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Whodunnit? Suspense is killing us too; BEST OF THE WEEK MURDER CITY WEDNESDAY, ITV, 9pm.

Byline: BY STEVE HENDRY

Amanda Donohoe and Kris Marshall are back on the trail of evil for a second series of ITV's Murder City.

But while the duo are cracking crime as top coppers DI Susan Alembic and DS Luke Stone on screen, they'd make rotten sleuths in real life.

Car chases and running about with a gun are Amanda's idea of hell, while Kris admits he can't work out whodunnit without the script to tell him.

Kris, 32, star of hit comedy My Family and the face of BT adverts, said: "I have never guessed who did it, either in this series or the last.

"It's hard enough to keep up with the twist let alone guess who the murderer is!"

Amanda, 43, who shot to fame in the film Castaway with Lucy Irvine and starred as a lesbian lawyer in LA Law, prefers working her brain to grappling with criminals. And she was delighted that most of this series' stunts involved the victims.

She said: "Maybe next year I'll have a high-speed car chase through the streets of London shooting semi-automatic weapons out the window and shouting, 'step on it Luke'. But actually, no, I'd hate that - I'm much happier doing the detective work than the action stuff."

The new series opens with the bizarre death of a groom the night before his wedding.

After kissing his wife-to-be goodnight, he is hit by the dead body of a woman thrown from the top of his apartment block.

Stone and Alembic have different styles - she is tough and methodical while he is a creative loose cannon. Their investigation leads them to a dating agency for married people who want clandestine sex and Alembic has to go undercover.

Detective drama is a very crowded marketplace but both stars are convinced Murder City has something different to offer viewers.

Amanda said: "Murder City is unique in that we tell two crime stories per episode and, somewhere along the line, they become interlinked. The fun is to figure out how, when and why they're linked. The twists and turns in the plot always surprise me." Kris added: "I think what people like about Murder City is that it's the kind of show where everyone bickers like people do in real life when they work together. I like the fact that all of the characters are quite real with each other.

"Luke bickers with his boss, he bickers with Alembic, the PCs bicker with him...they argue and question and take the mickey out of each other, which is what happens in real life.

"I really think there is space for Murder City. This is not paint-by-numbers police drama and I think it fills a gap in that way."

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Kris and Amanda are dying to get back on TV
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Apr 2, 2006
Words:529
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