One Foot In The Grave

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One Foot In The Grave was a BBC television situation comedy series written by David Renwick, which aired from 1990 to 2000.

Series 1 (1990)[edit]

Alive and Buried[edit]

Victor: It was Bovril flavour today.
Margaret: What?
Victor: The empty crisp packet on the front lawn.

Victor: I'm thinking of compiling a special reference guide: The Observer's Book Of Crap On Your Front Lawn. Give me something to do in the years ahead.

Margaret: [On Victor being made redundant] What did they say?
Victor: "Bugger off", I think was the general gist of it.

Garage Manager: Good afternoon. You're...
Victor: Victor Meldrew the Crimson Avenger!

Garage Manager: Could you tell me what exactly was the problem with the car?
Victor: What? You mean you don't know what's wrong with it yet?
Garage Manager: Well, we know what's wrong with it now.

Margaret: You've got a whole new life ahead of you Victor. I mean, you've hardly started. Got it all still to come.
Victor: I know. That's what scares me.

Series 2 (1990)[edit]

In Luton Airport, No One Can Hear You Scream[edit]

Nick Swainey: (cheerfully) Remember me? Nick Swainey, Outwardbound for the Elderly. I called round that day and you told me to piss off.

Christmas Special: The Man in the Long Black Coat (1991)[edit]

[Discussing Victor and Patrick's feud]
Pippa: I don't know what to do about him and Victor. I mean, it's one thing to call someone a "tosspot" to their face, but when you go to the lengths of having it iced on the front of a Thornton's Easter egg, I think it's got beyond a joke. I mean, he did put a card in the post as well. No name or address on the envelope, just the word's "To that cretin in the cap." I suppose it helped him let off steam at the time.
Margaret: Yes. The irony is, we received it. About the quickest a letter's ever got to us, I think.

[Talking about Victor's diet]
Pippa: What sort of things does he eat?
Margaret: [disgustedly] Anything, of any sort or description. In the most hideous and disgusting of combinations. Food you wouldn't put in the same cupboard, he'd happily slice up together on his weetabix. It's like watching non-stop junk mail going through a letter box. I think he lost all sense of taste years ago.
Pippa: Stomach like a bin liner? [Margaret murmers in agreement]

[Talking about Pippa's pregnancy]
Margaret: You must be thrilled, congratulations.
Pippa: [Sombrely] Well, I'm not sure "thrilled" is the word. Wasn't exactly planned. I know I'm supposed to be all glowing and maternal, but when you look round at the state of things, I don't think life is something I'd wish on my worst enemy. And you never know what you're bringing into the world. I mean, look at the people who started out as babies... Hitler... Dr. Crippen...

Series 3 (1992)[edit]


Victor returns from Sainsbury's in a bad mood and interrupts Margaret's coffee morning

Victor: Unbelievable! Absolu-...oh, good morning, ladies. (to Margaret) Can you believe that? They've lost the left shoe! Lost it! And do you know what he had the nerve to...? He said he'd only charge me half price!

Mrs Warboys: Evening, Mr Meldrew. I can't stay long...
Victor: Right you are. Bye! (slams the door)

The Beast in the Cage[edit]

Victor: The first 50 miles on the go all the way - your sense of direction - bowling along. Get past 60 and everything slows down to a sudden crawl and you realise you're not going anywhere any more. All the things you thought you were going to do that never came to anything. You can't turn the clock back; it's one-way traffic just gradually grinding to a halt.

[The Honda Song, to the tune of Bread Of Heaven]

There's a bloke we can't stand any longer,
Always on the bleeding moan;
Every time we mend his bloody Honda,
He's back grousing on the phone.
First we fixed his car's ignition,
Checked his brakes and clutch, and then
Overhauled his whole transmission.
He just brought it back again.
Victor Meldrew
Victor Meldrew
He can stick up his bum (up his bum)
He can bugger off to kingdom come.

Beware the Trickster on the Roof[edit]

[After burgling Victor's house, the thieves have phoned to ask how to operate the VCR]

Victor: [shouting from an open window, wielding a metal coat hanger] You callous cold-hearted thieving bastards! Help you with a couple of points?! I'll help you straight onto this point when I see you! I'll bloody well tear your liver out and feed it to the cat, you see if I don't!

Margaret: We can't leave it here (A cow with a back leg slightly damaged)

Victor: No, I'll just slip in the freezer with the beef burgers.

