"No-one ever said fighting injustice'd be easy. They've got the power, they've got the weapons, and all we've got is a Rasta, a wally, and a bearded avacado."
(Marian to Robin, taken from
Rotten Rose)

Maid Marian and Her Merry Men is one of the few truly brilliant television series for children, with Tony "Baldrick" Robinson (also of Time Team) using the comic style of Blackadder to great effect.

The series was based on the legend of Robin Hood but with a twist - Maid Marian (Kate Lonergan) was the true hero, whilst Robin (Wayne Morris) was a useless coward who always got the credit (imagine a cross between Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen and Louis Theroux). This heroic duo were aided by "a ruthless band of freedom fighters" - cool, intelligent Barrington (Danny John-Jules, who went on to become The Cat in Red Dwarf), big and stoopid Rabies (Howard Lew Lewis) and short, violent Little Ron.

The Merry Men's mission was to fight the oppression of King John (Forbes Collins), a royal bully leading the country while his brother Richard is away on a crusade (who made a brief appearance in The Whiteish Knight at the end of the first series). Aided by his sheriff (Tony Robinson) and his two guards Gary and Graeme) they brought misery to the people of Worksop. They were joined by the King's nephew Guy of Gisbourne (Ramsay Gilderdale), a man who made even Robin look butch. King John spent most of the second series trying to get rid of him, but always with the threat of Queen Elinor "that disgusting thing with a pencil" if anything should happen to him...

The stories themselves were in early series pretty simple affairs - a simple fight of Ye Goodies vs Ye Baddies. However, the stories gradually became more developed with modern references (aliens, bouncy castles, driving tests...). A personal favourite is Raining Forks where the people of Worksop are conned into building an amusement park for the King in Skegness after an outbreak of the plague (actually just a common cold), where they celebrate High Forks Night - 'You know the poem: "Remember, remember, the twenty-seventh of April."'

After the first broadcast on November 16th, 1989, there was eventually a total of four series filmed plus a Christmas special.


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