Minder

Wednesday 11th March at 9:00pm on five

The comedy drama concludes on Five. In the last episode of the series, Archie becomes a boxing agent in an effort to pay his divorce settlement. His plan involves pitching a young boxer against an up-and-coming fighter – only for his scheming wife to sabotage the match. Jamie steps into the breach, but the ensuing bout pushes his friendship with Archie to breaking point.

Poor old Archie is facing a ruinous divorce settlement with his estranged wife, who – despite having been unfaithful to him – has seized the upper hand. She is threatening to expose all of his dodgy deals and he has no choice but to pay up.

To fund the divorce, Archie decides to dabble in the boxing business. His pal, Spike, is looking to set up a match featuring rising star Carlo Rocks. Unfortunately, there is no one good enough to challenge him. Can Archie find a contender? “I need a fighter who’s guaranteed to give him a run for his
money,” he says. Archie immediately rules out ex-pugilist Jamie for being too old, and instead hits upon the idea of using local boy Ryan Doyle.

While Archie hunts down Ryan, Jamie is sent to keep an eye on the competition. Jamie follows Carlo and spots him meeting with a beautiful older woman. This woman turns out to be Carlo’s lover
and manager – and she also happens to be Archie’s wife, Delilah (Josie Lawrence). A furious Jamie rushes back to confront Archie, who is forced to admit that his idea of setting up the fight is fuelled by revenge. “If I can put my man in the ring, I get to beat my wife, give Carlo a hiding and make enough money on the fight to pay for my divorce!” he says.

Jamie reluctantly agrees to coach Ryan – but the young tearaway initially refuses to knuckle down.
The pair gradually develop a bond when they find out they have both spent time inside. As he opens up about his past, Jamie reveals why he quit the sport. “Boxing’s all about control –that’s the bit I had trouble with,” he says. It transpires that Jamie went to jail for beating up his mother’s abusive boyfriend – and his relationship with his mum has never recovered. “She ain’t spoken to me since,” he tells Archie.
Meanwhile, just when it seems Ryan is shaping up to be a real contender, the cunning Delilah manages to sabotage the match. She arranges for Carlo to catch Ryan flirting with her in a bar. A furious Carlo
pummels Ryan into the ground, putting him in hospital and out of the fight. Jamie is desperate to confront the boxer, but Archie talks him out of it.

The only solution to their predicament is to find another fighter – and there is only one candidate.
“It’s your call, Jamie. No pressure,” says Archie. Jamie agrees to throw his hat in the ring and launches into an intense training regime. But he is stunned when, on the night of the fight, Archie asks him to throw the match. “I’ve bet everything I own on Carlo,” he says. “This was my plan from the start.” Jamie cannot believe that Archie would have asked Ryan to take a dive, and feels that his boss has no faith in him.

Jamie refuses to do Archie’s bidding and steps out in the ring to face Carlo. However, at the last
moment, he has a change of heart and lets himself be knocked down by his opponent. The plan has succeeded and Archie is a rich man – but Jamie is in no mood for celebrating. “You went too far this time,” he tells Archie. “We’re finished – for good.”

Jamie donates his fee from the match to the injured Ryan, and is horrified to learn that the young lad’s boxing career may be over. “The medic said I might not be able to fight again,” Ryan says. A red mist descends on Jamie and he decides that Carlo needs to be taught a lesson. But will he lose control once again and land himself in trouble? And can Archie mend his friendship with his minder?

The comedy drama continues on Five. This week, Archie risks the wrath of an old business associate when he loses the man’s car in a poker game. He enlists the help of poker expert Jamie to win the car back, but the pair find the stakes are uncomfortably high.

Archie’s latest money-making scheme involves hiring out his warehouse for an exclusive charity function. The charity, run by beautiful ex-model Eve Cornell (Rachael Stirling), aims to fight sweatshop labour around the word. The event is being bankrolled by Eve’s wealthy husband, Felix (Clive Wood), and Archie hopes it will be the start of a fruitful collaboration. “We pull this off, Daley Events Management could be booked for months,” he says. The same day, Archie agrees to look after a stunning Porsche sports car for an old associate, ‘Canny’ Danny.

