Adrian Dunbar hosts Have I Got News for You

Friday: Have I Got News for You; (BBC1, 9pm)
Ian Hislop and Paul MertonIan Hislop and Paul Merton
Ian Hislop and Paul Merton

The latest – and 61st – series of the satirical quiz show got off to a fine start with guest host David Tennant.

For the second episode though, Have I Got News for You is really “sucking diesel” as Adrian Dunbar takes over as guest host.

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If that doesn’t make much sense, then you must be one of the few viewers who hasn’t been hooked by the latest run of the hit programme Line of Duty

The drama about an anti-corruption unit rooting out bent coppers began on BBC2 in 2012 and was a critical and ratings hit.

It only grew more popular and more acclaimed with subsequent series, making the jump to BBC1 for its fourth series in 2017.

The current sixth run began last month to nearly 10 million viewers – not quite as many as tuned into watch Oprah Winfrey interview Harry and Meghan, but still enough to make it the most popular drama since Bodyguard (which, incidentally, was also the work of Line of Duty writer Jed Mercurio), which was broadcast in 2018.

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There are a lot of reasons why Line of Duty is such a hit – the gripping storylines and the fact that each series centres on a different guest lead while also tying in with previous plots for starters.

But for a lot of people, the star of the show has been Dunbar, who plays the highly quotable AC-12 boss Ted Hastings.

It’s turned Dunbar, who has been working since the 1980s, from a jobbing actor into a household name – and it seems he’s quite happy with his late-flowering fame.

The 62-year-old recently told The Telegraph that he would have found this level of celebrity “difficult to cope with in my 20s…

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“I wouldn’t have known what to do with it… the attention is difficult to deal with, especially if you like to be anonymous and do your own thing, like I do.

“Ted gave me a chance at this stage in my acting career to bring all my experience to bear on it.

“I was able to identify all the things I could do with the character.”

But will he be working any of Ted’s many catchphrases into his job as the guest host of the latest episode of Have I Got News for You?

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And will regular team captains Ian Hislop and Paul Merton take the opportunity to turn the tables and ask him a few questions in the hopes of getting a few spoilers out of him?

We’ll just have to wait and see, but what we can safely say is there will be questions about the stories the nation has been talking about, other than their theories regarding Line of Duty and the mysterious H.

There will also be appearances from comedian Katherine Ryan (who should definitely know the HIGNFY drill as this is her eighth time on the show) and The Sunday Times’s Political Editor Tim Shipman.

So this episode of Have I Got News for You will undoubtbly attract some great viewing for all Line of Duty fans hoping to get a ‘tip-off’!

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