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Magic Moments > 1993 > Mark's Arrival Episode 1980

Written by Barbara Angell, Directed by Ian Watson, Produced by Sally Anne Kerr and Dave Worthington

Channel Ten: 13/08/93, BBC One: 16/06/94, UK Gold: 02/06/00

Doug learns that his tax bill has been reassessed - Pam is delighted, until she learns that it's been increased from $70,000 to $100,000...

Doug is doing some home improvements for Cheryl at number 22, and she's wondering why she can't seem to win over Lou. Doug says that he's an old-fashioned guy, suggesting that Cheryl might be coming on too strong, but Cheryl points out that she can't change her personality. Doug then suggests that maybe she should just allow Lou to make the first move, and she shows him to the front door, grateful for the advice.

..

At number 28, Gaby says that Doug's never kept his eye on the details, and Pam agrees, but says that $100,000 is quite an oversight. Gaby leaves for work, as Pam is starting to panic that Doug needs to get ready, so they can go to the bank. He walks in the door, as Gaby walks out, and Pam is ranting about how Doug should have sold the company out to Constructacon when he had the chance. Doug asks Pam not to worry and starts to make himself a cup of coffee, telling her that they should have no problems in getting a loan to pay off the taxman, and the whole thing won't cause too much long-term damage. Pam wonders how on earth he can believe that - but he says that he's just being optimistic, then he heads off to take a shower, leaving Pam to fret.

At number 32, Hannah has wet the bed again and is putting her sheets into the washing machine, when Julie catches her. She comforts her daughter, who says that everything would be alright if Philip could come home, but Julie says that she won't talk about that now. Hannah continues to pester her, but Julie says that she's upset too, but she won't have Hannah using the bed-wetting as an emotional lever to get whatever she wants. Hannah is upset as Julie says that Philip isn't coming home, and they need to get used to that.

..

Pam and Doug arrive home, and she's furious that they've ended up with a second mortgage and crippling interest repayments, at the time in their life when the kids are almost off their hands and they should be enjoying their retirement. Doug can't see any way around it, but Pam says that there is still one final option - he could sell the business.

At The Hungry Bite, Lou and Annalise are teasing Philip about his new romance with Beth, but he tells them to drop it, pays for his coffee and leaves. Lou then takes his sandwiches and also leaves, and Annalise is gestured to by a customer sitting in the window. She asks if she can get him anything else, and he tells her that the food he has is practically inedible, suggesting that it's from yesterday and has been warmed over. Annalise says that they get almost all of their food in fresh each morning - the man says that he still thinks this is from yesterday.

..

At number 28, Doug has just finished a phone call, and he and Pam are delighted that the Constructacon deal looks like it could work out. Pam answers the door to Beth, who's brought over the time sheets for Doug, and he tells her about the deal. Beth says that she's pleased for him, but her face tells a different story, and she admits that she's a little concerned about what this will mean for her apprenticeship. Pam and Doug both assure her that nothing will change and her future is secure.

At the Lassiter's office, Gaby is seeing an applicant for the chef's job - the man who hassled Annalise at the coffee shop earlier, but now he's speaking in a dodgy French accent. Gaby is impressed, and Philip is also interested when he meets him, but Marcel tells them that his bags have gone missing, so he has no paperwork to prove his previous work experience. Philip says that he can't give him an interview without his papers, but then Marcel offers to prove his worth by cooking lunch.

..

..

In the Lassiter's kitchens, Philip and Gaby - along with Beth, who tried the previous chef's food when she was working at the hotel - are waiting for Marcel to finish preparing the meal. Gaby tries some toasted pine nuts and says that they're tasty - Marcel then tells her that she is also tasty. He tells Philip that he's preparing lamb, and becomes quite cagey about which herbs he's using. They're all very intrigued and gather around the pan, as Marcel turns away from them and smiles to himself.

At number 32, Hannah's friend Nicholas has come over, and starts causing chaos by turning on the tap and leaving it running, then trying all the biscuits and putting them back in the jar. Hannah thinks it's fun, and then Nicholas says that they should make a pie. Hannah says that her mum would be pleased to have dinner ready when she gets home, and they put a saucepan on the stove and start randomly emptying jars into it.

..

The Hungry Bite is busy and a man asks if he can sit at Lou's table. They get chatting about the local area and Lou hands over his business card to the man, Mr Baker, who says that he's in the construction business. Doug mentions that one of his neighbours is in the same trade and is going through a fairly difficult time right now. Mr Baker tells him that things are improving, but Lou explains that the amount of business isn't the problem - it's the size of his tax bill. Baker then looks interested when Lou mentions Doug's name.

Hannah and Nicholas are playing out on Ramsay Street, throwing stones at the letterbox outside number 30. Pam then arrives home and tells them that it's dangerous and they should stop, then asks why they aren't in school. Hannah says that the teacher let them miss gym, though Pam doesn't look convinced. As she walks into the house, Nicholas sticks his tongue out at her.

