Yes Minister (1980–1984)

TV Series  |   |  Comedy
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The Right Honorable James Hacker has landed the plum job of Cabinet Minister to the Department of Administration. At last he is in a position of power and can carry out some long-needed reforms - or so he thinks.

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Title: Yes Minister (1980–1984)

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3   2   1  
1984   1982   1981   1980  
Top 250 TV #95 | 6 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »



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Series cast summary:
Paul Eddington ...
 James Hacker (22 episodes, 1980-1984)
 Sir Humphrey Appleby (22 episodes, 1980-1984)
Derek Fowlds ...
 Bernard Woolley (22 episodes, 1980-1984)
Diana Hoddinott ...
 Annie Hacker (10 episodes, 1980-1984)


James Hacker is the British Minister for Administrative Affairs. He tries to do something and cut government waste, but he is continually held back by the smart and wily Permanent Secretary of the Department, Sir Humphrey Appleby. Private secretary Bernard Woolley is caught in the middle, between his political master, and his civil service boss. Written by Tony Lammens <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




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Release Date:

25 February 1980 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Javisst, herr minister  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(21 episodes) | (1 episode)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The writers had advisors who had worked within the government and many of the stories were based on real situations. For example, in Yes Minister: The Moral Dimension (1982) they go to an arab state where alcohol is not allowed and so they set up a "communications room" in the embassy where they keep a stash of booze so they could slip out and have a drink. This really happened. See more »


During the train sequence in "The Official Visit", a close-up shows that the warning notice on the wall is written in gibberish. See more »


Bernard Woolley: That's one of those irregular verbs, isn't it? I give confidential security briefings. You leak. He has been charged under section 2a of the Official Secrets Act.
See more »


Version of Rosenbaddarna (1990) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Not to put too fine a point on it, absolutely fabulous!
7 May 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Quite easily among the best-written comedies of all time. The razor-sharp wit and the superbly crafted word-play will have you both laughing out loud and oooohing and aaaahing in appreciation. Yes Minister tracks the day jobs of its three pivotal characters: Jim Hacker, the honorable Minister of the Dept of Administrative Affairs, his Permanent Secretary Sir Humphrey Appleby and his Private Sct, Bernard.

In each episode, the somewhat idealistic (though exceedingly publicity-hungry) Minister tries to reform govt in one way or the other, but is blocked by his Permanent Sct, Sir Humphrey. Though this comedy is based on the British system of govt, I think the problems presented have universal appeal and so it would be appreciated by Americans, in fact by people of all nationalities.

The highlight of the comedy, in my mind, is the brilliant script, esp the lines Sir Humphrey delivers when he wishes to "talk a lot but say nothing". Nigel Hawthorne's acting is Grade A material and a treat to watch.

For those of you who enjoy wordplay, a somewhat cererbral comedy, or are simply an official in one or the other branch of govt, don't miss this one.

31 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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