The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin (1976–1979)

TV Series  -   -  Comedy
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BBC Television comedy detailing the fortunes of Reginald Iolanthe Perrin. Disillusioned after a long career at Sunshine Desserts, Perrin goes through a mid-life crisis and fakes his own ... See full summary »

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Episodes

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3   2   1  
1979   1978   1977   1976  
7 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
...
 Reginald Perrin (21 episodes, 1976-1979)
Pauline Yates ...
 Elizabeth Perrin (21 episodes, 1976-1979)
John Barron ...
 C.J. (20 episodes, 1976-1979)
Sue Nicholls ...
 Joan Greengross (20 episodes, 1976-1979)
Trevor Adams ...
 Tony Webster (20 episodes, 1976-1979)
Bruce Bould ...
 David Harris-Jones (20 episodes, 1976-1979)
Sally-Jane Spencer ...
 Linda Patterson / ... (16 episodes, 1976-1979)
John Horsley ...
 Doc Morrissey (14 episodes, 1976-1979)
...
 Jimmy Anderson / ... (13 episodes, 1976-1979)
Tim Preece ...
 Tom Patterson / ... (9 episodes, 1976-1977)
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Storyline

BBC Television comedy detailing the fortunes of Reginald Iolanthe Perrin. Disillusioned after a long career at Sunshine Desserts, Perrin goes through a mid-life crisis and fakes his own death. Returning in disguise after various attempts at finding a 'new life', he gets his old job back and finds nothing has changed. He is eventually found out, and in the second series has success with a chain of shops selling useless junk. That becomes so successful that he feels he has created a monster and decides to destroy it. In the third and final series he has a dream of forming a commune which his long suffering colleagues help bring to reality. Unfortunately that also fails and he finds himself back in a job not unlike the one he originally had at Sunshine Desserts. Written by D.Giddings <darren.giddings@newcastle.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

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Details

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Release Date:

8 September 1976 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Caída y auge de Reginald Perrin  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(21 episodes)

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Real-life Labour MP (Member of Parliament) John Stonehouse faked his own apparent suicide in exactly the same way as Reginald Perrin - in the summer of 1974 he left his clothes on a beach in Miami and disappeared. However this was pure coincidence: David Nobbs wrote his novel early in 1974, before Stonehouse disappeared (so Nobbs couldn't have based the novel on Stonehouse's disappearance) but the novel wasn't published until 1975, after Stonehouse went missing (so Stonehouse couldn't have got ideas for his disappearance by reading the novel). See more »

Quotes

David Harris-Jones: I'm sorry, I might be a bit slow on the uptake.
Reginald Perrin: Yes?
David Harris-Jones: But why should anyone buy a pill that doesn't do anything?
Reginald Perrin: Because it comforts them, David. It has no effects whatsoever, therefore it has no side-effects, you don't need to keep it out of the reach of children, and Catholics can take it.
See more »

Connections

Remade as Reggie Perrin (2009) See more »

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User Reviews

 
All you can say is "Wow!!!"
23 February 2009 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

There is no shortage of excellent sitcoms - the U.S. gave us Seinfeld, and Soap, the Brits Good Neighbors, Fawlty Towers and Butterflies. The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin, rises above even these, and is a true masterpiece of television.

What makes The Fall and Rise so exceptional is its incredible depth. While other shows were content to earn certain points and then coast (e.g. Seinfeld acts as a catalog of ridiculously mutated and twisted social convention, but rarely moves beyond it) The Rise and Fall never lets up on its observations, criticisms and offering of wild and crazy solutions, providing a hero who sees everything wrong with the world and is desperate and willing to change as much as possible.

The absurdity of corporate culture, suburban monotony, flaky post-hippie child-rearing concepts, condescendingly manipulative advertising and marketing, sexism, racism, class conflict, are hung, drawn and quartered for laughs. And Leonard Rositter's posturing and snarking make it surreal. It is Voltaire, Brecht.

Of course, the hero's plans rarely turn out as he expected, and Perrin is constantly thrown off course as each of his absurd plots is met by an even more absurd response from the world. Rositter's Perrin reacts with even more absurdity, all the while stammering and mugging to underline the fact that, well, that's life.

The Rise and Fall of Reginald Perrin, is a must to television viewing as Mozart is to music, Citizen Kane to cinema, and Dickens to reading. You will probably like it, but even if you don't, it will do you great good, and be the yardstick by which you judge all other related material.


11 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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