Characters: Maid Marian and Her Merry Men
Maid Marian And Her Merry Men was a children's Sit Com made by The BBC, based on Robin Hood and written by Tony Robinson, who also played the Sheriff
. Considered by some to be Blackadder's Younger Cousin
The heroine and titular character; a passionate revolutionary who wages a constant war against tyranny and injustice — or at least tries to, in spite of the well-intentioned "help" she gets from her rather incompetent band of Merry Men. She's probably the smartest character on the show, frequently functioning as the Only Sane Woman
, though even she can get some strange ideas when it comes to what outlaw heroes are supposed to do.
Robin "Hood" of Kensington
The biggest hero and most ruthless outlaw in all England — or so people think, thanks to various mishaps and misunderstandings. In reality, Robin is a vain and cowardly fool who worked as a tailor before circumstances forced him into the life of an outlaw. He is (at least in Marian's eyes) the stupidest and most useless of the Merry Men, though he does occasionally make himself useful; for example, it was his idea that the Merry Men all dress in green so as to "co-ordinate with the trees."
- The Cast Showoff: Actor Wayne Morris is a good singer, so it follows that Robin sang a lot of the songs on the show.
- The Dandy
- Fake Ultimate Hero: Only the other Merry Men see him for the foolish coward he really is; to everyone else he's the greatest hero in the land. Partly this is pure accident and partly because he thinks it's a cool image to cultivate.
- The Fool
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Despite his selfish and self-centered nature, he's really quite soft-hearted and kind, even towards his enemies.
- Lovable Coward
- The Munchausen: With a heavy accent on Miles Gloriosus.
- Small Name, Big Ego: It's not uncommon for him to let the praise of the people go to his head and begin thinking he's as awesome as everyone says.
- Unlimited Wardrobe: Robin is the only character in the show to avert the Limited Wardrobe trope; especially after the first series. He has a lot of different outfits and seldom wears the same one two episodes in a row. Probably Justified in that he is a tailor by trade, and is repeatedly shown to be very fashion-conscious.
- Upper-Class Twit
An Affectionate Parody
of Little John; Little Ron is the smallest but scrappiest of the Merry Men. He's known for his violent outbursts, and basically joined Marian because it seemed a good way to get into more fights.
- Bad Ass
- Fearless Fool: Little Ron owns no fear or respect for anything and is usually the first to charge into danger (though he does occasionally get confused and charges in the wrong direction).
- Hair-Trigger Temper
- Pintsized Powerhouse: He's the most effective fighter in the group, and has on several occasions simultaneously taken on two or three people twice his size, and won with no difficulty.
The Merry Men's resident Rastafarian
who also occasionally functions as the series' All-Knowing Singing Narrator
. He's a cool, laid-back sort who seldom worries about anything and is probably the smartest of the Merry Men, bar Marian.
The biggest, strongest and slowest Merry Man, Rabies is much like a naive child in an adult man's body.
He's usually two steps behind everyone else and seldom has any idea what's going on, though he will occasionally display a bit of Simpleminded Wisdom
, even if he mostly doesn't use it in any particularly practical way.
The violent and unstable monarch of England, who has No Indoor Voice
, no manners and no gratitude. He spends a good deal of his time tyrannizing his people, his employees and just about anyone else he can think of, and the remainder of the time yelling at them — with perhaps a the occasional minute devoted to wondering why nobody likes him.
The Sheriff of Nottingham
King John's devious, scheming and much put-upon
stooge; he basically acts not only as Sheriff and tax collector but as the King's personal servant and attendant as well. He is without question the most intelligent and competent bad guy in the series, but thanks to a huge unlucky streak and the Merry Men's ability to pull off schemes at the very last minute generally ends up losing.
Gary & Graeme
Two guards at the King's Castle (at times it seems like they're the only two guards employed by the King) who function as the Sheriff's bumbling Sidekicks
. They both have cheerful and sunny dispositions and are far more friendly and affable than him.
- Affably Evil: More affable than evil, really. They'll cheerfully and without regret aid in oppressing the villagers, stealing, cheating or lying, carry out executions for small offenses (and argue about whose turn it is to get to swing the axe), but they're always friendly and smiling, completely lacking in malice.
- Anti-Villain: With a side-order of Punch Clock Villain. Unlike the genuinely-nasty Sheriff, they really are just doing their jobs.
- The Ditz
- Minion with an F in Evil
- Seinfeldian Conversation: Prone to these when they're left alone (and even sometimes when they aren't, despite the Sheriff's constant orders to shut up); they'll go off on the oddest tangents.
- Those Two Bad Guys
"Rotten" Rose Scargill
Marian's old schoolmate and former best friend. Their friendship ended when Rose "stole" Marian's boyfriend, beginning a feud that ended with them both getting expelled from school. Rose is almost as cunning and sneaky as the Sheriff is, though even more selfish; she will do almost anything for even the slightest personal gain. She describes herself as Robin's biggest fan.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: She puts on a big show of sweetness and friendliness in front of people but will think nothing of stabbing them in the back once they take their eyes off her.
- Brainy Brunette: With the possible exception of the Sheriff, Rose is probably the smartest of all the villains.
