Written by Donald James Directed by Ray Austin

ORIGINAL ITC SYNOPSIS

You don't expect a nun to double-cross you - unless she turns out to be something quite different. And by the time he discovers this, Jeff Randall is in dire need of his ghostly partner's help.

If there is one thing calculated to shake a bachelor to the core, it is to awaken in the morning and find a very pretty nun sitting in your apartment.

Jeff Randall is therefore justifiably surprised when this happens to him. The pretty nun explains that she has walked in and has been waiting for him to wake up. The St Ursula's Convent needs his help: it is being robbed by a man named Douglas Kershaw, who has been engaged as an accountant. Could Mr Randall please drive down to the convent to pick up the papers which they believe will incriminate Mr Kershaw, and try to get the money back?

Marty Hopkirk materialises to accompany Jeff. The nun meets them at the convent gate and hands over some papers. Then she departs, leaving a puzzled Marty to warn Jeff that he has been tricked. The nun, he is convinced, is a fake.

Jeff just has time to fling the papers into some bushes before he is cornered by a security guard, Edwards, and Jeff is taken into the building, which certainly isn't a genuine convent; it's the headquarters of an electronics research corporation.

Philip Yateman, an executive of the organisation, accuses him of trespassing, demands the return of the papers, and threatens to call in the police. Matters are further complicated by the finding of a card with the name and address of Douglas Kershaw in Jeff's possession.

Thanks to Marty's help, Jeff manages to escape and to collect the papers - which turn out to be old newsprint. This aspect of the puzzle is explained when Jeff visits Douglas Kershaw, who turns out to be a man who buys and sells information, engaged in industrial espionage and not in the least surprised to hear Jeff's story. This sort of thing often happens when there is a risk of detection: a fall guy has to be found and in this case, Jeff Randall is the fall guy.

Jeff finds himself framed. Jean Hopkirk warns him that the police are after him, and a return to the 'convent' confirms his suspicions that there is an industrial espionage plot in progress and that the nun is phony. He suspects the security guard, Edwards, but then finds that the man responsible is Philip Yateman. But too late. He's caught and is left in a cell to die.

Marty Hopkirk is desperate. He is unable to give physical aid to his living partner, and it looks as though Jeff will be joining him until he hits on the idea of securing the aid of a hospital patient who is hovering between life and death. Dragged by Marty over the border, the patient is asked to telephone the police and is only then allowed to return to the land of the living...

PRODUCTION & ARCHIVE
Production Code: RH/DCW/4005
Filming Dates:
July-September 1968
Production Completed:
Late November 1968
Recording Format: 35mm Colour Film
Archive Holding: 35mm Colour Film

UK REGIONAL PREMIERES

Anglia: Sun 6 Dec 1970, 3.00pm (B/W*)
ATV: Fri 2 Jan 1970, 7.30pm
Border: Unconfirmed
Channel: Sun 1 Mar 1970, 9.10pm (B/W)
Grampian: Wed 27 May 1970, 8.00pm (B/W)
Granada: Sun 22 Feb 1970, 11.25pm
HTV: Sat 29 Aug 1970, 5.50pm
LWT: Fri 6 Mar 1970, 7.30pm
Scottish:
Sun 7 May 1972, 11.20pm
Southern: Wed 14 Jan 1970, 8.00pm
Tyne Tees: Unconfirmed
Ulster: Fri 14 Aug 1970, 11.00pm (B/W)
Westward: Sun 1 Mar 1970, 9.10pm (B/W)
Yorkshire: Wed 16 Sep 1970, 8.00pm
(B/W) = Transmitted in Black and White
(B/W*) = Transmitted in B/W due to ITV Colour Strike
CHARACTERS & CAST
Jeff Randall
Marty Hopkirk
Jean Hopkirk
Miss Holliday
Philip Yateman
Edwards
Douglas Kershaw
1st Detective
Surgeon
Mechanic
Receptionist
Nurse
Patient
Anaesthetist
Mike Pratt
Kenneth Cope
Annette Andre
Juliet Harmer
Patrick Barr
Garfield Morgan
Jeremy Young
Clifford Earl
Tony Steedman
John Walker
Ingrid Sylvester
Maggie London
Edward Caddick
Michael Graham
STAND-INS
Jeff Randall
Marty Hopkirk
Harry Fielder
Dougie Lockyer
STUNT DOUBLES
Jeff Randall
Philip Yateman
Rocky Taylor
Les Crawford
ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK

Music for this episode was recycled from stock and therefore no release of a soundtrack of You Can Always Find A Fall Guy has been issued.

