Analysis of a Scene XIV: Minder – Around the Corner

Patrick Malahide: Sgt. Chisholm in Minder

Top moment from Around the Corner.  Poor Jones.

Around the Corner (reviewed here) is probably best known for its infamous car crash between DS Chisholm and DS Rycott (Peter Childs).  It is an excellent episode because of all the great Chisholm vs Rycott scenes.  It is the crooked “grass” known as Tasty Tim who is the main source of their woes in this episode.  He has been feeding both coppers (bad) information, and since neither one is inclined to share the information wacky hijinks are bound to follow.  In this scene, they (along with Constables Jones and Melish) confront Tasty on his double (triple?) dealings.

RF:  Oh, and Rycott was totally at fault for the accident.  😉

“Oh no, he’s not. He’s mine!”

Rycott: (on the street with DC Melish; they are taking Tasty into custody) Charlie! What are you doing here?
Chisholm: What are you doing with this man, Rycott?
Rycott: Well, I don’t suppose it matters very much now, Charlie, but this is my grass: Tasty Tim.
Chisholm: Oh, no he’s not. He’s mine!
Tasty: I can explain everything.

Admin: Chisholm and Rycott have both been raked over the coals because of Tasty, so they are in incredibly bad moods.  Chisholm is very nearly scary as he approaches Rycott  looking him in the eye with a precise laser like stare.  His voice has a challenging menace when he says “he’s mine,” complete with an intense jaw flex.  Tasty is decidedly worried, and I don’t blame him.

RF:  Chisholm leans forward just a bit as he fixes Rycott with his gaze; he comes across as being in a much worse mood than Rycott even though they’ve had essentially the same treatment by their boss.  He’s decidedly more scary-looking than Rycott, who just seems to be very annoyed.  Melish and Jones wisely stay out of it for the moment.

It still doesn’t explain how you gave…this officer here the same information as you gave me without telling either of us.

Tasty: It’s the truth, Mr. Chisholm….Mr. Rycott. May I never see my poor, sick mother again, alone in her wheelchair…at the old folks’ home. Look it wasn’t my fault. The geezer with the videos didn’t show. I mean how was I supposed to know that would happen?
Chisholm: It still doesn’t explain how you gave…this officer here the same information as you gave me without telling either of us.

Admin:  Hmmmm….I think Tasty is mostly afraid of Mr. Chisholm. 😉  He says “Mr. Rycott” as something of an afterthought and clearly finds it easier to make eye contact with Rycott than with Chisholm, especially when he’s talking a lot of flannel about his poor, sick mother.  And you can see why he is reluctant to look into Chisholm’s eyes.  He is not looking very cheerful at all.  Chisholm’s voice is seething with barely restrained anger, and I love his rude pause before “this officer here.”  I think Chisholm had a few other words in mind to describe Rycott that should never be heard by the ears of young, impressionable constables.

RF:  Chisholm leans in niiiiiice and close to Tasty as he’s protesting his innocence, violating Tasty’s personal space and using his height advantage to do a bit of looming.  It seems to be working as Tasty seems much more intimidated by Chisholm than Rycott.  Yeah, I don’t think he has a poor, sick mother at all, or if he does, she’s living in a nice flat somewhere paid for by ill-gotten VCRs.  I also liked “this officer here”.  😀  Chisholm obviously did some quick calculating there for the least rude thing he could say in mixed company.

That is what I said, that is what I said.

Rycott: What Mr. Chisholm means, Tasty, you gave us that false information separately.
Chisholm: (turning to Jones in vexation) That is what I said, that is what I said.
Rycott: Thus occasioning a very serious waste of my valuable time.
Chisholm: And mine…and mine.
Rycott: Not to mention causing Mr. Chisholm to crash his motor car into mine.
Chisholm: What? What!? It was you crashed into me!

Admin: Chisholm is so frustrated he is repeating himself. 🙂  He can’t believe Rycott is taking this line.  His facial expression when Rycott mentions the car crash is priceless.

What? What!? It was you crashed into me!

