Death in Paradise teases first look at Ardal’s replacement - is it Rowan Atkinson, Ralf Little, Alexander Armstrong or someone else?

Death in Paradise series nine Ardal as DI Jack Mooney

Can you crack who the mystery man is?

Death in Paradise has released a teasing first glimpse of Ardal O Hanlon’s replacement on the BBC1 hit - and fans are torn over whether it’s Rowan Atkinson, Ralf Little, Alexander Armstrong or possibly someone else!

The mysterious snap only shows the back of the new Death in Paradise top cop, who will be taking over when Ardal leaves his post as DI Jack Mooney during the next series.


The Death in Paradise team tweeted: “Greetings from the Caribbean! Here’s a sneak peek of the new D.I. taking over from Ardal O’Hanlon to unravel the island’s murder mysteries. Who do you think will be playing him? Answers on a postcard please!.”

This has obviously led to feverish debate on Twitter about who the chap looking out at the ocean actually is!

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It would be a nice twist if it was Alexander Armstrong as he is famous for his comedy work with Ben Miller, who of course played the original Death in Paradise leading man, DI Richard Poole.

Ralf Little

Is Ralf Little the new Death in Paradise top cop? (pic: WireImage) (Image credit: WireImage)

However, many are convinced that the mystery man is none other than The Royle Family’s Ralf Little.

Ralf actually guest starred in a 2013 episode of Death in Paradise as Will Teague, but that wouldn’t necessarily stop him from being the new leading man.

Rowan Atkinson

Rowan Atkinson would be a popular choice (pic: Getty Images) (Image credit: Getty Images)

Some claimed that the gentleman in question could be Rowan Atkinson; while other names touted include Hugh Laurie and, rather mischievously, the political Jacob Rees-Mogg!

Conducting our own investigation we can safely rule out Jacob and we reckon Rowan Atkinson is unlikely to be playing another cop, as he’s recently been starring as Maigret on ITV. Ralf Little or Alexander Armstrong seem more likely candidates.

However, the BBC is yet to confirm who will be taking over from Ardal for the new series, which begins in early 2020.

David Hollingsworth

David is the What To Watch Editor and has over 20 years of experience in television journalism. He is currently writing about the latest television and film news for What To Watch.

Before working for What To Watch, David spent many years working for TV Times magazine, interviewing some of television's most famous stars including Hollywood actor Kiefer Sutherland, singer Lionel Richie and wildlife legend Sir David Attenborough. 

David started out as a writer for TV Times before becoming the title's deputy features editor and then features editor. During his time on TV Times, David also helped run the annual TV Times Awards. David is a huge Death in Paradise fan, although he's still failed to solve a case before the show's detective! He also loves James Bond and controversially thinks that Timothy Dalton was an excellent 007.

Other than watching and writing about telly, David loves playing cricket, going to the cinema, trying to improve his tennis and chasing about after his kids!