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His Life & Career - Reginald Perrin - Rising Damp

Reggie Online: The Official Reginald Perrin web site

Character Studies: Reggie's Family

Reginald Perrin  -  Elizabeth Perrin  -   Linda Patterson  -  Tom Patterson  -  Jimmy Anderson




Reginald Perrin


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Related Links: Reggie's late train excusues - Rude letters - Leonard Rossiter Biography
Introduction:
Reginald Iolanthe Perrin lives at 12, Coleridge Close, on the outskirts of London, in the commuter-town of Climthorpe, with his wife Elizabeth and their cat, Ponsonby. He is the father of Mark and Linda, and grandfather to Linda's children Adam and Jocasta. He is 46 years old and a senior sales executive at the desserts and puddings company Sunshine Desserts. At the company he is supervisor over David Harris-Jones and Tony Webster, and their ultimate boss is Charles Jefferson, known as C.J. Reggie is increasingly disillusioned with his life - his job, his office, his journey to work, everything about his life seems to be a chore and a burden and a bore. He sets out to change this.

Series One
On an ordinary, overcast Tuesday, something happens which is the start of a huge and life-changing chain of events for Reginald Perrin: he mentally refers to his mother-in-law as a hippopotamus. This stops him in his tracks for a while, then he continues through the Poets' Estate - so-called because each road is named after a famous poet, including his own, Coleridge Close - and heads for Norbiton railway station. Stuck on automatic pilot, he boards the 8.16, sits in his usual seat opposite his neighbour and hayfever-sufferer Peter Cartwright, then walks to his office at Sunshine Desserts. His train, as always, arrives eleven minutes late, and enjoys giving the British Rail explanation for the delay to his secretary Joan when he eventually arrives. He spends the day dictating letters, attending meetings and all the usual executive activities. Sunshine Desserts is about to launch a new range, called Exotic Ices. CJ tells Reggie that there will be a tasting in his office to vote for the three most popular flavours to launch the range with. While in CJ's office, Reggie is startled to discover himself distracted by thinking about him self and Joan licking ice creams while passionately embracing each other. When he returns home, the hippopotamus/mother-in-law comparison returns, this time accompanied by a vivid image of a trotting hippo. Reggie is perplexed as to why these strange images have suddenly started to appear. Next day, the same old journey, same old day at work, this time punctuated by more fantasies. The visions of flashing at his neighbour and making love to Joan on his desk in the middle of a field make Reggie decide to visit the company's medical man, Gerald 'Doc' Morrissey. Unfortunately, the man is incompetent and, after the Doc describes Reggie's exact symptoms, he only tells him it's because he feels the same, and gives Reggie two aspirins.
On Thursday, Reggie's eccentricities continue to accelerate, with visions of travelling to work on roller-skates while wearing a balaclava and kilt. He takes a later train to work, forgetting that he had a marketing meeting at 9am to discuss promotional plans for the Exotic Ices range. At lunchtime, he goes to an Italian restaurant for the first time and has three courses of ravioli. He comes home to find ravioli for tea, too, and lets out a scream.
As the series progresses, Reggie makes his life as different from the norm as possible, including having an affair with his secretary, throwing a dinner party without any food, and walking out to the lions on a trip to the safari park. By Episode 5 Reggie has decided he can take no more and has chosen to leave the drudgery of his current life for a new one - a new identity, a new history, in a new part of the country. He gives a drunken address to the delegates of a fruit seminar, then disappears when his wife pulls up for him to go to the loo in the town. He takes a taxi to Sunshine Desserts, borrows a van full of loganberry essence, pollutes CJ's private river and heads to a Dorset beach with a change of clothes in a suitcase. He feels he has come too far to turn back and spends long summer days roaming the countryside and visitng different villages dressed as different people. He settles on the guise of Donald Potts, unemployed. He gets a lodgings but starts long to return to his wife. After seeing his wife accompanied by her old friend Henry Possett, he decides he must go back to her. He confesses all to his daughter Linda and attends his own memorial service as rather more distinguished Martin Wellbourne, an old friend of Reggie's who'd gone to live in Brazil. Elizabeth recognises him for who he really his, but does not let him know that she knows. He is happy as Martin Wellbourne (now that he's succeeded in pushing Henry Possett out of the frame, at least) and she lets him stay as Martin for as long as he wants to.
 

