Harrow: Ioan Gruffudd interview

Ioan Gruffudd plays Harrow, the maverick medical examiner whose passion for pathology has come at the expense of his family. We caught up with the Welsh actor to find out more...

Harrow: Ioan Gruffudd interview

What makes Harrow an interesting character?

Harrow is stunningly complex. Eccentric, smart, incredibly passionate, slightly quirky and a little bit belligerent. A big secret at the beginning of the show rears its ugly head in every episode. It always comes back to haunt Harrow. The secret isn't revealed until the very end and we'll grow to understand why he committed this crime.

What attracted you most about the show?

For me, as an actor, I loved all the relationships that evolve throughout the series. His ex-wife, his daughter, Sergeant Soroya Dass and the relationship with Dr Fairley, who is the comic foil.

How is Harrow's relationship with his daughter?

Harrow has lost touch with his daughter Fern and it is destroying him, even though he won't admit that to anybody. He is struggling to win back her confidence and love. Fern is smart, strong and determined, yet vulnerable and Harrow sees himself in her. He has met his match and knows he cannot fool her.

What did you love most about making Harrow?

The show has elements of House and it's unashamedly entertaining so there are also elements of Quincy. We are not shying away from how funny it is one moment, to the next being tragic and I think the audience will respond to that.

What case stands out to you the most?

In episode three we move from a human cadaver to a crocodile cadaver. Harrow is terrified of crocodiles. Soroya Dass, the woman that he is infatuated with, is gung-ho and it exposes Harrow for his vulnerabilities. Harrow turns into a child and the audience suspects he is not the masculine, clever, funny guy that he thinks he is.

What was the most touching moment of filming the series?

There's an episode where we find the body of a homeless girl in a tree. It's a tragic story where the hospital proves her baby wasn't hers. I was floored that this woman had lost everything and lost her life and just wanted her boy back. Ultimately, Harrow discovers that it was in fact her baby. The girl was a chimera, she had two sets of DNA. That was so moving and is my favourite episode so far.