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The Man and the Hour
Series 1, Episode 1
The Man and The Hour
Air Date 31st July 1968
Written by Jimmy Perry and David Croft
Director David Croft
Producer David Croft
Length 30 minutes
Original Audience Figures 7.2 million
Previous episode None
Next episode Museum Piece
List of episodes

The Man and the Hour is the first-ever episode of Dad's Army, and was originally broadcast on Wednesday 31st July 1968, on BBC1.

SynopsisEdit

On the outbreak of the Second World War, a local bank manager, George Mainwaring, takes it upon himself to form a unit of Local Defence Volunteers in the town of Walmington-on-Sea.

PlotEdit

The episode starts in 'present day England' (1968) with Captain Mainwaring announcing to his former platoon that he is backing Britain. A flash back showing scenes from the Second World War and the British Army is then seen.

The action then switches to Swallow Bank, Walmington-on-Sea in 1940. Wilson, Pike and Mainwaring are laying sandbags at the window. Mainwaring then receives a message saying that he can set up an LDV unit to protect Britain. He finds out more about this on the wireless, having been told by a clerk, Miss King, that Anthony Eden is about to make a Ministerial broadcast. Pike is told to go round to all the LDV volunteers and tell them to meet in the church hall.

At the church hall, many people are waiting and Mainwaring (now the self-appointed commander) begins to enrol them. He makes Wilson his Sergeant and Jones his Lance-Corporal. An ARP warden bursts in and tells the commander to "shove off" because he needs the hall for an ARP lecture. He is forced to let him use it and informs the platoon to meet in the hall later.

Later, when Mainwaring and Wilson are inspecting the platoon, Godfrey has a gun and Mainwaring believes that he should have it because he is the officer, but Godfrey refuses. The platoon are told about tanks and how to defeat then. The platoon play at being tanks and how to destroy them. Mrs Pike arrives to pick up Pike because it's his bed time. The uniform (armbands) and weapons (pepper) arrive. It is not what the platoon expected. They are handed out.

Mainwaring gives a speech and the platoon cheer.

CastEdit

NotesEdit

  • This was the only Dad's Army episode to feature an audience laughter track during the opening titles.
  • A scene involving the fire brigade wanting to use the hall for practice was also filmed, but was cut from the final programme; it is unlikely that the scene still exists.
  • This episode was originally planned for transmission on Monday 5 June
  • David Croft intended the ending sequence to have actual wartime footage of Nuremburg marches and newsreels of refugees being bombed behind the cast members marching which caused controversy at the BBC, forcing him and Jimmy Perry to change the outro to what it is today.

VideosEdit

Dad's Army - First Ever Intro and Scenes (From Pilot)04:00

Dad's Army - First Ever Intro and Scenes (From Pilot)

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