Officer Crabtree

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Officer Crabtree
'Allo 'Allo! character
First appearance The Policeman Cometh
Last appearance A Winkle in Time
The Return of 'Allo 'Allo!
Portrayed by Arthur Bostrom
Information
Occupation Secret Agent & French Policeman
Nationality English

Officer Crabtree is a fictional character in the BBC sitcom 'Allo 'Allo!, which ran from 1982 to 1992; he was played by actor Arthur Bostrom.

In The Return of 'Allo 'Allo!, it was revealed that the character was partly based upon Edward Heath, who spoke fluent French, but with an obviously English accent.

Character overview[edit]

The character is an undercover British agent masquerading as a gendarme. His grasp of French is limited however, and this is represented on screen by his mangling of vowels for comic effect. Crabtree is occasionally heard speaking his maternal English, mostly when speaking to Fairfax and Carstairs. His bad French also seems to be contagious as several French characters (particularly Madame Edith) end up speaking like him without realising it after hearing him talk. It is also of note that others, especially lead character René, will use his mangled French to insult him, such as in "Pass off" (for "Piss off").

A running gag throughout the series is that, when any of the other characters meet British officers (even Fairfax and Carstairs on one occasion, when they were to be disguised as gendarmes) their French is just the same as Crabtree's.

Rank[edit]

Crabtree's rank in the French police force is unknown, although in series 9, he wears 3 stripes which denote the rank of Sergeant, and in series 7, Helga reveals that he is the head of the Nouvion police.

After the character's introduction, various episodes were named in this talking manners (e.g. "Up the Crick Without a Piddle" for "Up the Creek without a Paddle" in Season 7).