No Peace for the Wicked

"No Peace for the Wicked" is an episode of the BBC sitcom Porridge. It first aired on 14 November 1975.[1] In this episode, Fletcher tries to have peace on a Saturday afternoon, but fails at every turn and corner.

"No Peace for the Wicked"
Porridge episode
Episode no.Season 2
Episode 4
Directed bySydney Lotterby
Written byDick Clement and Ian La Frenais
Original air date14 November 1975


It is Saturday afternoon, and this is free time for the inmates of Slade prison. All Fletcher wants to do is lie on his bunk reading his porn magazine. McLaren tries to persuade Fletcher to come and see the prison football match, but Fletcher refuses. Next, Warren comes in and asks for a loan of the ping pong ball. After Warren leaves, Banyard the defrocked dentist asks Fletcher if he'd be interested in joining their drama society. Fletcher turns Banyard down.

Fletcher thinks he's finally got peace, when he sees a wooden hobby horse. Since the maker of the horse is the elderly Blanco Webb, whom Fletcher is fond of, Fletcher acts kindly to Blanco. They show the horse to Mr Collinson, while Fletcher steals some of Collinson's Jaffa Cakes. Fletcher tells Blanco to pass on the word that he is incommunicado, but Blanco fails to grasp this concept.

The next person to disturb Fletcher's peace is Mr Barrowclough, who disapproves of Fletcher's loafing around. He also refuses to grant Fletcher's request to lock him in. Fletcher suggests to Barrowclough that the British penal system should take tips from the USA, such as allowing conjugal visits, but Barrowclough is bewildered by such an idea. Fletcher even tries offering Barrowclough his dirty book, due to his own sex-starved marriage.

Meanwhile, two men and a woman from the Home Office are being given a guided tour by Mr Mackay. They inspect Fletcher's cell, much to his annoyance, and despite their insistence that they will respect his privacy, they proceed to pick his brain about his views on prison life, since he has spent so much time in different institutions.

After yet another interruption from Warren, Fletcher is at breaking point. He tries praying to God to let him have some peace, as he fears he may not be responsible for his actions otherwise. Unfortunately, the prison chaplain chooses this moment to have a word with Fletcher. This causes Fletcher to snap and push the chaplain over the railings.

Fletcher is taken to the Governor's office by Mackay, who is smug because Fletcher is in serious trouble. The Governor is very upset at Fletcher's actions. Fletcher tries to defend himself by saying the safety net saved the chaplain, but this does him no good. The Governor punishes Fletcher by sentencing him to the maximum period of solitary confinement - three days. Fletcher requests if he could make it a fortnight. The episode ends with a freeze frame of Mackay going to drag Fletcher away.

Episode cast

Actor Role
Ronnie Barker Norman Stanley Fletcher
Brian Wilde Mr Barrowclough
Fulton Mackay Mr Mackay
David Jason Blanco
Sam Kelly Warren
Tony Osoba McLaren
Michael Barrington Venables
Eric Dodson Banyard
Ivor Roberts Prison Visitor
Barbara New Prison Visitor
Geoffrey Greenhill Prison Visitor
Paul McDowell Mr Collinson
Tony Aitken Chaplain


  • Only episode in Series 2 not to feature Godber.
  • Mr Collinson, who was previously seen in A Night In, returns.
  • The female Home Office visitor is modelled on Margaret Thatcher, who became the leader of the Conservative Party in 1975 and was Britain's first female Prime Minister from 1979 to 1990. She was played by Barbara New, the wife of Michael Barrington who played Governor Venables.


  1. "Original Air Date (No Peace for the Wicked)". IMDB. Retrieved 12 July 2013.
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