Series / Campion
was a British series, adapted from the Albert Campion
books by Margery Allingham, which ran between 1989 and 1990, and featured Peter Davison
as Albert Campion; outwardly a Rich Idiot with No Day Job
but in reality a Gentleman Adventurer who is willing to sell his skills to anyone in trouble
. Aside from his enquiring mind and deductive abilities, his main attribute is his incredible range and depth of contacts, ranging from low class criminals up to the Chief Constables of a number of police forces. He was assisted on most of his adventurers by Magersfontein Lugg — a burglar turned valet.
This show provides examples of:
- Affably Evil: Many of the villains.
- Asshole Victim:
- The victim in 'The Case of the Late Pig' was at school with Campion and used to bully him, at one point holding Campion over a gas jet until he fainted.
- Also Cousin George in "Police at the Funeral"
- Battle Butler: Lugg and Scatty Williams.
- Beware the Silly Ones: Campion might act like a silly ass and compulsively make jokes, but you never should underestimate his mental or physical capabilities. Ever.
- Bluffing the Murderer
- Body Double: Campion employs one of these in "Sweet Danger"
- British Brevity: Only two series, each consisting of four stories.
- Cool Car: A red 1932 Lagonda 16/80
- Cordon Bleugh Chef: Lugg. Herrings in tomato sauce for a start...
- As strange as it sounds, herring in tomato sauce is a thing you can buy premade.
- Cruel and Unusual Death: In 'Sweet Danger', the evil tycoon is crushed by a mill wheel. It is not nice.
- Deadpan Snarker: Inspector Oates
- Detective Drama: Not exclusively, but a number of the episodes did revolve around the traditional whodunnit format.
- Did Not Get the Girl: All the women Campion's interested in end up falling in love with one of Campion's friends/clients, except for Amanda Fitton (but they never did any of the stories a few years down the line where Campion and Amanda actually start dating).
- "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: In the first series, the theme song (consisting solely of the word 'la') was sung by Peter Davison.
- Freudian Trio: Lugg is the Id, Stanislaus the Superego, and Campion the Ego
- Friend on the Force: Technically, Campion is friends with the force, as he lives next door to a police station. A more specific friend is Detective Inspector Stanislaus Oates, who takes Albert's calls and even saves his neck from time to time.
- Gentleman Detective: Campion, obviously.
- I Have Many Names: Campion has used many pseudonyms including 'Christopher Twelvetrees' and 'Orlando'. Even 'Albert Campion' itself is a pseudonym.
- Iron Lady: Mrs. Faraday
- The Jeeves: Subverted with Lugg. If anything, he's a Personal Mook.
- Join or Die
- Karmic Death: Happens to many of the villains.
- Lights Off, Somebody Dies: In "Death of a Ghost."
- Locked Room Mystery: In Flowers For The Judge.
- London Gangster: Plenty of these.
- MacGuffin: The Gyrth Chalice in "Look to the Lady". The Crown, the Charter, and Metternich's Receipt in "Sweet Danger".
- MacGuffin Guardian: Is the guardian of the Gyrth Chalice real, or just a legend and a set of coincidences? It's left up to you to decide...
- New Old Flame: Janet Pursuivant
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Campion's stock in trade. By the time his enemies have seen beyond the glasses and the frivolous remarks, it's generally too late.
- Present Company Excluded
Lugg: It's all nobs and nobodies with him, I can't stand either of them. Begging your pardon, ma'am, and present company excluded.
Noblewoman: Do you like anybody? Present company excluded?
Lugg: Suppose I must. Be hard to name any names though.
- Recruiting the Criminal: Thos. T. Knapp
- Reformed Criminal: Lugg used to be a catburglar.
- Sarcastic Devotee: Lugg
- Sharp-Dressed Man: Goes with being a Gentleman Detective
- Smoke Out: Campion uses smoke bombs when his compatriots decide to deviate from his more subtle plan and go on a Roaring Rampage of Rescue.
- Technical Pacifist: Campion has a 'rule' not to kill — partly because of his arrangement with the police and partly because it just wouldn't be gentlemanly — but he's quite ready to punch people into the wall. And the table. And the bookshelf...
- Part of the conflict in "Mystery Mile" comes from the 'kill or be killed' situation he ends up in.
- The Vicar: Swithin Cush.
- Villainous Widow's Peak
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Campion and Lugg. If they're not insulting each other, something's wrong...
- We Help the Helpless: Campion's business card reads: Coups neatly executed. Nothing sordid, vulgar, or plebeian. Deserving cases preferred. Police no object.