The switched on scene
Pardon the Expression
Episode number 34
Episode The Switched-on Scene
ITV broadcast date 13th June 1966 (Monday)
Writer Charles Hart and Peter Bishop, from an original story by Mike Pratt
Director Michael Cox
Designer Peter Caldwell
Previous episode Thunderfinger - Part 2
Next episode The Cup That Cheers


It is the centenary of Dobson and Hawkes and all of the store managers have been instructed to celebrate the event in a way that drives up custom further. Sir Charles Dobson is concerned about only one store, Wally Hunt’s, and travels there himself to see what ideas they have come up with. To his non-surprise Leonard Swindley has been delegated with the task and his idea is to put on display items that were selling one hundred years before whereas Sir Charles is keen to capture the youth customer and bring to the chain, "a touch of Carnaby Street". He drags Hunt and Swindley along to a local club, "The Ravers Return", and points out two individuals getting to know each other very well on the dance floor and suggests that their ideas are used in whatever changes are implemented. The only problem is that the two youths, Roy Jackson and Valerie Wilkins, have just been given their notice by Swindley, he for having long hair and her for too short a skirt. He swallows his pride and re-employs the two with instructions to create a boutique that will attract the youth. They promise to come up with the goods and suggest that Swindley books a group for the opening to grab the crowds on their first day. Swindley uses an agent he knows who suggests that "The Moody's" are booked.
The big day arrives and Hunt is very impressed with the new look of the displays, the clothes and the Expresso bar manned by a very trendily dressed Mrs Edgeley. As the crowds of youngsters chant outside and the police try to get the traffic moving, The Moody’s arrive - a tea-room trio of siblings Ethel, William and Reginald. It looks like another disaster but trends have moved on and the fickle youth have moved away from PVC macs and "dig" the genteel music of the trio and Swindley’s display of Victoriana.


Regular castEdit

Guest castEdit


  • "The Moodys" were credited under their collective group name and not as individuals.
  • Several contemporary references are contained in the episode, including an oblique reference to The Beatles and their filming in Bermuda (an event which had actually taken place over a year before for their second feature film "Help") but the most obvious allusion in the episode is the use of the name "The Ravers Return" for the club. Strangely, Swindley makes no remark about the name's similarity to another establishment he used to frequent...
  • One element possibly not in the original script was caused by the casting of Pauline Collins as Miss Wilkins, only one week after her appearance in the two-part "Thunderfinger" episodes. Dressed like her previous character and sounding identical, Swindley looks extremely puzzled when he first meets her and refers to her on several occasions as Miss Wainwright before he corrects himself.
  • This episode was transmitted on Wednesday 15th June at 9.10pm by both Border Television and Tyne Tees Television; on Thursday 16th June at 6.30pm by Television Wales and the West and on Friday 17th June at 9.10pm by Scottish Television. Along with the rest of the second season the episode was not transmitted by Westward Television, Ulster Television, Channel Television or the Teledu Cymru service of Television Wales and the West.
  • Viewing Figures: First UK broadcast - 6,250,000 homes (6th place).

Commercial releasesEdit

This episode was included in Network DVD collection Pardon the Expression - The Complete Second Series, released on 24th August, 2009.

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