As the night of the charity event arrives, Jamie takes charge of security for the venue. Felix wants surveillance to be very tight as his wife has recently been targeted by a stalker, an ex-employee of his named Wes Gray. Unfortunately, Wes manages to slip into the party and threaten Eve. Jamie quickly rescues Eve and bundles Wes out of the warehouse.

Meanwhile, an overexcited Archie is pretending to Felix that the Porsche belongs to him. But the hapless Daley soon finds himself out of his depth when he joins Felix in a high-stakes poker game. Before he knows it, he has been goaded into betting the car as collateral. “I’m a player, Archie,” says Felix. “The question is, are you?” When Archie promptly loses the car, he faces the awful prospect of having to answer to Canny Danny. “Danny’s gonna kill you,” Jamie remarks.

Jamie knows only too well the dangers of gambling, as his former cellmate was a poker card sharp whose luck eventually ran out. He urges his boss to come clean to Felix and ask for the return of the car, but Archie ends up agreeing to a rematch at the businessman’s mansion in the country. Meanwhile, Jamie has to react fast when he sees a car about to run Wes Gray down in the street outside Felix’s office. Jamie saves Wes’s life – only for the lad to run off.

Back at the Winchester, Archie begs his minder to win the car back for him. Archie hopes that the poker skills Jamie gleaned in the nick will enable him to defeat Felix at his own game – if he agrees to pose as a mysterious “international playboy”. When Jamie points out that Eve may recognise him as the security guard from the charity do, Archie waves aside his objections. “These people never notice the hired help,” he says.

Jamie gives Archie a crash course in poker before the pair make their way to Felix’s country pile, where they pretend not to know each other. Once inside the house, Jamie reveals to Archie that he believes Felix is trying to bump off Wes Gray – and he is determined to find out why. But when Jamie starts snooping around Felix’s office, he is caught by Eve. “I knew your face was familiar,” she says. “You’re that guy from the charity do – the bouncer!”

Jamie succeeds in convincing Eve that her husband is caught up in some shady activities – and he has some help when Wes turns up out of the blue to tell his side of the story. Wes reveals to a shocked Eve that her husband is involved in employing child labour. But the trio come a cropper when the villainous businessman catches them all together. Felix has figured out that Jamie is not who he claims to be, and challenges him to a final game of poker. “You win, you get the car back,” he tells Jamie. “I win, I get two of your fingers!” If Jamie is dealt a losing hand, will he lose part of his own mitt?

The comedy drama continues on Five. This week, Archie asks Jamie to mind the beautiful young widow of his former business associate. Suspecting that the grieving woman may be responsible for her husband’s death, Archie enlists the help of a psychic to find out what she is hiding.

Archie drags Jamie along to the funeral of Harry Grant, a former business associate and fellow conman. “Even in the valley of the shadow of death, there are openings for a man of enterprise,” points out Archie. It soon becomes clear that the savvy conman hopes to get back the £5,000 he is still owed by the deceased. “A merry widow needs minding,” he says, pushing Jamie in the direction of Harry’s bereaved wife, Maria.

A reluctant Jamie accompanies Maria to the reading of her late husband’s will, and the widow is shocked to learn that Harry left all his assets – including the couple’s house – to his bevy of cats. “He always had to have the last laugh, my Harry,” she says bitterly.

Back at the Grant residence, Jamie waits while Maria packs up her belongings. As they prepare to leave, Harry’s former partner in crime, Donovan, bursts into the hallway and attacks Jamie. It is clear that he wants to get to Maria, but she scrambles into Jamie’s cab and the couple are able to make their getaway.

Realising that there may be more at stake than Maria is letting on, Jamie spirits his charge back to his flat. “I might be hired help,” he says, “but I don’t like taking a beating unless it’s for a very good cause.” Maria confesses that years earlier Harry stashed some valuable stolen property, but would not tell Donovan, who was entitled to a cut, where it was hidden. However, she insists that she does not know any more details about the loot. “I don’t even know what it is, never mind where it is,” she says.

It emerges that Harry was actually sitting on a haul of diamonds. When Maria hears this news, she promises to help Archie and Jamie find the jewels in return for a 50-50 split of the profits. Archie hits on the idea of using a psychic to help locate the booty, so he pays a visit to Vlad the Impostor (Steve Pemberton, ‘The League of Gentlemen’). Encouraged by the fact that the medium seems to be expecting him, Archie offers Vlad a wad of cash in return for a reading.