The Worst Horror of All[edit]

Man: Sloppiness and bad manners just won't do. Do you understand what I'm saying?
Victor: [with poorly concealed menace] Yes. Right. I do understand what you're saying, and I'm very sorry.
Man: [contemptuously] I should think so.
Victor: [louder] Yes, I'm very sorry because I'm afraid I'm going to have to throw your toupee down the drain! (does so)

Victor: I'm sorry neither of you have managed to master the mechanics of a door handle. That must be very complicated for you with your limited brain power. [to the woman] Oh, and do forgive me for not getting the fur coat out. Because if you hadn't chopped its legs off, it could have climbed out on its own. [to the man] You asked me if I wanted to go on working here. Well if it means sucking up to odious bastards like you two every day, then I think I'd rather remain unemployed, thank you very much!

Series 4 (1993)[edit]

Descent into the Maelstrom[edit]

Mrs Warboys has returned from the dry cleaner, with a gorilla costume

Victor: You must have seen it as a mistake when they brought it out!
Mrs Warboys: Well, I don't know what your suit looks like, do I?
Victor: Well, it doesn't bloody well look like this! I mean where do you think I shop? King Kong at C&A!

Hearts of Darkness[edit]

Nick Swainey: Wakey, wakey, everyone! It's a beautiful morning! I've just been watching two frogs having sex!

Victor: I'm sorry, what language are you talking in now? It appears to be Bollocks!

Warm Champagne[edit]

Victor: And you, you smug-faced bloody vandals!

Margaret: He [Victor]'s the most sensitive person I've ever met, and that's why I love him and why I constantly want to ram his head through a television screen.

Margaret comes home to find Victor in bed with a strange old woman

Margaret: Who is she?! Have you, have you been-?! Tell me you haven't been sleeping with this! Who is she?!
Victor: [confused, stammering for an explanation] I, I thought it was you! [Margaret's expression becomes one of offended outrage]
Margaret: [offended] Thank you very much! I mean, where did she come from?! And what on earth is she doing? AND WHY THE BLOODY HELL AM I WHISPERING?! This is my bedroom! I mean, this is the end to a perfect week, isn't it?! To come home, and find your husband has taken up necrophilia!

The Trial[edit]

Victor: WHAT IN THE NAME OF BLOODY HELL?! I do not believe it! In the name of sanity! I do- well, that's it! That's just about the absolute limit of all bloody time! [Victor storms over to the phone and calls a number] I mean, what was he- HELLO! I'd like to speak to the manager please, and be quick about it! Meldrew. No, he doesn't but he will shortly! Hello, is that Mr. P.T. Sturgeon? Yes, well it's about a large yucca plant your garden centre delivered to my house this morning. Yes, a young chap, I didn't catch his name, it may have been Frank Spencer! Well I'll tell you exactly what the problem is, Mr. Sturgeon! I was out the back, working in the garden when he arrived, so I asked him if, for the time being, he'd put it in the downstairs toilet for me, and you know what he's done?! He's only planted it in the pan! Yes, actually in the lavatory pan, with compost and everything! I mean, how anyone can be so utterly goofy just boggles the mind! A mistake anyone could have made?! Are you stark- I mean, what am I supposed to do, cock my leg against the trunk like a Yorkshire terrier?!

Victor: What in the name of bloody hell...?! I do not believe it! [Victor pulls a toupee out of the bread loaf, then reads the label] "J.L. Dinkins, Hairpieces of Distinction"?! Well, that just about takes the biscuit! I mean, dropping your wig in the bloody baking dough?! I mean, he must have realised it had come off, for God's sake! Well, this is just about it, this is the absolute limit of all bloody time! [Victor storms over to the phone and calls a number] I mean, what am I going to find next?! A false arm in the French stick?! Glass eye staring up at me out of the coconut meringues?! [Victor briefly tries on the hairpiece] Absolutely bloody hideous! It'd be much more sensible wearing a loaf of bread on top of your head! How anyone could be so-Hello! Yes, I'd like to speak to the manager please and quick about it! Meldrew. NO HE DOESN'T BUT HE BLOODY WELL WILL SHORTLY!

Secret of the Seven Sorcerers[edit]

Patrick is dreading going for dinner at the Meldrews' house

Patrick: I would ring up and cancel, but I suppose it's be a bit inconsiderate, isn't it, really? Dragging him out of his coffin in broad daylight. I wonder what bizarre aquatic species I can expect in the groin this time. Stingray up the rectum? Perhaps I'll just get off lightly with a couple of barnacles on the foreskin.
Pippa: Can you see an old dirty floorcloth by the door?
Patrick: Uhm...yup.
Pippa: Well, would you mind SHOVING IT in your bloody mouth?!