Series Two
Martin Wellbourne hates being Martin Wellbourne. Elizabeth has got her a job at Sunshine Desserts, running, of all things the Reginald Perrin Memorial Foundation. a scheme to make the ployess happy in their work. By the end of Episode 1, he has had enough and tells Elizabeth who he really is, although she knew anyway. He still has to pretend to be Martin at work, but his renewed happiness gives him away and Joan realises he's Reggie, and so does Doc Morrissey. CJ is furious, and sacks them both. Unable to find suitable employment Reggie gets a job at a piggery but hates it. His wife starts working at Sunshine Desserts instead, as secretary to David and Tony. Elizabeth's brother Jimmy Anderson calls round to make an offer to Reggie to join forces with him to fight against the forces of anarchy and the New World Order. Reggie has never heard such rubbish, but gets an idea for an unusual shop - Grot. 

From small acorns grows the Grot empire, selling rubbish items at inflated prices, but Reggie is again stuck in the same commuter-office-commuter rut that he fought so desperately to get out of at Sunshine Desserts. Even having his colleagues now working for him, and even his wife, the joy of being a tycoon wears off and he again journeys to the beach, this time accompanied by his wife.

Series Three
Reggie and Elizabeth sell off Grot and live in peace and comfort on the proceeds. But Reggie is still not happy. He feels there is something he must do, for the benefit of man. He decided to open a commune for the middle-aged and middle-class, again recruiting all his old friends, family and colleagues. Eventually, the Perrins project is a great success, but local thugs, unhappy at Perrins Peacekeeping Force, destroy the properties and Perrins is ruined. Once again, everyone goes their separate ways. Reggie then receives an appointment for an interview at Amalgamated Aerosols, and it transpires that CJ has recommended him, as his brother FJ is Managing Director of the company. Reggie is never happy there and decided to make a mockery of a market research exercise to determine the three most popular fragrances for a new range of air fresheners. By the end of the series, he is thinking of returning to the beach again.
 

The Legacy of Reginald Perrin
Reggie and Elizabeth continued to live in Climthorpe until their retirement. Reggie is killed at the age of 72 by a billboard, ironically advertising the life assurance company with which he was insured. But even in death, Reggie has kept his eccentricities alive - he has left in his will £1 million to each of his family and friends provided they do something suitably absurd to claim it. After doing individual schemes, the potential beneficiaries club together to march on London to protest against ageism. Everyone gets so caught up in the project that it stops being absurd, and so the money is not released.

