|Portrayed by||John Michie|
|Duration||1998 - Present|
|Relationships||Gaby Ross (Divorced)|
|Family||Jamie Ross (Son)|
John Michie first appeared in Taggart in 1990 an episode called Love knot playing a character called Robby Meiklejohn. In Homesick, it is revealed that Robbie's mother's family is Italian, hence the dark looks. Ross is also known for his good looks and charm and while the rest of the Taggart team may be doing the actual investigating of a murder, he spends a lot of time chasing around after some women. This can be seen in the episode Compensation, where he manages to lure a farmer's daughter to bed. Although capable of attracting any kind of female attention, he is unable to form any long-lasting relationship.
He also has a tendency to go off the rails and is occasionally hanging around with some dodgy informant. This can be seen in the episode Grass where one of his informants is killed and his contact book is stolen after he picked up a girl from a bar. This kind of action can risk the careers of his fellow officers,as they are constantly defending Robbie. Robbie has a problem with drinking, sex and gambling and is addicted to all of them. The latter was explored in series 27 and was the main story arc.
In Safer it was revealed that Ross's father bullied and abused his mother.
He is also divorced from his wife Gaby, who appeared in The Caring Game and he was faced with the choice of either staying in Glasgow or leaving for Canada with her and their son, Jamie. In the same episode, it is revealed that he only gets to see him on weekends. "When he's around, things seem to make more sense," Robbie says.
In Skin Deep, Robbie had £5000 paid into his account as part of set up attempt by two ex cons with a grudge against him. While being investigated by Jackie's boyfriend DCS Brian Holmes whom he feels is more interested in bagging a dirty cop than finding the truth, Robbie tracks the frame up to former blackmailer and current wife abuser Dougie Todd. After smashing his way into the house to confront Todd while he is attacking his wife, Robbie is accused of Todd's murder by his partner before it is revealed Todd's wife accidentially killed him in self defence and the partner is holding her captive in order to get Robbie convicted until he's rumbled by Jackie and Stuart.
A Fistful of Chips also shows just how dodgy Robbie can be when he comes into contact with Glasgow's underworld and it is revealed he is friends with Billy Whizz, an informant who offers him an M3P player for thirty pounds - which Ross obviously knows fell off the back of a lorry. It is not surprising that Billy later ends up dead. Robbie is also there for Jardine's funeral and DCI Matthew Burke takes over.
In Fire, Burn the rest of the time find it difficult with Burke now in charge; Robbie is the one who mainly seems to be getting on fine with him but also stands up for Stuart and ends up getting his fingers burnt. Willy Strachan, who is an old adversary, is smuggling women into the country and using them in the sex industry and one of his informants, Sadie, who happens to be a prostitute, ends up dead in a washing machine after she helps Ross by telling him when the next run will be. He gets shot in the arm at the end of the episode.
In the episode Hardman, Robbie follows a suspect, is forced to get out of the car and follow on foot through Central Station, which is packed. He is hot and sweaty from running in the underground car park by the rest of the Taggart team arrive.
In Fade to Black, he complains to Burke about all the paperwork in his tray and he makes a procedural error, resulting in the loss of valuable evidence and it becomes obvious that he has to file it all in the bin.
In Bad Blood, Detective Sergeant Fairchild briefly joins the team - he and the rest of the team get on well with her apart from Burke - but they later find out she is corrupt so he is not happy.
In Blood Money, he attends a boxing match with Matt and Stuart, and ends up losing the bet and when fighting promoter Bobby Walker is found murdered he breaks the news to his widow, Elaine. He is reluctant when she throws herself into his arms and it is revealed that she was only putting on an act. He ends up falling for it.
In New Life, Jackie remarks that he didn't kick anyone's door in for once and managed to get through a whole shift. In the episode So Long Baby, it is revealed that he is due to go on holiday and finds an abandoned baby on the doorstep of a house where a man has been murdered inside.
Relationships with colleaguesEdit
DCI Michael JardineEdit
Robbie Ross first arrived in the episode A Few Bad Men and was immediately marked down as a troublemaker by his boss, Michael Jardine. They eventually get to know each other well and form a good, if distant working relationship.
