When Londoner Thomas Gynn escapes from his dodgy associations in the capital for a new life up north, he literally runs in to feisty Yorkshire lass (and damsel-in-distress) Sally Hardcastle...
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When Londoner Thomas Gynn escapes from his dodgy associations in the capital for a new life up north, he literally runs in to feisty Yorkshire lass (and damsel-in-distress) Sally Hardcastle on the A1 - getting her broken down car back on the road. Sally runs a narrowboat business in Leeds, and it soon seems that this unlikely couple will be exploring new and uncharted waters together.Written by
The show was originally going to be called 'Northern Lights'. See more »
In many episodes of Season 4, the job "continuity" is spelled "continunity". This may be an in-joke, given that attention to detail and noticing small errors is one of the tasks of the continuity person. See more »
I have to admit I didn't watch this series at the time - which is strange, being that I'm a huge fan of both Jan Francis and Dennis Waterman!
But something made me watch it now, and I'm so glad I did.
The premise is quite simple - Thomas Gynn is on the from some dodgy goings on in London, and hitches a ride up north to start a new life.
But, when he's left stranded on the A1, he happens upon the lovely Sally Hardcastle. After fixing her car, she drives him to Leeds where she runs a narrowboat business, and it seems Thomas has made a new friend.
They don't quite see eye to eye at first - Thomas the cheeky cockney chancer, and Sally the temperamental Yorkshire lass. But it soon transpires that they need each other... and they do sometimes actually get on too!
They end up getting into various unlikely scrapes and adventures, as fish-out-water Thomas gets a taste of life north of Watford and on the canal.
The series does seem to get off to a slightly shaky start as it finds its feet, but by season 2 the characters are firmly established, and it feels like one of those classic shows that you know and love.
Jan is excellent as Sally, and gets the chance to do a Yorkshire accent and play a more feisty role than those perhaps she's more famous for.
Dennis is great as Thomas too - I think of him (in this role anyway) as still being Terry from Minder, relocated to Yorkshire, which is no bad thing - he and Jan had appeared together in one of the final episodes of that series, and clearly the chemistry between was sewn then. Dennis also gets to show his softer and more emotional side at times too - a far cry from his days in The Sweeney and early Minder.
It's all good, knockabout fun, and pity Jan left at the end of season 3 - it might have been wiser for the show to have called it a day then too, as season 4 sees a dip in quality where she's sorely missed.
But, if you're a fan of Jan and Dennis, and you stick to the first 3 seasons, you can't go wrong... set sail for some good old fun by the canal.
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