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Special Branch: Stand and Deliver (ITV 7 Mar 1974, with Dennis Waterman)

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In Stand and Deliver Special Branch investigate when a top secret new weapon is stolen from a testing ground at an Army camp. We know it’s Frank Gosling and Ron Murray, a pair of pig farm waste collectors, who have stolen the weapon and pretty soon so do Craven and Haggerty. They don’t know why they have stolen it though.

Frank is a single dad trying to raise enough to find a nice home for his two kids, he thinks he can sell the weapon to the highest bidder. His sister meanwhile is something of a political agitator and Haggerty thinks she may have her own reasons for wanting Frank to steal the weapon.

When Frank and Roy realise the police are on to them they go on the run.

Another strong script from Michael J. Bird and with a prominent guest appearance from Dennis Waterman who would of course go on to star in the next Thames-Euston series The Sweeney. Interestingly Stephanie Turner here plays Waterman’s sister, she would play his wife in The Sweeney.

Special Branch Stand and Deliver

Stephanie Turner, TV’s first Juliet Bravo, plays Waterman’s sister – she played his wife on The Sweeney.

production details
UK / ITV – Thames / 1×50 minute episode / Broadcast Thursday 7 March 1974 at 8.30pm

Writer: Michael J. Bird / Director: Tom Clegg

Series: Special Branch Season 4 Episode 4

cast
George Sewell as Alan Craven
Patrick Mower as Tom Haggerty
Paul Eddington as Strand
Frederick Jaeger as Cmdr Fletcher
Dennis Waterman as Frank Gosling
Ronald Radd as Leonard Gosling
Ray Mort as Ron Murray
Stephanie Turner as Jean Gosling
Christopher Benjamin as Dr Eric Blyth
Edwin Apps as Major Erskine
Barrie Cookson as Lemner
Lynn Dalby as Carole Murray
Eric Mason as Steve
Jonathan Elsom as Koniev
Charles Farrell as Harry
Julie Anderson as Teresa

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Hazell: Hazell and the Big Sleep (ITV 24 May 1979, with Ian Marter)

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Hazell Nicholas Ball

In Hazell and the Big Sleep, James goes undercover at an hotel, posing as a wealthy antiques expert from America. He has been hired by an old police colleague who now runs security at the hotel. Somebody is stealing on a pretty intense level.

There are plenty of suspects it would seem, from the concierges on the front desk, to various of the residents.

A chance meeting at the hotel with Choc Minty sees Hazell more or less being blackmailed into working for him – two Mafioso’s have arrived from the US and Minty wants Hazell to find out what they are up to. Especially as various big time London heavies are also showing up to pay their respects to them.

The so-called Australian girl who Hazell has been getting friendly with is actually an FBI agent, also on the trail of the two Mafia gents.

Not the best episode of the series by a long shot. The playing by all concerned is way too big for a start. Star Wars fans may find the episode of interest though for it’s brief appearance by Peter Mayhew who is best known for playing Chewbacca.

production details
UK / ITV – Thames / 1×50 minute episode / Broadcast Thursday 24 May 1979 at 9.00pm

Writer: Trevor Preston / Production Design: Philip Blowers, Peter Elliott / Director: Baz Taylor

Series: Hazell Season 2 Episode 6

cast
Nicholas Ball as James Hazell
Roddy McMillan as Minty
Desmond McNamara as Tel
Peter Bourke as Graham
Geraldine Gardner as Sheel
Richard Durden as Jeremy Ironside
Ian Marter as Roper
Glyn Jones as Meltzer
Blain Fairman as Koch
Irene Sutcliffe as Mrs Lovegood
George Tovey as Webb
Ken Parry as Lugosi
Peter Mayhew as Giant
James Fuller as Sam
Paul Haley as Dave Dunn
John Quarmby as Billy Bush
Martyn Whitby as Danny Scaife
Charles Pemberton as Tony Rycott
Rosalind Wilson as Girl in Office

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