Why was Ivy confused or shocked?

Sarkus

Well-Known Member
From reading the various books about the series, Brian did have Shingles which meant he had to dive out of filming at short notice. But the vibe I got was the production team were happy to let him go as he was so difficult to work with. It's speculation on my part but I reckon even if Brian had wanted to return after his illness, he wouldn't have been allowed to do so. For that reason I think Truly was always going to be a permanent replacement for him.
According to Alan Bell's book they were more than prepared to have him back but Bell says Wilde suddenly wanted perks in his contract that he hadn't previously demanded. So they decided to move on. I've always found this explanation to be lacking, however. There is evidence that at least up until the filming of "There Goes the Groom" there was some belief Wilde might come back and I've read that wasn't filmed until after all the other episodes were filmed that year. Who knows what the full story was, however.

There was a poster here a few years ago who claimed there was some talk of somebody else taking over after one year with Frank Thornton but I've never seen any talk of that elsewhere.
 

Barrychuckle

Well-Known Member
According to Alan Bell's book they were more than prepared to have him back but Bell says Wilde suddenly wanted perks in his contract that he hadn't previously demanded. So they decided to move on. I've always found this explanation to be lacking, however. There is evidence that at least up until the filming of "There Goes the Groom" there was some belief Wilde might come back and I've read that wasn't filmed until after all the other episodes were filmed that year. Who knows what the full story was, however.

There was a poster here a few years ago who claimed there was some talk of somebody else taking over after one year with Frank Thornton but I've never seen any talk of that elsewhere.
I've read Alans book a few times and I found it a really interesting insight into what went on behind the scenes. I did however find him very bitter in certain parts so I always felt I wasn't getting the full story on certain matters, not sure if you felt the same ?
 

Sarkus

Well-Known Member
I've read Alans book a few times and I found it a really interesting insight into what went on behind the scenes. I did however find him very bitter in certain parts so I always felt I wasn't getting the full story on certain matters, not sure if you felt the same ?
I agree. I don't think Bell is 100% telling us everything and he has his own bias. Part of that is not wanting to be gossipy and spill the dirt on the actors, of course, which is understandable. But other stuff is confusing. I don't buy his story on how Brian Wilde left the show, for example. He doesn't clarify when that decision was made, but suggests that it was early enough that it didn't impact the scripts. However, the episodes from that series have all kinds of artifacts of having been written for Foggy, not Truly. "Here Comes the Groom" is especially problematic. Nobody would write a script using a body double for Foggy. That's clearly a last minute emergency re-write of something that they expected Brian Wilde to appear in. If that was filmed later than the rest of the series (and I read that it was), then it means he was still expected to return at a very late date. Bell makes it seem like Wilde's departure was a tough but necessary final call, but then casually admits that a few years after Bill Owen's death he and Wilde had dinner and agreed Wilde would make a guest appearance (Wilde quickly changed his mind). So that seems to contradict the earlier explanation of why Wilde left. Like I said, we may never know the full story unless someone like Roy Clarke has some secret memoir somewhere ready to publish.
 

Barrychuckle

Well-Known Member
@Sarkus
Also the story Alan tells about Crusher (who I know occasionally contributes on this forum) is contradictory, Alan gives the impression he just turned up just before filming having lost a lot of weight, so he had no choice but to fire him. However in an interview Jonathan gave to the Summer Winos he gives a quite different slant on the subject. I have to say I'm inclined to believe the latter more. That said, I did meet Alan briefly in 2008 and I know he as so passionate about the series and he was clearly devastated when it was ended.
 

Adanor

Well-Known Member
Wasn't truly going to be a sort of short term character until Brian came back? but then it came out the he wasn't returning so Frank Thornton joined permanent at least that's what I have heard. I also felt as if some of the episodes in that series didn't have time to be rewritten so therefore Truly didn't really settle until the series after that when the scripts would be more suited to the character.
When Bill Owen passed, Frank Thornton apparently was able to be a steadying influence on the rest of the cast and crew in helping them get through that sad time.
 
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