The Professionals (1977–1983)
2 user 1 critic

Private Madness, Public Danger 

Charles Nesbitt, an expert on chemical warfare, has a plan to flood the water supply of London with lethal hallucenogenic drugs. In order to show what he has in mind he intends to have a ... See full summary »


Douglas Camfield


Brian Clemens (creator), Anthony Read




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Gordon Jackson ... George Cowley
Martin Shaw ... Doyle
Lewis Collins ... Bodie
Keith Barron ... Charles Nesbitt
Donald Douglas ... Eric Sutton
Di Trevis Di Trevis ... Susan Fenton
Angus MacKay Angus MacKay ... Gerald Harvey
Trevor Adams Trevor Adams ... Benny
Christopher Ellison ... Biggs, CI5 Agent
Peter Penry-Jones Peter Penry-Jones ... Cummings
Penny Irving ... Pam
Gloria Maley Gloria Maley ... Pretty Nurse (as Gloria Walker)
Bridget Brice ... Betty, Cowley's secretary
Donald MacIver Donald MacIver ... Hoskins
Melanie Peck Melanie Peck ... Barmaid


Charles Nesbitt, an expert on chemical warfare, has a plan to flood the water supply of London with lethal hallucenogenic drugs. In order to show what he has in mind he intends to have a dummy run outside of the capital and the Professionals have to head him off. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Action | Comedy | Crime





Release Date:

30 December 1977 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The show was mercilessly parodied by Channel 4's "The Comic Strip" in an episode called The Bull*******s: Roll Out The Gunbarrel starring Keith Allen and Peter Richardson as "Bonehead and Foyle" and directed by Stephen Frears. Lewis Collins would cameo in the production playing the doorman of the theatre Foyle is appearing at. See more »


The World Chemicals Sports and Social Club signboard misspells the word 'secretary' as 'secretery'. See more »


Ted Miller: [before jumping out of the window] The sky's very big.
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The professionals
Composed by Laurie Johnson
Album 'The Rose And The Gun'
Published by Standard Music Ltd
See more »

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User Reviews

Private Madness, Public Danger
22 November 2018 | by Prismark10See all my reviews

I always regarded the BBC series Spooks as the natural successor to ITV's The Professionals.

Whereas Spooks in some ways reflected the political inclinations of the New Labour years when most of the episodes were shown.

The Professionals although started at the end of 1977 when James Callaghan was Labour Prime Minister. It gained popularity when Mrs Thatcher got elected and certainly to me reflected an element of crypto fascist leanings.

No wonder actor Martin Shaw seemed uncomfortable to talk about the show at one point.

This opening episode very much set itself up as a gritty exciting action show. Slightly hard boiled, you see some scantily clad ladies and right from the off you see a chemistry between Bodie and Doyle laced with humour.

Keith Barron plays Charles Nesbitt. A clever and ruthless activist who plans to poison the water supply with hallucinogenic drugs. Nesbitt wants the government to stop testing on chemical warfare.

It certainly is a lot of fun and to think a generation of viewers in the 1980s would know Barron from his sitcom work.

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