'The Lovers' was a short lived Granada Television sitcom written by Jack Rosenthal, who had earlier created 'The Dustbinmen'. It starred then unknowns Richard Beckinsale and Paula Wilcox as Geoffrey Scrimgeor and Beryl Battersby, a young courting couple from Manchester whose relationship has been on and off more times than a prostitute's knickers. Geoffrey, like most testosterone filled young men ( such as myself ), is forever trying to have his wicked way with Beryl however she is insistent that they have none of what she calls 'Percy filth' until they have tied the knot.
Beryl lives at home with her interfering mother ( played by Joan Scott ) who knows only to well what young Geoffrey is after and watches him like a hawk to make sure he gets up to no funny business. When not trying to get into Beryl's knickers, Geoffrey spends much of his time with his lecherous friend Roland ( the late Robin Nedwell, who would later find greater fame as Duncan Waring in the 'Doctor' series ).
Jack Rosenthal gave up the writing duties after the first series and so the second series was written by Geoffrey Lancashire.
While 'The Lovers' gave both Beckinsale and Wilcox regular television exposure, sadly it was rarely very funny. The scripts were not terribly good and the obvious and annoying canned laughter ( which seemed to dog most Granada sitcoms ) killed many of the jokes stone dead. The mix of characters was not strong enough either. Both Beckinsale and Wilcox seemed wasted in the roles. Fortunately, Wilcox was only a couple of years away from landing the role as Chrissy in the superior 'Man About The House' and Richard Beckinsale too was not far away from playing Godber in Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais' wonderful 'Porridge'.
The best thing about the show is its theme tune ( supplied by Derek Hilton ) which played over an animated set of opening titles which saw Cupid ( bow and arrow and all ) with a 'L' plate placed over his groin ( and that was probably the funniest part of the whole series ). The show was produced by Michael Apted, who later went on to become one of Britain's most respected filmmakers.
In 1973, 'The Lovers' feature film was made. I haven't seen it but as the series itself was not all that good, I can't imagine the film was much better.
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