"You know what thought did? Shoved a feather up its bum and thought it was a chicken"

Detective Chief Inspector Jim Taggart was the main character in Taggart from 1983 to 1994. He was played by Mark McManus until his death in 1994. The character is most famous for the line "There's been a murder!" which has been the subject of parody in Scottish comedy.

Name Jim Taggart
Portrayed by Mark McManus
Rank Detective Chief Inspector
Duration 1983 - 1994
Relationships Jean Taggart (wife)
Family Alison Taggart (daughter)
Hometown Glasgow


He made his first appearance in the pilot episode "Killer" alongside sidekick Detective Sergeant Peter Livingstone, a university-educated graduate from Edinburgh and in 1985, the show was renamed after him in his honour. Taggart was a working-class man and had worked his way up through the ranks and throughout the programme is shown to be a tough, sarcastic copper but not without showing a softer side too. In the first ever episode, he revealed to DS Peter Livingstone that his father wanted him to be a tram driver. In 1987, Taggart was joined by Detective Constable Michael "Mike" Jardine in The Killing Philosophy. His working relationship with Jardine was slightly better than it had been with Livingstone as he also knew Michael's father, who had once been a right-hand man of his. He also shown to be a family-man, being married to Jean (Harriet Buchan) and has a daughter, Alison. In 1990, the team of Taggart and Jardine was joined by Women Police Constable Jackie Reid, in Death Comes Softly, where she is a mere uniformed policewoman. When Jackie reminds him about the choir practice, Taggart just rolls his eyes in an almost disbelief expression. When McVitie offers them both biscuits, Jim reveals that when he was a boy they called them squashed fly biscuits. However, in the next episode, Rogues' Gallery, she is seconded to CID and promoted to Detective Constable. When she hands him the note, Jim takes one mere glance at before chucking it in the bin. In 1994, the main character was killed off after the shocking death of the show's star and was given an on-screen funeral, in the episode Black Orchid, where Michael Jardine is promoted to Detective Inspector. It is revealed that he died on the 17TH September 1994, as shown on the plaque on his coffin. Jim Taggart appears in flashbacks in the episode Fearful Lightning. In Cold Blood, Jim and Jean celebrated their silver wedding anniversary, meaning that they married sometime in 1961. In Double Jeopardy, when he and Jardine are having a drink in the pub, Taggart asks: "What's that?" Michael replies "Mineral water." In turn, Taggart says "And nuts? What are you planning to do, hibernate?" Michael also tells Taggart that there is something else he should know. He reveals that he has decided to become a Christian.

Personality and characteristicsEdit

Jim was one of the old-school type coppers who had worked his way up through the ranks and has little time for subtlety, sensitivity or many of the more modern aspects of police work that his junior colleagues placed faith in. His focus is always on solving the crime, using traditional police methods of evidence and proof. He had worked his way up from being a policeman on the beat, and had a wide experience of people, crimes, and the infinite variety of both. Pragmatic rather than idealistic, he does not trust easily, but is completely loyal to those who work for him. He firmly believes there are no really clever murderers, or really clever policemen either. He was married to Jean Taggart, who used a wheelchair for the duration of the episodes she appeared in. It was a solid marriage with the dour, serious Taggart devoted to his more outgoing wife, who could see through the tough exterior to the, very well hidden, slightly sentimental man within.


Jean TaggartEdit

Alison TaggartEdit

DS Peter LivingstoneEdit

DS Michael JardineEdit

DS Jackie ReidEdit

Supt. Jack McVitieEdit