- Jerkass: Of the recurring villains, she probably has the least redeeming qualities — even King John can on a rare occasion Pet the Dog just because he's in a good mood, but Rose always has a selfish motive and never does anything for anyone unless she's also secretly using them.
- Manipulative Bitch: Her greatest talent is to manipulate and use people.
- Rival Turned Evil
- Stalker with a Crush: To Robin.
Guy Of Gisborne
King John's spoiled, bratty and completely brainless nephew who was sent to live with his uncle by his mother, who had decided it was about time he went out into the big wide world and lived a little. He is the only person on the show the King does not dare to mistreat, for two reasons: His mother pays quite handsomely for the expenses, and if she found out that her son wasn't happy, she would do "that nasty thing with a pencil"
to King John.
- The Ditz
- Man Child: He's in his late twenties, but he acts like he's five.
- Momma's Boy
- The Prankster: A version of this; he loves pulling pranks, though they're always extremely simple, often based on some Incredibly Lame Pun, usually directed at the Sheriff and/or King John, and always repeated ad nauseum because thanks to his mother's demands his victims can't stop him from pranking them, nor can they refuse to fall for the same trick for the fiftieth time.
- Royal Brat: He has a much sunnier disposition than most examples of the trope and is unusually good-humored about set-backs (in some episodes he even almost, almost comes across as Spoiled Sweet), but he's got the entitlement and insensitivity, constantly demanding special treatment and threatening to "tell Mummy!" if he doesn't get his way.
Much, the Mini-Mart Manager's Son
A smooth-talking Con Man
who can sell you anything
as long as you can pay for it — if it exists, he can get ahold of it (or at least a reasonable facsimile of it) for you. If it doesn't
exist, he'll sell it to you anyway and then be gone long before you discover that he's tricked you.
- Catch Phrase: He's got two. "I'm only an outsider, right, and shut me up if I'm speaking out of turn" whenever he's about to make an extra daring suggestion, and "Cost ya, mind," said after every sales pitch.
- The Charmer: There's no denying he has a way with the ladies — Rose is instantly smitten and Marian, while initially skeptical of him, quickly warms up to his charms.
- Con Man
- Honest John's Dealership
- Lovable Rogue: Complete with a Cockney accent.
- Ship Tease: With Marian.
- Snake Oil Salesman
- Wild Card: He'll do business with anyone, long as the price is right.
A new recruit for King John's guard and part of the "government training scheme"; in fact he was the only one who let himself be recruited. He fits in remarkably well with the rest of the guards and is often praised for his intelligence and his brilliant ideas. He's four years old.
- The Ace: Treated as one in-series by Gary, Graeme and King John, fulfilling the role of Always Someone Better to Guy. Only the Sheriff sees how absurd this is.
- The Smart Guy: Parodied. He's hailed by Gary and Graeme as a great ideas man, but his ideas are all based around kid logic — such as frightening the enemy into submission by showing them a scary drawing of a witch or putting fake bugs in their beds, or climbing up a tree to pour water on their heads so they'll have to go home and change out of their wet clothes, "and they aren't allowed out again 'til they've had a bath and been rubbed down with a big warm towel."
- The Voiceless: He doesn't have a single spoken line. Presumably, he speaks off-camera, since Gary and Graeme relate his ideas to the King and the Sheriff.
Possibly the most prominent of the inhabitants of the village of Worksop, Gladys is the resident Wise Woman (though she's the first to admit she's under-qualified) who occasionally dabbles in witchcraft. She's an old friend of Barrington, who calls her his "main man," and has picked up quite a bit of his slang. Or maybe it's the other way around?
- Cool Old Lady
- Jive Turkey: She has definite traces of it anyway, especially when talking to Barrington.
- Witch Doctor: Played with in a couple of episodes; for the most part she's just portrayed as a Lethal Chef, but a few of her recipes actually do have magical properties, such as the Sleepy Seed Cake — a great cure for insomniacs but with weird side-effects like turning the eater into a clone of Paul McCartney.
Along with Gladys, Snooker is the main peasant character in the show, and acts as a sort of leader and spokesman for the villagers, in many ways being the "voice of the common man."
- Generic Guy: For the village of Worksop, anyway; despite being the villager who gets the most screen time he's remarkably unremarkable.
- The Fool: Like most of the villagers.
- Punny Name: His name was revealed in the end of the third episode for the sole purpose of a joke, when the Sheriff (as a mocking reward for a favor he'd done him) gave him some wooden balls, some sticks and a wooden triangle and told him that he could become rich and famous if he made a game out of it and named it after himself.
A young village girl who featured in the first season. She's definitely smarter than your average villager, and is fully aware just how stupid the others are.
- Deadpan Snarker
- No Name Given: She's the only character in the show who is never named; the credits only refer to her as "Little Girl." (Then again, given the intelligence level of the villagers, that may very well be her actual name.)
- Rumor has it that Tony Robinson was originally going to call her "Chlamydia" or "Cystitis," but wasn't allowed by the BBC.
A young village girl who featured in the second season, and probably the most intelligent of all the villagers. She's a good friend of Marian.