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Rupert Rigsby would have been a good neighbour for Albert Steptoe - both filthy!

Eric Chappell's 'Rising Damp' is arguably the best sitcom ever broadcast by ITV. That channel's paucity of quality comedy has been embarrassing for years, which just makes the outstanding comedies like 'Rising Damp' and 'Shelley' seem all the greater.

Leonard Rossiter played two of the greatest-ever comedy characters - Reggie Perrin and Rigsby. Whereas Perrin had some admirable qualities, Rigsby was seedy and lascivious, with ideas above his station in the shape of the posh Miss (Ruth) Jones (Frances de la Tour). He was also jealous of young guns Alan (Richard Beckinsale) and Philip (Don Warrington), because HE wasn't getting any... The two happily tormented him, but it was all very playful. Another star of the series was Rigsby's black and white cat, Vienna, who was probably Rigsby's only friend - and that was debatable!

Though he had just left the show, Beckinsale's tragic early death in 1979 really put the kybosh on any future series, though the best bits of the TV series were squeezed into a movie, with Christopher Strauli from 'Only When I Laugh' fame drafted in to play Alan. With Leonard Rossiter's death in 1984, there was no chance of, maybe, reviving the old show in a desperate effort to boost ratings. As with 'Fawlty Towers', less is more, and 'Rising Damp' ended with its audience not fully satiated. It ran for 28 half hour episodes from 1974 to 1978, plus the 1980 movie.

- Paul Rance/

Rising Damp Main Cast List

Leonard Rossiter - Rupert Rigsby
Frances de la Tour - Miss Ruth Jones
Richard Beckinsale - Alan Moore
Don Warrington
- Philip Smith

Rising Damp DVDs available from - in association with

'Rising Damp - The Complete Series Plus The Movie DVD' Rising Damp - The Complete Series Plus The Movie [1974] ~ Leonard Rossiter, Don Warrington
B00004XQTL Rising Damp - The Best Of [1974] ~ Len Lurcuck

Rising Damp Episode List


  • The Lodgers Broadcast (2nd September, 1974)

Series 1

  • Black Magic (13th December, 1974)
  • Charisma (20th December, 1974)
  • A Night Out (27 December, 1974)
  • All Our Yesterdays (3rd January, 1975)
  • The Prowler (10th January, 1975)
  • Stand Up And Be Counted (17th January, 1975)

Series 2

  • Permissive Society (7th November, 1975)
  • Food Glorious Food (14th November, 1975)
  • A Body Like Mine (21st November, 1975)
  • Moonlight And Roses (28th November, 1975)
  • The Perfect Gentleman (5th December, 1975)
  • The Last Of The Big Spenders (12th December, 1975)
  • Things That Go Bump In The Night (19th December, 1975)

Christmas Special

  • For The Man Who Has Everything (26th December, 1975)

Series 3

  • That's My Boy (12th April, 1977)
  • Stage Struck (19th April, 1977)
  • Clunk Click (26th April, 1977)
  • The Good Samaritans (3rd May, 1977)
  • Fawcetts Python (10th May, 1977)
  • The Cocktail Hour (17th May, 1977)
  • Suddenly At Home (24th May, 1977)

Series 4

  • Hello Young Lovers (4th April, 1978)
  • Fire And Brimstone (11th April, 1978)
  • Great Expectations (18th April, 1978)
  • Pink Carnations (25th April, 1978)
  • Under The Influence (2nd May, 1978)
  • Come On In, The Water's Lovely (9th May, 1978)

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