Dead Ernest – 1982, Andrew Sachs Forgotten Sitcom

An attempt by Andrew Sachs to break away from Manuel, Dead Ernest was a Channel 4 sitcom that unfortunately only ran for one season.  It was the first sitcom to be produced by the newly formed Central Television who would later go on to produce such classics as Spitting Image.

The idea of a sitcom set in heaven was original and there were some very clever comic set pieces, such as when Ernest encounters Beethoven and Bach in one episode.

Despite it’s originality and the undoubted draw of Andrew Sachs in the lead role the series failed to live up to expectations and was cancelled after just one series of seven episodes.


Bus Driver, Ernest Springer wins half a million pounds on the football pools.  However whilst celebrating his win he is killed by a blow to the head from a stray champagne bottle cork. He subsequently ascends to heaven.

Although the authorities in heaven admit that his death was an administrative error (he had been scheduled to die in his bed in Lyme Regis in 2007), as his kidneys have already been donated he cannot go back down to earth.

Miffed at his untimely demise, Ernest has no choice but to accept his fete.  To help ease the error the celestial authorities offer him a number of jobs, to which there are hilarious consequences.  These include being in charge of diseases, where Ernest ensures that there are some nasty outbreaks among bus drivers in his hometown.  This results in a transfer to weather, where once again Ernest reaps his misery by ensuring adverse weather in his home town.


No stills or video are available unless anyone knows different.


Andrew Sachs … Ernest Springer (7 episodes, 1982)
Ken Jones … Archangel Derek (7 episodes, 1982)
Harry Fowler … Cherub Fred (7 episodes, 1982)
Janet Rawson … Archangel Doreen (7 episodes, 1982)
Zena Walker … Edna Springer (3 episodes, 1982)


Channel: Channel 4
Written By: Julian Roach and John Stevenson
Produced By:
Tony Charles  …. producer (7 episodes, 1982)
Allan McKeown  …. executive producer (7 episodes, 1982)
Alan Wallis  ….producer (7 episodes, 1982)


At the time of post no DVD release was available


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