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Dougray scott in Irvine Welsh’s Crime

Do you think Ray Lennox, on some level, subverts that old archetype of the “troubled yet brilliant” detective?

DOUGRAY SCOTT: I think he does. You’ve seen “troubled” detectives before, but I don’t think many of them go into the trauma of childhood sexual abuse, and how that fuels a character like Lennox, and how it really is an impetus for everything he does in life. Ostensibly, he joins the police force in order to find the people who abused him as a child. That creates this sort of volcanic character, someone who’s never comfortable lying still — he’s always on the lookout, searching continuously to find these people. And he’s a protector of sorts, he’s a voice for people who are vulnerable in society . . . He’s an interesting mixture of many, many things, but ultimately he’s a tragic character in some respects as well, because he’s full of so much pain — but he uses his job in order to try and scratch that itch within him. Ultimately, he’s not able to do that, but he still does a lot of good in the process.

In terms of both his cases and his inner turmoil, what new challenges does Lennox face in season two?

IRVINE WELSH: He’s got to solve this series of murders. They’re quite a perplexing series of murders, and he’s quite conflicted about it as well, because it seems to be abusive people in power that are being targeted by this killer. So he has some sympathy with the killer. That brings him to that point of existential crisis: “What am I doing in the police force? I’m ultimately protecting these people who have done these terrible things.”
DOUGRAY SCOTT: The cases lead him to have a stronger and more regular contact with his therapist, which then, in turn, leads him to talk more about what happened to him as a child — which affects his relationship with his mother and his sister. And you see a lot more of him in his family environment, which in some ways is good, because you get to see how that relationship will change . . . and everything that’s gone on inside his sister’s life. But it also allows you to get a window into the soul of Lennox and the trauma that he was affected by as a child, and how it’s bled into his adult life. So I think he finds himself in a situation that he never thought in a million years that he would be, which is to really talk about the effect of what happened. He has these sessions with his therapist where he talks about what happened, and it’s very painful for him to do that.

Irvine Welsh’s Crime, streaming on BritBox


The Scottish actor has appeared in a wide variety of film and TV projects on both sides of the pond, including as Drew Barrymore’s Prince Charming in bittersweet Cinderella remake Ever After and Tom Cruise’s nemesis in Mission: Impossible 2.


Last year, Scott scored an International Emmy for his portrayal of tortured police detective Ray Lennox, who unravels cases for Edinburgh’s Serious Crimes unit, while also reckoning with his own deep-seated trauma as a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. Below, both the leading man and his series creator Irvine Welsh (author of Trainspotting) preview season two of their dark, complex cop thriller.

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