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Strike star Tom Burke on what's next romance wise for Strike and Robin

Strike Lethal White Tom Burke and Holliday Grainger
(Image credit: BBC/Bronte Films/Steffan Hill)

Tom Burke reveals the turmoil on its way as Strike – Lethal White airs on BBC1

There’s romantic trouble ahead for private eye Cormoran Strike as the new four-part run of BBC1 crime drama Strike begins on Sunday. Strike – Lethal White (opens in new tab), based on the fourth Strike novel written by JK Rowling under the pseudonym of Robert Galbraith, sees Strike (Tom Burke) continuing to fight his feelings for his now married colleague Robin Ellacott (Holliday Grainger).

But the sleuths also have a tough case on their hands when they look into the blackmail of government minister Jasper Chiswell (Robert Glenister). Meanwhile a young man also claims to have witnessed a murder when he was a child. Are the cases connected?

Here Tom Burke tells us about the return of the shabby private eye in BBC1 crime drama Strike – Lethal White…

How are things between Strike and Robin?

Tom Burke: “Well he has a girlfriend now, Lorelei [Corrie’s Natalie Gumede] but he’s not really in the right place because of Robin. We see more of Robin’s wedding day and she and Strike have this hug... They don’t want to spoil things but there is just that frisson. I can imagine them together but whether that’s interesting for an audience I don’t know. I’m always in favour of catastrophe in a drama!”

Tell us about the cases

TB: “One is a mystery as someone comes into the office and talks about a murder that maybe happened years ago and then he disappears. As we try to find out more, it starts to overlap with the other case…”

Tom Burke and Robert Glenister in Strike and Jasper in Strike Lethal White

Tom Burke and Robert Glenister as Strike and Jasper in Strike Lethal White (Image credit: BBC/Bronte Films/Steffan Hill)

What was it like working with Robert Glenister?

TB: “Robert’s great and he actually narrates the Strike audiobooks. I met him when he did a bit with us on The Musketeers. He played the Duke of Lorraine and they fitted him for this very full-on wig and I said, “What do you think?” and he said, ‘I’m worried it’s not enough Duke and too much Lorraine!’ I got to know him well on that so it was nice to see him again.”

Does JK Rowling (opens in new tab) give you much input about the characters?

TB: “She gives us a few wee things and also gives us very nice feedback and says that we inform her imagination when she writes so that’s a huge compliment.”

Are there many stunts this time?

TB: “I did a lot of falling over! I get pushed down some stairs and I know how to fall backwards now but I still panic and over-compensate and hurt myself!”

Strike – Lethal White airs on Sunday 30 and Monday 31 August at 9pm and continues for the following two weeks (see our TV Guide for full details). Check out our BBC dramas 2020 guide for more great shows to watch on iPlayer.

Caren has been a journalist specializing in TV for almost two decades and is a Senior Features Writer for TV Times, TV & Satellite Week and What’s On TV magazines and she also writes for What to Watch.


Over the years, she has spent many a day in a muddy field or an on-set catering bus chatting to numerous stars on location including the likes of Olivia Colman, David Tennant, Suranne Jones, Jamie Dornan, Dame Judi Dench and Sir Derek Jacobi as well as Hollywood actors such as Glenn Close and Kiefer Sutherland.


Caren will happily sit down and watch any kind of telly (well, maybe not sci-fi!), but she particularly loves period dramas like Call the Midwife, Downton Abbey and The Crown and she’s also a big fan of juicy crime thrillers from Line of Duty to Poirot.


In her spare time, Caren enjoys going to the cinema and theatre or curling up with a good book.