DVD EXTRAS

Network DVD (United Kingdom):
Photo Gallery.
Umbrella Entertainment (Australia):

Photo Gallery.

PRODUCTION CREDITS

Writer Donald James
Series Theme & Musical Director
Edwin Astley
Creator & Executive Story Consultant
Dennis Spooner
Creative Consultant
- Cyril Frankel
Producer
Monty Berman
Director
Ray Austin

Ronald Liles (Production Supervisor), Brian Elvin (Director of Photography), Charles Bishop (Supervising Art Director), Bob Cartwright (Art Director),
Philip Aizlewood (Post Production), Stephen Cross (Editor), Ernest Morris (Production Manager), Gerald Moss (2nd Unit Cameraman),
Denis Porter & Len Shilton (Sound Recordists), Guy Ambler (Sound Editor), Alan Willis (Music Editor), John Owen (Casting), Sue Long (Set Dresser),
Bill Greene (Construction Manager), David Harcourt (Camera Operator), Jack Morrison (Assistant Director), Janice Byles (Continuity),
Peter Dunlop (Production Buyer), Gerry Fletcher (Make-Up Supervisor), Jeannette Freeman (Hairdresser), Laura Nightingale (Wardrobe Supervisor),
A.J. Van Montagu (Scenic Artist), Frank Maher (Stunt Co-ordinator), Cinesound (Sound Effects Suppliers) and Chambers + Partners (Titles).

Made on Location and at Associated British Elstree Studios, London, England
An ITC Production

YOU CAN ALWAYS FIND A FALL GUY REVIEW

You Can Always Find A Fall Guy is the third consecutive script to have come from the busy pen of Donald James and it simply oozes confidence. Witty dialogue abounds, notably that given to Jeff and Marty in relation to Jeff's driving, and there is a lightness of touch here that was missing in the script of A Sentimental Journey. Taking the directorial reins, former stuntman and stunt co-ordinator Ray Austin passes the test with flying colours and it's easy to see why he progressed to feature films very shortly afterwards. He paces the episode well and delivers a fine product with what could be seen as a second tier cast. The only criticism perhaps is his seeming inability to hide the change to stunt performers in action scenes - perhaps this was intentional, giving those vital cogs in the production some of the limelight bearing in mind his own background as a stuntman? Juliet Harmer does a fine job with what she's given, but for a top-billed artiste, her character practically disappears into the background halfway through the narrative, which is a shame. Patrick Barr, Jeremy Young and Garfield Morgan are competent support, but it is Mike Pratt who really steals the honours in this one (not an uncommon event). After her complete absence from the previous episode, Annette Andre returns and gets a little more to do, but there's still some way to go before she becomes a true central character. Location work is again a positive in this episode, this time taking in the breathtaking house and gardens of Grim's Dyke Hotel, which is well worth a visit. All told, a fine episode which marks the series really beginning to hit its stride.

YOU CAN ALWAYS FIND A FALL GUY DECLASSIFIED

  • Teaser... It's eight in the morning and in Jeff's apartment, the alarm clock rings but he is not there and his bed has not been slept in. Shortly after the bell ceases its insistent pealing, the apartment door opens and an exhausted Jeff enters. The view which meets his eyes causes look on in disbelief, for a nun is waiting patiently for his return. As Jeff makes himself a coffee, she reveals that six thousand pounds have been embezzled from the St Ursula's convent funds by Douglas Kershaw, a disreputable accountant they had taken on three months ago. Jeff suggests that the case is one for the police, but the sister states that the Mother Superior only wants the money recovered and that they could not countenance being responsible for a man being sent to prison. Jeff agrees to take the case and is asked by the sister to come to St Ursula's at 9.30pm, near the town of St Cross outside Winchester, to see the convent accounts in full before he confronts Kershaw. Jeff agrees and the sister takes her leave. As she walks out from Jeff's apartment block, she turns a corner and gets in a red Jaguar sports car. She discards the nun's veil and drives off.