Character Analysis
It is clear from the end of the very first episode that Reginald Perrin is suffering a mid-life crisis, more properly called a mid-life transition. All the symptoms are there: being discontent with life and/or the lifestyle that may have provided happiness for him for many years; boredom with things and people that have held great interest and dominated his life;  a feeling of wanting to be adventurous and to do something completely different; a questioning of the meaning of life; and confusion about who he is, or where his life is going. There is normally two ways people deal with this, and it is never a conscious decision as to which one to take. The first is to change, to adapt to their new feelings, new environments (such as moving house) and a gradual acceptance that things are slowing down and that ageing and death are no longer more than half a lifetime away. The second way, Reggie's way, is to escape. Sometimes this involves alcohol, sometimes it involves a radical shift in personal attitudes and behaviour. Reggie's fantasies, his near-affair, his rudeness to his family and his final descent into a compeltely new identity are all indicative of dealing with a mid-life crisis through escape. But it is this route which hurts more. Not only hurting his family by his disappearance and apparent suicide, but hurting himself because the freedom of the release from his old routine was only temporary, and a longing to return to his wife was not far behind. Having done so, he returned to the bosom of his family and even his old workplace and colleagues, but it didn't last long. Still with the desire of escape, but without wanting to disappoint his family this time, his break from convention came with upsetting corporate enterprise - telling the world that his Grot shops were there to sell rubbish honestly, rather than under false pretences like businesses usually do. Consumers agreed, and Reggie became a hero for doing so, but again, the old routine resurfaced and both Reggie and Elizabeth escaped from it together second time around. In Series 3, fresh from his hero-type status with the British public at the helm of Grot, Reggie decided his altruism could be amplified if he set-up a community for ordinary people to share their problems and recover from them. Such a concept is the final stage of Reggie's own therapy, as much as a therapy for his guests, until once more society intervenes (in the shape of vandals who wreck his community) and forces Reggie yet again back into the commuter lifestyle, although the series ends with Reggie's thoughts of going back to the beach for a third time. In a way, Reggie's projects help him through his crisis. He can look back and realise that he can radically change his life and still be a success, and happy, and rich. But he can also look back at the pain he has caused, and accept that the problems that sometimes present themselves in life will always arise, no matter how radically different he tries to make that life. He has experienced both sides of the coin - dysfunction and conformity - and is a better man for it. As CJ said in the final episode: "You've been on a switchback of fate, Reggie. You were discontented. You believed there is a greener hill far away with grass on the other side, and you went in search of it. But you discovered there isn't a greener hill far away with grass on the other side... You've returned, Reggie, a better and wiser man..."


Elizabeth Perrin


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Related Links: Pauline Yates Biography

Introduction:
Elizabeth Perrin is the archetypal caring, devoted, loving wife of Reginald Perrin. Mother to his two children and with a brother, Jimmy, in the Army and a mother, in Worthing. Elizabeth is part of Reggie's daily routine, and he loves her for it. Even when he begins to hate the world around him, it only starts outside the front door of 12, Coleridge Close. She is happy to concur with all of Reggie's schemes, no matter how strange they are. When Reggie is unemployed, she dutifully goes out to work instead. She even starts working for her husband at Grot and are a team at Perrins. Even after Reggie's death, she is brave and noble and happy to stand by while Jimmy rallies the troops for their plan to claim Reggie's inheritance.

Series One
Elizabeth Perrin is happy to be a housewife and to be there every morning and every night for her husband. She prepares breakfast, and they eat together. Then Reggie leaves the table and Elizabeth is ahead of him, ready to hand him his briefcase and umbrella and to receive a kiss from him as he leaves for the 8.16 to Waterloo. She is happy in this routine until Reggie starts to be sarcastic about her comments, such as when he has a bit of yellow fluff on his seat, or when he has left his flies undone. She is also happy to receive him back at night at the usual time with a drink and a dinner table laid for evening supper. Again, she dotingly does this until he returns home late one night, and drunk. And when Reggie refers to her mother as a hippopotamus, she really gets worried. She tells Reggie to demand four weeks holiday, as she thinks he needs it. CJ refuses, but gives him the afternoon off. Reggie then fails to make love one night, and is also rude to their son-in-law when they have to take the grandchildren to the safari park. Elizabeth puts it down to the pressure of work with the launch of the Exotic Ices project, and hopes it will pass. Nevertheless, in Episode 3, when she has to go and stay with her motherwhile she is ill, Elizabeth has arranged for Jimmy, Tom and her son Mark to call round to check on Mark. Unfortunately, Reggie has chosen the opportunity to have an affair with Joan and they have to abandon it, and she crawls down the drainpipe. When Monday comes, she is happy to hear he was fine over the weekend, and trusts Reggie to cancel the dinner party that he had invited several people to. He doesn't. He invites them round, but doesn't give them any food, instead sending a cheque to Oxfam so they'll all have to do the same. In Episode 5, Elizabeth is back home and is looking forward to Reggie's speech to the British Fruit Association at Bilberry Hall, but Reggie gets drunk and makes a mess of it. She stops in the High Street on the way home for Reggie to use the public toilet, and that is the last she sees of him, until... Reggie is fed up with his 'new life' and confesses to daughter Linda that he didn't commit suicide. However, while at Linda's house, her mother calls and Reggie has to hide in the kitchen. Elizabeth has come to tell Linda she is to be married to Henry Possett, who Reggie hates. He is forced to meet her, posing as the plumber, and even shakes her hand and congratulates her on the way out. She next sees him at Reggie's memorial service, where he is posing as long-lost friend Martin Wellbourne. She invites him back to her house for the wake, and soon realises it's really Reggie. However, she is aware that Reggie wasn't happy as Reggie, and agrees not to let on that she knows, even when Linda tells her mother that it's her dad. By the end of the series, ELizabeth 'falls in love' with Martin and breaks off the engagement to Henry Possett.
 