RF:  I thought Chisholm just didn’t want to be left out of the conversation, which seemed to be getting away from him.  He’s plainly annoyed at Rycott for repeating his words, but he doesn’t get really offended until Rycott blames him for the car crash.  Then his eyes widen to a frightening degree as he becomes truly angry, glaring at Rycott.  However, Rycott doesn’t seem to recognize the danger signs.  Oh, and weren’t both D.C.s actually doing the driving?  So theoretically, they’re the ones  responsible for the accident…  I know, details, details…  😉

Tell you what I’m going to do, I’m going to give you one last chance to come up with a result.

Tasty: Look, Mr. Rycott, Mr. Chisholm, be fair. Put yourselves in my position. You both of you put the frighteners on me at the same time to come up with something. Well, when this thing turned up I thought do them both a favor. You know, what was I supposed to do?
Chisholm: Tell you what I’m going to do, I’m going to give you one last chance to come up with a result.
Rycott: And soon.
Chisholm: Otherwise you are going to be in serious trouble, my son.

Admin:  Chisholm is still looking at Rycott with unbridled hatred as Tasty continues.  He is so intense when he tells Tasty he’s giving him just one more chance, complete with a very dangerous sneer.

RF:  Well, we have to give Chisholm credit for trying to come up with a solution, even though Tasty doesn’t seem very sincere about making good on it.  I do wonder why Chisholm’s even letting him have another chance; has it not occurred to him that Tasty might have other D.S.s on the string?  In any case, not only do we get a dangerous sneer, we also get an emphatic finger point.  Rycott appears content enough to ride along on Chisholm’s coattails for the threat, though.  He’s just not anywhere near as menacing.

Jones: *giggles* 😀

Rycott: I shall personally see to that.
Jones: *giggles*

Admin:  Poor Jones.  If looks could kill, Chisholm would have lasered him into a pile of ash right on the spot.  The only left would have been his glasses.

RF:  Ooohhhh, worst timing ever!  😀  And Jones had been doing so well up to that point, keeping his mouth shut!  He appears to realize instantly that he’s made a baaaaad mistake.  Chisholm’s already in a vicious mood, but his Glare of Death at Jones is just priceless.  I totally agree, under other circumstances Jones would’ve burst into flames.  Even Rycott looks astonished, as if he can’t quite believe what Jones just walked into.

I’d need a drink too.

Dave: (Taff enters the bar) Hallo Taff. ‘Ere, what are you doing without Mr. Chisholm on your arm?
Jones: Don’t mention that name. I’ll have a large scotch please, Dave, followed quickly by another one.

Admin:  We know Jones must have got the mother of all chewing outs. I kind of wish we’d seen it, but honestly Chisholm’s flexing jaw is enough to let us know it must have been brutal.  🙂

RF:  Poor Jones avoids eye contact with anyone as he comes in, seeming slightly bewildered.  Then he goes over to the bar and chugs down his drink as fast as humanly possible.  😉  I agree it would’ve been interesting to see the epic dressing-down, but it’s also a lot of fun to just imagine it.  Say, if Jones is drowning his troubles at the Winchester, where’s Chisholm?  Off consoling himself with tea and pie?  Or something stronger?  😉


Admin:  It is great scene and a fine part of an excellent episode.  Around the Corner has a  goofy subplot with a greyhound, Daley’s Deal (DD for short). Although DD is certainly very cute, I wish they hadn’t bothered with that and instead focused more on the police station rivalry.  I’d have also liked to have seen more scenes of mutual commiseration between DCs Melish and Jones.

Patrick Malahide: Sgt. Chisholm in Minder

We should have got more of these two together.

RF:  Jones does mention at one point that he and Melish sometimes go for drinks.  I bet they do.  😉  Oh, to be a fly on the wall for those conversations.  Chisholm wants Jones to pump Melish for information about what Rycott’s up to, but we know Jones could never bring himself to spy like that.

Admin:  But, back to the scene, Chisholm’s intense, flinty anger is incredible.  The looks he gives Rycott, Tasty and Jones are epic; and Patrick Malahide delivers an energy that positively crackles.  The pay off with Jones’ ill-timed giggle is also very good and funny.  Excellent stuff.

RF:  It was great seeing some of Chisholm and Rycott’s rivalry in action.  They’re both similarly ambitious although Chisholm seems somewhat more… driven, shall we say.  😉  And both of their D.C.s are generally easy-going sorts who are just trying to get on while not making too many ripples.  Wonderful and very funny to see them interacting, and I wish the “Minder” writers had brought them together for more storylines.


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