Civvies (TV series)

Genre Crime drama
Written by
Directed by
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 6 (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s)
  • Lynda La Plante
  • Ruth Caleb
  • United Kingdom
Running time 50 minutes
Production company(s)
Original network
Picture format 4:3
Audio format Stereo
Original release 22 September (1992-09-22) – 27 October 1992 (1992-10-27)

Civvies is a six-part thriller first broadcast on BBC1 on 22 September 1992. The series was written by Lynda La Plante - her first writing contribution for the BBC, after being snatched in a "golden handcuffs" deal following the success of Prime Suspect. The series focuses on Frank Dillon (Jason Issacs), a former Army soldier who finds life outside the army tougher than being in it - and slowly falls under the power of east end gangster Barry Newman (Peter O'Toole), who is looking to hire a trained hitman. The complete series was released on DVD on 3 June 2013 on Acorn Media UK.[1]


Reconciling the danger and excitement of serving in the elite British Parachute Regiment with life back home with his family does not prove simple for Frank Dillon (Jason Isaacs). An impulsive and aggressive man, he is aware that his pay-off from the army isn't sufficient to secure his future but, like his friends, struggles to find stable employment elsewhere. With no one prepared to take a chance on him, Frank may be powerless to resist the approaches of Barry Newman (Peter O'Toole), an East End gangster who could certainly find a use for a trained killer.



No.TitleDirected byWritten byBritish air dateUK viewers
1"Frank"Karl FrancisLynda La Plante22 September 1992 (1992-09-22)N/A
Some time after narrowly avoiding being killed by an IRA bomb in a pub while serving in Northern Ireland, Sgt Frank Dillon decides after 15 years of service in the British Army that he has had enough, as he wants to see his two boys grow up. He is cashiered to the value of £5000 and leaves the Parachute Regiment barracks for the last time.
2"Taffy"Karl FrancisLynda La Plante29 September 1992 (1992-09-29)N/A
Taffy, who has been suffering from flashbacks, has been unable to get a nights sleep for quite some time - and it is starting to affect his sanity, and his ability to get a job. He calls Frank and tells him his woes, but Frank seems vacant and uncaring. Taffy laterd returns home to find bailiffs clearing out his house, a situation which he doesn't help by threatening them and then smashing things up so they cant take them.
3"Steve"Karl FrancisLynda La Plante6 October 1992 (1992-10-06)N/A
Frank, Jimmy, Steve and Cliff travel up to Scotland where they meet up with Harry, who introduces them to Don, another ex paratrooper who is the estate they will be working on's assistant gamekeeper. Harry is upset at seeing Steve among the group, labeling him as a "drunken prat", a moniker which he manages to live up to as he more or less immediately gets drunk in the hotel bar. While there, the hotel owner regails them with a tale of how a handsome bounty of £3000 will be paid to anyone who shoots it, meanwhile, both Frank and Steve take a shine to Sissy, the estates attractive restaurant manager.
4"Jimmy"Karl FrancisLynda La Plante13 October 1992 (1992-10-13)N/A
Frank and Jimmy clear Steve's stuff out of Franks spare room, which amounts to little more than a single bin bag, which amounts to little more than a few items of clothing and a lot of empty bottles. Frank muses over whether he did the right thing by abandoning him, but Jimmy points out that Steve was bound to die sooner or later, if not from the suicide then he would have drunk himself to death, or someone else would have killed him.
5"Harry"Karl FrancisLynda La Plante20 October 1992 (1992-10-20)N/A
Stag Security are enjoying a bit of a boom period, so much so that Frank throws a party with the duel intention of celebrating their success, and recruiting more ex servicemen to work for them. All is going well, until Cliff puts "Great balls of fire" on the record player, which causes Frank to have a horrendous and graphic flashback to the night of the bombing.
6"Cliff"Karl FrancisLynda La Plante27 October 1992 (1992-10-27)N/A
Cliff and Harry arrive to pick up the payroll from a laundry, completely unaware that their movements are being watched by a man across the street. Frank worriedly checks the local newspaper to see if there are any reports about the murder he and Harry committed.


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