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Nicholas Lyndhurst: 'It's nice playing a baddie!'

Nicholas Lyndhurst: 'It's nice playing a baddie!'
Nicholas Lyndhurst: 'It's nice playing a baddie!' (Image credit: des willie)

Rock & Chips (opens in new tab), the prequel to Only Fools and Horses, is back! And Freddie Robdal is still up to no good, as Nicholas Lyndhurst reveals... How easy was it to go from playing Rodney in Only Fools and Horses, to Rodney's dad, Freddie Robdal, in this latest instalment of Rock & Chips? "Freddie's a criminal first and Rodney's dad second. It's nice playing a baddie and there's a stillness with Freddie; people never know he's there. There's a scene in this episode where the bar staff in The Nag's Head are talking about someone and Freddie's just standing, watching, and quietly taking it all in." Freddie has hired Joan Trotter (Kellie Bright) as his housekeeper. What's their relationship like this episode? "Joan fell in love with Freddie without knowing many facts about him. Joan is scared about taking the relationship further, but they love each other. That's not something Freddie had planned at all, but there's this girl who just melts his heart." Meanwhile, Freddie's nemesis DI Thomas (played by Mel Smith) is trying to nail him for the Margate jewellery robbery... "Mel was brilliant as the tired, bored police officer. Freddie threatens Thomas and then he's arrested on suspicion of murder. But, in the end, Freddie has to make quite a sacrifice for Joan. He puts his hand up to something, so that Joan's life can continue the way it is." What made you want to be a part of Rock and Chips? "I knew that any prequel to Only Fools would be excellent but, initially, I wasn’t sure about going back. But because Rock & Chips is a comedy-drama and therefore so different to Only Fools yet so similar, I signed up. And I think that's what's captured the public's attention, too." What do you think of young Del Boy, played by James Buckley? "He's great! He knows how to do it, and just pulls it out of the bag. I didn't need to advise any of the younger performers, who play the likes of Boycie, Denzil and Trigger, they're a clever bunch of actors." Next year is the 30th anniversary of Only Fools and Horses. Does that make you feel old? "It's strange isn't it? It really doesn't seem like 30 years. No, I don't feel old, just proud. I can't help thinking of Only Fools without smiling." *Rock & Chips: The Frog and The Pussycat screens on Thursday, April 28 on BBC1

Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix. 


An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.