Series 5 (1994-5)[edit]

The Man Who Blew Away[edit]

An injurious Christmas cracker joke

Victor: "Question: What's the difference between Victor Meldrew and a chef who keeps dropping his pancakes? Answer: They're both useless tossers!!" Well, that's incorrect. That's not the difference; that's what we have in common!

Hole in the Sky[edit]

Margaret: Better get ready for bed. If you want me, I'll be in the bathroom sandpapering my breasts.

Series 6 (2000)[edit]

The Dawn of Man[edit]

[Both on separate phones:]

Patrick: Frankly Mr Skinthorpe, what side of bed I got out of this morning is not a matter I consider relevant. The fact is that the Open Sesame Garage door which you installed last week has just jammed for the third time, and as BMW rather short sightedly failed to include a limbo dancing option on the new 300 series, I am keen to learn how you expect me to get the car on the road.
Nigel: Yes, I'll tell you precisely what's 'chafing my hide' this morning, Mr Gorrindge. It concerns a majestic 2000 millenium globe which I foolishly ordered from your company for my brother's birthday, which I can't help noticing has arrived with two Northen Hemispheres.
Patrick:If by 'one of our top service engineers' you are referring to that child with the head-full of glue who spent three hours here yesterday wobbling around on a ladder, presumably in an attempt to get his testicles to drop, I was not impressed Mr Skinthorpe.
Nigel: Unfortunately not, Mr Gorrindge and whilst a world with two Europes and no Australia may have certain cultural advantages, I'm afraid it doesn't quite fall in with the theory of continental drift.
Patrick: Well I can't say with any certainty, Mr Skinthorpe, whether it was Rick or Dave. Although he very sensibly had a ring fitted through his nose like a cow, I'm afraid the name tag seemed to have fallen off. Really? Well how fine and dandy for him.
Nigel: Well it depends what you mean by "very noticeable" Mr Gorrindge. Had my brother been horribly blinded by some hideous accident then all our troubles would be over.
Patrick: Well please offer him my profound congratulations, Mr Skinthorpe, and tell him to get his arse round here now and finish the job.
Nigel: I shall expect a proper replacement in 24 hrs or heads and hemispheres will roll

Victor Meldrew[edit]

  • [coming in with chocolate wrappers] Seven chocolate wrappers today. Makes you wander why the bother about funerals anymore. [Imitating punters] "Grandma's dead, should we bury her? No, I can't be bothered. Just sling her over that bloke's fence. He'll clean it up."
  • I don't believe it!/I do not Believe it!
  • [Talking about 1992 General Election result] I couldn't believe that last election result. It's like hiring a man-eating shark as your children's swimming instructor. [imitating parent] "Yes, I know it bit my baby's head off last time, but I still think it deserves another chance."

Victor Meldrew, from the episode The Beast In The Cage.

  • Huh just typical... have you read this? A man in South London was arrested the other day when a dead body was found in the boot of his car. Though interestingly this somehow was overlooked when the car went in for its MOT the day before!
  • I mean we were just asking for trouble weren't we? Leaving Mrs Warboys to hold the fort when this arrived (points at massive 50' telly) [imitating Mrs Warboys) It's a whopper isn't it Mr Meldrew.
  • Well that just about takes the bloody biscuit. You know that young bloke from down the road and his girlfriend? They were only having sex on the back seat of our car. I forgot to close the sunroof properly. Carrying on bold as you like. They didn't even stop when I opened the door, stark naked the pair of them and he had the cheek to tell ME to go and PUT SOME CLOTHES ON!!! Said I was letting the whole tone of the area down.

  • [In traffic jam. Mobile phone rings:] Hello? What? No we CAN'T bloody well move any further forward. I couldn't give a bugger if you are. 5 yards my foot it's 4 at the most and where's that going to get you anyway? Well you can bloody well LUMP IT THEN CAN'T YOU!?. (Horn honks) And you.
  • [In traffic jam.] Yes I've always said that for a really super Bank Holiday treat you've got to go a long way to beat four and a half hours staring up a horse's BOTTOM! [Camera reveals horsebox in front.]
  • You mean I was fartarsing about in front of an armed psychopath doing ruddy tai chi excersises jamming my hands in the air like a simpleton I could've ended up with a bullet through my [realises his cap may have got the hole from a rifle]

External links[edit]

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