Mr Rose Series 3 on DVD

Thursday, 21 March 2013 00:00
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Mr Rose - Series Three out now on DVDThe enduring character of Scotland Yard’s Chief Inspector Rose was first introduced in The Odd Man and It’s Dark Outside, Granada’s cult crime series of the early 1960s. In this sequel, reaching its third and final series with this DVD release from Network, we continue the acerbic detective’s adventures within a rather restless retirement.

This is the final run of stories to feature the character. It is again set against the backdrop of his city flat, very out of character as it is very minimalist and futuristic, and we watch him tackling crimes ranging from blackmail to murder, art theft to protection rackets. His aide, John Halifax, is away for the duration of the season, so brought into play, to prod Rose to finish his second book of memoirs, is publisher’s assistant Robert Trent, played by Eric Woofe.

Trent fancies himself remorselessly, but not in a nice way.  He is positively painful to any pretty ladies that walk into the storylines, and they are quite right to keep him as much at arm’s length as possible.  Whereas John Halifax was so obviously a ladies’ man, there was enough charm in his demeanour for his girl-chasing to be excused. Trent, however, comes over more as a psychotic stalker, who deserves a good slapping wherever and whenever it is dished out.

Actor Eric Woofe went on to play the senior Johann Strauss in 1972’s The Strauss Family for ATV, which seems to have been the end of his acting career. He had previously featured in episodes of Spindoe, Armchair Thriller and The Avengers.

The calibre of those guest-starring in these stories is as high as ever, so you’ll enjoy ‘talent spotting’ the likes of Bryan Mosley, Ivor Salter, Jean Boht, Glynn Edwards and Nicolas Ball.

Of particular note is the final episode, “Free and Easy” features the ages-old deceit of having our star having an exact double. William Mervyn excels at the dual role, doing his best to disguise his voice for the secondary role of an actor up to no good. You can tell he’s having a ball in grabbing so much screen time in a single episode. This story also has a unique set of closing credits, with William Mervyn curled up on a bed in a spotlit circle on the left of the screen as the credits role.  It almost reminds you of the Looney Tunes "That's All Folks" cartoon conclusions.

Regrettably, this is very short season, just five episodes, and you get the feeling that in its abrupt conclusion so much unfinished business is left unresolved. A twenty-fifth episode of Mr Rose, "The O'Rourke Affair" by Meredith Cutlack, was scheduled for production in August 1968 but remained unproduced due to an ITV strike. Another story, “The Put Pockets” by Michael J Bird, reached a final draft version, and both these scripts are included on Disc 2 as PDF files.

An Image Gallery is also included as a special feature of this release. Nine pages from TV World magazine which feature the series in one shape or form, including a very engaging front page featuring William Mervyn (30 May 1968), plus one of Gillian Lewis and Donald Webster (20 April 1967), and an extensive interview with William Mervyn are included as a PDF file, also on Disc 2.

They say that you should always leave your audience wanting more. With colour television being commonplace just around the corner, many a viable series never made the jump from monochrome, with commissioning editors preferring new shows to furnish the advances in technology on. Mr Rose is one of those that bowed out, which was a real shame.  The character was continually surrounded by new faces to bounce his wit and repartee off, and this was why our man Rose never flagged. He was truly one of the great unsung heroes of 1960s television.

Mr Rose - The Complete Third Series is out now from Network Releasing.  It has a ‘12’ certificate a running time of 250 minutes approx, and a RRP of £19.99, or get it for less at



William Mervyn as Charles Rose

Eric Woofe as Robert Trent


Designer: Colin Rees (3.01-3.03, 3.05), Alan Price (3.04)

Producer: Margaret Morris


3.01 “The Less-Than-Iron-Duke”

Sheena’s nightclub is opening soon, but the local gangsters want a piece of the action. Will Rose be able to see them off from expanding their new protection racket, despite the established cartel being none too pleased about the invasion of their patch? And will Rose become Sheena’s ‘husband number six’?

