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DI Sam Tyler

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 Played by: John Simm

Originally a DCI in 2006, Sam was hit by a car and woke in 1973 Manchester with a new makeover, a new motor, and a new rank: DI. Although under a lot of stress from the bizarre situation, he remains the same straight-laced, by-the-book officer he was in 2006.

Manchester CID

For tropes from Ashes to Ashes, see the respective character page

DCI Gene Hunt

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 Played by: Philip Glenister

Also known as 'the Gene Genie', the boozing, womanizing, rough-housing, politically incorrect DCI. His role models are John Wayne and Clint Eastwood, probably why he describes himself as 'the Sheriff'. Gene is of the belief that you do whatever you must to put the baddies away, and is rather ruthless in his pursuit of that rule. However, he does have a softer side, one that very few have seen (mostly because he'd rather take cyanide then show it).

  • Badass
  • Catch Phrase: You're surrounded by Armed Bastards!
  • Commander Contrarian
  • Cool Car: His beloved Mark III Cortina.
  • Cowboy Cop: Pretty much everyone who isn't Sam, but especially Gene Hunt. Sam occasionally flips over into this territory as well, despite his professed morals; then again, he's never sure if 1973 is real or not, so what does it matter if he occasionally skirts proper procedure?
  • Da Chief: (Subverted?) Gene is in charge, but he's the one causing the trouble.

 (while the car is going way way too fast) Sam: You're not above the law you know Gene, I should do you for speeding!

Gene: What're you talking about Tyler? I am the law!

 Gene: They reckon you've got concussion. Well I couldn't give a tart's furry cup if half your brains are falling out, don't - EVER - waltz into my kingdom acting king of the jungle.

Sam: Who the hell are you?

Gene: Gene Hunt, your DCI, and it's 1973, almost dinnertime - I'm 'aving 'oops.

WPC (and later WDC) Annie Cartwright

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 Played by: Liz White

Sam's love interest and confidante. She's the only one that Sam has told his theories to, and wavers between loyalty to her superior, and her desire to heal/help him. As a modern woman in a department full of chauvinists, Annie can still hold her own.

  • Action Girl: She doesn't start out as this, but she's getting there.
  • Brainy Brunette: With an undergrad degree in psychology, too.
  • Goofy Suit: Her Road Safety Squirrel costume, worn while teaching schoolchildren. Gene later employs it to infiltrate CID.
  • I Minored in Tropology
  • One of the Boys: What Annie aspires to when she's promoted to WDC (women's detective constable). At the very least, she holds her own at the pub and while undercover.
  • Skinny Dipping: Admits to having done this on her graduation day.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Not the object of the trope, but usually the one asking Sam what crazy-assed idea he's got this week and why he's acting like a lunatic.
  • You Get Me Coffee: Annie's role in the otherwise all-male CID.

DC Chris Skelton

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 Played by: Marshall Lancaster

A slightly nervous, slightly bumbling member of the team. Often the comic relief or the coward, he still has his moments, like his own Crowning Moment of Awesome near the end of the series. Has a case of hero worship for both Sam and Gene, but isn't sure which one to pick. He is often found in the company of Ray Carling, his best mate.

DS Ray Carling

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 Played by: Dean Andrews

A rough character who seems to live most of his life with little to no control over his impulses. If he wants to hit a suspect, he hits him, if he wants to snog a woman, he snogs her. Has nothing but contempt for minorities, women, and anyone who isn't a 'man's man'. He and Gene think a lot alike, but where Gene wants The Law to protect people from criminals, Ray believes that everyone should respect and obey The Law, period (It would be more accurate to say that Carling adores Gene and uses him as his role model, but unlike Gene he really has no real sense of where the limits are). He hates paperwork, and prefers to use his fists instead of his brains, and listen to orders rather then think for himself. But Ray is not without redeeming qualities, having a crooked streak of chivalry running through him. Best mates with Chris Skelton, although he is sometimes a bad influence.


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 Played by: Tony Marshall

The barman at the Railway Arms where most of CID goes to drink. He takes a keen interest in Sam's troubles, and there may be more to him than meets the eye.

WPC Phyllis Dobbs

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 Played by: Noreen Kershaw

Phyllis mans the front desk at Manchester CID, and also oversees the welfare of the prisoners. Probably the only woman in the department whom Gene and his cronies can't intimidate. Bears a slight resemblance to Rosa Klebb, though this doesn't seem to hamper her dating life.

 Gene: Serves you right for staying up rodding all night with that new fella of yours. Did you let his guide dog watch?

Phyllis: His guide dog's giving your mam one. From behind.

Gene: (to Sam) Whatever happened to all the classy birds?

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