Series Two
In what could be seen as a bad move on Elizabeth's part, she gets Reggie (still pretending to be Martin) a job at Sunshine Desserts running, of all things, his own memorial fund. He hates the job, and his secret life, and confesses to Elizabeth his real identity. She pretends to faint with shock. Doc Morrissey and Joan soon see through his mannerisms and turns of phrase too, and CJ sacks him. Unable to find employment, Elizabeth decides to be the breadwinner and gets herself a job at Sunshine Desserts as typist to David Harris-Jones and Tony Webster. CJ uses the opportunity to have a fling with Elizabeth while Mrs. CJ is away in Luxembourg. He chickens out, however, and when elizabeth types a truthful letter instead of David's dictation, he sacks her. Jimmy soon gives Reggie the idea for Grot, and Elizabeth is, naturally, pessimmistic that the concept would work. 

But, dutiful as ever, she mucks in producing broken crockery, square hoops and the like, and the shop does a roaring trade. With Grot a success, Elizabeth is bored with opening ceremonies of new stores around the country and insists on a job at HQ with Reggie. He reluctantly agrees, but by this time is fed up with its success and so employs Doc Morrissey, Jimmy and Tom among others to try to destroy it. Reggie sees only one way out eventually, and realises he must go to the beach again, but wishes to take his wife with him. After talking all night about it, she agrees, and they both shed their clothes on the sand and walk off as Mr and Mrs Gossamer.

Series Three
At the start of Series 3 we join Reggie and Elizabeth in their new identities but they are not happy. They decide to become Mr and Mrs perrin again, and Elizabeth is relieved. Reggie, however, feels there is something he must do and comes up with the idea of a community for people with problems. Elizabeth is happy he has conceived a genuinely sensible idea for a change, and they purchase a property. While Reggie recruits his staff (all the old mob) Elizabeth furnishes their new house. Elizabeth becomes the secretary of Perrins and very much takes a back seat. For their first Christmas as a community, she has a desire to cook the Christmas dinner. Reggie says he will sort it out with violent chef McBlane, but fails miserably. He has more success, however, in calming Elizabeth's fears that they are running out of room. He gets staff members to share, then buys more properties by making the current residents move out threatening an influx of ethnic minorities into the street. She is once more by her husband's side when vigilantes threaten the community and a spate of thefts make Reggie depressed. But the vigilantes have the upper hand and Perrins closes down. We last see Reggie and Elizabeth together as he sets off for his new 'normal' job at Amalgamated Aerosols.
 

