The Legacy Of Reginald Perrin. Image shows from L to R: Joan Greengross (Sue Nicholls), Hank Millbeck (Michael Fenton Stevens).

The Legacy Of Reginald Perrin

Reginald Perrin's family and friends must do something absurd in order to inherit his fortune

1996  (BBC One)
7 (1 series)
Pauline Yates, Geoffrey Palmer, John Barron, John Horsley, Bruce Bould, Theresa Watson, Sue Nicholls, Michael Fenton Stevens, Tim Preece, Sally-Jane Spencer, Patricia Hodge
David Nobbs

Reginald Iolanthe Perrin has passed away but he has bequeathed a fortune to his family and friends. There is only one proviso, they must each do something absurd in order to receive their share of the money. They therefore, initially individually and then as a group, attempt to concoct a bizarre scheme that will impress solicitor Geraldine Hackstraw enough to make her part with the money.

This culminates in an attempt by senior citizens to march on Whitehall as a protest at a youth-obsessed society.

Our Review: It was a bold decision taken by writer David Nobbs to resurrect the Reginald Perrin series several years after star Leonard Rossiter's death. The general reaction to the series was less than positive however and Nobbs himself has since confessed that it was probably a mistake.

The criticisms of the series are fairly unanimous, chief among them being the wisdom of making a series in which the title character is now dead. The general feeling is that the absence of Reggie could not be compensated for by the other characters.

The writer himself has also admitted that too many jokes and catchphrases were repeated, and this served to negate the impact of the strong plotline.

The end result of this was that The Legacy of Reginald Perrin failed to generate large audience figures and, although the series featured an open-ended conclusion in order to allow the story to continue, the characters never reappeared.