1 9 8 3 – 1 9 8 5 (UK)
13 x 30 minute episodes
Originally intended as a one-off short film for the cinema, this bizarre Channel 4 series of silent comedies starred Enn Reitel in the title role as the eternally romantic optimist, Nigel.
Despite failing in most of his endeavours (usually while trying to impress an attractive girl), the Walter Mitty-like Optimist maintained a cheerful outlook on life, no matter how bad the outcome.
The first series was set in Los Angeles and found The Optimist trying his hand at windsurfing to impress a girl, visiting a “dude ranch”, competing in a mini Grand Prix, and joining a health farm which was more like a prison.
The Optimist’s adventures returned to London in the second series where he accidentally became involved in the world of international espionage, came into possession of a stolen diamond, was mistaken for an impressionist painter, and inherited a crumbling and sinister country estate.
Nigel, The Optimist
Sea Dreams | The Good, the Bad and the Nasty | Man’s Worst Friend | Healthy Body, Unhealthy Mind | Kid’s Stuff | Burning Rubber | A Challenge || Any Messages | Turf Luck | The Light Fantastic | The Double | The Fool of the House of Esher | The Brush Off