Mr. Bean in Room 426
|"Mr. Bean in Room 426"|
|Mr. Bean episode|
|Episode no.||Episode 8|
|Directed by||Paul Weiland|
|Written by||Robin Driscoll|
|Produced by||Sue Vertue|
|Original air date||17 February 1993|
"Mr. Bean in Room 426" is the eighth episode of the British television series Mr. Bean, produced by Tiger Television and Thames Television for Central Independent Television. It was first broadcast on ITV on 17 February 1993 and was watched by 14.31 million viewers during its original transmission. This was the first episode to consist of a single storyline and was shot entirely on location in Southsea.
Act 1: Checking In
For a bank holiday weekend, Mr. Bean decides to stay at the Queens Hotel but upon parking his Mini by the entrance he fights with the bellboy (Matthew Ashforde) over his suitcase, believing him to be a thief although he later trusts him when he offers to move his Mini to a parking space by giving him his steering wheel. As Bean checks in, a quiet man (Michael Fenton Stevens) checks in as well and Bean becomes determined to beat the man to his hotel room (room 425), but the man gets to the lift before him. In retaliation, Bean runs up the staircase and stops the lift on every floor. He almost succeeds in entering his room first but due to his impatience he struggles with unlocking his door and the man ultimately enters his room before Bean enters his.
Once inside his room, Bean immediately starts investigating, such as flicking the light switch on and off rapidly, standing on his suitcase to see the sea through his window, testing out the phone and when the bellboy clears his throat to ask for a tip, he gives him a cough sweet instead. Bean finds the remote control for the TV and initially mistakes it for a phone, because his own TV at home has no remote. He tests the remote control's signal range and turns the volume up once he is outside his room until his other neighbour in room 427 comes outside to investigate the noise. Bean hides the remote in his jacket and pretends to tell the guest inside room 426 to be quiet, and goes back inside once the neighbour is gone.
Back in his room, Bean unpacks his suitcase and places Teddy in his makeshift "bed" in the drawer, accidentally decapitating him in the process. He personalizes the room by changing the lampshade for his own, placing his own curtains on the window and drilling holes to hang framed pictures on the walls (the noise can be heard throughout the hotel).
He decides to have a bath but realizes his room doesn't have a bathroom. Bean then hears the sound of water running in room 425, and is annoyed to discover that that room has an en suite bathroom whereas his doesn't. Bean uses a glass to listen through the wall in order to locate said bathroom, and then once the man in room 425 leaves, uses his drill to cut a giant hole in the wall in order for him to gain access to the bathroom.
Once again, the noise is heard throughout the hotel, and the vibration travels all the way to the lobby and restaurant, prompting the manager (Roger Brierley) to investigate where it is coming from. Just as he knocks on the door to Mr. Bean's room, the man from room 425 complains that he left his watch in the bathroom but can't get the door open. The manager also tries to turn the handle (in vain) and apologizes to the man, suggesting that it may be jammed.
However, it is revealed that Bean has locked the door and is in the bathtub quickly washing himself. He then finishes and hides the hole with his wardrobe and the curtains from the bathroom. The manager then says that he will have someone come and look at the man's bathroom door just as Bean peeks out of his room wearing nothing but a towel to see what all the fuss is about. The manager notices this as Bean heads back into his room and gives him a suspicious look before walking away.
Act 2: The Bad Oysters
At dinnertime, Bean again tries to beat his neighbour to the dining room by knocking on his door and then running off, only to find that the lift is out of order. Annoyed, he goes to take the stairs, but becomes even more annoyed when he gets stuck behind a slow-moving elderly woman with a walking frame. Instead of simply asking the lady to let him pass, he decides to go around to the other staircase, but becomes further annoyed when he somehow ends up stuck behind her again. He then contemplates pushing her, but stops himself when he hears a couple walking past.
Fed up knowing that it is a big staircase and that he could be there for a long time, he takes a risk and climbs onto the opposite side of the banister to finally get past her. But his victory is short-lived when he ends up behind an equally slow-moving elderly man with 2 walking sticks (presumably the lady's husband). Now stuck between the two with insufficient space to repeat the same tactic and still feeling unable to ask for space to pass, Bean is forced to go down slowly.
Once he reaches the restaurant, he takes a plate and cutlery and sees his neighbour and 3 people ahead of him in the queue. So, he cheats his way to the front by knocking the cutlery and napkin from the 2 people in front of him. Now behind his neighbour, he proceeds to copy what food he is taking from the buffet, but doubling the quantity and even going so far as to fill an entire plate with oysters, and putting back what the man puts back. Bean then steals the table that his neighbour was going to sit at and starts imitating him by drinking water and using a napkin before putting an obscene amount of salt onto his food.
