Detectives in films and TV are seemingly required to have a trademark characteristic that sets them apart from the crowd, whether that be Hercule Poirot’s moustache or Sherlock Holmes’ deerstalker hat.
In the case of Julien Baptiste, star of The Missing and his own spin-off series, his signature style has been a distinctive limp that he’s carried since first appearing on our screens in 2014.
But just how did Baptiste get his limp and does actor Tchéky Karyo have a limp in real life?
Why does Baptiste limp?
- Baptiste’s leg was smashed repeatedly in a car door in an episode of The Missing.
Ever since Julien Baptiste first appeared on our screens, he has walked with a limp and the reason behind it was revealed in episode 6 of The Missing’s first series.
Baptiste was attacked in his car by a corrupt police officer who had been leaking information to the press.
In the struggle, Baptiste attempted to get out of his car but as he puts his right leg on the ground, his attacker slams the car door on Baptiste’s leg repeatedly, leaving it badly injured and needing surgery to save it from amputation.
The French detective has walked with a limp ever since but in the recently released season 2 of the Baptiste spin-off, Julien’s limp isn’t quite as pronounced as it once was but the injury is certainly noticeable in scenes where he’s forced to run and chase a suspect.
Does actor Tchéky Karyo have a limp?
- No, while Baptiste does walk with a limp, Tchéky Karyo does not.
However, that hasn’t stopped the Turkish-born French actor from being recognised for Baptiste’s limp as he explained in an interview with HuffPostUK in 2016.
Tchéky joked: “Whenever I get into a cab, they ask me, ‘how’s the limp?’”
He also revealed that picking the limp up to play Baptiste isn’t as easy as it might appear, saying: “I have to remember which leg it is”
Baptiste season 2: Release date and plot
Baptiste returned to BBC One and iPlayer for season 2 on July 18th, 2021.
The new six-episode series centres on Emma Chambers (Fiona Shaw), the British Ambassador to Hungary, whose husband is shot dead and her two sons, Alex and Will, go missing after venturing into the woods outside of their hotel.
Having recently suffered his own personal loss, Julien Baptiste (Tchéky Karyo) offers to help Emma find her sons and bring the person responsible to justice.
However, the disappearance of Alex and Will is only the tip of an iceberg that kickstarts a story told over 14 months with plenty of twists along the way.