"I GENUINELY didn’t think anybody would be daft enough to give us one series, never mind two," Martin Compston confesses in the opening minute of Martin Compston’s Norwegian Fling.

The Greenock actor has again teamed up with good pal Phil MacHugh for the new six-part BBC series which follows on from the duo’s 2022 Scottish Fling. 

The Line of Duty star says he was worried people might find him "annoying" in the travelogue, but his fears were proven to be wrong after the series was hit with audiences.

Glasgow Times:

"I was so chuffed with it [the response to Scottish Fling]," he says.  

"I’m not a presenter, I’m an actor. I’m always, I wouldn’t say hiding behind characters, but that’s what I do, it’s not yourself out there.

"So, you do worry are people going to find me annoying.

"But the amount of people who approach me about it now, this is one of the most popular things I have ever done."

Glasgow Times:

Norwegian Fling will see Martin and Phil travel the length and breadth of Scotland’s closest Scandi neighbour, immersing themselves in the country from Oslo to the North Artic.

They hope after viewers watch the series, they will want to take a trip over the North Sea and experience all the country has to offer.

"We wanted to avoid stereotypes for the show, but we wanted to keep a Scottish connection with it being one of our closest neighbours," Martin explains.

"I’ve never come across a British show that’s been to Norway, even really Scandinavia, or if they’ve been to it not really in depth.

"We got to do the country bottom to top which was a real treat.

"When we get a bit of a break we go and hunt sunshine, going north doesn’t really enter anybody’s mind, but I think after this it will because it is absolutely slap you in the face beautiful."

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Throughout the series, viewers will see Martin and Phil immerse themselves in Nordic culture experiencing everything from roller-skiing to marching in Norway’s National Day parade to becoming deckhands on a fishing boat.

For Martin, getting up close and personal with a wolf was his most memorable experience and one he was excited to share with his son.

"That’s an opportunity you might not get many times in your life," he says.

"My son at the moment, like all youngsters, he’s really into animals and at that particular time he was obsessed with The Jungle Book so it was real daddy Brownie points when I got in there and sent him a video."

Meanwhile, meeting international popstar Dagny was a highlight for Phil, who says he is a big fan of Scandi pop music.

"We spent a day with Dagny," he says, "and I was in my element.

"Being a fan of her music and then meeting her and finding out how incredible she is as a person was brilliant. I really enjoyed that day.

"I got to dance with her in the studio, have a wee song, it was brilliant."

Glasgow Times:

So how did travelling around Norway compare to the experience of travelling around Scotland?

"You could get 5G in a tunnel," Phil laughs, "the infrastructure is incredible.

"The roads are all smooth, you’re driving through tunnels and mountains and every corner you turn there’s beautiful new scenery.

"It’s a phenomenal country to travel through and it does change from the south to the north.

"Even with the communities and the people you’re meeting their mindsets, their personalities are all very different which is brilliant to see.

"It’s very similar to Scotland in that way, the cities are very different to the Highlands and the Hebrides."

Martin continued: "In so many ways they’re ahead of the game, their green energy, they’ve invested their oil fund incredibly well.

"It’s very clean, they take pride in their country. We found lots of gorgeous little beaches everywhere and everybody picked up their rubbish, the sides of the roads were all clean.

"I think because they are so close to us there’s a lot we can learn from them."

Martin Compston’s Norwegian Fling will air weekly on BBC Scotland at 10pm from Thursday, February 22 and on BBC Two from Friday, February 23 at 9pm.

All six episodes will be available to view on BBC iPlayer from 6am on Thursday, February 22.