This amiable Vince Powell/Harry Driver sit-com for Thames Television starred the irreplaceable Sid James and the underrated Victor Spinetti as 'Sid Turner' and 'Vic Evans', city boys who quit their boring office jobs but have no idea what to do next. "I'll have to do something.", says Sid: "I'm too old to be a hippie!". They buy Clover Farm ( 40 acres, 12 dairy cows, 40 poultry, two sows and a mare ) in the middle of nowhere, and try and run it themselves. Predictable mishaps ensue - milking, mucking out, the occasional run-in with the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries & Food, hens that won't lay, tractors breaking down, Fanny the cow getting pregnant, and surly locals and snobbish gentry trying to get one over on our heroes.
Hardly 'The Good Life' ( which it most strongly resembles ) perhaps, but miles funnier than the more recent 'The Green Green Grass'. The humour comes chiefly from the offbeat teaming of hardened Londoner James and shrill Welshman Spinetti. Originality might not have been Powell & Driver's forte, but they knew how to write funny lines alright. Guest-stars included John Le Mesurier, James Beck, Bill Pertwee, Gerald Flood, Graham Crowden, Justine Lord, and a fresh-faced John Inman. Spinetti was absent one week, so Richard Davies ( 'Mr.Price' of 'Please Sir' ) took his place.
Though a ratings success, it was dropped after only two seasons. In his autobiography 'From Rags To Gags', Powell says that it was because the second run had not done as well as the first, and being a fairly expensive show ( with some of it being done on film and involving livestock ), the powers-that-be decided not to continue with it. Sid would next be seen in the show he is best remembered for - 'Bless This House'.
35 years after it ended, 'Clover' resurfaced on D.V.D. and proved as delightful as ever.
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