Towards the beginning of the episode, Carla is annoyed by a man for whom she holds the door, whilst exiting a store. She has several bags in her hands. She chases after him and transfers some bags to her left hand. When she catches him up, she grabs him, with an empty left hand.
Carla [picking up a copy of Maddy Magellan's book]: Is this the woman you…
Carla: So where is she no...
Jonathan: Texas. Some publishing junket.
Jonathan: Just the once in a hotel room, which we realised was probably a mistake.
Carla: Do you know, you can be so…
Jonathan: Pre-emptive? Yeah, well that was the problem.
Adam: Well you said on the 'phone you'd been living for the last two years in Norway.
Kenny: Er… In a doorway.
(At the theatre next day.)
Jonathan: You see, this is what happens when you encourage a person with no talent. Not only have you completely screwed up this guy's life – reduced him to the level of a cave dweller. Now I've got to pretend to work with him to repair the damage. I mean the man's barely got two brain cells to rub to… Kenny! How you doing? Finding your way round okay?
Kenny: Listen, I've got a great new bit for the TV series. You know how those guillotine tricks always suck on the telly? Like you never really believe the blade actually goes through. So how about this? We find some guy with a terminal illness, okay? Probably could do with a bob or two for his next of kin. And… we cut his head off!
Jonathan: It's a thought, isn't it, Adam? Prime-time euthanasia. Just what the BBC are looking for to spearhead the autumn schedule.
(Vivian has just discovered Bronson's false head of her for his kissing scenes.)
Bronson: Do you have the faintest idea how many streptococci are released in the average French kiss. Believe me it runs in the mi… [grabbing the head] Can you not break the seal please? It's meant to be sterile.
Vivian: It's a pity your father wasn't. I'm sorry but this man is the most immature, self obsessed, insensitive… [ cut to scene of Vivian being interviewed ] …and thoroughly charming individual I've ever worked with. A real professional and a gentleman.
David Renwick originally wrote the episode with the character of Maddy in it, but Caroline Quentin declined to appear, as she was trying for a second baby. She may have been available later, but the BBC wanted to put this episode out in time for Christmas, so Renwick had to go away and write in the new character of Carla Borrego.
Carla's boyfriend is called Vernon Spools, which causes great hilarity in the episode, because people assume he's given her a false name. For those who may not understand the joke (which is especially British), this is an allusion to the famous British betting company, Vernons Pools – the Pools being a way of betting on the outcome of football matches to win large amounts of money.
Jonathan: Anklet. What are you, Barbara Stanwyck?
This is a reference to the famous actress, particularly in her role in Double Indemnity, where she played the character of Phyllis, a conniving woman who persuades an insurance salesman to kill her husband, having taken out a large life insurance policy on him. During the scene where she is seducing the salesman she is famously sporting a 'honey' of an anklet, which was at the time seen as rather sleazy and daring.
Herman Grole: Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.
Herman is quoting from Edgar Allen Poe's famous poem, The Raven, which is a fitting reference as it is about loss and despair.
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