  • Production Brief... This story, as evidenced by the ITC story synopsis retaining the incorrect information, was originally to have had Jeff awakening from a night's sleep to find a nun sitting patiently in his apartment. In the finished episode, Jeff returns from a rather sleepless night out to find the nun waiting for him. It's a pity that Jeff didn't confront the lady on how she had got in. There was a killer line they could have used: "Divine intervention!"

  • This was the first episode of Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) to be directed by former stuntman Ray Austin, who had moved to the other side of the camera to direct action sequences for The Avengers, before becoming a Second Unit Director on that series (a role he also filled on The Champions). Austin showed great promise and was quickly promoted to principal director on both series and also directed episodes of The Saint and Department S before joining the Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) team. He went on to direct five more episodes in the series and was prolific in the UK, directing among many others, episodes of Space: 1999, The New Avengers and The Professionals alongside feature films including Virgin Witch (1972), before emigrating permanently to the United States of America in 1978. Austin had worked there early in his career as a stuntman, debuting in Stanley Kubrick's Spartacus. Upon his return, his career flourished and he has been responsible for many television series in his various guises of producer, director and writer. More recently, he has become an author and has written four novels: The Eagle Heist (2001), Dead Again (2002) and Your Turn To Die (2006), all Beauford Sloan Mysteries, and Find Me A Spy, Catch Me A Traitor, his first spy thriller, published in 2007. Ray Austin is also known as Raymond DeVere-Austin, the Baron of Delvin (Ireland), a title he holds as a result of his marriage in 1994 to Lady Wendy DeVere Knight-Wilton.

  • Despite her role not being the central guest character, actress Juliet Harmer was the top billed guest artiste for this You Can Always Find A Fall Guy, above Patrick Barr and Jeremy Young. This is likely to have been in recognition of her recent success as Georgina Jones alongside Gerald Harper in the BBC1 series Adam Adamant Lives! (1966-1967). She had also had a guest star role in The Man in the Elegant Room, which was the first episode of Department S before the cameras.

  • Jeannie is now seen to be working in the office and is handling dictation and typing - not to mention liaison with the police, whom she deals with when they come to arrest Jeff!

  • Hairdresser Jeanette Freeman joined the Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) crew from this episode, replacing Olive Mills, with the result that finally, Kenneth Cope's wig is correctly fitted and remains so for the remainder of the series (with the exception of some sequences in Who Killed Cock Robin? that had been filmed prior to her arrival).

  • Exact filming dates for this episode are unknown, but it has been established that filming took place at the Grim's Dyke Hotel on and around Monday 12th August 1968.

  • Post production work on this episode was completed in late November 1968. It would, however, not receive its first UK broadcast until it aired in the ATV Midlands region on Friday 2nd January 1970, more than a year later.

  • Although the episode was listed as the fifth in the advised running order by ITC, most ITV regions held it back for later in the series, with the majority opting to place it midway through the run. Anglia and Ulster placed it earliest in the run at 11th out of the 26 episodes and London Weekend left it the longest, showing it as Episode 25 in their run.


  • On Location... A nice, varied set of locations in this one, encompassing the familiar London locales, including the Thames riverside, and the glorious Grim's Dyke Hotel, which is a familiar sight from a number of ITC series and more besides. More details in Locations: You Can Always Find A Fall Guy.


  • Trivia... One bit of camera trickery that is difficult to spot until you actually go to the location and realise it doesn't look right concerns the brief scene in the teaser where Miss Holliday gets in her car and drives off. She gets in the car and removes her nun's headgear on Greenberry Street, St John's Wood NW8, but when the car drives off, it is Bridgeman Street where the shot is staged.

