The adventures of a gang of British workmen abroad. Combines black and white humour with moments of drama, poignancy and drunkenness. In series 1, the lads head to Germany seeking work, and... See full summary »

Creator:

Franc Roddam
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1,492 ( 81)

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5   4   3   2   1  
2004   2002   1986   1984   1983  
4 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Series cast summary:
Timothy Spall ...  Barry Taylor 40 episodes, 1983-2004
Jimmy Nail ...  Oz Osborne 40 episodes, 1983-2004
Tim Healy ...  Dennis Patterson 40 episodes, 1983-2004
Kevin Whately ...  Neville Hope 40 episodes, 1983-2004
Christopher Fairbank ...  Albert Moxey 39 episodes, 1983-2004
Pat Roach ...  Bomber Busbridge 36 episodes, 1983-2004
Gary Holton Gary Holton ...  Wayne Norris 26 episodes, 1983-1986
Julia Tobin Julia Tobin ...  Brenda Hope 22 episodes, 1983-2004
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Storyline

The adventures of a gang of British workmen abroad. Combines black and white humour with moments of drama, poignancy and drunkenness. In series 1, the lads head to Germany seeking work, and are thrown together by virtue of shared nationality and a run-down wooden hut. The story follows the lads' relationships with women, Germans and each other, and their attempts at passing the time away from home, saving money and ordering food in a German curry house. The series ends with new employment legislation forcing some of the Brits having to choose between the UK and their new-found pleasures abroad. Two years later the gang are reunited for a second series, in which they travel to Wolverhampton to rebuild both the "magnificent seven" and Barry's home for his impending marriage. A further offer of work sees the lads head to a Derbyshire stately home in need of refurbishment. Here they fall foul of an irritable pub landlord, suspicious locals, a less than enlightened employer and the Inland ... Written by Mike Cryan

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

BBC [UK] | Official Fansite

Country:

UK

Release Date:

11 November 1983 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Öl, kvinnor och tegel See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(26 episodes) (1983-1986) | (14 episodes) (2002-2004)

Sound Mix:

Mono | Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

By the second series, Gary Holton's drug addiction was causing major difficulties on set as he struggled to complete scenes resulting in multiple takes. Eventually, the producers had to schedule all his scenes to be shot in the morning as, by the afternoon, he was often incapable of working. See more »

Goofs

Most of the German location shots in Series 1 were filmed in Hamburg, not Dusseldorf. One of the giveaways is that many of the cars have HH (Hamburg) number plates. See more »

Quotes

Neville Hope: Erm... I'll have to ask Brenda...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Final Episode of Series 3: "The Transporter Bridge Is Still In Middlesborough" - so convincing were the digital effects of the dismantling and reassembling of the bridge, many people in the UK were reported to have visited Middlesborough to check the bridge was still in place. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Red Dwarf: Back to Reality (1992) See more »

Soundtracks

That's Living Alright
(end credits - season one)
Composed and Arranged by David Mackay and Ken Ashby
Performed by Joe Fagin (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Just about the best TV series I've seen.
30 July 2004 | by lee-326See all my reviews

I remember watching the first series of this as a 12 year old boy with my parents and loving every minute of it. 20 years later I own all four series on DVD and still enjoy them as much as I did the first time round. Lets be honest, how many programmes can we honestly say that about?

The first series was pure genius. Relatively unknown actors proving you don't need big names to make some of the most watchable, amusing and heartwarming television around. Since then of course many of the actors have gone on to be household names.

The second series was also great, probably as good as it could ever have hoped to be. The third and fourth series in my opinion aren't as good and I feel have suffered by moving to the BBC. They seem too clean cut and professional, something the lads were never intended to be. However, I still find them very watchable, but that is mainly down to the characters created in the early 1980's.

I doubt there'll be any more episodes now that bomber (the wonderfully understated Pat Roach) is no longer with us. To me this is the end of a TV era.


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