The Legacy of Reginald Perrin
Elizabeth Perrin is now a widow, after Reggie's tragic death from a falling billboard. At the reading of the will, she is shocked to discover that Reggie had secretly invested his fortunes from Grot in tax-free states, but that she is not the sole beneficiary. Every member of his family and friends are to get £1 million pounds, provided they do something totally absurd to earn it, with solicitor Miss Hackstraw as the judge. After doing individual turns of absurdity, such as CJ (and Doc Morrissey and Tom) asking Miss Hackstraw to marry them, Jimmy dressing as a woman and Linda shopping on roller-skates, they all meet at the Perrins' home for Elizabeth to tell them that they should be working as a team. They decide to march on London to protest against ageism and Elizabeth elects Jimmy as team leader, although she spends most of the time putting ideas into his empty head. As they finally march on London it is Elizabeth who gives the rousing speech, but even so, the money is not released as it failed to remain an absurd idea.
 

Character Analysis
Elizabeth Perrin is unusual as a sitcom wife in that she is not a battle-axe. She is instead a loyal, loving, devoted but strong-willed woman. Happy to 'stand by her man' through thick and thin, but not ashamed to put her foot down when needs be. In Episode 1 she is not afraid to confront Reggie over him calling her mother a hippopotamus and rebukes Reggie in Episode 2 for trying to get out of taking the grandchildren to the safari park at the weekend. But she is understanding when Reggie disappears and is quick to see through his disguise when he reappears. As she said to her daughter in Episode 7: "You can fool some of the people some of the time; you can even fool all of the people all of the time. But you can't fool a wife." She is enough pure of thought to not realise CJ has invited her to his country cottage to have an affair, but is dominant enough to want to punch Reggie when he admits to having an affair with Joan in their house. She takes a more dominating role in Series 4, despite her intentions for her brother to do so instead and we leave her happily reunited with her family and re-found friends, even though their project did not achieve its ultimate goal.


Linda Patterson


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Related Links: Sally-Jane Spencer Biography

Introduction:
Linda Patterson is the beautiful daughter of Reggie and Elizabeth, wife of Tom and mother of Adam and Jocasta. She is, like her mother, devoted to her husband. She puts up with his boring speeches, his pipe-smoking, and his unusual and barely-digestible home-made wines. But by Series 4 they are separated but the inheritance money project rekindles their love.

Series One
We first see Linda in Episode 2, with heaving bosom and sweating, having just cycled to her parents from her home . She informs mom and dad that estate-agent husband Tom had promised to take the kids to the safari park the next day (Saturday) but had crashed the car through the window of a house he was trying to sell. She asks if her parents would take them instead and Elizabeth happily agrees, Reggie reluctantly so. Saturday is a pleasant day had by all - except Reggie. It is the hottest day of the year and they are all couped up in Reggie's car, sometimes with the windows closed because of the animals. Reggie has enough of Tom's squid-with-garlic breath and Adam and Jocasta's 'big jobbies' and decides to spend time with the lions instead.
We don't see Linda again until Episode 6 when Reggie is disillusioned with his new life and she faints in his arms on her doorstep when Reggie confesses to her who he is. She convinces her father that he should only return to Elizabeth when he's good and ready, but the plan is soon shattered when Elizabeth arrives to tell Linda she is engaged to Henry Possett. After the memorial service and wake for Reggie, Linda struggles to bear her secret. When Elizabeth falls in love with 'Martin' Linda can stand it no more and tells her mother who 'Martin Wellbourne' really is, but her mother has already guessed.
 

Series Two
Once again, Reggie has turned to his daughter for advice, when he is sick of living as Martin Wellbourne. She reassures him that it will be OK to confess it to Elizabeth, and calls her when he has left, so Elizabeth can be ready to be surprised. In Episode 2, Linda has accompanied Tom to the Perrins' home where Tom has agreed to offer Reggie a job as assistant estate agent, but Reggie is sacked on the first day after trying to outbid Tom's client. She again is by her husband's side when he confronts Reggie in his first Grot shop for selling his horrible wine, but withdraws his comments later when he learns they are selling well (but not for the right reasons). As wit the first series, Linda remains the stay-at-home mother to her two children, and even when Reggie employs family and friends at Grot, Linda is not among them.

