Oliver (we never learn whether this is his first name or his surname) is a middle-aged lecturer in Comparative Religion, with a passion for trivia, crosswords and anagrams, and a very strange taste in jokes. Having been made redundant from the University of the Rhondda Valley, and with no family ties, he decides to set off on a quest to find "Aristotle", a setter of crosswords. He soon teams up with WPC Diane Priest, who has just been suspended from the police force because she has been asking too many questions about a local murder that seems to implicate the Chief Constable. Pursued by Baxter ("the man with no name"), Oliver and Diane visit Shrewsbury, North Yorkshire, Durham, Hadrian's Wall and Kirkleven (in the Scottish highlands) on their journey to find "Aristotle" in the Orkney Isles. Along the way they uncover a major scandal centred around a property company. The laconic humour and the laid-back style are similar in many ways to The Beiderbecke Affair (1985), The Beiderbecke ... Written by
When Alan Plater wrote the novel "Oliver's Travels" on which this TV series is based, he dedicated it to his friend and fellow resident of Hull, Tom Courtenay. When the BBC decided to dramatise the novel for TV, Plater hoped that Courtenay would play Oliver, and was not pleased either with the casting of Alan Bates or with the way that Giles Foster directed the series. See more »
My greatest complaint is that this one has never been committed to DVD or even VHS. I've never seen any explanation of why this one hasn't been put on the market. It's just too good for words.
One of the most brilliant, funny and delicious adventure romances I've ever seen. If you have ANY chance to see it, the acting is totally brilliant, great script, twists and turns in the story line and a delightful romance, as well.
Alan Bates, scene stealer par excellence in so many of his films, performs the title role of Oliver, who sets out to find the person behind his favorite series of crossword puzzles.
I won't even try to give you any of the zany antics which take place, yet all plausible, as he meets and falls for Sinead Cusak, that brilliant actress, certainly up to some quality scene stealing herself.
God bless the Brit acting community.
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