1 9 7 5 – 1 9 7 7 (UK)
1 9 8 0 (UK)
26 x 30 minute episodes
If not quite three-in-a-bed, this Granada would-be rival to Man About The House cast three-in-a-bedsit, with newlyweds Chris (David Roper) and ‘Fliss’ (Diane Keen) Hawthorne sharing their sparsely furnished Chorlton-cum-Hardy (Manchester) accommodation with lodger Gavin Rumsey (Lewis Collins), who calls himself Chris’s best friend.
The trouble is, while Chris is a young northern newspaper reporter, typing his fingers to the bone to pay off the mortgage, and living with his pretty bride – who has delivered them twins – with little more than two pennies to rub together, Gavin (pictured) is a wealthy young air-freight executive used to the luxury life and lavish spending sprees; the original medallion man.
Forced to leave his matrimonial home when he splits from his wife Carol, Gavin moves his fancy furniture, Scalextric, hi-fi, abundantly stocked wardrobe, drinks cabinet and fast cars chez Hawthorne – at first only for a couple of days but then, it seems, indefinitely.
Gavin behaves like a cad, flaunting his wealth and suggesting romance with the disinterested Fliss – who, herself, is wondering what has happened to her life: three A-levels to her name and she’s up to her hands in nappy-rash cream.
Also closely involved in Chris and Fliss’s lives are their eccentric neighbour Austen Tweedale and Fliss’s prudish, interfering and materially-obsessed mother Connie.
Three such series were made, at which point Lewis Collins went off to become a star in ITV’s dashing-and-daring cop series The Professionals, and The Cuckoo Waltz seemed to be at an end.
Three years later, however, a final series was made – by this time the twins were of school age, Chris and Fliss had a little more money to spend and there was a new lodger to contend with, Adrian Lockett.
Like his predecessor, Adrian was something of a scoundrel, and he made abundantly clear his appreciation for Fliss.
Felicity ‘Fliss’ Hawthorne