Guest Starring: Gabrielle Brune (Sheena), Virginia Wetherell (Catherine), Eric Lander (Eddie Rice), Peter Madden (Harry Duke), John Franklyn-Robbins (Rupert), Ivor Salter (Vince), Harry Towb (Two-Tone), Queenie Watts (Mrs Midgley), Milton Johns (Larry), Noel Davis (Hugo), Julian Fox (Escort), Cynthia Michaelis (Maggie), Anna Gymer (Ruth), Bryan Mosley (Goon), Ronald Harvi (Man), Jean Boht (Woman), Michael Percival (Reporter), Anthony Boden (Critic), George Holden (Doorman)

Writer: Roy Clarke

Director: Ian Fordyce

Original ITV Transmission: 7 November 1968


3.02 “The Bogeyman”

Rose sees a man killed in a road traffic accident, but the same man was killed in a similar accident two years earlier.

Guest Starring: Graham Armitage (Nigel Chinnery), Glynn Edwards (Willis), Mollie Maureen (Mrs Castle), William Moore (Rupert Harcourt), Hugh McDermott (Bruce), Jerry Stovin (Segal), Jean Rimmer (Mrs Saunders), Brian Miller (Mr Tetlin), Barbara Laurenson (Mrs Tetlin), Ronald Johnson (Gerald Tetlin), Ray Gatenby (Crematorium Attendant), Arthur Spreckley (Ernie), S Keith James (Dr Everard), John Manford (Policeman), Rey Overbury (Saunders), Freda Jeffries (Passer By)

Writer: Brian Thompson

Director: Barry Davis

Original ITV Transmission: 14 November 1968


3.03 “The Missing Chapter”

Rose is subjected to a blackmail attempt, concerning the latest chapter of his book. But is it worth the paper it is written upon?

Guest Starring: Graham Armitage (Nigel Chinnery), Lois Daine (Liz Vicary), Geraldine Newman (Vera Tate-Fairlie), John Dearth (Harry Quist), Arthur Lovegrove (Jenkins), Gerry Cowan (Ralph Mariner), Margot Lawson (Lady), Gloria Ann Feenan (Sarah), Derek Williams (Durrance), Alick Hayes (George)

Writer: David Whitaker

Director: June Howson

Original ITV Transmission: 21 November 1968


3.04 “The Jolly Good Fellow”

Mr Rose is kidnapped by students on his way to give a lecture on criminology at their university. But is there more to this than the latest rag week fundraiser?

Guest Starring: Jean Harvey (Elaine Fawcett), Manning Wilson (Professor Cosgrove), Walter Fitzgerald (Sir Gilbert Treece), Richard Goolden (Dr Inigo Walker), Raymond Young (Ralph Pinder), Royston Tickner (Arthur Pilbeam), Kerry Gardner (Martin Dashwood), Mark Allington (Philip Mostyn), Kerry Jewel (Norman Dickinson), Colin Haigh (George Fisher), Rex Arundel (Landlord)

Writer: Michael J Bird

Director: June Howson

Original ITV Transmission: 28 November 1968


3.05 “Free and Easy”

Charles Rose has a doppelganger, a pretentious actor called Despard. Can he play dead to help Rose crack the latest mystery of an exclusive private club?

Guest Starring: William Mervyn (Marcus Despard), Derek Newark (Thomas Lundy), David Graham (Alexander Marrow), Michael Elwyn (Seaford Smith), David Savile (Corby Jones), Geoffrey Brightman (Inspector Banks), Rosemarie Dunham (Marsha Tot), Holly Doone (ASM Hefty), Reginald Barratt (Old Nosey), William Simons (Landlord), Nicolas Ball (Young Guardsman), Peter Childs (First Guardsman), Michael Percival (Second Guardsman), Alan Bardsley (Third Guardsman), Ian Michael (Fourth Guardsman)

Writer: Jack Russell

Director: Barry Davis

Original ITV Transmission: 5 December 1968




Last modified on Sunday, 24 March 2013 20:33

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