Fans of BBC1 police corrpution drama Line of Duty were thrilled with Sunday night's conclusion to the fourth series

Line Of Duty fans were shocked after a twist in the fourth series finale saw Balaclava Man identified as not one but several people.

Viewers gripped by the BBC1 police drama were hoping the identity of the murderer would be revealed, with almost all the main characters a suspect over the course of the series.

 

But while Balaclava Man was shot dead by police, he was not named, and it turned out he was just working for a mysterious criminal network.

Rather than one culprit, there were ‘Balaclava Men, plural’.

Viewers on social media were stunned at the turn the crime series had taken.

 

One fan said the episode was so stressful “I feel like I’ve just lost 5 years of my life!!”

The instalment saw the net close around DCI Roz Huntley (Thandie Newton) as her role in the death of Timothy Ifield was finally revealed.

She broke down during a gruelling interrogation, confessing as she realised the mountain of evidence against her. Not that Thandie was able to see her demise.

 

Viewers are crossing their fingers that the character’s subsequent 10-year jail term does not keep her from appearing in the next series.

 

The finale also left a cloud of suspicion hanging over Superintendent Ted Hastings (Adrian Dunbar), with many viewers suggesting he is the corrupt criminal mastermind known as H.

However, most insisted they did not want to see him unveiled as a villain.

“Genuinely thinking of starting a petition to get the writers of Line Of Duty to insure that Hastings isn’t “H”,” quipped one.

Detective Sergeant Steve Arnott (MARTIN COMPSTON), Superintendent Ted Hastings (ADRIAN DUNBAR), Detective Sergeant Kate Fleming (VICKY McCLURE)
Detective Sergeant Steve Arnott, Superintendent Ted Hastings and Detective Sergeant Kate Fleming (World Productions/ BBC/Des Willie)

 

The number of viewers has grown steadily since the show moved to BBC1 this year, with 8.5 million tuning in.

The previous three series screened on BBC2, where audiences peaked at 5.6 million.

A fifth series has already been commissioned.