1 9 6 0 – 1 9 6 3 (UK)
98 x 30 minute episodes
1 9 7 4 (UK)
6 x 30 minute episodes
After being demobbed from The Army Game, Alfie Bass and Bill Fraser tasted life in civvy street in Bootsie and Snudge.
Former National Serviceman ‘Excused Boots’ Bisley was now a handyman and his bullying former sergeant Snudge the pompous doorman/Hall Porter at The Imperial, an old-fashioned club on Pall Mall in London.
The club was run by hot-headed secretary, the Rt Hon Sec Hesketh Pendleton, and Bootsie and Snudge were joined by 83-year-old club employee Henry Beebohm Johnson (Clive Dunn).
Old Johnson’s addled mind convinced him at first that Snudge was Lord Kitchener returned to life, and he was prone to prattling on about the “fuzzy-wuzzies” and bumbling in the befuddled manner that Dunn would later bring to the part of Corporal Jones in Dad’s Army.
Storylines centred often around complications caused by the Imperial’s members and guests, but mostly around the inter-relationships between the four staff and, in particular, Bootsie and Snudge.
Marty Feldman and Barry Took wrote the majority of the earlier episodes but had moved on by the third series in 1962 – 63. A number of future TV stars passed through the series in minor roles when relatively or completely unknown. Amongst them were Warren Mitchell, Honor Blackman and Mollie Sugden.
In 1964, Bootsie and Snudge moved into the Diplomatic Service in Foreign Affairs and the famous duo was laid to rest until an unsuccessful one-series revival in 1974 when, in a reversal of positions, Bootsie wins a million pounds (and 27 pence) on the football pools and has to suffer Snudge – now an employee of Permapools – in a subservient role as his financial adviser.
Montague ‘Bootsie’ Bisley
Henry Beerbohm Johnson