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TAGGART

Set in Glasgow, 'Taggart' was a television detective series made by ITV company STV Productions, and it became one of the most respected crime dramas in the history of British TV. Mark McManus played the title role of rugged Detective Chief Inspector Jim Taggart, until his death in 1994. The series continued after McManus' death, and though the Jim Taggart character was never replaced the show's title was retained.

A Promising Start

'Taggart' was first shown on TV in 1983, as a three-part episode. Entitled 'Killer' it won a BAFTA, and so the show's credibility as a high quality drama was established early on. The 100th episode of 'Taggart' was broadcast in 2009. In 2011, English and Welsh ITV networks said that they would no longer broadcast the series, which was conceived by Glenn Chandler and Robert Love.

The stories in 'Taggart' were self-contained, and though they were of a gritty nature, the series rarely overstepped the mark in terms of nudity or strong language. 'Taggart' maintained its realism throughout its long run, and the series included a plethora of respected guest stars, including Robert Carlyle, Julian Glover, Annette Crosbie, Jill Gascoine, Hannah Gordon, John Hannah, Isla Blair, Barbara Dickson, Clare Grogan, Diane Keen, Ken Stott and Amanda Redman.

Main Characters

Blythe Duff was the longest-serving member of the 'Taggart' series, first appearing in 1989 as the calm Detective Sergeant with the dry wit, Jackie Reid. Other main characters in 'Taggart' were Neil Duncan as Detective Sergeant Peter Livingstone, Iain Anders as Superintendent Jack McVitie, John Michie as Detective Inspector Robbie Ross, and James MacPherson as Detective Chief Inspector Mike Jardine.

Alex Norton, who played Detective Chief Inspector Matt Burke, was in the Jim Taggart mould, and he was almost a father figure to the younger policemen and policewomen under his command, much as Jim Taggart had been. Jackie Reid's relationship with Robbie Ross was another interesting aspect of the series, as though it was a platonic relationship, there was an underlying affection that seemed ready to surface as a full-blown romance.

Overseas Popularity

The setting of 'Taggart' was normally in grim surroundings, and even the original theme song for the series had the same gritty quality that the series possessed. One of the most recognizable of all TV theme songs, 'No Mean City' was sung by Maggie Bell, before that was replaced by just the theme tune.

Shown around the world, including in Australia, New Zealand and Ireland, 'Taggart' also built up a strong following in some non-English speaking countries. The series was shown in Sweden and Denmark, as well as in several Eastern European countries.

- Paul Rance/booksmusicfilmstv.com.

Taggart Fan Club


Taggart Main Cast List

Blythe Duff as DS Jackie Reid
Colin McCredie as DC Stuart Fraser
John Michie as DI Robbie Ross
Robert Robertson as Dr. Stephen Andrews
James MacPherson as DCI Mike Jardine
Alex Norton as DCI Matt Burke
Iain Anders as Supt. Jack McVitie
Mark McManus as DCI Jim Taggart
Harriet Buchan as Jean Taggart
Michael MacKenzie as Dr. Magnus Baird
Lesley Harcourt as Gemma Kerr
Tamara Kennedy as Sheila Crombie
Brian Cowan as DCS Brian Holmes
Anne Marie Timoney as Det. Supt. Valerie Patterson
Graham De Banzie as Pathologist
Alastair Duncan as DS Peter Livingstone
Bill Denniston as Address To The Haggis
Lewis Howden as Alan Fisher
Angela Neil as Desk Seargent
Paul Donnelly as Constable
Yasmin Marley as WPC Heather McIntyre
Bill Barclay as Desk Sergeant
Ken Drury as Bernie Martin
Sandy Welch as Alistair Hogg
John McGlynn as Cameron Friel
Stuart Hepburn as Kenny Forfar
Gray O'Brien as DC Rob Gibson
Louise Ludgate as Dr Hilary Stewart
Katrina Bryan as Ellis Sinclair
Anthony Cochrane as Dr. Crawford
Ron Donachie as Harry Stein
Jimmy Chisholm as Derek Kennedy
Patricia Ross as DS Laura Campbell
John Straiton as Billy Whizz Neary
Dave Anderson as Alec Harris
Kenneth Bryans as Daniel Tulloch
Alan Tall as George Douglas
Emma Currie as Madeleine Brown
Julie Miller as Caroline Patton
Frank Gallagher as Bruce MacKenzie
Monica Brady as Carol Matheson
James Martin as Billy Watson
Vincent Friell as Andrew Kerr
Finlay Welsh as Angus Robinson
Niall Greig Fulton as Brendan Gallagher
Jake D'Arcy as 'Wisnae Me' McGhee
Adam Smith as Police Station Desk Clerk

Taggart DVDs available from booksmusicfilmstv.com - in association with Amazon.co.uk

Taggart - 25th Anniversary Edition [2008] ~ Taggart
'Taggart Through The Years DVD' Taggart Through The Years (6 Disc) ~ Blythe Duff, Mark McManus

 

 

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