In Long Time Dead, Robbie takes over the investigation when Jardine's girlfriend Elaine becomes involved in the case. In the episode Death Trap, Robbie was the one who arrived at Michael's flat to take his warrant card and suspend him permenantly.
DCI Matthew BurkeEdit
DI Robbie Ross first met former Special Branch Officer DCI Matthew Burke in the episode Death Trap when he and the team found out that Michael Jardine would be replaced as Senior Investigating Officer. They have a good working relationship, and eventually become good friends.
In Fire, Burn, when the rest of the team are finding it hard to get to grips with Burke's rule, Ross seems to get along with Burke just fine. During this episode, Jackie is frequently yelled at by Burke, and Stuart is treated as errand-boy, a state of affairs which ends when they stick up for themselves. However, it is only when Ross belatedly tries to stick up for Stuart that Burke reveals that he respects Stuart for standing up for himself, and is disappointed at Ross for not being louder in the defence of his colleague.
DI Jackie ReidEdit
Robbie and Jackie met in the same episode when Jackie was a DS and there has always been a bit of attraction between them, which continues throughout the show. In the first ever episode he appeared in, A Few Bad Men, he immediately started flirting with Jackie and even she couldn't help but notice his good looks and charm.
It is not until Fearful Lightning that he invites her round for dinner, to which she accepts; however, it goes disastrously wrong as she turns up while Robbie's girlfriend, Francesca is in his flat, and it turns out Robbie had been hedging his bets between the two.
In the episode Skin Deep, Jackie and Robbie's relationship comes under strain when DCS Brian Holmes - her current boyfriend - arrives to investigate Ross for corruption, although he is innocent. Both Jackie and Stuart stand up for Ross and work tirelessly to prove his innocence.
In Safer, Robbie went off the rails when he and Jackie were sitting in the car and saw Kevin Nash having a go at his wife Paula. Robbie went too far and in turn started beating up Nash; it was only when Jackie stopped him that he finally came to his senses. Nash later put in a complaint - although as usual Robbie's career is saved only at the last minute.
In Bloodsport, the pair go undercover and finally get to kiss - although this is not for romantic reasons. In Abuse of Trust, Jackie has to pick Robbie up from the pub and has to drive him home. In The Ends of Justice, Jackie tells him that he has to change his lifestyle and addictions such as gambling and drinking too much.
DC Stuart Fraser Edit
While Fraser is probably closest to Jackie Reid in terms of having known each other, Robbie and Stuart eventually become something of a double act. The two police officers are polar opposites - Robbie is the classic "tall, dark and handsome", constantly chases after women, gambling, sex and fun, while Fraser is geeky, gay, ginger and a bit more calm in personality. Robbie even describes Stuart as "the only one of us [four] likely to make a decent parent."
While they first meet in the episodeA Few Bad Men, Robbie initially assumes that Stuart is straight. Stuart attempts to correct him, but is interrupted. Stuart eventually comes out to Ross in the episode Bloodlines, and Robbie is initially shocked to learn that Stuart is gay. Over the course of the episode, he gets over his surprise and seems quite fine with Fraser's sexuality, and in later episodes he does have a tendency to tease him about it. Fraser often responds playfully and there is a lot of banter and bickering between the two. It's always kept within limits, though, and the one time it goes too far, in the episode Wavelength, Robbie apologises to Stuart.
The moment when it becomes obvious that Ross has become close to Fraser as a friend and has changed as a person comes inGhost Rider, when Robbie and Fraser have to work with Robbie's old police mates. These police officers are uncouth, bullying and openly homophobic towards Stuart, and their remarks go beyond teasing. Robbie initially says nothing as he still considers these men his friends, but later, after a particularly nasty remark, he sticks up for Stuart against his old mates. This gets him scorn from his old friends, but he doesn't seem to care any more.
Fraser often covers up for Robbie's mistakes or brings him up to speed on things when the other gets distracted. When Robbie was accused of corruption, Fraser was outraged on his behalf, and works with Jackie to prove Robbie's innocence. Robbie does the same for Stuart in An Eye for an Eye, when Stuart is suspended wrongfully over a case that went wrong, and even stands up to the boss for him.