Meanwhile, Jamie and Maria head back to Jamie’s flat, where the hapless minder is set upon once again by an enraged Donovan, who is lying in wait.

The wily couple tear off in Jamie’s cab, with Donovan on their tail. Eventually they manage to lose him, and Jamie decides the safest place to spend the night is in a hotel.

The next morning, Jamie is jolted awake by a loud knock at the door. The visitor turns out to be Archie, who is shocked to see Maria and her minder stayed in the same room. “I slept in the armchair,” insists Jamie. Eager to have Maria meet with Vlad, Archie hustles her out of the hotel. During the reading, Maria is visibly spooked and suddenly bolts from Vlad’s lair. “Tell you what, mate,” says the psychic to Archie, “that girl’s guilty of something.”

Theorising that Maria may have deliberately brought about her husband’s demise to gain access to her inheritance, Archie asks Vlad whether he can shed more light on the widow’s true nature. “Every girl knows diamonds are for wearing,” says Vlad, who seems to have channelled Harry’s spirit. But will the psychic’s cryptic message be enough to lead Archie to the stolen diamonds? Is Maria really a gold-digger? And will Jamie’s attraction to his beautiful charge get in the way of business?

The comedy drama continues on Five. Shane Richie stars as wheeler dealer Archie Daley alongside Lex Shrapnel as Jamie Cartwright. This week, Archie smells the chance to make a fortune after stumbling upon a ‘Banksy’ painting in the home of an unsuspecting housewife. But his efforts to woo the art world come unstuck when he learns the mural is a fake.

Archie has agreed to buy some second-hand furniture from an elderly couple who are down on their uppers. Anita Richardson (Maureen Lipman) and husband Brian have been struggling to make ends meet since health and safety ruled that Brian’s failing eyesight means he can no longer drive his ice- cream van. Archie is just sizing up a wardrobe in the bedroom when he notices a distinctive mural on the wall, featuring a girl with an umbrella. Anita dismisses the graffiti as the work of a former lodger. “He was an odd sort of chap,” she says.

Sensing he has found something valuable, Archie shows a picture of the mural to art dealer Tasty Tim (Nickolas Grace, ‘Robin of Sherwood’, ‘Brideshead Revisited’). The gallery owner believes it could be the mythical ‘Camberwell Banksy’ – an early work of the elusive graffiti artist. Archie heads straight back to Anita’s house and makes an offer well below the mural’s true value. A bemused Anita strikes a deal to sell her wallpaper to Archie. “It’s just a bit of graffiti, isn’t it?” she says.

Leaving Jamie to prise the Banksy off the wall, Archie sets about converting his warehouse into the exclusive ‘Daley Gallery’. Most of the exhibits consist of bizarre “poultry sculptures” conjured up by Archie using left-over chickens. “No one recognises an artist in his promised land,” Archie says, when Jamie and Petra mock his efforts. “Con artist, more like,” Petra shoots back. That evening, the art world gathers for the unveiling of the Banksy. As interest grows, Archie agrees to sell the mural at the auction house of beautiful art dealer Henrietta (Camilla Arfwedson).

The next day, Archie is delighted to hear that Jamie had to chase off an intruder who tried to steal the painting overnight. “This proves the Banksy is worth a fortune to some very unscrupulous forces out there!” he says. Jamie’s next job is to attend the auction and push the price up should the bidding falter, but he decides to pay a visit to Anita and Brian instead. Jamie cannot help but feel guilty about cheating the old couple. However, he arrives at their home to find their garage is full of high-quality art forgeries. Have the boys been conned?

Jamie rushes to the auction house, where he and Archie almost end up buying their own painting. In the event, it is purchased by the British Art Council for a whopping £750,000. As the buyers carry off the mural to test its authenticity, Jamie finally breaks the bad news to Archie. “It’s a fake,” he says. “It’s not a Banksy – it’s a Brian.”

Archie confronts Anita and learns the whole story – Brian has been forging paintings for years, working for an Amsterdam art dealer named ‘Picasso’. But the dealer recently ended the contract, forcing Anita and Brian to start selling off their possessions. The ‘Banksy’, it transpires, was painted by Brian on a whim – and Anita saw an opportunity to make a bit of cash by selling it to Archie.

