Season 8 Episode 23

Episode 347


Sky One Transmission Date:

Sunday 27th March 2005


Directed By

Rob MacGillivray


GS: Joel Brooks (Craig Charles)  Bailiff (John Carver)


Fletch has enlisted the help of Joel Brooks to put his and Dean's 'Remove Barker' plan into action. They will use Fletch's old youth team mate Carl Caskey, who is out of contract as bait, although Fletch makes it clear he doesn't want Carl to get hurt in this. Fletch goes inside and sees Carl’s wife Nicole and his daughter Savannah, before Caskey tells him of how Charlton have let him go and now doesn't have a penny to his name. Fletch says he may be able to get him back at Harchester, and Caskey excitedly tells Nicole and Savannah to Fletch's anguish. Don is at first unwilling to bother with Caskey, but is talked round by Dean and Joel until he agrees to a trial. As part of the plan, Fletch tells Caskey who is unaware to pretend they haven't seen each other for years.



Joel introduces Caskey to Don and is told he has a weeks' trial and possibly a reserve game. Don’s attention is turned when he notices Nicole through the window. Caskey is still fairly impressive on the training pitch, but when it comes to attacking the ball Carl has lost his confidence and Don tells Dean he's no longer interested. Fletch reminds Dean that Don wouldn't have taken a bribe if Caskey had been good enough to sign and this isn't the end. Caskey knows he wasn't good enough and tells Nicole he has failed both her and Savannah and the house will have to go. Joel goes to Don's office and tells him how desperate the Caskey's are for Carl to get this contract, even talking about slipping Don some of the signing on fee. He tells Don he could end up with 75K in his back pocket. Don asks whether he has just offered him a bribe to which Joel says he did. Don then admits he won't get out of bed for anything less than 100 grand. Dean is worried about handing over their own cash to Joel, who tells them once they have Barker's admission on tape and his letter of resignation they will get their money back. Joel then shows them the spyware Parker pen that doubles as a camera and will capture Don’s actions. Nicole meanwhile, has arranged to meet with Don to discuss Carl. She explains their situation, with Don then adding how their offer of 50% of the signing fee is generous enough. Nicole is confused, and says they cannot give Don a cut as they need every penny of the money. Don presses her for more and gets out of Nicole that Fletch approached them saying Harchester were interested. Don realises what’s going on and tells Nicole there are other ways she can help, and strokes her cheek. Nicole is appalled and runs out.


Don tells Joel he won't be signing Carl and lets him know that he's aware of Fletch's involvement. Don turns the tables and tells Joel he can have half of the £50K present and when this is over he can do Harchester's deals too (although he’s off to Corrie and we don’t see him again). Joel goes back to Fletch's room and plays the tape, only all they get is static fuzz. Joel tells them he must have forgotten to switch it on and Dean flies at him, after Fletch says Don has their money in unmarked notes. At training the next day, Don tells Caskey that he'll have to pass on him. Carl pleads with him to reconsider, and to at least give him the reserve team game but Don isn't interested. At the Caskey's, Savannah opens the door to three men who trick her into thinking they are from the club, and lets them into the house. Inside they begin removing furniture and reveal they are actually bailiffs. Carl and Nicole arrive home and Nicole is forced to hand over her car keys. As they sit inside their empty house Carl tells Nicole that in training today he was his old self, but Barker still didn't want to know, and he doesn't know what else he could have done. Nicole later phones Don and says they should meet up over what they discussed and Don says in return he'll be able to use Carl in the reserve team game tonight. He then tells a shameful Nicole to wear something nice. That night Caskey is surprised to see Fletch in the reserve team dressing room but is pleased to be playing with him again. Caskey and Nicole both get ready for their big night(s) and before leaving the house Nicole takes her wedding ring off. Nicole undresses for Don in his room and they make one-sided love whilst Caskey is on fire at the reserve team game.


