Something Neat XV – And Patrick Malahide in Life in the Fast Food Lane

Minder S06E02, Life in the Fast Food Lane is a mixed bag.  But first –  Something Neat We’ve Found.   When Peter Capaldi landed the role of the Doctor, Digital Spy posted 12 Awesome Photos.  Below is the most awesome one.  Aren’t they lovely?  Three Celtic guys hanging out in a dismal car lot.

Three Celtic Guys

Three handsome Celts

Life in the Fast Food Lane

Arthur Daley buys some car phones (they look like bricks) from dodgy Scotsman McTaggert (Jake D’Arcy) who ups the price by providing technical support from “young Ozzie”, played by a young and cute Peter Capaldi.  Arthur dislikes Ozzie. Probably because his Scottish accent is impenetrable half the time, and he’s so laid back, he’s horizontal.  Arthur calls Ozzie “the moron,” but Ozzie is smarter than Arthur and Terry combined.  OK, that’s not saying much, but he is smart.

The phones have a slight snag.  Being of a cheaper Taiwanese variety, they are not British Telecom approved.  If they were, they’d have lovely green stickers designating them as such.  Arthur and Terry want to throw in the towel, but Ozzie points out that if you put green stickers on them, a punter won’t know any different.

So, they filch stickers from a phone shop.  Arthur almost walks out with a green sticker on his hat; he’s worse than Minnie Pearl.  Ozzie, being the smart one, catches it and warns him.  I notice Ozzie only stands guard by the window, probably so as not be involved in any sticker theft bang-ups later.

Crossed Wirelesses

 "Got anything on the keeper of a red Ford Cortina, F Foxtrot, G Golf, V Victor, 9 5 2 Romeo, Yankee 2, over."

“Got anything on the keeper of a red Ford Cortina, F Foxtrot, G Golf, V Victor, 9 5 2 Romeo, Yankee 2, over.”

It is over 23 minutes before Chisholm appears, so I was grateful for Mr. Capaldi as I waited.  Anyway, Jones is driving and Chisholm has a new toy: A police radio!  He looks really good with it too, like something from The Sweeney as RFodchuk pointed out.

“Got anything on the keeper of a red Ford Cortina, F Foxtrot, G Golf, V Victor, 9 5 2 Romeo…. Yankee 2, over.”  Yankee 2.  🙂  Yankee 2 is told to “hang on” and isn’t too happy with that.  When dispatch gets back to him, the radio goes all static and a random voice is heard over it.   Chisholm isn’t as technically minded as Ozzie, so he tries thumping on his receiver.  Hey, thumping often works on vending machines.  Anyway, his confused sneer makes the 23 minute wait worth it.

Surprise, surprise….Daley just happens to be chatting on his brick phone nearby.  When he realizes Chisholm is in the motor beside him, he hides his phone under his little trilby.  Chisholm sees him and lowers his electric window, “Arthur Daley.  What a nice surprise.”  No, he’s not being sincere.  Then the radio decides to work again.  It is no coincidence it happened shortly after Daley shut off his phone.  As they drive off, Chisholm duly notes that Daley wasn’t wearing his trademark hat.  He *is* a good detective and notices these things, but he just can’t get anything to stick.

The Great Green Sticker Heist

He looks like such a detective.

He looks like such a detective.

Chisholm and Jones are called to the phone shop to investigate the theft.  They are gobsmacked when told  about the stickers.  It is so incongruous because Chisholm, with his trilby and mac, looks every inch the detective.  He must feel his skills are being lamentably wasted.  That is until the shop girl recalls that the younger one was called Terry, and Terry definitely called the older one Arthur.  “The one with the hat.”  (Ozzie managed to keep his name well out of it.) Chisholm stampedes out of the shop leaving gallant Jones to thank the nice lady.

Oh My Gawd — The Filth

Chisholm and Jones are at the car lot as Arthur and Ozzie drive up, “oh my gawd – the filth,” says Daley.  How rude!  The signal mixing phones are in the back of Daley’s motor, so he sends Ozzie off with them.  Chisholm knows something is up and says he’ll wait for Ozzie to return.

