27 April 2005 | ubercommando
Great show that slipped through the cracks
Basically a vehicle for Timothy Spall, Frank Stubbs promotes was a comedy/drama much in the vein of "Minder" but without the double act. Frank is your classic down on his luck hero; in this case a promoter of actors, entertainers, sportsmen, you name it. He's broken away from his slimy boss/rival (played by Nick Reding in series 1) to be his own boss but each week, he'll either be befriending some other down on their luck has-been trying to make a comeback, or an aspiring newcomer with stars in their eyes. Added to that, Frank has his ex-wife and family to deal with, who all think he's a big loser. You couldn't help but feel sorry for Frank; he has big dreams and ambitions and genuinely wants to help everyone who comes to him, but he can't escape the fact that he's not a big time player in promotions and that he resorts to cheap, shoddy and cringeworthy publicity stunts. In series two, he begins a romance with the receptionist at a big promotions firm, and the tender romantic scenes are brilliantly played out by Spall and Carolyn Bradshaw. It was a good, fun, well acted and well written show that didn't catch on; it came out at a time when ITV were obsessed with their big network shows; Inspector Morse and Touch of Frost, and would produce a lot of crap in between that swallowed up their production budget (Saracen, The New Saint to name but two). Unless a show hit the big ratings, ITV were oft to cancel shows (they still do, sometimes in mid-season). No one else may remember Frank Stubbs Promotes, but I think of it fondly.