Series Three
In Perrins community, however, both Linda and Tom become staff members, as the children are accommodated and babysitted when necessary (usually with great reluctance by CJ). Linda is elected the art tutor, despite little knowledge or talent, likewise her husband, who is in charge of sport. She is an active team member throughout the series, though not a prominent one, and leaves to return home with Tom when the community collapses.
 

The Legacy of Reginald Perrin
With her children now adults (Adam works for the BBC and Jocasta is touring Asia with friends), Linda is happy to be part of the team to do something absurd for her million pounds. She is separated from Tom, and only sees him for the first time in seven years at the reading of Reggie's will. They are cold towards each other, and frequently argue. Soon, though, they decide to do some recruiting together and visit an old people's home as part of the drive to march on London. By the end of Episode 4 they have declared their love for each other again, and have consummated their re-found relationship. Episode 5 sees them marrying in a double ceremony with Joan and Hank.
 

Character Analysis
Linda Patterson leads a happy, middle-of-the-road existence with her children and child-like husband Tom. Eventually, though, the strains begin to show, and she hates the terms of endearments he calls her, such as 'Lindyplops' and 'Squishypoos'. But they stay together for the sake of the children. Even the femme fatale of Series 3, Deborah Swaffham, fails to impact on their bond, and it is only in the gap between Series 3 and 4 that we learn their relationship has broken down. Linda has become an independent woman of the nineties, but finds her life without love is a lonely one, and reacquaints herself with ex-husband Tom.





Tom Patterson

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Related Links: Tom's catchphrases - Tim Preece Biography - Leslie Schofield Biography

Introduction:
Tom Patterson is the lanky, pipe-smoking, spectacle-wearing estate-agent husband of Linda, Reggie's daughter. He is father to their two children Adam and Jocasta. He has a fondness for brewing home-made wine made from unusual foodstuffs, and likes to tell people of his fondness or otherwise for things by using the phrase "I'm a (whatever) person" or "I'm not a (whatever) person. As annoying as he is to Reggie, he becomnes an integral part of Reggie's life, especially during the Grot shops empire.
 

Series One
Tom is first seen sitting in the back of Reggie's car on the fateful day at the safari park. He is told by Reggie in no uncertain times what his father-in-law's opinions of himself are. The next time we see him, Reggie is even more annoyed as he is the second visitor to call to check on Reggie while he is trying to have an affair while Elizabeth is away. Tom meets Reggie at his wake disguised as Martin Wellbourne and offers Martin a chicken vol-au-vent, but then sneezes over them.
 

Series Two
It is Tom's turn to be annoyed next time we see him. He has bee ninvited round to the Perrin's home for a special announcement, only to be told that Martin Wellbourne was really Reggie all the time. Tom is unhappy that he gave 50p at the service. He is, however, magnanimous enough to offer Reggie a job as his assistant when Reggie is sacked from Sunshine Desserts. But it only lasts a day as Reggie says he wants to move from Climthorpe, likes the house Tom is trying to sell to his client and tries to outbid him for it. When Reggie starts up his Grot shop in Climthorpe High Street, Tom is again annoyed with his father-in-law for selling his home-made wine under the banner of 'completely useless items'. 

But thanks to Grot's very first customer, who buys a dozen bottles for his mother-in-law who he can't stand, Tom withdraws his remark and lets Reggie keep them. When Grot becomes a massive success, Reggie tries to destroy it by recruiting completely unsuitable people in key roles. He employs Tom as Head of Publicity. Unfortunately, Reggie's plans backfire and Tom's slogans, such as “Grot is the ideal place for gifts, as it’s all on one floor, so there aren’t any lifts”, become a national cult.

Series Three
At Perrins community, Reggie has decided that a Sports Officer should be there to take the aggression out of competitiveness, and that Tom's pathetic ignorance would fit the job perfectly. After a shaky start, Tom soon comes up with some good ideas, such as football with no opposition and one-man boxing.
 