He then gluttonously eats whatever the man is eating at a certain time. When the man starts to eat his oysters Bean eats all of his without smelling them. But the man notices an odd smell coming from his own oysters and asks the headwaiter about it. The headwaiter smells them and apologizes by saying that they are off. He then goes to collect the plate of oysters from the buffet and is repulsed by the smell. Bean sees what is happening and is horrified that he has just eaten bad oysters.
Act 3: Locked Out
That night, with lots of tissue paper and a full chest of medicines beside him, Bean is feeling sick with high fever as a result of eating the bad oysters from earlier and wakes up from a nightmare about his neighbour and the restaurant owner laughing demonically at him while oysters are being eaten nastily. He then undresses due to being too hot and is about to go back to sleep when music blasts from next door. Bean looks at the alarm clock and upon realizing that it's 12:05 am, gets up while forgetting that he's naked, knocks angrily at the door and shushes loudly. The music stops and he walks back to his room just as the door closes and locks itself. He reaches for his key, only to remember he does not have it. To make matters worse, he finds himself locked outside his room naked and starts to panic. Bean hides in a doorway as a couple come past from a night out.
Once they've gone, he escapes by covering himself with a fire extinguisher and door signs ("Private", "Exit", etc.) while avoiding people. He begins to run down the stairs, only to get stuck behind the elderly lady, yet again. So he goes back up and heads for the lift; on the way he comes across another couple making out, so he sneaks past them by crawling under the carpet. He then enters the lift, but the door closes on the string by which he is dragging the "Exit" sign along with him. We then see the floor numbers go down and hear a lady screaming in sheer shock.
Down in the lobby, Bean peeks out the lift and sneaks out with "Out of order" and "No entry" signs, into his work space. Meanwhile, the manager is talking to Danny La Rue (playing himself), saying his show was marvellous and that they love him. The performer delightfully goes back in to give them another encore. The clerk then gives Matthew (the porter) the keys to the car and tells him to bring them to Mr. La Rue's car. Meanwhile, Mr. Bean gets the keys to his room from the front, and hides behind a pole as Matthew parks the suitcase and leaves.
The manager gets back behind his counter and almost sees the suitcase moving several times (Bean being in it changing). Matthew then comes back and locks the suitcase, and brings it out to the car, dropping it on the stairs. Just then, Mr. Bean shows up at the counter in a sparkly gown and wig and lipstick, saying "426 please", and the manager replies "Certainly, madam".
Right at that moment, Danny La Rue walks by, noticing his stuff is being worn. So he approaches angrily, and says to him "Here, that's my frock" and yanks an earring off Bean's ear, and the screen suddenly goes black, while we hear Bean unconvincingly cry out in pain.
This was the first episode to incorporate only one storyline instead of separate acts or sketches as well as the first to be shot entirely on location. The episode was filmed at the Queen's Hotel in the seaside resort of Southsea, Portsmouth, Hampshire. Principal photography began on 1 October 1992.
It was also the first full episode to be directed by Paul Weiland, previously the series' specialist director for film sequences. Another episode-length story, Mind the Baby, Mr. Bean, was also filmed in Southsea.
This was also the first episode to be commissioned and presented for the ITV network by Central Independent Television following the loss of Thames' ITV franchise in London. Central would also oversee commissioning and compliance for a number of other Thames independent productions, such as Minder, Wish You Were Here...? and Strike It Lucky, until the ITV Network Centre removed the requirement for a 'commissioning company' in the late 1990s.
"Homeless" from Mr. Bean: The Animated Series was inspired by this episode. The last scene also inspired the episode "Opera Bean" where Bean wears a lady's frock.
Some scenes of Bean naked during the final part of the episode were edited out for broadcasts on Disney Channel and Philippine network ABS-CBN. This episode was never broadcast on Nickelodeon UK, possibly due to Bean being naked for the majority of the last act.
- "Timeline". mrbean.co.uk. Archived from the original on 22 September 2013. Retrieved 4 January 2014.
- Shaun May (17 December 2015). A Philosophy of Comedy on Stage and Screen: You Have to be There. Bloomsbury Publishing. pp. 109–. ISBN 978-1-4725-8045-0.
- Rae Beth Gordon (2001). Why the French Love Jerry Lewis: From Cabaret to Early Cinema. Stanford University Press. pp. 223–. ISBN 978-0-8047-3894-1.