Ripping Yarns (1976–1979)
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Roger of the Raj 

On the eve of the Great War Roger Bartlesham's aristocratic parents are firm believers in the Empire though Roger, encouraged by socialist Latin teacher Mr Hopper,dreams of equality and ... See full summary »


Jim Franklin


Michael Palin (by), Terry Jones (by)


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Episode complete credited cast:
Michael Palin ... Roger
Richard Vernon ... Lord Bartlesham
Joan Sanderson ... Lady Bartlesham
Roger Brierley Roger Brierley ... Hopper
John Le Mesurier ... Colonel Runciman
Jan Francis ... Miranda
Allan Cuthbertson ... Major Daintry
David Griffin ... Captain Meredith
Charles McKeown ... Captain Morrison
David Warwick David Warwick ... Captain Cooper
Michael Stainton Michael Stainton ... the Gamekeeper
Ken Shorter Ken Shorter ... 1st Mutinous Officer
Douglas Hinton Douglas Hinton ... 2nd Mutinous Officer
Dorothy Frere Dorothy Frere ... Housemaid


On the eve of the Great War Roger Bartlesham's aristocratic parents are firm believers in the Empire though Roger, encouraged by socialist Latin teacher Mr Hopper,dreams of equality and opening a tea shop with his sweet-heart Miranda. After a sojourn in India where various officers shoot themselves to atone for breaches in etiquette Roger gets caught up in Hopper's attempt to bring the Russian revolution to England but is rescued from the chaos by Miranda in time for them to pursue their dream. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Adventure | Comedy


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

24 October 1979 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color | Black and White (archive footage)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


"Roger of the Raj" was the final title of this episode. It started off as "Potter of the Punjab", then "Roy of the Raj" and finally "Roger of the Raj". See more »


Lord Bartelsham: You know, I often think that if people had been a little more kind to each other, we could have avoided many of the wars which have plagued society through the ages.
Lady Bartelsham: Rubbish, dear.
Lord Bartelsham: Well... maybe... but just suppose for a minute that when Wallenstein reached the gates of Magdeburg in 1631, instead of razing the city to the ground and putting its inhabitants to the sword, he'd said... "What a lovely place! How lucky you are to live here. I live in Sweden... you must come and see me some time." ...
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Rule, Britannia
Music by Thomas Augustine Arne
Arranged by Chris Payne
Carlin Recorded Music Library
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User Reviews

Roger of the Raj
10 June 2016 | by Prismark10See all my reviews

This was the final episode of Ripping Yarns. Roger of the Raj stars Michael Palin as Roger Bartlesham who grew up in a stuffy, out of touch and wealthy family with several large houses, an overflowing breakfast table and plenty of servants.

Roger's mother, Lady Bartlesham (Joan Sanderson) loves to kill grouse and quite a few beaters, she is rather willing to shoot Roger as well if he ever started a revolution.

His father Lord Bartlesham (Richard Vernon) cannot get over the fact that slavery has been abolished and that all his servants are free.

Roger's Latin tutor a former child molester with a fake degree teaches him about Marxism. When the great war breaks out the Bartleshams move to India but Roger dreams of opening a general store with his girlfriend Miranda. He gets embroiled in a revolt by the army thanks to his tutor.

Ripping Yarns satirises English colonial attitudes and this episode again is no different with Sanderson and Vernon on top form as the ruling elite oblivious to any changes in social attitudes.

The episode has a standout sequence when army officers at the dinner table suddenly spurt out outrageous sentiments such as being able to pass the port any way you want and then step away from the table and outside the room to shoot themselves. Leading to Colonel Runciman (John Le Mesurier) to get up and say he wanted to abolish the Loyal Toast, the National Anthem and set up a socialist republic before he too steps out to shoot himself.

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