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S1-E3 The Frog and the Pussycat

S1-E3 The Frog and the Pussycat

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Review

The late John Sullivan’s prequel to Only Fools and Horses staggers on to 1962 with Del and Rodney’s mum, Joan (Kellie Bright managing to be both sassy and naive), holding down two jobs to keep the Trotter family going. Meanwhile, Rodney’s biological dad and smooth criminal Freddie Robdal (Nicholas Lyndhurst) is being hounded by DI Thomas (Mel Smith at his jowly best) for the Margate jewellery heist, and young Del (James Buckley) has got engaged to a posh bird called Barbara.

Samantha Spiro and Alex MacQueen give wonderfully over-the-top, cartoon-like performances as the up-market Birds. The disdainful yet bewildered expression on their faces when they hear that Del’s dad is a docker is akin to that of Downton Abbey’s Maggie Smith when she enquired exactly what a weekend is.

But, despite these moments, most of this is clunky and charmless. And lovely Lambrettas and Golden Egg restaurant aside, some of the period detail is strangely unconvincing. Yet audiences have loved earlier outings. An enduring nostalgia for the Trotters maybe.

Summary

The third of John Sullivan's 1960s-set prequels to Only Fools and Horses. Freddie's arrest threatens his dream of sailing away and beginning a new life with Joan. Meanwhile, Del falls in lust again, and the girl's parents throw an engagement party they will never forget. Starring Nicholas Lyndhurst, Kellie Bright and James Buckley.

Cast & Crew

Freddie Robdal Nicholas Lyndhurst
Joan Trotter Kellie Bright
Ted Trotter Phil Daniels
Reg Trotter Shaun Dingwall
Del Trotter James Buckley
Vi Trotter Paula Wilcox
DI Thomas Mel Smith
DC Stanton Tom Brooke
Ernie Rayner Robert Daws
Boycie Stephen Lloyd
Trigger Lewis Osborne
Denzil Ashley Gerlach
Jumbo Lee Long
Albie Jonathan Readwin
Gerald `Jelly' Kelly Paul Putner
Reenie Turpin Emma Cooke
Raymond Billy Seymour
Don Bobby Bragg
Gwen Joan Hodges
Barbara Bird Jessica Ashworth
Beryl Bird Samantha Spiro
Bernard Bird Alex MacQueen
Rose Denise Mack
Alberto Daniel Cerqueira
Sgt Foster Dave Lamb
Val Alison Pargeter
Golden Egg waiter Rufus Jones
Director Dewi Humphreys
Producer Gareth Gwenlan
Writer John Sullivan
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Comedy

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