The Legacy of Reginald Perrin
Tom is separated from Linda as we meet in Series 4, and even in death Reggie insults him, calling him 'a dreadful arse' in his will. Along with CJ and Doc Morrissey, Tom tries to woo the executor of the will, Miss Hackstraw, to try to claim his inheritance. It doesn't work, and everyone decides to work together. Tom joins David Harris-jones in spying on CJ, as they suspect he is a traitor to the cause. He starts to see Linda again, and they fall in love, and finally remarry.
 

Character Analysis
Tom's appearance, demeanour and boring habits and hobbies belie his intelligence and resilience, especially in the face of continuous insults from his father-in-law. He is loving towards his wife and children, and despite a few grumble about tasks set to him (such as slogans for Grot or Sport ideas for Perrins) he eventually throws himself into the job at hand and makes a good effort to be a valuable part of the team.


Jimmy Anderson


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Related Links: Jimmy's catchphrases - Geoffrey Palmer Biography - Spin-off: Fairly Secret Army

Introduction:
Major James Gordounston Anderson is the younger brother of Elizabeth Perrin, brother-in-law of Reggie and Uncle to Linda and Mark. He is in the Queen's Own Berkshire Light Infantry and is stationed at Aldershot. He is unlucky in life and in love. A lifetime spent in the Army, both in the UK and overseas, has left him with the habit of speaking in stunted, Army terms. He is also prone to never having enough food to feed his cadets. He gets involved with a number of projects, always with shady colleagues, and is always left out of pocket when said colleagues run off with all the money.
 

Series One
Jimmy has called round and spoiled Reggie's afternoon off. Conversation is strained as Reggie does not feel like talking, so Jimmy tells him of his weekend's Army activities against the 'Communists' to be acted out on Bagshot Heath. He has called round to borrow some food, and ends up taking most of what Elizabeth was about to prepare for herself and Reggie. He annoys Reggie again on the Sunday by being one of the less-than-welcome visitors to his house while Joan is hiding upstairs. He has been asked by Elizabeth to check on Reggie while she is away staying with their mother. He hints to Reggie as tactfully as possibe (ie. not very tactfully at all) about people who work too hard and go bonkers. Jimmy spots Joan crawling through the shrubbery on her escape route after shinning down the drainpipe. We next see Jimmy at Reggie's memorial service, although he is less than riveted by the vicar's sermon, spending most of it asleep in the pew. At the wake he is introduced to Martin Wellbourne buts gets in a muddle - as does everyone - as to the country Martin has flown in from.

Series Two
Jimmy is next seen sporting a bandaged thumb in Episode 1. He has been 'forcibly retired' from his Army position and has caught his thumb in the labour exchange door. He is present with the rest of the family for Elizabeth's shock announcement that Martin Wellbourne is really Reggie in disguise. When he learns of Reggie's sacking from Sunshine Desserts, Jimmy thinks it is the perfect time to recruit Reggie into his new project - a secret army. Reggie agrees to visit his bedsit and listens to Jimmy's plan. He decides it is all rubbish, and tells his brother-in-law that it is. With the mention of the word 'rubbish', Reggie gets the idea for Grot, and thanks Jimmy for the inspiration. Reggie's Grot empire explodes and Jimmy, meanwhile, has joined forces with Clive 'Lofty' Anstruther to develop their secret army. They have raised funding for ammunition and weapons, and have bought a disused farm near the south coast. Reggie and the family are on holiday nearby when Reggie loses his temper with his grandchildrens' loose bowels and abandons the car to walk, leaving Tom to drive. As he is walking along the dual carriageway, Jimmy emerges from a side road, being driven by his 'batman'. He offers Reggie a lift, and suggests he take him to view his secret hideaway and meet Lofty. As a precaution he blindfolds Reggie and the car takes a circuitous route to the farm. When he gets there he fails to locate any ammunition in any of the haystacks or milk churns where they are supposed to be hidden, and Lofty is gone. The safe door is open, and the money is gone, too. Jimmy id dejected, but Reggie, now set on his mission to destroy Grot by employing idiots in key roles, instantly hires Jimmy as Head of Creative Thinking. But Reggie's plan backfires, and all his new employees perform brilliantly. Jimmy creates a Heath Robinson contraption which doesn't do anything. David Harris-Jones Christens it the 'guess-what-it's-for machine' and it sells like the proverbial hot cakes.

