Gilbert was the latest in a line of 'Cynthia replacements' for Baker to play against: her stage stooge was traditionally a tall, mute man in drag playing her friend Cynthia. Edward Malin's character Walter Tattersall had fulfilled the same function in Nearest and Dearest (1968). See more »
Based on a stage play by Tom Brennand and Roy Bottomley, 'Not On Your Nellie' cast the irrepressible Hylda Baker as Nellie Pickersgill, a northern spinster who inherits a shabby London pub which she decides to run with her father Jed ( John Barrett, who'd also played her father in the 'Nearest & Dearest' pilot).
The pub's regulars consist of a gay couple ( "And what are you today, Gilbert? Oh, you're one of those, are you?" ), a layabout window cleaner called Charlie and an Asian bus conductor - typical '70's sitcom stereotypes, in other words. Nellie Pickersgill was so like Nellie Pledge it hardly seemed worth changing the surname. Various busty barmaids came and went, amongst them a young Wendy Richard.
It was crude, vulgar, hardly P.C., but very funny. In the third season, Jed's place was taken by Jack Douglas as Nellie's cousin Stanley. Baker broke her leg during the filming of one episode and had to do the next in a wheelchair. When she got so ill she couldn't work anymore, the show was sadly abandoned.
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