1 9 6 7 (UK)
6 x 55 minute episodes
This short-lived comedy series from Granada featured Arthur Lowe and Robert Dorning as a duo of amateur ghost-hunters – Leonard Swindley and Walter ‘Wally’ Hunt.
Swindley had changed a lot, though, since Pardon The Expression. The blustering buffoon had largely gone: he rarely spoke now as if he had taken an overdose of verbal laxative.
He had an attractive sly humour which was eased in where before the blunt laughs were rammed home with hammer force. And there was a new incisiveness about his personality that was never there in the previous series.
Much of the credit for the transformation of Swindley, and the vigour and breadth of the new series, was down to writers Peter Eckersley and Kenneth Cope, both of whom had been closely associated with Coronation Street.
Granada took a risk in offering Arthur Lowe an hour-long peak-time slot of his own, and he took just as much of a risk in accepting it. For both of them, the venture paid off.
Lowe would, of course, go on to fame as the irascible Captain Mainwaring in the long-running Dad’s Army.
Walter ‘Wally’ Hunt
The Boyhood Haunt | Hail Thee, Aunt Shelmadine | A Big Hand for a Little Lady | The Happy Medium | You Can’t Get the Wood | One for Yes, Two for No