They go in Daley’s office and start rifling through his cabinets.  Well, Jones does; Chisholm just slouches attractively in a chair.  Daley starts to speak but is cut off by Chisholm, “No, Daley, I don’t have a warrant. Do you wish to insist on one?  If you do, I will nick you for stealing sticky telephone labels.”   Except, he says it without any punctuation, so it comes out as one long run-on sentence.  Chisholm knew warrants would come up.

"Been getting any crossed lines lately?"

“Been getting any crossed lines lately?”

Chisholm says he’d rather get him on something more substantial, such as telephones.  He snatches Daley’s old Bakelite rotary model up and studies it, “British Telecom approved, I hope, Daley?”  Standard issue.  Chisholm asks if he’s been getting any crossed lines.  Daley responds in the negative.  I have to hand to him for remaining calm when it is obvious that Chisholm has pretty much figured out what is going on.  He is anxious, though, when young Ozzie shows up early.

Chisholm is up like a shot and out of the door to greet him.  “Keys!” Jones!”  I love the way he just tosses them to Jones.  Daley loses his cool now and threatens to phone his brief while whispering “you bloody moron” in Ozzie’s ear.  But, as mentioned earlier, Ozzie is the one with a brain and got rid of the phones.   So, Chisholm comes up empty.

Chisholm looks tired. Daley suggests a long weekend in Llandudno.

Chisholm looks tired. Daley suggests a long weekend in Llandudno.

The frustration is evident on Chisholm’s face.  Daley gets cocky again.  “Oh, you do look tired.  You know what he needs?  A long weekend in Llandudno.”  He says that to Jones who is amused until he gets a hostile look from his boss.  That takes the smirk off his Welsh face.  It is a excellent scene, everyone is so funny and Chisholm is especially fierce looking in his perplexity.

Fare the Weel, Ozzie, and Haste Ye Back

"You're a bampot, a right bampot."

“You’re a bampot, a right bampot.”

So what did Ozzie do with the phones?  He sold them.  And he won’t give Arthur the money either since McTaggert did a bunk.  Arthur threatens to set Terry on him (Oooh! I’m sure he’s shaking.) but Ozzie is going back to Scotland, so he doesn’t care. Before he leaves, he claps Arthur on the back and calls him a bampot, “a right bampot.”

bampot (plural bampots )

1 (Scotland, slang, pejorative) Idiot; an objectionable and foolish person.

Goodbye, Ozzie!  I’ll miss you even if I didn’t know what you were saying half the time.

The Sub-Plot

There isn’t nearly enough Chisholm in the episode.  Also, I would have liked loads more interaction between Chisholm and Ozzie. There is a sub-plot where a beautiful heiress (Jan Francis) randomly picks up Terry (?!?) in a super market to the vexation of her father, burger magnate Sir Ronald Bates (played nicely by David Daker) who hates her dating a bit of rough.

Why Terry?  He doesn’t look like a bad boy.  Terry could be some middle-aged guy who manages the little telephone shop they stole stickers from.  It would have been better had she gone after Ozzie.  I wonder what it would have been like had she picked up Chisholm?  Is he even pick-up-able?  The world may never know!

Wrap-Up

Giving Ozzie a sharp look.

These two needed more scenes together.

Poor sub-plot aside, it was lovely to see Patrick Malahide and Peter Capaldi in the same production.  They have also  both appeared in The Secret Agent (excellent) and December Bride (though, sadly, not together in DB).

Mr. Malahide, as always, is perfect as Chisholm, who although weary never gives up trying to nab Arthur.  He is, as usual, on the right track, but the Fates constantly conspire to deprive him of his quarry, this time as Peter Capaldi’s Ozzie does the final out-foxing.

Gallery, Courtesy of RFodchuk (and one by Digital Spy)

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2 Responses to Something Neat XV – And Patrick Malahide in Life in the Fast Food Lane

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