Bells was the first episode of Blackadder II as the show returned after the two-and-a-half year hiatus that followed The Black Adder. This series is set in Elizabethan London and re-introduced audiences to Rowan Atkinson and Tony Robinson in their now-familiar roles as Blackadder and Baldrick. In this podcast Gerry and Iain take a look at the plot, characters, actors and others involved in the creation of Bells as well as some more general thoughts on the series.
Besides Atkinson and Robinson, Bells featured four additional regular characters and some dynamic guest appearances. Miranda Richardson‘s Queen Elizabeth, her wet nurse, Nursie (Patsy Byrne), Lord Melchett (Stephen Fry) and Lord Percy Percy (Tim McInnerny) would all return in future episodes, while Rik Mayall‘s Lord Flashheart and Gabrielle Glaister as Kate/Bob showed up for the only time in Blackadder II.
Supporting the main cast were John Grillo as the homophobic Dr Leech, Edward Jewesbury as Kate’s father (who wishes she would take a different career path), Sadie Shimmin as a Young Crone in Putney and Barbara Miller as a Wise Woman who offers Blackadder three options to resolve his predicament.
Bells was released in 1986. It is 30 minutes long and originally aired on the BBC. Blackadder II can be viewed on Netflix in the UK and Ireland and a remastered set of the whole series is available on DVD around the world (Region 1) (Region 2).