Series Three
With Reggie's community idea ahtched, Elizabeth insists on finding a role for Jimmy, and sets off to track him down. He finds him on the canal, running a new project, narrowboat hire, with a new colleague, Tim 'Curly' Beamish. Reggie hops aboard the headquarters vessel, complete with radar to track down his fleet, and they set off for a short cruise. As they pass under a low bridge, however, Jimmy ducks and locks his back. During the ensuing rescue operation by Reggie, the boat hits a bend in the canal and they are still there at dusk trying to 'fend off' from the canal bank with barge poles. Soon afterwards, Reggie is walking through the living room of Perrins when he meets Jimmy sitting on the sofa. He informs Reggie that Curly has disappeared with all the money from the narrowboat hire firm and is begging Reggie for a job. Reggie makes Jimmy leader of the community's expeditionary force, clearing Botchley of litter, thugs and junk. Jimmy partakes in Tom's idea of non-opposition football, but the final score is 4-1 as Jimmy forgot to change ends at half-time. As the Community's success increases, one of the influx of guests is none other than CLive 'Lofty' Anstruther, the man who stole all of the money from the secret army. Reggie forces them to meet in a pub, and gets them to be friends again. But the local thugs are not happy at having their beat protected by the community and set about to ruin it. Jimmy is elected leader of the defence strategy, and after a few hare-brained idea such as the staff being disguised as compost heaps, he settles on trees. But the thugs have their revenge, and the communty folds. Jimmy says his goodbyes and leaves for another venture, this time in the mountains of Switzerland, with yet another colleague, Nigel 'Ginger' Carstairs, who reckons chairlifts are on the up and up

The Legacy of Reginald Perrin
Jimmy is at the funeral of his brother-in-law Reginald Iolanthe Perrin. Jimmy has already lost his wife, killed by a juggernaut. He comforts his sister, now widowed, and is surprised to learn there is to be no wake, in true Reggie style. Two months later, Jimmy is excitedly on his way to visit a solicitors regarding Reggie's last will and testament. He arrives with the rest of the family and is staggered to discover each of them have been left £1 million pounds, with a condition. Jimmy's solo effort is to wear a woman's dress, which he does at the local pub and at a friends' party. Unfortunately, he'd forgotten it was a fancy dress party, so he doesn't look at all out of place. AFter the benficiaries agree to unite in their absurdity, and formulate the plan to march on London against ageism, Elizabeth elects Jimmy s team leader, much to CJ's annoyance. Eventually he rallies the troops and successfully woos the solicitor Geraldine Hackstraw, where CJ, Tom and Doc Morrissey failed. On the day of the London take-over, Jimmy hijacks the BBC news bulletin and addresses the nation about their plans. Back in the solicitor's office, Jimmy is as shocked as everyone to learn that Geraldine cannot release the money because of the sensibility of the plan, and the fact it failed to remain absurd.

Character Analysis
Jimmy Anderson's Army training has stood him in good stead for his life. The 'stiff upper lip' and the perseverence in the face of adversity has helped Jimmy overcome his bad luck and failures. And there were many. He is dim-witted and gormless ways belie his caring, sensitive nature. He has impeccable manners, even when asking for the contents of other peoples' fridges and is not too proud to ask Reggie for a job when his project collapses. He throws himself into his task as head of BROSCOR - eventually - and motivates the troops until the missin is accomplished brilliantly, if too successfully.




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