  • The 7th-13th August 1971 edition of TV Times magazine carried a one-page feature entitled 'Shaggy Dog Story... with a cast of too many!" on page 16. The piece concerned two animal trainers, John Holmes (pictured, right) and his wife Mary, who were based in Dorset and ran a business which supplied trained animals for film and television productions. In August 1968, the Holmeses provided an Alsatian called Ivan for You Can Always Find a Fall Guy, and the feature alluded to this fact, suggesting that the dog "had to be 'hypnotised' in Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased)". Ivan had quite a television pedigree, having previously appeared in an episode of the wartime drama Manhunt, with John Holmes playing the German dog handler beside him. Ivan had even had the distinction of chasing Emma Peel up a tree in The Avengers! It is likely that both Alsatians seen in the episode were supplied by John and Mary's company.


  • Only You, Jeff? As in For the Girl Who Has Everything, Marty can be seen by members of the canine family, spooking and totally subduing two Alsation guard dogs in the grounds of the Winchester Electronics Research Corporation, much to the confusion of their handlers...

  • Marty also gets a message through to the police with the help of a hospital patient who is hovering between life and death. When the surgeons encounter trouble during his operation, he appears to Marty as a ghost and memorises the message that Marty gives him before he is resuscitated. When he awakes in a hospital bed, the patient frantically demands a telephone and passes Marty's message on to the police. Later he cannot remember anything of his near death experience or the reason for his wanting to call the police. Jeff is exceptionally grateful to him and delivers a basket of fruit to the man's hospital room, which leaves the patient somewhat confused.


  • Ghosts and Ghoulies... The hospital patient appears to Marty as a ghost when his body on the operating table stops breathing. He survives and makes a full recovery, forgetting his ghostly meeting.


  • The Vehicles... Appearing in this episode were the following wonders of transport...

Jaguar XK120 (c. 1950)
Registration DTL 151
Driven by Miss Holliday
 

1964 Austin 7/Mini
Registration BAP 245B
Driven by Jeff Randall

Also appeared in:
Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) -
'My Late Lamented Friend and Partner', 'All Work and No Pay', 'Never Trust a Ghost' and 'Somebody Just Walked Over My Grave'
Department S - 'The Man from X'
The Persuaders!
-
'Greensleeves'
1968 Ford Zodiac MkIV
Registration WEV 473F
Driven by Edwards
 
1968 Vauxhall Victor FD 2000
Registration RXD 996F
Driven by Jeff Randall and Miss Holliday
Also appeared in:
Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) -
used extensively throughout the series
Department S - 'The Last Train to Redbridge'
Houseboat
Thames-berthed home of
Douglas Kershaw
 
1968 Ford Zephyr Deluxe MkIV
Registration PXD 976F
Driven by Police Officer
Also appeared in:
Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) -
'My Late Lamented Friend and Partner', 'A Sentimental Journey', 'Who Killed Cock Robin?', 'The Trouble with Women', 'Whoever Heard of a Ghost Dying?', 'Never Trust A Ghost', 'A Disturbing Case', 'Somebody Just Walked Over My Grave' 
Department S
- '
The Bones of Byrom Blain' and other episodes

 


  • Seen It All Before? Yes, it's that hallway set again that we've seen in one form or another in most episodes so far, this time redressed as the entrance foyer of the Winchester Electronics Research Corporation building.

  • The cellar that Jeff Randall is imprisoned in had been built for the Department S episode A Cellar Full of Silence and would later be reused in that series in the episodes Handicap Dead and The Treasure of the Costa del Sol among others.

  • That same police car again - the Ford Zephyr, registration PXD 976F - seen in Central London, Borehamwood and now Winchester. It sure gets around!

  • The hospital operating theatre set was from stock, albeit redressed to a small extent, and had previously been used in the earlier ITC adventure series, The Champions.


