The Captain's Car
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|"The Captain's Car"|
|Dad's Army episode|
|Episode no.||Series Seven
|Directed by||David Croft|
|Story by||Jimmy Perry and David Croft|
|Produced by||David Croft|
|Original air date||Friday 13/12/74 8.00pm
(recorded Sunday 17/11/74)
|Running time||30 minutes|
The Captain's Car is the fifth episode of the seventh series of the British comedy series Dad's Army that was originally transmitted on Friday 13 December 1974.
The platoon inherit a Rolls Royce Staff car, and have to prepare for a visiting French General.
Lady Maltby arrives to see Captain Mainwaring in his office, as she can't get the petrol for her Rolls Royce, so is keen to see it used for the war effort. She is carefully maintaining her class distinction, being very superior to Mainwaring, then catches sight of Sergeant Wilson, and greets him warmly as 'Dear Arthur'. They talk for a few minutes, obviously well acquainted, leaving Mainwaring fuming.
Mainwaring is very keen to use the car, so Private Frazer offers to respray it cheaply. Unfortunately, there is a misunderstanding when Frazer collects the car, and he takes the Mayor's Rolls Royce instead. A great flap ensues, which is calmed down by the accusation that the Mayor's chauffeur obviously hadn't disabled the car when he left it, which takes the wind out of the angry Mayor's sails. Of course the Mayor's car is now not black but camouflaged, so Frazer has to spray it again.
In the background the town is preparing for the visit of a Free French General. Mainwaring is not impressed, and tells Wilson that "the French don't make very good soldiers, you know, especially after lunch". There is a lot of argument between the Wardens and the Home Guard about who should have the most important spot in the Guard of Honour. Frazer just manages to deliver the Mayor's (now black) car in time, but the paint is still tacky.
At the Guard of Honour, The vicar's choir sings half the French National Anthem ("they didn't have time to learn it all"), Wilson gives a welcoming speech in French, and the French General is so overcome he kisses Wilson, then Mainwaring, on both cheeks. Then the flash of Private Cheeseman's camera startles him, and he steadies himself with his hands against the Rolls Royce, so that when he kisses the outraged Warden Hodges he ends up with black paint all over his face.
The main car used in the episode, a lovely example of a Rolls Royce 20/25, BMG443 belonged to a TV & Film prop company, and upon arrival for filming the director noticed that the spirit of ecstasy was missing, so the poor lad had to drive back to London in the car to retrieve it. BMG443 as also been used as Audrey fforbs- Hamilton's much loved car in the BBC's To The Manor Born, and other British and Hollywood Films.
- Arthur Lowe as Captain Mainwaring
- John Le Mesurier as Sergeant Wilson
- Clive Dunn as Lance Corporal Jones
- John Laurie as Private Frazer
- Arnold Ridley as Private Godfrey
- Ian Lavender as Private Pike
- Bill Pertwee as ARP Warden Hodges
- Talfryn Thomas as Private Cheeseman
- Frank Williams as The Vicar
- Edward Sinclair as The Verger
- Colin Bean as Private Sponge
- John Hart Dyke as The French General
- Eric Longworth as Town Clerk
- Fred McNaughton as The Mayor
- Mavis Pugh as Lady Maltby
- Robert Raglan as Colonel
- Donald Morley as Glossip
- "1934 Rolls-Royce 20/25 h.p. H.J.Mulliner Saloon [GRC33]". Internet Movie Cars Database. Retrieved 19 September 2015.