This series was the second major output from the comedy team of Croft and Perry, the first being Dad's Army. Drawing on the experiences of Jimmy Perry in a wartime concert party, the series is set in the Royal Artillery Depot in Deolali, India (although in later series they changed location). Michael Bates starred as Ranji Ram (although this has been spelt Rangi and even Randi in some places), Windsor Davies as Sgt. Major 'Shut Up' Williams, George Layton as Bombardier Solomans, Melvyn Hayes as Gunner 'Gloria' Beaumont, Don Estelle as Lofty, and Donald Hewlett and Michael Knowles as the officers.

The series has, in recent years, been the victim of PC, with a lot of the characters being branded as racist, and therefore, the show has not made it back on the repeat runs on BBC, although the other Croft Perry classics such as Dad's Army and Hi-De-Hi get outings far more regularly. UKGold, a UK satellite channel did show most of them a few years back (where I managed to get most of my information) and more recently, Acorn video have released four videos containing a total of 12 episodes, virtually in order. As a bonus, the fourth volume is a special edition featuring the classic Don Estelle, Windsor Davies hit, 'Whispering Grass'. When I contacted Acorn about the two missing shows, all they could say was that they were not able to buy the distribution rights, so whether theya re being withheld for copyright reasons or have been junked, I am not sure.

So as not to miss the gravy train, dear old Auntie have issued an audio cassette containing four episodes from the show. Now normally I would baulk at the idea of a TV programme only having the soundtrack issued, but as this is one of my favourite shows, I have let them off. Unfortunately, the mediums are different and there is a lot of visual humour in the series, some of which is lost on cassette. Nevertheless, if you are a fan like I am then you will probably have copies on video somewhere and will be aware of what is going on. Oh, don't think that you will be completely lost with just the cassette as the four episodes chosen still work very well, but it is certainly a missed opportunity.

Here follows an episode log for the series. This has been compiled from various sources, although a considerable amount was from material taken from the excellent fan magazine Hello Campers! written by Rob Cope. He can be contacted at:

24 Woodland Avenue,
nr Leek,
ST13 7BZ

SERIES 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8

Series One.

TitleTX DateNotes
Meet The Gang3.1.74Acorn Video Volume 1
My Lovely Boy10.1.74Acorn Video Volume 1 & audio tape
The Mutiny Of The Punka Wallahs17.1.74Acorn Video Volume 1
A Star Is Born24.1.74
The Jungle Patrol31.1.74 Acorn Video Volume 2
It's A Wise Child7.2.74
The Road To Bannu14.2.74 Acorn Video Volume 2
The Inspector Calls21.2.74Acorn Video Volume 2

Series Two.

TitleTX DateNotes
Showing The Flag2.1.75 Acorn Video Volume 3
Down In The Jungle9.1.75 Acorn Video Volume 3
The Natives Are Revolting16.1.75 Acorn Video Volume 3
Cabaret Time23.1.75 Acorn Video Volume 4
The Curse Of The Sadhu30.1.75 Acorn Video Volume 4
Forbidden Fruits6.2.75 Acorn Video Volume 4
Has Anyone Seen My Cobra?13.2.75
The Night Of The Thugs20.2.75

Series Three.

TitleTX DateNotes
The Supremo Show2.1.76 Audio tape
Mind My Maharajah9.1.76
Bang Goes The Maharajah16.1.76
The Grand Illusion23.1.76
Pale Hands I Love30.1.76
Don't Take The Micky6.2.76

Series Four.

TitleTX DateNotes
Monsoon Madness2.11.76
Kidnapped In The Khyber9.11.76
A Fate Worse Than Death16.11.76
Ticket To Blighty23.11.76
Lofty's Little Friend30.11.76
Flight To Jawani7.12.76
We Are Not Amused14.12.76 Audio tape
Twenty.One Today21.12.76

Series Five.

TitleTX DateNotes
Front Line Entertainers25.10.77
Bridge Over The River Hipong1.11.77
The Pay Off8.11.77
Puddings From Heaven15.11.77
The Superstar22.11.77
The Eternal Quadrangle29.11.77

Series Six.

TitleTX DateNotes
The Stars Look Down23.10.78
The Big League30.10.78
The Big Payroll Snatch6.11.78
The Dhobi Wallahs13.11.78
Lead, Kindly Light20.11.78
Holidays At Home27.11.78
Caught Short4.12.78

Series Seven.

TitleTX DateNotes
That's Entertainment?17.10.80
The Guinea Pigs24.10.80
Dog In The Manger31.10.80
The Great Broadcast7.11.80
Class Of 194514.11.80
Star Commandos21.11.80

Series Eight.

TitleTX DateNotes
Gloria's Finest Hour23.7.81
Money Talks30.7.81 Audio tape
The Last Warrior13.8.81
Never The Twain Shall Meet20.8.81
The Long Road Home27.8.81
The Last Roll Call3.9.81