Captain Mainwaring's lecture on dealing with enemy agents in interrupted by a monocle wearing officer, with a suspicious accent. Not taking any chances, they arrest the man and plan an interrogation until he convinces them he's a Polish captain serving with GHQ. He informs them of the £10 reward for every Nazi arrested.
On night patrol, Jones, Walker and Pike capture two German pilots. While being held in the church hall, Godfrey lets them escape but the Polish captain recaptures them. When the Military Police collect the prisoners, the Polish captain is mistakenly arrested as well, giving the platoon a total reward of £30.
Also appearing: Caroline Dowdeswell (Janet King), Carl Jaffe (Captain Winogrodzki), Denys Peek and Nigel Rideout (German Pilots), Bill Pertwee (ARP Warden), David Davenport (Military Police Sgt.)
I just saw this last week!!It was really good! Walker's characterization is already so strong and I love the interaction between him and Jones! Pike seems different, looks smaller and sounds different doesn't have the confused look quite yet! So far my favourite of the first season. BTW The first season is on BBC 2 on Saturdays between 6 and 8, doesn't seem to have a fixed air time and the next ep is 'The Showing Up of Corporal Jones'
"We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars." - Oscar Wilde
This is really a Walker and Jones classic. The two of them make a good tandem in many episodes and this is perhaps one of the first occasions where this is established. Also nice to see how Walker defends Jones when he is sent to his shop to call HQ but returns. The Captain gets annoyed and says something like ”Blast you!” but Pte Walker then says ”There is no need to talk to him like that!”. Great stuff!
Post by Alan Hayes on Sept 8, 2020 11:59:09 GMT 12
A strong episode, if a bit talky. There's not a lot of action - and it's studio bound other than the brief faux newsreel shots at Blackrabbit Warren.
It is however a good, tight script and there are some lovely moments - Jones shooting a parachutist that turns out to be a swan (which provides the episode with a great payoff line for later), Mainwaring and Wilson in their ill-fitting ATS trousers, and Godfrey losing the airmen in the most gentlemanly way (leaving them in his charge was bound to end in tears!).
Being studio bound it doesn't feel as opened-out as some other episodes, but it's a strong script which is in the main well-played. However, Carl Jaffé overplays Captain Winogrodzki to the point where you think he's wandered in from a different series entirely. He was playing a Polish officer but in fact Jaffé was born in Hamburg, Germany. Yes, we've had Colonel Square by this point, effectively a 'Colonel Blimp', but Winogrodzki is clearly a serving officer, so why he's so broadly played is a bit of a mystery to me. It's almost like he wants to be rounded up and carted off as a spy!
A 7/10 for this one. The writing's really firing on all cylinders by this point.
Last Edit: Sept 8, 2020 12:00:49 GMT 12 by Alan Hayes
Post by Dave Homewood on Sept 12, 2020 19:13:10 GMT 12
Don't forget that the Polish forces, Army and Air Force, who escaped to Britain and continued to serve often did not speak English when they arrived there and they took English lessons in order to communicate, so by mid-late 1940 when this took place he might not have been so relaxed with English as a language and could well have appeared to speak it in a forced way. He was attached to GHQ too, not part of the regular British Army establishment. Although he does not wear the Polish shoulder titles, I am not sure when the nationality titles on shoulders were adopted?
I know it is only fiction but there is a great scene in the move ”The Battle of Britain” from 1969 were a Free Polish squadron is shown in action. They have a British CO and only the senior Polish officer speaks a little English. The CO is tearing his hair as the Poles are ”keen as mustard” to get into the fight and they can’t communicate.
In one sequence, in training, they come across a bunch of Heinkel bombers and one by one they leave the furious squadron leader and attack the bombers. One of the Poles gets shot down and land with parachute in the middle of some farmers in a field. As he can’t speak any English, they think he is an evil Nazi, so they point a pitchfork against his backside and walks him away to the Police.
Only fiction but I am certain that it is based on similar true events. Stuff like that must have taken place in reality also.
Last Edit: Sept 12, 2020 19:52:41 GMT 12 by petere
”By Jove, that’s the sort of talk I like to hear!”
Don't forget that the Polish forces, Army and Air Force, who escaped to Britain and continued to serve often did not speak English when they arrived there and they took English lessons in order to communicate, so by mid-late 1940 when this took place he might not have been so relaxed with English as a language and could well have appeared to speak it in a forced way. He was attached to GHQ too, not part of the regular British Army establishment.
That's a good point, which I absolutely take on board, but I still think the part is wildly overplayed!
Post by Dave Homewood on Sept 15, 2020 15:08:56 GMT 12
Ha! I never realised that was the Walmington mayor who took that prisoner.
Peter that movie is not fiction, and I believe the scenes with the Poles is actually based on what really happened, as is most of the film, only they changed some of the names for characters still alive.