Nicole returns home and showers, before finding Carl in the bedroom. He says he thought she'd left him after finding her ring. She tells him she wasn't at the game because she was too nervous but congratulates him on scoring twice. After her encounter with Don Nicole isn't in the mood and tells Carl she's tired. The next morning Carl and Nicole meet Dean and Don in the boardroom to sign Caskey's contract. Don tells Carl that his signing fee will be £60,000 due to him being out injured. Dean then goes through the terms which show that Carl will only be paid every time he plays. Nicole is confused and Don tells her Carl is there on the merit of one good performance, but if he cannot deliver weekly he'd have to let him go. Nicole is horrified at the prospect of having to carry on sleeping with Don and runs out into the toilets. Gina goes after her and Nicole tells her through tears what Don has made her do. Outside Gina speaks with Carl, telling him the pressure of it all has just gotten to Nicole and to take her home. Barker then comes out and creepily asks Gina if she is OK, to which Gina replies that she's going home as she suddenly feels sick. Gina returns to Fletch and tells him what Nicole told her. A furious Fletch goes straight to Dean shouting about how Don has stolen his money and raped his best mate's wife, and how he wants Barker’s blood. Dean says all they've got to do is let Don try it again and with Gina’s help they concoct a plan. Gina explains to Nicole all she has to do is be in the same room as Don one more time, and a broach she will wear will record everything Barker says. In his room Nicole tells Don he disgusts her and she slaps him, only for Don to pull her hair back and tell her it didn't stop her before. Nicole goes to run out and Don holds her by the arm, stating that Carl won't take to the pitch tomorrow or any game again until she sleeps with him. Nicole returns to Fletch and Gina, where with Dean they watch the tape and celebrate what will surely be the end of Don Barker at Harchester.




·          First appearances of Carl Caskey (Stephen Rahman Hughes), his American-born wife Nicole Caskey (Cassandra Bell) and Savannah Caskey (Hannah Tointon).


Best Known For: Stephen Rahman Hughes has had an impressive stage career and played the lead role of Akaash, in the West End musical "Bombay Dreams" from 2002-2004. He also had a guest role in "Emmerdale" (2006-07) as DI Vikesh Dasari. Cassandra Bell has modelled for products by Kylie Minogue and appeared in music videos by Michelle Branch ("Goodbye To You") and Muse ("Nights of Cydonia"). Hannah Tointon is Kara Tointon’s younger sister and after her stint as Savannah goes on to play Katy Fox on “Hollyoaks” from April 2007, leaving 12 months later. She recently appeared in “The InBetweeners” (2010).


·          Logic: Charlie Taylor, Wes Caine, Shaun Piper etc all from the first team join Fletch for the reserve game. Clearly only there to add up the team numbers. The sight of Barker’s bare backside should also come under Logic. Did we really need to see that?!!


Quotes: Don (to Nicole): "That's a beautiful dress... take it off!".  Barker is so, so creepy in this episode.


·          Continuity: Has Fletch forgotten what he made Kelly James do in #196? Maybe his reaction is down to him thinking more of the Caskey’s than he did Wes/Kelly. Fletch and Caskey were in the youth team together fifteen years ago. Caskey says this will be his first game as a pro-Dragon, and in 354: Caught In A Trap says Fletch has been his best mate for 16 years. This hints that Fletch and Caskey were together in the youth team at Addison Road between 1989-1992, and Caskey never made the first team while Fletch did.


Additional Info: Savannah argues with her father about wanting to attend her school’s sixth-form college, which suggests she is presently in her final year of high school. Carl was out of the game for two years with an injury to his knee. Caskey’s first wife, and Savannah’s mother is called Katie.


·          Soundtrack: Air: "Alone In Kyoto",  Feeder: "Piece by piece",  Fingathing: "You Fly Me",  Goldfrapp: "Deer Stop",  Kinobe: "Vanishing Point",  KoRn: "Word Up",  Queen: "It's A Beautiful Day.”


Screencaps from 8.23’s original broadcast on Sky One on 27/03/05.



At home with the Caskey's

 Not seen each other in years!



"You want me to do what?!"

 Joel is forced to cough up



Homeless with the Caskey's

 Fletch won't give up until he's

 got Barker




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