The Rebel. Henry Palmer (Simon Callow). Copyright: Retort.

The Rebel

Gold sitcom starring Simon Callow as a rebellious pensioner. 9 episodes (2 series), 2016 - 2017. Stars Simon Callow, Bill Paterson, Anita Dobson, Amit Shah and others.

Series 2, Episode 2 is repeated on Saturday 13th February at 3:25am.

The Rebel. Image shows from L to R: Margaret (Anita Dobson), Charles (Bill Paterson), Henry Palmer (Simon Callow). Copyright: Retort.

Series 1, Episode 1 - Law

Following a reluctant visit to see his doctor, Henry witnesses a robbery and gives chase - only to be accused of homophobia by a do-gooder policeman, whom he then assaults!

Further details

Henry visits his GP, Dr. McGill, but only at the insistence of his daughter Cath and under protest. He doesn't want to be there; he feels as fit as a fiddle, even though everyone keeps reminding him he's 70.

Dr. McGill diagnoses possible depression and Henry puts her blood pressure apparatus in her sharps bin when she's not looking. She prescribes anti-depressants which Henry refuses to take and he storms out.

Henry pays his daily visit to the charity shop run by Margaret. While trying on a waistcoat, his best friend Charles comes in looking for a stress toy for his gerbil. Henry buys him an old teddy bear which Margaret picks out. As she opens the till, a bearded thief steals its contents.

Henry gives chase, brandishing the teddy bear... Henry confronts the thief who tries to take the bear off him. Witnessed by PC Burns, the useless policeman accuses Henry of a homophobic attack. Henry assaults him with the teddy bear and is arrested.

Cath is furious and suggests he apologise to the nice policeman in the hope of just getting a caution. Infuriated, Henry decides to go on a rebellious rampage, setting fire to a cash point in a protest against the banks, smashing a supermarket window and desecrating a font.

He ends up in court. Determined to make his rebellious point he represents himself. Despite his best efforts to go to prison... the judge has other ideas. Adjourning to the judge's chambers he discovers they went to school together. The judge is determined to let Henry off for the sake of the old school's reputation. However, Henry has other ideas...

Broadcast details

Wednesday 20th July 2016
40 minutes

Cast & crew

Regular cast
Simon Callow Henry Palmer
Bill Paterson Charles
Anita Dobson Margaret
Amit Shah Jeremy
Anna Crilly Cath
Guest cast
Doon Mackichan Doctor McGill
Philip Cumbus PC Burns
Nila Aalia Jane
James Millard Court Official
Simon Williams Judge 'Scabby' Pawson
Clara Indrani Ms Budaly for the Prosecution
Writing team
Andrew Birch Writer
Production team
Vadim Jean Director
Vadim Jean Producer
Simon Lupton Executive Producer
Jon Rolph Executive Producer
Tanya Qureshi Executive Producer


Remembering The Past

Henry and Charles chat.

Featuring: Simon Callow (Henry Palmer), Bill Paterson (Charles).

Henry Attacks A Policeman

A policeman gets in the way of Henry's mission.

Featuring: Simon Callow (Henry Palmer), Doon Mackichan (Doctor McGill), Philip Cumbus (PC Burns), Nila Aalia (Jane).


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