Drama series detailing stories of British arms salesman Joe Hine and his many international dealings.
At the time of broadcast there was a lot of publicity centred around the fact that Hine was most probably the most controversial character to take the lead in a TV drama – he is an arms salesman after all! Everything Hine does is perfectly legal thanks to government export licenses , he sells everything from small arms to the latest machines but what he really wants is to pull off that huge deal that would allow him to retire in style.
In reality while the series does touch on some unsavoury topics – Hine finds himself selling arms to quite a few revolutionaries and the like, Hine is more akin to contemporary characters like Joe Lampton from Man at the Top.
Times critic Philip Purser said that the series worked because Hine was “a role guaranteed to offend every soft liberal consciousness nevertheless turned up trumps thanks to the cunning of Wilfred Greatorex’s format and Ingham’s debonair performance. In a world dominated by by giant corporations and agencies Hine emerged as the last honest man.” Greatorex himself said of star Ingham in the TV Times promo for the show that “he brings to Hine a wilful self-assurance and horse-power that makes Hine as real as any arms salesman I have met. He makes Hine come alive and survive.”
Writers included Peter Draper, Robert Holles, Ray Jenkins, Kenneth Ware and Arden Winch.
“I’m a dealer, not a politician.”
UK / ITV – ATV / 13×60 minute episodes / Broadcast 7 April – 30 June 1971
Creator/Producer: Wilfred Greatorex / Associate Producer: Robert D. Cardona
BARRIE INGHAM as Joe Hine
COLIN GORDON as Walpole Gibb
PAUL EDDINGTON as Astor Harris
MICHAEL GOODLIFFE as Sgt Christopher Pendle
SARAH CRAZE as Susannah Grey
JOHN STEINER as Jeremy Steiner
EPISODES 7 April – 30 June 1971
1. RIFLES ARE DANGEROUS (7 Apr 1971)
2. THE ABOMINABLE NO-MEN (14 Apr 1971)
3. WHAT’S WRONG IF THE PRICE IS RIGHT (21 Apr 1971)
4. THE STERILE WEAPONS (28 Apr 1971)
5. CAVIARE AND CHIPS (5 May 1971)
6. MISSILES FOR SALE, AS NEW – ONE OWNER (12 May 1971)
7. THE OLD SCHOOL NOOSE (19 May 1971)
8. THE LITTLE WHITE LADY (26 May 1971)
9. TO HAVE AND TO HOLD (2 Jun 1971)
10. COMRADES IN ARMS (9 Jun 1971)
11. SURVIVAL OF THE CREEPS (16 Jun 1971)
12. EVERYTHING I AM I OWE (23 Jun 1971)
13. THE BIG PACKAGE (30 Jun 1971)