  • Cock Ups... The first cock up in this episode isn't a mistake at all, just one that the viewer suspects, a case of the director being a bit too clever for us! The opening panning shot cleverly masks Juliet Harmer's Miss Holliday as the camera moves past her to the door. The lifted lid of Jeff's record player appears between the camera and where Miss Holliday was soon to be seen sitting (although it is unlikely that Ms. Harmer was in position for the shot). It works so well that the viewer thinks they have been misled and that the nun appears from nowhere as she had not been seen in the opening shot. Taking the opportunity of quickly checking back in the home video age, you really notice Ray Austin's attention to detail in this shot, where he delivers deft sleight of hand.

  • At 12 minutes and 25 seconds into the episode (DVD timing), the substitution of the characters of Yateman (Patrick Barr) and Edwards (Garfield Morgan) for a pair of stunt performers is not well handled. The substitution is hardly invisible and Les Crawford, the stuntman doubling Patrick Barr, does not resemble the actor. Often the doubling of actors by stunt performers is achieved with some modicum of subtlety, but this is one of those instances where the substitutions are painfully clear. This sequence also permits us a good view of Mike Pratt's regular stunt double for action scenes, Rocky Taylor. Patrick Barr is also doubled unconvincingly for the fight sequence with Jeff later on Kershaw's houseboat (at around 35 minutes and 45 seconds).

  • The first genuine, fully paid up cock up of You Can Always Find A Fall Guy occurs at 15 minutes and 50 seconds, just after Jeff and Marty have made their escape from WERC and stop at the side of the road to take a look at the documents that the nun had entrusted Jeff with. Jeff opens the envelope and there is a studio insert shot (below, left) where it is clearly seen that the newspaper pages he finds are guillotined and the text is running diagonally. The action cuts back to the location filmed sequence and Jeff has a perfectly normal newspaper in his hands. Slapped wrists for Janice Byles in charge of Continuity!

  • At 29 minutes and 16 seconds, we're back on Yateman's office set at the Winchester Electronics Research Corporation and Jeff meets with Yateman. The shadow of a boom microphone follows their conversation, back and forth, on the wall behind them.

  • A couple of minutes later, at 31 minutes and 28 seconds, some rather poor blue screen work causes Jeff's car roof to partially disappear and the background shows through it, presumably due to an incorrectly placed lighting rig which caused the car roof to pick up reflections from the blue of the background drape. In the image below, the effect is displayed and Kenneth Cope auditions for the role of Simon Templar. :)

  • Finally, at 36 minutes and 34 seconds, when Miss Holliday drives Jeff's Vauxhall Victor into the research corporation grounds, she pulls up and runs around the car, opening the rear door so Yateman can drag their captive Jeff from the back seat. As she opens the rear door, the camera crews arc lights can be seen clearly reflected in the glass of the door. 


  • And Finally... The marvellous Grim's Dyke Hotel in Harrow Weald was once the home of celebrated dramatist and librettist Sir William Schwenck Gilbert (1836-1911), who enjoyed a phenomenally successful artistic partnership with Sir Arthur Sullivan (1842-1900), during which they produced a number of highly regarded operas. These productions included The Yeoman of the Guard, H.M.S. Pinafore, The Pirates of Penzance and The Mikado, and all remain popular to this day. Tragically, Gilbert drowned in the lake in the gardens of Grim's Dyke, suffering a heart attack when attempting to aid one of two girls to whom he was giving swimming lessons when she got into difficulties. The lake is now known as Gilbert's Lake. The inscription on his memorial on the south wall of the Thames Embankment in London reads: "His Foe was Folly, and his Weapon Wit". There is also a memorial plaque at All Saints' Church, Harrow Weald.

Plotline: Scoton Productions / ITC UK Transmissions by Simon Coward and Alan Hayes
Review by Alan Hayes Grim's Dyke Photograph by Alys Hayes
Declassified
by Alan Hayes with thanks to Vince Cox, Harry 'Aitch' Fielder,
Des Glass, John Holburn and Andrew Pixley

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