Annette Badland, 71, gave an insight into playing fan-favourite character Fleur Perkins in an exclusive interview with Express.co.uk. The Midsomer Murders star admitted that she had experienced a rather “naughty tempation” before while on set as her character Fleur, acting opposite DCI John Barnaby star Neil Dudgeon.
Annette joined Midsomer Murders back in 2019 as motorbike-riding chief pathologist Fleur Perkins.
While Annette only became a part of the show in its 20th season, the ITV hit has now been running for 25 years.
When asked what she thinks makes it stand the test of time, Annette replied: “I think it’s quite quirky and English because the deaths are often extraordinary and the fans like that.”
Opening up about one particular murder scene featuring “naughty” Fleur, Annette admitted she got an inappropriate temptation during filming.
“One death I’ve had is by chocolate,” Annette recalled, as she referred to the season 20 episode The Lions of Causton.
“It was as much as I could do not to break a bit off and eat it,” the actress admitted.
She went on to explain that she felt it was “something Fleur might do” but decided against it for a rather peculiar reason.
“I thought Fleur might do, but then I had to think, ‘No – of course she’d like dark chocolate.’
Annette went on to share the surprising story of how she came to be cast as the irreplaceable Fleur.
“The producer, when he asked me to do it, said that one time, the person they had playing the pathologist had been ill and they didn’t know how to get around it when they were filming.
“So they said, ‘Oh, I know, we’ll have them send a fax through with the details and Barnaby can read it out’.
“And so he said, ‘I wanted a new character who could not be replaced by a fax machine.’
“Fleur certainly can’t be replaced by a fax machine!” Annette added proudly.
Annette has starred in plenty of other high-profile shows over the years, including EastEnders as the infamous Babe Smith, Mrs. Glenna Fitzgibbons in the first season of Outlander, Mae the no-nonsense pub landlady in Ted Lasso and villainous slitheen Margaret Blaine in the BBC’s Doctor Who.
Aside from all her acting endeavours, Annette is also taking part in a fundraiser for Diabetes UK, which will see her swim 22 miles (the equivalent distance of the English Channel) over the course of the next month.
Donate to her fundraiser on behalf of Diabetes UK here: https://swim22.diabetes.org.uk/fundraising/annette1425#share-page