1 9 6 5 – 1 9 6 6 (UK)
13 x 30 minute episodes
1 9 6 9 – 1 9 7 0 (UK)
12 x 30 minute episodes
1 9 7 8 (UK)
9 x 30 minute episodes
A superb sitcom written by Lewis Schwarz and Charlie Drake, The Worker featured comedian Charlie Drake as an unemployed “little man” willing to take on any form of work.
Unfortunately, he was accident-prone and although he had tried more than 1,000 roles, he was completely incapable of holding down any job for more than one day.
As a result, the irrepressible ginger-haired imp virtually haunted the Weybridge Labour Exchange, staffed by the long-suffering Mr Whittaker (Percy Herbert), and – after the first series – by Mr Pugh (Henry McGee, well known for his supporting roles in The Benny Hill Show).
Each episode would inevitably end with Mr Pugh (or “Mr Pooh” as our hero pronounced it) grabbing Charlie by the throat and hoisting him off the ground.
After a gap of four years, the series was brought back in 1969. The opening episode, ‘Hello Cobler’ featured Drake playing virtually ever character from a bookie to Queen Victoria.
The Worker was briefly revived again in 1978 as part of Bruce Forsyth’s Big Night, with Drake and McGee again doing battle in the job centre.
Guests on the show included Windsor Davies, Maggie Fitzgibbon, Angela Douglas, Aubrey Morris, Dilys Laye, Geoffrey Palmer, Wanda Ventham, Judy Cornwell, Norman Vaughan and John Meillon.