‘Place of Honour’ (TV)

 

‘PLACE OF HONOUR’

Please feel free to comment on my review.

Here we are on the second episode of Series 5 of ‘All Creatures’. In this episode, things do get comedic especially towards its end, but in a good way. I’ll explain further when I get to the episode’s conclusion.

Once again, Helen is bedridden in the episode and Calum is still absent as he is away in Ireland. In fact, no mention of Calum is given. I know that I have criticised Calum, but a mention of him would be nice.

This episode seems to showcase James, Siegfried and Tristan’s characters all the way through and highlights why the ‘All Creatures’ trio are memorable. The actors and characters have proved so great.

‘Place of Honour’ is the title for the second episode in Series 5 of ‘All Creatures’. The episode based on the ‘James Herriot’ books is by Johnny Byrne. This is his second contribution to Series 5 of the show.

I know I’ve criticised the reboot series of ‘All Creatures’ from Series 4 to 7 so far, but to be fair Johnny Byrne is good writer. After all, he wrote one of my favourite ‘Doctor Who’ stories ‘The Keeper of Traken’! 🙂

Once again, Robert Tronson returns to the directing chair of ‘All Creatures’ for this episode. This is the second of four contributions made by Robert Tronson in Series 5. His first was the first Series 5 episode

Interestingly, it seems like it’s winter in the early part of Series 5 especially with the title card having a backdrop of snowy countryside. That does change by the third episode but we’ll get to that next time.

Anyway, the episode has James attending to the farm of James Norris as Peter Trenholm and Vivien Keene as his wife Mary. They have this sheepdog who sleeps outside in a barrel. James gets concerned.

But James and Mary Trenholm reassure James that everything’s alright with their sheepdog sleeping outside. It seems this is the sheepdog’s way to be alert and to look after sheep when they’re out on the field.

Incidentally, my parents thought Peter Trenholm was played by the actor who played the neighbour in ‘Bless This House’ with Sid James. But I checked IMDb and apparently James Norris did not play him.

That character in ‘Bless This House’ was played by Anthony Jackson. Although I can see where my parents were coming from as James Norris and Anthony Jackson do sort-of look similar in appearance.

Back to the sheepdog, there’s a moment when Trenholm’s sheep gets attacked by two stray dogs. When the two stray dogs come to attack the sheep, there’s pretty foreboding music in the background.

Seriously, I thought James was a threat at the start when his car turned up at the beginning of the episode. 😀 Thankfully the Trenholms’ sheepdog manages to ward off the strays but gets badly injured.

James comes out to check the Trenholms’ sheepdog and it may seem he won’t last very long. Thankfully the sheepdog survives once James manages to find him still sleeping outside in the barrel. 😀

Tristan meanwhile has his own troubling customer in Harold Goodwin as Mr. Busby. Tristan answers the phone once Mr. Busby calls Skeldale up. He insists Tristan comes right away to attend a cow of his.

He says ‘yes’ and will come out, but Tristan is still half asleep and goes back to bed despite the urgency of Busby’s call. Now Tristan should’ve attended to that call sooner despite the lack of sleep he’s getting.

It angers Busby when he calls up again and James gets Tristan to attend to the case while he’s looking after Helen. Tristan also seems ignorant in almost causing Helen pain by sitting next to her on the bed.

Thankfully Tristan does attend to Busby’s cow, but Busby turns out to be an unhappy and critical customer. Even when Tristan does his work, Busby moans and complains to him. Seriously shut up, Busby!

And this isn’t the only time Tristan has to deal with Mr. Busby. Oh no! He deals with him not once, not twice but three times. The second time involves a cow again, but Tristan’s delay is at the Drovers pub.

Helen calls Tristan via phone to attend to Mrs. Busby’s cow whilst James and Siegfried are out attending to Mrs. Pumphrey’s dog, Tricki-Woo. Helen rightly points out he should be on duty all times.

When Tristan attends to Mrs. Busby and his cow and explains why James and Siegfried are unavailable, Busby complains that his cows are more important than Mrs. Pumphrey’s dog. Tristan objects to that.

And I concur. Busby comes across as rather selfish and inconsistent as we’ll discover later. Mind you, it’s amusing when Tristan poured so much ‘liquid’ onto Busby who complained whilst attending his cow.

The third time Tristan sees Busby, it’s when he wants him to see his dog. On the phone, James suggests to Busby that he takes his dog to be seen to at surgery by Tristan. But Tristan has another urgent case.

Tristan returns to Skeldale in a hurry after attending to an injured horse. His coat’s covered in blood. What would’ve been funny if the woman who saw him with the bloodied coat accused him of murder. 😀

Busby is far from happy and complains his dog are more important than an injured horse. Tristan gets angry with Busby, saying that he’s contradicting himself in the second time he saw him about cows and dogs.

Busby is uncomprehending about Tristan says and tries to make a joke out of it. Despite Busby’s inconsistency, I liked it when Tristan tries to stand up for himself as he states Busby treated him badly.

