The Good Life. Image shows from L to R: Margo Leadbetter (Penelope Keith), Tom Good (Richard Briers), Jerry Leadbetter (Paul Eddington), Barbara Good (Felicity Kendal). Copyright: BBC.

The Good Life

BBC One sitcom about a couple practicing self-sufficiency. 30 episodes (4 series), 1975 - 1978. Stars Richard Briers, Felicity Kendal, Penelope Keith and Paul Eddington.

Series 1, Episode 3 - The Weaker Sex?

The stress of 'a 36 hour day' starts to take its toll on Barbara after she is left to restore an old range to its former glory. The Goods also celebrate the first signs of life in their vegetable patch and viciously defend it from the birds.

Further details

Tom and Barbara are celebrating new life in their front garden as their first pea has emerged from the soil. After a quick Kodak moment Tom notices something rather intriguing pass him by, tied to the back of a horse and cart driven by a fake cockney. After a quick display of bartering the Goods are the proud owners of what Barbara refers to as 'a couple of tons of rusty old iron' - a kitchen oven range.

Whilst Barbara is left to clean it, Tom devises a make-shift device for scaring the birds. Sadly it has a fatal flaw. A visit from Margot later on sees her offering Barbara a new dress. Barbara politely declines this offer of charity, however Tom accepts. Margot later sees the designer dress in the garden crudely worn by a scarecrow. Sadly for Tom the birds are strangely attracted to it rather than repelled.

By this point Barbara is at breaking point with the range and has a mini breakdown as the stress of self-sufficiency begins taking its toll. A quick visit to the Leadbetters' house puts things into perspective. Barbara returns to find Tom waiting with a kiss and a fully cleaned and functioning range.

Broadcast details

Friday 18th April 1975
30 minutes

Cast & crew

Regular cast
Richard Briers Tom Good
Felicity Kendal Barbara Good
Penelope Keith Margo Leadbetter
Paul Eddington Jerry Leadbetter
Guest cast
Tony Selby Sam
Paul McDowell GPO Man
Writing team
John Esmonde Writer
Bob Larbey Writer
Production team
John Howard Davies Director
John Howard Davies Producer
Bill Harris Editor
Paul Munting Production Designer
Burt Rhodes Composer

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