Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Minder was a British comedy drama, made by Euston Films, a subsidiary of Thames Television, and shown on ITV, that ran in ten series from October 29 1979 to March 10 1994. It starred George Cole as Arthur Daley, an unscrupulous used-car salesman, and Dennis Waterman as Terry McCann, his honest and likeable bodyguard (minder in London slang). As the title suggests, the handsome Terry was originally intended to be the lead character, but Arthur eventually overtook him in popularity. Arthur would frequently test Terry's patience to its limits with his dishonest and doomed schemes to make money ("nice little earners"), but would then use his superior cunning to convince Terry to stay with him. Arthur manipulated all his friends, such as Dave the long-suffering pub barman, in the same way. Arthur frequently referred to his wife, who never appeared (→ Unseen character), as "'er indoors".
Other features of the series were Arthur's constant and ambitious use of obscure Cockney rhyming slang, the derelict sites used as locations, and the episode titles, which contained references to well-known phrases and names (e.g. "Guess Who's Coming to Pinner"). Another strong character was Arthur's failed nemesis, the hapless policeman Detective Sergeant "Charlie" Chisholm (Patrick Malahide ), who was always close to detecting Arthur's crimes but was not quite clever enough to catch him.
The original theme tune, I Could Be So Good For You, was written in 1979 by Patricia Waterman and Gerard Kenny, and sung by Waterman.
Waterman left the show in 1989 after seven series, and his character was replaced in 1991 by Ray Daley, Arthur's nephew, played by Gary Webster. The theme tune was replaced by an instrumental version of Waterman's song, credited to "Kenny".
- I Could Be So Good For You/Nothing At All (single), Dennis Waterman & The Dennis Waterman Band (1979), EMI5009.
A minder is also someone who is assigned to watch over another person, usually to observe their actions and keep them in line. This typically happens to visitors in totalitarian countries (especially North Korea), or in political campaigns.
A minder might also be the personal staff of a politician, try to doctor the spin for best effect, hence Spin doctor.
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