The Good Life

BBC (ended 1978)
Rate Show
98 votes
  • Episode Guide
  • S 4 : Ep 9

    When I'm 65

    Aired 4/18/78

  • S 4 : Ep 8

    Silly, but It's Fun ...

    Aired 12/26/77

  • S 4 : Ep 7


    Aired 5/22/77

  • S 4 : Ep 6

    Sweet and Sour Charity

    Aired 5/15/77

  • S 4 : Ep 5

    Suit Yourself

    Aired 5/8/77

  • Cast & Crew
  • Richard Briers

    Tom Good

  • Paul Eddington

    Jerry Leadbetter

  • Penelope Keith

    Margo Leadbetter

  • Felicity Kendal

    Barbara Good

  • Reginald Marsh


  • show Description
  • The Good Life stars Richard Briers and Felicity Kendal as Tom and Barbara Good, a middle class suburban couple who on Tom's 40th birthday decide to turn their Surbiton home into a self sufficient allotment. They grow their own food, keep farm animals and have sold or bartered all of their electrical appliances as they have no electricity. This creates friction with their best friends and next door neighbours, the Leadbetters (Jerry and Margo) played by Paul Eddington and Penelope Keith. But even though the Goods have lowered the tone of the neighbourhood in the Leadbetters eyes they still can't help but be best of friends.moreless

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (39)

    • Barbara: What happens when we need new clothes? Tom: I'll have made the loom by then.

    • Tom (reading a birthday card): "Mozart and Mendelssohn were dead by 40, why aren't you?" How thoughtful.

    • Margo: (sitting in bed while Jerry stares out the window): What is it? What's going on? Jerry: The Goods. They're dancing in their goldfish pond. Margo: But why? Jerry: I hadn't thought of that. Why? Barbara: Celebrating. Jerry: Your birthday was yesterday. Tom: No. We're celebrating we found out how to beat it! Margo: What's he saying? Jerry: If you're so damned interested, why don't you get out of bed yourself and have a look?

    • (Reading notes made by Tom) Barbara: Gobar gas. Gobar is the Hindi for cow dung. One cubic foot of gas may be generated from one pound of cow dung. N.B. check this figure for animal droppings generally.

    • Tom: When I get a birthday card from my wife, I expect a loving, sickly verse. Not "Another nail in your coffin you old wreck!"

    • (About Tom's ideal of self sufficiency) Jerry: You're totally insane. Tom: Jerry, we've never been saner in our lives.

    • Tom: You look like an advert for gracious living. Jerry: That's because I am.

    • Barbara: I can't kill chickens. Tom: That's all right. When you're not looking I'll have their heads off with my Black & Decker.

    Show More Quotes

    Notes (4)

    • Penelope Keith does not actually appear in this episode but can be heard talking to Jerry when he's talking to Tom and Barbara from his bedroom window.

    • Barbara teasing Tom about missing a chicken from six inches is a reference to Episode 2, "Say Little Hen", in which Tom attempted to kill a chicken with his air pellet gun and missed because the chicken ducked.

    • This episode was filmed in front of the queen.

    • The original transmission of this episode was 45 minutes long, and labelled a command performance, but all subsequent repeats have been 30 minutes. The extra 15 minutes was footage of the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh attending the studio recording, standard cast introductions and explanations to the studio audience. A late 1990s showing on the PBS affiliate for Dallas--Ft. Worth, TX, USA, was the full 45-minute version. It also retained the original series title, while US showings (and video/DVD releases there) of all other episodes have been retitled "Good Neighbors" (with that non-British spelling).

    Trivia (29)

    • Jerry and Tom began work at JJM Limited at the same time, eight years earlier.

    • In this episode Barbara calls the goat "Margo" but in all future episodes the goat is called "Geraldine".

    • This is the first time Tom and Barbara say that their cockeral is queer.

    • This is the first appearance of the Goods' cat.

    • This episode marks the first appearance of the Good's "peaopod burgundy" wine.

    • When Sir cannot remember her name, Barbara introduces herself as "Fatima." Sir also refers to Tom as "Tim."

    • Sir and Felicity's son is named Martin and he is living with his girlfriend.

    • This is the first time the phrase "Money, Jerry!" is used.

    Show More Trivia

    Allusions (8)

    • Tom and Barbara are imitating Daleks from Doctor Who in this episode.

    • Sam refers to the cat as Shere Khan, the tiger from The Jungle Book.

    • The Goods' pigs are called Pinky and Perky. Pinky and Perky are a pair of puppets on a BBC television programme.

    • The restaurant name in this episode is "Runcible Spoon". This is an allusion to Edward Lear's poem The Owl and the Pussycat.

    • We hear about the famous musical The Sound of Music with music written by Roberts and Hammerstein. Margo is playing the lead, which was origianlly played in the film by Julie Andrews.

    • The record Tom plays for the plants is Peter Dawson singing The Bandolero.

    • I Talk To The Trees is a song from the musical Paint Your Wagon.

    • The title is an allusion to the number one song from 1956 "The Green Door" by Jim Lowe. In the song, he tries to get behind the green door to see what secrets are being kept behind there. This is pretty much what Tom and Barbara are doing when they start following Margo around to find out what secret she's been keeping.

    Show More Allusions
  • Fan Reviews (2)
  • Excellent depth of character and well constructed relationships as well as well put together humor makes this an excellent show, probably my most favorite of all.

    By riskell, Jan 17, 2007

  • Classic piece of British Comedy.

    By ricktvtvtv, Sep 20, 2005

  • Related