The devastated Daley is further chagrined to learn that the police now believe him to be the mysterious Picasso. “When that alleged Banksy is proved to be a forgery, I’ll have your head on a spike,” DI Willoughby tells him. With his liberty on the line, Archie feels they have no choice but to reclaim the Banksy from the British Art Council Museum. “We have to get the painting back – we can nick it before the tests come through!” he declares. But will Jamie go along with the scheme?

The comedy drama continues its new series on Five. Shane Richie stars as wheeler dealer Archie Daley alongside Lex Shrapnel as Jamie Cartwright. This week, Archie steps in to help an old pal organise his daughter’s wedding. But when the groom goes missing and a menacing loan shark threatens to ruin the big day, Archie wonders if he has bitten off more than he can chew.

Archie has just done a deal to supply some dodgy wine to an old school friend, Maurice (Rik Mayall), for the wedding of his daughter, Roxy. Archie has always felt jealous of Maurice’s success, and senses a chance to make some easy money when he hears that preparations for the big day are not going well. A troubled Maurice reveals that the stress is impacting on his relationship with his wife, Jess (Meera Syal). “She’s doing my head in with this damn wedding,” he says. “It’s a disaster all around.”

Archie quickly offers to help by supplying a photographer and a singer for the occasion. “There is no such thing as a crisis,” he tells Maurice, “only opportunity yet to be ravished.” When Maurice expresses his concern that the groom, Neil, might stand Roxy up for the second time, Archie suggests that someone keep an eye on him – and he has just the man for the job. For his part, Jamie is less than thrilled to be stalking the groom. “I’ve got to mind somebody who doesn’t know he’s being minded?” he asks, incredulously.

Jamie sets about his task and is shocked to catch Neil talking to a shady looking man named Teddy B. Archie knows him well, as he used to be the school bully. “He’s known as the Great White of the loan shark family,” he says. Does Neil owe Teddy B money? Jamie trails the young man on his stag night, only for Neil to confront him. “What are you following me for?” he demands. A fight ensues and the groom is arrested, forcing Jamie to pay his bail. The disgruntled minder then insists that Neil spend the rest of the night at his flat. “Think of me as your babysitter,” he says.

The big day arrives with the wedding due to take place on a boat on the Thames. Archie is on hand to organise proceedings, having made a special promise to Jess that everything will go smoothly. There is clearly a spark between the pair and Archie cannot help but feel that Jess’s marital woes might even work in his favour. However, events soon begin to spiral out of control when Jamie calls to say that Neil has gone AWOL.

Archie takes desperate measures to delay the boat’s launch while Jamie tracks the groom down to a nearby pub. He finds some sympathy for the lad when Neil blames Maurice for giving him cold feet. “I love Roxy,” he says. “It’s just her dad I want nothing to do with.” Jamie convinces Neil to go through with the wedding, only for a new problem to arrive in the form of Teddy B.

Archie and Jamie fear that Teddy has come to collect his debt from Neil, but are stunned when the groom declares: “I told you not to come, Dad!” It transpires that Teddy is Neil’s estranged father – and no one is pleased to see him, least all of Maurice. Jamie catches the pair talking and discovers that it is Maurice who is in debt to the loan shark. “One way or another, I’m getting my money back today,” Teddy tells him.

As the boat sets sail, Teddy causes further trouble by starting a fight with the photographer. In the confusion, Maurice disappears, and Archie finds him about to throw himself overboard. A distraught Maurice confesses that, far from being a successful businessman, he is bankrupt and in debt to Teddy. “I’m a pitiful mess,” he says. Archie decides to give Maurice a good telling off, even goading him to plunge into the river. “Go on then, jump! You always liked to make a splash!” he says. But will Archie’s words have the desired effect and pull Maurice back from the brink?

The popular and iconic comedy drama returns to British TV for a brand new series on Five. The show builds on the heart and wit of the original, but has been refreshed for a modern audience. Shane Richie stars as wheeler dealer Archie Daley, nephew of Arthur, alongside Lex Shrapnel as his minder, Jamie Cartwright. In the first episode, Archie enlists the help of taxi driver Jamie to settle his debt to a pair of menacing property developers.

