Minder – Gunfight at the O.K. Laundrette

RIP George Cole, 1925 – 2015

Archive Television Musings

gunfight

It should have been an easy job for Terry (Dennis Waterman) – a simple case of minding Alfie Cavallo (Dave King) as he collected the money from his string of coin-operated laundrettes.  But a bungled armed robbery, led by Stretch (Trevor Thomas), meant that Terry, Alfie and the unfortunate Mrs Mayhew (Hilary Mason) are taken hostage and a tense stand-off with the police begins.

Richard Marson’s recent book about Verity Lambert describes how she green-lit Minder after listening to a five minute pitch.  Her snap decision paid off as it remained one of ITV’s top-rated dramas for the next fifteen years.  During that time the tone of the series certainly changed, as it became a more comedic, family friendly series – which wasn’t to the liking of everyone (especially Dennis Waterman, who left after the seventh series mainly because he’d felt the show had lost its edge).

Gunfight at the…

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