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Me And My Girl (ITV Sitcom, Richard O’Sullivan, Tim Brooke-Taylor)

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Me and My Girl Richard O'Sullivan Joanne Ridley ITV

In the popular 1980’s sitcom Me and My Girl, Richard O’Sullivan is single dad Simon Harrap doing his best to bring up his teenage daughter Samantha (Joanne Ridley) but struggling when Samantha shows an interest in all the usual teenage girl things, such as boys and make up. Simon was a widower with a successful advertising business (called Eyecatchers) and was also keen on dipping his toes back into the dating scene.

Luckily for Simon his mother-in-law Nell (the fabulous Joan Sanderson of Please Sir! fame) is on hand to help out as is his brother-in-law and business partner Derek Yates (Tim Brooke-Taylor). Simon also had live in help in the shape of Maddie (Leni Harper) in the first two seasons and then scatterbrained Scot Isobel McClusky (Sandra Clark) for the rest of the series.

Me and My Girl was quite popular with viewers and the first three seasons all aired within 16 months, as Joanne Ridley grew up Samantha herself started to gain a more independent streak. The series was created by Keith Leonard who himself was a single dad bringing up a daughter called Samantha. His initial idea was then fleshed out by John Kane (he also wrote 19 of the episodes). The script editor was Bernard McKenna, longtime collaborator of Python Graham Chapman. McKenna also contributed full scripts to 9 episodes. Other writers on the series included Colin Bostock-Smith (who contributed the most episodes of all, 23), Ian Whitham and actor Mike Walling. The excellent theme tune was by Peter Skellern and Humphrey Barclay was executive producer throughout.

The series, made by London Weekend Television for ITV, notched up 52 half hour episodes during it’s run between 31 August 1984 and 4 November 1988.