Cabbie Jamie is just finishing his shift when a snappily dressed stranger jumps into his car. “Step on it, please!” says his fare. The taxi takes off with a pair of goons chasing them in a car. Jamie shakes off their pursuers with a few nifty moves, only for the taxi to be rammed to a halt. The thugs haul Archie Daley from the car and warn him to obey their bosses’ orders. Jamie steps in and floors the henchmen with a few well-placed punches. “He’s my passenger. He’s my responsibility,” he tells them.

The goons beat a retreat, but not before a pair of sharp-suited City types arrive in a car and toss Archie a briefcase. “You got 24 hours, mate,” they say. Dusting himself off, Archie thanks Jamie for his help and invites him back to his office in a shabby warehouse. Archie likes what he has seen of the cabbie and thinks he could be just the man to carry out a ‘little job’. “Nothing dodgy, straight up – trust me,” he says. An incredulous Jamie learns that the briefcase contains £50,000 in cash, which Archie wants him to deliver as down payment on a pub.

Jamie heads to the pub, only to discover that the landlady, Petra Bennett (Jenna Russell), has no desire to sell her home to Archie Daley or anyone. “You can tell him he can shove it!” she says. Back at the office, Archie is under pressure from all sides – first from crooked councillor Conway (John Henshaw), who refuses to grant him permission to buy his warehouse, and then from DI Murray (Josette Simon), who confiscates Archie’s dodgy goods. When Jamie returns to find the place crawling with cops, he stashes the briefcase in a box – only for it to be carried off to the police station with the other contraband. “At least it’s where nobody can nick it,” he tells Archie.

An exasperated Archie drags Jamie off to a meeting with the Gold brothers, a couple of sinister property developers. Jamie realises that they are forcing Archie to buy Petra’s pub on their behalf – and that the £50,000 is actually theirs. Refusing to do any more of their dirty work, he storms off. “I’ve hardly known you a day but I’ve never met a bigger bleeding liar in my life,” he snarls to Archie.

Jamie returns to the pub and apologises for trying to pressure Petra into selling up. He offers to stay the night and protect her and her teenage son should the Gold brothers try anything untoward. Later, he catches Archie in the act of trying to scare Petra out of her home by making spooky noises in the piping. “This is the level of desperation to which they have sunk me!” Archie cries.

Jamie decides it is high time to fight back against the property developers and expose their dodgy dealings with Cllr Conway. With Archie’s help, he sneaks into Conway’s office and steals a vital set of plans showing that the pub must be demolished to allow the brothers to build a vast new retail park. “Petra’s pub is the only thing that stands in their way!” says Archie.

However, before the boys can sabotage the scheme, DI Murray arrives and arrests Jamie for breaking in to Conway’s office. Archie is shocked to learn that his fledgling minder has previously served time for GBH, but nonetheless scrapes together bail to spring him from jail. The boys head straight for the pub, only to find someone has set it alight. Can the mismatched pair save Petra from the fire and bring the Gold brothers to justice?

Five has confirmed that it has commissioned production company talkbackTHAMES to produce the six-part drama series Minder, to air on Five in 2009, it was announced today (THURS).

Starring Shane Richie as Archie Daley, Arthur Daley’s nephew, and Lex Shrapnel as Jamie, the iconic series is updated for a modern audience.

Five’s Director of Programmes, Ben Gale, said: “I am delighted to confirm this commission which retains all the humour and charm of the original Minder. The assembled on and off-screen talent is exactly what’s needed to bring this celebrated series to life for a new audience.”

Susie Conklin will executive produce the series for Five. Susie brings a wealth of experience to the role having worked on projects as diverse as Cranford, State of Play and Linda Green.

Executive Producer for talkbackTHAMES, Johnathan Young, said: “Minder is one of the British comedy drama greats. We’re working with really strong writing and directorial talent to capture the wit and sentiment of the original series, while exploring the strong bond between the two leads. We want to satisfy fans of the original, but will also add different elements in order to excite new viewers.”

As in the original, the capital plays an important part in the drama, with each episode exploring a corner of contemporary London, from the glossy Gherkin and London Eye to the tower blocks of Walworth and the markets of Borough and Bermondsey.

In true Minder style, each hour-long episode is a self-contained story where Archie and Jamie come into contact with a cast of contemporary characters from wannabes and has-beens, to villains and police. The series will also feature guest stars and cameo appearances from a range of British acting talent.

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