Alan is booked to appear on TVAM to discuss an important by-election result....



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Nick Stringer ...
Chief Whip
Tim Stern ...
Mrs. Thatcher (as Stephen Nallon)
Police Commander
Noel Coleman ...
Richard Ireson ...
Inspector Radford
Mrs. Selway
Judith Hibbert ...
Jayne Irving ...
Floor Manager
Howard Lee ...


Having spent the night in a brothel B'stard is late for a breakfast television debate and makes a fool of himself. He is followed into the studio by the cabbie, whom, in his hurry he omitted to pay and believes he has killed the man after he falls and hits his head. Driving the taxi to dispose of the 'body' he picks up Margaret Thatcher as a passenger and, in his guise as an ordinary man, praises B'stard, which increases his popularity with the prime minister. When the taxi driver comes to B'stard gets out of his predicament by persuading the police that the man kidnapped him. Written by don @ minifie-1

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Release Date:

18 October 1987 (UK)  »

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User Reviews

Alan gets French lessons
27 November 2010 | by (Ambrosia) – See all my reviews

Done your Christmas shopping yet? Started mine yesterday. Bought 'The Mammoth Book Of Zombie Comics', 'Hellraiser - The Complete Film Collection', 'Serial Killers Galore' and 'The History Of Vampires'. Hope the wife's mother likes them.

Anyway, onto 'The New Statesman'. The penultimate Season 1 episode is a cracker. Whilst researching the show, Marks and Gran heard of a M.P., booked to appear on breakfast television to discuss a by-election result, who forgot to go and instead was having fun in a high-class brothel in London. Not surprisingly, the anecdote found its way into a 'N.S.' script. Alan goes to Mrs.Selway's ( Amanda Walker ) to inflict corporal punishment on Chantelle ( Judith Hibbert ). But the girl ( dressed as a teacher ) has misunderstood his request and beats him instead. So now Alan's buttocks are red raw. To make matters worse, police raid the place. Amongst the embarrassed clientèle are a Judge ( Noel Coleman, who was 'The Commander' in David Jason's 'The Top Secret Life Of Edgar Briggs' ) and a police Commander ( John Ringham of 'Just Good Friends' ). Alan gives his name as 'Piers Fletcher-Dervish'.

At the T.V.-A.M. studios, Alan gives an embarrassingly poor performance

  • he does not know who won the by-election and Bob Crippen gets the

better of him. A chirpy Cockney taxi driver ( Tim Stern ) follows Alan ( how he got past Security we can only guess at ) into the toilet, demanding he pay his fare. They fight and the driver hits his head on a cubicle door. Alan cannot find a pulse...

This is almost like a 'New Statesman' version of the 'Fawlty Towers' classic 'The Kipper & The Corpse', with Alan instead of Basil trying to dispose of a dead body. Alan gives his name as 'Fred Housego'. The real Fred was a taxi driver who won 'Mastermind' in 1980. Jayne Irving of 'T.V.-A.M.' plays herself. 'Mrs.Selway' is clearly based on Cynthia Payne, the legendary 'luncheon voucher Madame' whose brothels ( which catered for well-heeled folk ) had been raided many times. In 1987, she went on 'The Dame Edna Experience' ( a comic chat-show starring Barry Humphries ) and published her autobiography - 'Entertaining At Home'.

Funniest moment - during the raid, the police commander flashes an I.D. at the Inspector. "Commander Stevenson...Vice Squad!", he reads. Then, in a reference to the old American Express commercials, smiles and says: "That'll do nicely, Sir!".

Second funniest moment - the taxi driver insults Alan whilst he is having a pee, so Alan directs the urine all over him!

Unemployment may have been rife in the '80's, but one person with no worries about the dole was Steve Nallon, easily the best Margaret Thatcher impressionist around ( also in demand on 'Spitting Image' ). He is not seen properly ( a white paper obscures his face ), and in a later episode he is wearing a face-pack.

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