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  1. #1
    Member Country: UK Loose_Cannon's Avatar
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    A TV drama which sticks in my mind, I was early teens and off school sick watching TV one afternoon with my mum. This short play came on which centred on a sexual relationship between 2 unlikely partners; a young attractive woman seeking attention and a much older man (fat, bald and 50s) whose wife, although she loves him, has ceased their sex life

    Conceptually it had a lot in common with "Take Me Home" with Keith Barron, but this must have pre-dated it by several years, as I was young enough to be acutely embarrassed for my mum to be watching it too, but felt grown up at the end as she had watched it without swiching over, and felt like I had been accepted as grown up!

    As far as I can remember the "action" never left the bedroom, I remember the woman mentioning she had to go away for a while and playfully lifting the sheets commenting on the old guys belly; "look at that paunch, it will have got bigger by the time I get back". I had to ask my mum what a paunch was.

    It ended with the guy having a heart attack and dying whilst they were in bed, and the weeping woman, presumably not wanting the mans wife to worry over him missing for days, ringing her to explain things. I don't think we ever saw the wife, or indeed anyone else. It was a sad but quite gentle tale. As far as I know it was a one off and not a mini series.

    Ring any bells?

  2. #2
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    From what I've read of it, it doesn't entirely match, but I'll mention it anyway. ATV's 1979 series Heartland was a series of vaguely connected plays - insofar as one character from each play would appear in the following week's play and then a different character from that play would reappear the week after and so on.

    The original run was shown in 1979 and finished (after the ITV strike was over) in early 1980, but was repeated in the afternoons in November 1981.

    The play I'm wondering about was called "Last Knockings" in which the older Donald Churchill spends at least some time in bed with the younger Arwen Holm.

    I don't know all the ins and outs (if you'll pardon the expression) of the story, but Churchill's character definitely dies of a heart attack after, or maybe during, love-making near the end of the play.

    The other woman (or rather, the woman who isn't the other woman) in Churchill's character's life is certainly in the play too, so she's not merely talked about, but her role is described in one review as a cameo, so she can't have been in it that long. She was played by Gillian Raine. There was a picture of Churchill and Raine in the TV Times:



    Don't know if that helps.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Country: England cornershop15's Avatar
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    This might be a play I've mentioned several times here - Alice Trying, from the ITV series Heartland (1979). It starred Judy Parfitt, as Alice, and Donald Churchill, who also wrote the story. This was originally broadcast at 9pm, 10th August 1979, but I watched the afternoon repeat (trying to find out when that was). My main memory of the play is of an increasingly frantic Donald calling Judy from a telephone box. Did this result in his character's heart attack?

    Here's what it says in the TVTimes preview:

    Third in this drama series based on love affairs and the chain of changing partners involved in them.


    Alice Pearson is a charming but repressed spinster, who finds unexpected allies in her campaign to shed her inhibitions from a rugged self-made businessman, a college student drop-out and a retired naval officer.


    I'm guessing Edward Judd was the "rugged" businessman, Richard Hope the "drop-out" and Donald Churchill the "retired naval officer". My impression was that it was mostly a 'two-hander' but from that description I wonder if it was a three act play, with Donald appearing in the concluding part? Maybe that's all we saw/remember?
    Last edited by cornershop15; 04-10-12 at 01:41 AM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Country: England cornershop15's Avatar
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    I thought Simon was thinking of the same play when I noticed the picture of Donald Churchill but apparently not. His co-star in the play I saw was definitely Judy Parfitt.
    Last edited by cornershop15; 04-10-12 at 01:50 AM.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by cornershop15 View Post
    I thought Simon was thinking of the same play when I noticed the picture of Donald Churchill but apparently not. His co-star in the play I saw was definitely Judy Parfitt.
    Yes, Churchill's character was the one which carried over from "Alice Trying" to "Hard Knockings" (so he definitely didn't die of a heart attack at the end of the former). Parfitt's character had appeared in the previous play to that one - "Repent At Leisure" - too.

  6. #6
    Member Country: UK Loose_Cannon's Avatar
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    Wow how do you guys remember this stuff? But I'm glad you can. Any variations to your recollections will be my youthful failings - watching from behind an embarrassed hand didn't help.

    The gentleman above looks right, he seemed a bit fatter and with more of a comb-over, but everyone looks old when you are 12

    Can't find a pic of Arwen Holme but sure you are both right. It was a little sad, they both seemed to have a genuine connection and wasn't a "quickie".

    I thought it was the young lady calling his wife from a phone box, but it was a long time ago. Thanks everyone.

  7. #7
    Member Country: England
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    This reminded me of a play I saw around that time when I was also in my early teens. I've always remembered it because I was surprised by the sexual themes in a play shown in the day. It sounds like the one described above but the picture doesn't look right.

    In my play the man was maybe a travelling salesman and he was at a woman's house. I remember them being in bed and he couldn't rise to the occasion and she said something like "we'll that's no use to me" before giving him a helping hand and they then having sex (or maybe my my sex obsessed teenage brain imagined this as it does seem quite explicit for daytime tv). I remember them as both being really old but were probably in their 50s and the setting being very 70s suburban.

    As I'm writing this I've just remembered that it is the same play as remembered by Loose Cannon as he has a heart attack at the end. I remember her as being quite predatory and he complaining of feeling ill but she is insistent that they have sex (women huh, what are they like?)

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