Saw this on ITV4 the other day for the first time - thought it was great. Excellent actually.
It is an excellent episode gustav, one of my favourites.
I just hope ITV4 didn't cut too much. Arthur visiting the art gallery and making contact with the dealer who would eventually buy Franks 'original' is brilliant. Very funny and perfectly acted.
Terry's coolest moment of all time is in this one for me - outside Monicas studio there's a minor confrontation to which the dealer says 'Let's not make this unpleasant.' as his heavy pushes Terry out of the way. Terry bides his time and then delivers two crunching blows to the heavies abdomen which put him into a heap on the floor followed by Terrys line - 'That weren't too unpleasant was it?'
Well...this one was always a poor effort, for me. One of those I sought to avoid watching all the way through, as much as possible. And I'll endeavor to explain why. Zimbo's post from earlier is going to help me, a fair bit. When I saw this just the other night, my opinion on most things in this didn't change one iota from previous viewings. I had a cold when seeing this, but that just meant I chose wisely, for what to view in such a poor state of health. I did have connection issues for a day or so, and that did mean I may have forgotten a point or two..but no matter, the gist shall remain.
This was written by David, or Dave Humphries. As I mentioned over on the Fiddler On The Hoof thread, my favorite of his episodes is probably High Drains Pilferer.
Straight off the bat (or should that be butt?), the episode gets it's biggest asset (other than Cole of course) right in our boat races. Candy Davis is indeed hot, and memorable in this. The only positive thing I ever will remember from this. I have yet to see her in Are You Being Served, outside of a clip or two, but did see her in The Two Ronnies, as one "Miss Exotica Stormtrooper". No suspenders, mind you.
I think most all episodes of Minder (The Terry Years anyhow) were graced with somewhat divine inspiration when it came to casting roles, main cast or guest stars alike. It's hard to imagine any one role being played by any other actor, when you look back, today. Unfortunately, Patricia Quinn's Monica character is an exception to the rule. It's one thing that she had a barnet that could fit Barnet itself inside. It was the '80s, after all. It's one thing that she had a grating voice. Another thing that she overacted, getting edgy and plain eggy with Frank over and over. But when all's said and done, with all these things put together, in scenes set in some dreary looking hovel which was to pass as Monica's gaff, every single scene with her there was an eyesore..all I'll add is that some episodes of this series have great comedy writing, some have good action and adventure...this episode had Candy Davis, and my goodness it needed it.
I do not like George Sewell in this..I'll endeavor to explain why. One reason is that I have not seen him in anything else, like Special Branch or whatever. So I could care a darn about him. One should not have to be familiar with a guest star to enjoy him/her, though..that's the mark of a good performer. His performance was droll, and uninspired..characters like Pongo came off as far less of a boring old sod! This does not exactly whet my appetite to see Special Branch, or anything else he'd been in, either. But still, I do for sure reserve judgement on him as an actor..I'm sure he was probably fine, in other things.
One thing that did annoy me a fair bit, was each time Francophile Frank spoke French..the whole routine just bothered me. It's nothing too terrible, but it's hardly like Del Boy's French antics.
Not to keep on about the poor character choices in this....but as semi competent forgers go...I prefer Monsieur Leclerc, from Allo Allo, frankly.
The blooper with the kid is a good spot..the kid was a bit Todd Carty/Tucker Jenkins-esque, and obviously not one to shy away from mischief!
As has been noted, we get a rare scene in Arthur's home. His living room/sitting room is rather rarely seen, as it is here.
As for the whole art dealer thing...that rather proved Frank's point, about how the whole art game is bent. Of course, today, technically Daley could have gone online immediately, and sussed the dealer out, I guess.
In that scene with the dealer assaying the picture, I did like Arthur's confusion over the initialing..gbh.
"Bird bandit" Terry gets on the job with Candy Davis. No thanks to Arthur. Funnily enough, the scene begins with a shot of Terry and the bird's toes..as did the scene in High Drains Pilferer, when Terry got it on with Sheila Ruskin. What that says about Dave Humphries and women's footsies, is anyone's guess.
Of course, the quintessential moment this episode needed was Candy Davis, popping out, right in front of sheepish Arthur. And just loved how Terry chucked Arthur out of the gaff..good stuff.
As has also been noted, the Terry Vs. Jerry "fight" at the end was a decent Tel punchup moment.
The "deliberate mistake" was good, at least as a device to give Rory the hump with Daley.
Unfortunately, this episode falls far short of the appeal of most all of the other great Minder episodes, to me. Yes, it was a good touch, bringing back that strip club from the pilot episode (even though it's weird we hadn't seen Tel working there since then), but at the same time, this seedy side of London isn't exactly what I would best like it remembered for..the less the better..this show didn't need that, to be a timeless classic. And yes, Candy Davis was glamorous...but where would this episode really have been, if she wasn't there? Would everybody be ranting about it like they do? Even if the whole "Daley the art dealer" idea was good, this episode is all over the place. Who was it trying to appeal to? The average, Sun reading joe of the '80s, or art connoisseurs, who'd just as soon drool over some abstract painting than go out of an evening. I reckon they were trying to make the point that they are one and the same, all perverted..but that still didn't do it for me.
At the end, Rory makes Terry an offer..and I wouldn't have blamed Tel for taking him up on it..at least as a one off, to teach Arthur to appreciate him more. He should have listened to Tel, regarding the mistake in the painting..would have saved him a lot of agg.
Very below par episode for me...very droll, Terrence. 3/10, one for each butt cheek...one extra for luck (see Candy's Two Ronnies segment, with her as "Miss Exotica Stormtrooper", and you'll get that).
Not so keen on this one personally. I think if the subject matter (art forgery) isn't my cup of tea, then The episode does too, for me. I felt the same with Anthony Valentine's episodes (gambling)!As ever, the performances, especially George Cole, are mostly great, though I thought Patricia Quinn over acted when Steve Alder turned up and started fighting George Sewell. Candy Davis looked hot here.
Exactly! Very good points indeed, Zimbo. I often found myself asking myself just which demographic this episode was trying to appeal to! This episode suffers so much, largely because it relies on a lot, when it comes to the viewer:
That you give a monkey's about "fine art" galleries and stuff
That you are forgiving and understanding about Patricia Quinn, and, frankly, George Sewell as well
That you know more than just bonjour
That you aren't looking for a great example of either the comedy, or the action side of a Minder episode
That you aren't for some reason against seeing birds' bits being bandied about
I felt the same about the poker scenes as you did, Zimbo. I don't care about poker..I know many do, but I do not happen to, personally. The difference between the Maurice episodes, and this one, is simply this: Anthony Valentine. I don't think I'm alone in saying he was a great actor..many people here have said that, whether seeing him in Minder, or Raffles. His character Maurice happened to be one I could relate to, a fair bit..and more to the point, his performances were fun to watch. He was dynamic, and engaging. It made up for the fairly boring, non intuitive poker stuff, for me. Sewell however..
Anyhow I hope I am not in the majority of people who felt this way about this episode, and, since Candy Davis is indeed present as eye candy, as it were, that she helps people enjoy this particular series three episode.