It may seem like a career Ground Zero for those coming at the monocular Aussie’s works from the wrong end, but Rumpole was the logical conclusion of all that kindly avuncularity overlaid with an almost impenetrable cantankerousness that had gone before. Bellicose newspaper ed (Australian, too) in The Day the Earth Caught Fire. Leader of Beatles-coveting human sacrifice cult in Help! Eponymous father in Ryan’s Daughter. A rather demented Moriarty in The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes’s Smarter Brother. The Prisoner must have seemed rather sedate after all that.
FINEST HOUR: Desperate, mad and dangerous university professor out to gas the world into silly oblivion in A Jolly Bad Fellow.