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Porterhouse Blue (1987)


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Episode 3, tx. 17/6/1987

Cathcart introduces the Dean to Carrington, an ex-student who is now an investigative journalist, in the hope of publicising the damage being done by the Master's modernisation plan. Carrington expresses an interest in exploring the story further.

Zipser is desperate to get rid of the hundreds of condoms he collected while in a drunken stupor, but has been 'gated' and can't leave Porterhouse. He tries flushing them down the college toilets, but keeps being interrupted by other students. He rings The Samaritans, but the person on call is Lady Mary, the Master's wife, so he hangs up. He goes back to his flat and begins to fill them with gas from his fireplace and then shoves them up the chimney.

The Dean returns to the college and finds the hundreds of inflated condoms flying around the quad. He tells Skullion to get rid of them before the mornings. Skullion goes out with a broom to try and burst them all. During the night Mrs Biggs arrives in Zipser's room and wakes him. She tells him that she knows that has been secretly lusting after her and feels the same way about him. She takes her clothes off and turns on the gas before climbing into bed with him. The fire ignites the balloons still in the chimney, and part of the college explodes. Zipser and Mrs Biggs are both killed. Skullion disobeys Godber when ordered to open the gates for the emergency services as he hasn't managed to get all the condoms yet.

Skullion listens in on the next college council meeting and hears Godber blackmail the rest of the staff into accepting his demands to sack most of them and sell off the properties that they were allowed to live in while employed by the college. Skullion is furious and goes to see the Bursar to offer his life savings to help replenish the college funds, but instead is told to look for another job. Skullion tells Cathcart what has happened and alludes to his 'list'. Cathcart promises to help. Skullion tells the chef that the list includes dozens of names of prominent ex-students who only passed their exams when he helped them cheat. He is sure they will help him get his job back and stop the sale of the houses used by the staff.