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Rumpole of the Bailey

John Mortimer's fab barrister Horace Rumpole started life in a BBC Play for Today, but the BBC took so long to snap up the series that producer Irene Shubik took it to Thames instead. Leo McKern excelled in the lead rôle, becoming a hero to barristers everywhere, with Peggy Bates as his wife, Patricia Hodge, Peter Blythe, Peter Bowles, Richard Murdoch and many other great guest stars. Series two followed in 1979, the third in 1983, the last in 1988, in which Marion Mathie played Rumpole's wife a.k.a. "She who must be obeyed".