The main plot of the episode is Margaretta Scott’s return as Mrs. Pumphrey who consults James and Siegfried about a birthday party she’s arranging for Tricki-Woo. She also wants music to relax her dog.

It was amusing when Siegfried seemed to be humouring Mrs. Pumphrey on her whims about Tricki, especially when throwing a party for him and having music for him. James is non-committal about this.

It’s revealed that James is a fan of Mozart. Not that it’s been made clear in the episode before, but it’s good to know James has tastes in music. But Mrs. Pumphrey isn’t certain Mozart would be good for Tricki.

I liked it when James, Siegfried and Tristan receive a goodies box from Mrs. Pumphrey containing trout and salmon. It’s mainly for Helen, but the three gents try out the fishy food and it seems to be ‘glorious’.

Siegfried hopes to share some trout with a friend of his. James hopes to share some trout with Helen for a luncheon. But Tristan messes things up for the two and he gives James’ trout to Siegfried instead.

This is due to the fact that a sick cat ate up Siegfried’s trout whilst in waiting. Tristan was meant to look after Siegfried’s trout until he got back, but he clearly neglected in his duties and the cat ate it all.

I found it funny when that occurred. It put me in mind of a similar incident Tristan had with the dogs in ‘Home and Away’. That murderous look Tristan had with seeing the cat in the basket was magic. 😀

The gents also have kippers for breakfast. Whilst seeing the episode, my Dad remarked I would like kippers as I’ve never tried them before. But I’m reminded of ‘The Kipper and the Corpse’ in ‘Fawlty Towers’.

During breakfast, James intends to give Helen the trout for lunch he had in mind. But Tristan tells James she’s having the sausages instead as he explains what had happened with the cat trout incident.

As a result, James takes Tristan’s kippers off his plate and has it instead. I found that very funny when James takes the kippers away from him. Seeing the look on Tristan’s face was very wonderful to watch.

By the way, what happened to Judy Wilson as Mrs. Greenlaw from Series 4? She’s gone missing since ‘Hail Caesar!’ I know she wasn’t as good as Mrs. Hall and didn’t do much, but what did happen to her?

Anyway, on the night of Tricki-Woo’s birthday party, James and Tristan dress up in tuxedos. They’re not looking forward to it and James seems to be the guest of honour which he wasn’t made aware of.

Beforehand, Tristan ironed James’ shirt and left a huge black mark when he was distracted. He tries to cover it up but prevents James knowing, yet Siegfried saw him. I’m surprised Siegfried didn’t let it out.

It was funny on the night of Tricki’s party that Tristan saw the black mark on the shirt James was wearing and he covered it up with his jacket. I’m surprised Helen did not see the mark on James’ shirt.

Mind you, Helen is still lying in an uncomfortable position in bed whilst her back’s out. My Dad made jokes related to the ‘Steptoe & Son’ episode ‘Upstairs, Downstairs, Upstairs, Downstairs’ in seeing this.

Actually when Helen is giving breakfast and lunch by James, how can she eat and drink when she’s lying back like that? You can see her having a problem trying to break her boiled egg while lying in bed.

She’s going to leave a lot of tea stains if she pours a cup of tea for herself whilst lying in bed. She should’ve had scrambled eggs and a cup of tea before James and Tristan left. It’s not so ideal, but still.

At Mrs. Pumphrey’s house, James finds out he’s the guest of honour on the spot as it’s a surprise. James isn’t very happy about this and is forced to give a speech about Tricki, which he hasn’t prepared.

It was funny when James did the speech and he does it reasonably well. He even holds Tricki up for everyone to see in wishing him a happy birthday. I had a hard time picking the right still for this review. 😀

They don’t even state how old Tricki is when they’re celebrating his birthday. Again, this could be a completely different Tricki-Woo. The 1930s version of Tricki could’ve died before the 1950s one came.

Teddy Turner guest stars as Hodgekin in the episode as well as Anthea Holloway as Edna the maid. Hodgekin gives out the names of the people arriving before Edna does, which gets her very annoyed. 😀

The episode also features the Bourbon Ensemble, a band who come to play some music for Tricki’s party in the form of a concert. These came on behalf of a friend of a friend of friend of Siegfried’s here.

But the music that the Bourbon Ensemble plays turns out to be quite unexpected for Mrs. Pumphrey’s tastes. They play jazz music! There is a moment when Mrs. Pumphrey seemed to disapprove of all this.

It then turns outs that Tricki-Woo likes the jazz music played by the Bourborn Ensemble. Mrs. Pumphrey is astonished to discover this and very soon everyone dances, turning it all into a dance hall.

And I’m not joking here, the end credits roll up whilst the Bourbon Ensemble plays and everyone dances except James. Yeah! That’s how the episode ends. I was surprised this episode ended like that.

‘Place of Honour’ is a pretty comedic episode involving Tricki Woo’s birthday party and the jazz music at the end. My parents and I enjoyed it very much as we found lots to laugh about in a very good taste

‘Place of Honour’ rating – 8/10


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