1 9 7 2 – 1 9 7 3 (UK)
26 x 25 minute episodes
Ellis Jones plays a young assistant in an ironmonger’s shop in the fictitious town of Widdimouth – the lad goes by the painfully punful name of Hal Adden (geddit?) – who happens to be polishing up some old watering cans when out pops a genie, 4,000 years old and keen to serve his new master.
The only problem is, his back’s a bit stiff and, well . . . what with one thing and another, his spells have a habit of going wrong. He’s also inclined to take everything Hal says at face value – Hal quickly learns it’s unwise to say things like “Strike me pink!” or “Stone me!” when there’s a genie about.
As for the shop owner, Mr Cobbledick (Roy Barraclough) – and I’m saying nothing – he quickly resigns himself to never coming out on top in his skirmishes with the Magical One, and his visits to his psychiatrist increase.
Because the series was filmed at Thames the stars on the receiving end of the bad magic included the station’s biggest names of the day: Eamonn Andrews, Wendy Craig, Dickie Davies, Jack Smethurst, and Magpie favourites Susan Stranks, Tony Bastable and Puff the Pony.
Hugh Paddick (1)
Arthur White (2)