Digital Spy spoke to Morrissey about the two-part drama, the public's renewed interest in TV crime and what it's like splitting his time between the US and Britain...
What should we expect from the new Field of Blood? Your character Murray has a new rival, of sorts...
"He doesn't have a rival... what he has is a boss! He's the editor of the paper [and] he's lucky enough to run the day-to-day [goings-on] of the paper, but it's come under new ownership now and a woman comes up from London... basically to put a rocket up their arse!
"The paper is failing, its circulation is going down, it's stagnated and the management want to see a change. Murray is a realist - he knows if he doesn't make these changes, they'll close the paper down and a lot of people's livelihoods will go out the window.
"So he has to tread that fine line of trying to please management, stay true to his own ideals and also keep the paper open. He does that merry dance through this, but she's not his rival, she's definitely his boss - he works for her!"
But they do bang heads throughout the series?
"They do. At first, she comes in and reads everybody the riot act and he's not happy about that, but he's realistic enough to know that change is a-coming - he can see that around the world. Thatcher is in power, many institutions are going down, big changes are happening...
"Murray can take that on to a certain extent, but he also realistically knows that these people [who work under him] can't lose their jobs and actually the role of a newspaper - from the journalist's point of view - is about getting the story out there. It's a very hard position for a journalist to 'go on strike' because what they need to do is report the story, so he's compromised in those ways.
"This series is about how he faces those compromises that he has to make, and whether he will make the ultimate compromise and just move further and further to the right. That's the question for him."
What was it like for you welcoming Katherine Kelly on board the show?
"Oh, she's great, wonderful. She'd just come off Mr Selfridge actually, so it was interesting... she'd been in a bustle and a big hat for a while, so I think it was good for her to come into a little bit of normality... even though it's [set] in the '80s.
"It's a difficult job to come onto a show that's already been established, and certainly playing that role - a character that comes on and has to read the riot act to everybody - but she was brilliant, absolutely brilliant."
You chose not to read Denise Mina's novels - on which Field of Blood is based. Why was that?
"It was a time decision, really, on my part - the book of the first Field of Blood... I didn't read it, but I looked through it. Murray's a very different character in the book - as I looked at the first book, I realised he was very different, so I didn't really go there. David [Kane] has also written a very strong adaptation, so I just stuck to the script for this second one."
There seems to have been a resurgence in Scottish crime drama with shows like Field of Blood, Case Histories and Shetland - why do you think that is?
"I think it's the genre in general - we're all rediscovering it. There's been a [renewed] appetite for it. We're flying on the back of some Scandinavian zeitgeist - I think the success of shows like Wallander and The Killing shows that people enjoy that genre.
"They always have, whether it's Sherlock Holmes or Wilkie Collins... they've always loved that thriller aspect of it. The Suspicions of Mr Whicher on ITV with Paddy Considine - I think they're great shows and great books, so we've always had an appetite. It's just about finding a new way of selling it.
"I think people are also a lot more visually equipped now. You see it in things like Broadchurch - the directors and the cameramen are able to push it a little bit more, visually, and that's always very exciting."
Given that you have commitments in the US to The Walking Dead, is it difficult for you to find time to shoot new UK drama?
"My contract with The Walking Dead means that they have me for six months of the year, but the other six months I'm in the UK, so it's only harder as far as the diary is concerned. It's not harder as far as my emotional commitment is concerned - I'm very committed to British drama, which I love.
"I think there's great stuff happening in British television - I've always been a big champion of it. It's a little difficult as far as my diary is concerned, but there's no lack of emotional commitment for me - it's my home."
The Field of Blood returns on Thursday (August 8) at 9pm on BBC One.