returns to the series alongside Elizabeth Bourgine as Catherine Bordey and Tahj Miles as Officer Marlon Pryce.

Shantol Jackson who plays Sergeant Naomi Thomas and Ginny Holder as Darlene will also be back for the new instalment.

Death in Paradise’s Christmas special airs Boxing Day from 9pm on BBC One.

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