No Greater Love (Only Fools and Horses)

"No Greater Love"
Only Fools and Horses episode
Episode no. Series 2
Episode 4
Directed by Ray Butt
Written by John Sullivan
Produced by Ray Butt
Original air date 11 November 1982
(8.6 million viewers)
Running time 29:25 (DVD/iTunes)

"No Greater Love" is an episode of the BBC sit-com, Only Fools and Horses. It was the fourth episode of series 2, and was first screened on 11 November 1982.


The Trotters arrive at a London street with camel hair overcoats, and plan to receive payments from Mrs. Singh. But when Rodney opens the door to her house, he meets another woman named Irene, who tells him that Mrs. Singh moved away three weeks earlier.

Rodney enters Irene's flat and is instantly smitten with her. Irene tells Rodney that she is aged 40, and married with a teenage son Marcus. She also mentions her husband Tommy Mackay, who "is away working, but will be out in 6 months." He's actually doing time in Parkhurst prison for committing wounding with intent, GBH, and attempted murder.

One week later at Nelson Mandela House, Rodney tells Del Boy and Grandad about Irene, and how she moved away from her husband because he used to domestically abuse her a lot, and to make things worse, Tommy is getting released from prison, and Rodney wants to meet him in person. This makes Del worried for his younger brother's safety.

A few days later, at The Nag's Head, Rodney tells Del that he and Irene had broken up earlier in the day. Del consoles Rodney and tells him there are plenty of other women to talk to. But then, Irene's son Marcus enters and tells Rodney that Del told Irene over a drink to break up with Rodney. Rodney is furious with Del and storms out in a huff.

Later that night, Del is confronted by Tommy Mackay himself and a thug in a dark alley, since Tommy thinks that Del is Rodney (and Del confirms it in order to protect Rodney, since he would stand no chance against the huge Tommy), and prepares to give him a beating for dating his wife Irene. They let Del take his coat off, but he accidentally throws it into a puddle. Angered that his new coat has been ruined, Del is the one who starts the fight with Tommy, and despite sustaining a few injuries, Del manages to win the fight and limps back to the Nag's Head.

Back at the Nag's Head, Del shows Rodney his injuries, and lies that he fell down some stairs at Monkey Harris' house (even though he actually lives in a bungalow). Del also mentions to Rodney that he met Tommy Mackay and made him see the error of his ways, which means that the road is now cleared for Rodney and Irene. But Rodney says that he had a talk with Irene that their relationship was never going to work anyway. Plus, Rodney has met another girl, Zoe, from the roller-disco. Zoe arrives, she and Rodney leave, and Del is left alone in the pub, slightly irritated but still satisfied that he at least managed to protect his brother.

Episode cast

Actor Role
David Jason Derek Trotter
Nicholas Lyndhurst Rodney Trotter
Lennard Pearce Grandad Trotter
David Daker Tommy Mackay
Gaye Brown Irene Mackay
Steve Fletcher Marcus Mackay
Raj Patel Ahmed
Julie La Rousse Julie (barmaid)
Lisa Price Zoe
David Rhule Leroy

Episode concept

The idea for the script was to demonstrate the brotherly love that Del and Rodney have for each other, even willing to take a beating for his brother. The concept of Del getting beat up in order to protect Rodney would occur again in "Little Problems" when Del, much to Rodney's ignorance, chooses to take a beating from the Driscoll Brothers after making a promise to him, having forgotten that the money he would use for his wedding gift was also the money which he owed to them.[1]


Preceded by
"A Losing Streak"
Only Fools and Horses
11 November 1982
Succeeded by
"The Yellow Peril"
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