..

Back at Lassiter's, Marcel is impressing Philip, Beth and Gaby with his food, and presents them with dessert, once again complimenting Gaby as he does so. Philip is very pleased, and Gaby agrees that Marcel has got the job.

At number 28, Mr Baker is chatting to Doug about why he wants to sell the company now, after turning down the last offer. Doug says that he was sorry to disappoint them, but he's certain that he wants to sell this time, explaining that it was Pam who talked him into slowing down a bit. She goes along with this story, saying that there's so much work at the moment, but she just think it's time for Doug to start taking it easy. He says that it's a wonderful business but none of the kids want to continue it, so he thought it best to sell - and now they just need to sign the papers. Mr Baker then breaks the news that Constructacon are no longer interested in buying.

Doug can't understand the sudden change of mind, and he and Pam tell Mr Baker about all the positive aspects of the business, but he then brings up the taxation issue. Doug says that he'll be paying off the company's debts before the sale, and Pam confirms that they saw the bank manager that morning. Mr Baker asks how they can be so sure about all of this, if they saw the bank manager, then called him up straight afterwards - he drops the offer to $110,000, but Doug thinks that, with all the goodwill he's built up in the area, Willis Constructions is worth at least $170,000. Pam looks at Doug and shrugs her shoulders, and they realise that it's the best offer they're going to get, so Doug agrees. Just then, one of the front windows smashes and Pam goes outside to tell off Hannah and Nicholas.

..

At the car yard, a woman is looking around, and Julie immediately claims her as one of her customers. However, when she approaches her, the woman asks to speak to Lou Carpenter, who smiles to himself and sends Julie inside to answer the ringing phone. The woman introduces herself to Lou, as Maxine, and says that she's heard she can get a good deal from him. Julie calls out that she has to go home as there's a problem, and Maxine tells Lou that she has to go now, but they arrange to meet for coffee in an hour.

At number 32, Julie is cleaning up the messy kitchen and tells Pam that she'll pay for the broken window. Pam insists that the insurance will cover it, and Julie admits that she's at her wits' end with Hannah's behaviour lately. Pam suggests that she should try talking to Hannah about the separation instead of avoiding the issue. Julie doesn't think that it would help, but Pam tells her that kids can cope with a lot, if things are explained to them.

..

At The Hungry Bite, Lou is waiting for Maxine, when Cheryl arrives and goes to sit with him. He says that he's waiting for someone else, but Cheryl asks if he's talking about Maxine. He asks if she's psychic, and she says that she is, and tells Lou that he's going to meet a charming, mature woman who will wear him down, and he'll enjoy it. She goes on to explain that Maxine is her friend, who was just standing in for her - so in effect, Lou accepted a date with her. Lou thinks it's very unfair of her to drag him away from work under false pretences, but Cheryl asks if he can't just give her a chance - she knows that she's pushy, but if he gives her a chance, he might find that he likes her almost as much as she likes him. He laughs and finally agrees to go on a date with her.

Mr Baker is waiting for Doug to sign the contract, telling him that he can oversee the Waterhole job at Lassiter's. Doug asks if they'll be keeping on all of his current employees, but Mr Baker says that he never agreed to that, explaining that the contract is just for the company name, reputation and existing contracts. Doug asks how many of his employees will be kept on, and Mr Baker says that they won't be keeping any of them.

..

..

Back at The Hungry Bite, Lou and Cheryl are off to her bar, just as Marcel walks in. Annalise is surprised when he starts talking to her in a French accent, and he admits that it's all a con to get the chef's job at the hotel. Annalise introduces herself, and he says that his name's Mark Gottlieb - Annalise then mentions that her bosses have the same surname and wonders if they know each other. Mark's surprised to hear that Stephen owns the place, and swears Annalise to secrecy as he tells her that he's Stephen's brother.

Featured Regular Characters: Doug Willis, Pam Willis, Gaby Willis, Lou Carpenter, Philip Martin, Julie Martin, Hannah Martin, Beth Brennan, Annalise Hartman

Guest Cast: Caroline Gillmer as Cheryl Stark, Bruce Samazan as Mark Gottlieb, Justin D'Orazio as Nicholas Greenway, Fred Barker as Mr Baker, Pauline Coutts as Maxine

Trivia Notes
First appearance of Bruce Samazan as Mark Gottlieb
Mark's first words are (after Annalise asks if she can get him anything else) "No, thanks. I can't even get through this."
When applying for the chef's position, Mark claims that his name is Marcel Amadieu and that he's from Paris. He says that he's worked at the Paris Ritz and The Connaught in London
Fred Barker, who plays Mr Baker in this episode, would return as Barry Reeves in 1999, as Barry Taylor in 2003 and as Norm Hastings in 2007
Pauline Coutts, who plays Maxine in this episode, previously appeared in 1992 as Mrs Cunningham and earlier in 1993 as Angela Starkey

Summary by Steve

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