The Benny Hill Show Wikia


The Great Pretender is an unidentified farm hand hired by royal assistants in an unidentified period of British history, possibly somewhere between the 14th and 16th Centuries.
During the wedding plans of King Henry (Benny Hill) to his future bride, two regents (Nicholas Parsons and Bob Todd) learn of a plot to kill him by his cousin, the Duchess Catherine of Whitworth (Clovissa Newcombe in a blonde wig) seeking to gain his throne. They go searching for a double through the countryside for a worthy lookalike for the king to foil the plan and eventually find him in the form of the unnamed farm hand. Teaching him etiquette and speech (By accident, one of them actually mocks their king's voice to get the right voice.), they soon pass him off to the Duchess, leaving him there to be killed by her.
Unfortunately, King Henry finds his misdirected invitation from the duchess and goes to meet his cousin. The two lookalikes wandering in and out of her dining room separately and oblivious to each other only ends up confusing her. It is later revealed (through the story-tellers) that a body is later tossed into the moat as another returns to the castle. Eventually, King Henry is successfully married to his French bride (Bettine Le Beau), and his regents rejoice in a plan gone well. However, after they depart, the king departs to his chambers with his new wife, his voice slipping back to that of the farm hand.


  • The Great Pretender and the dire King were both played by Benny Hill.
  • The King's Mother is played by Rita Webb.
  • One of the regents (the one played by Nicholas Parsons) is named Lord Albert.
  • The Ladybirds help pass along the story with brief passages in song.
  • Robin Hood, Casanova, The Count of Monte Cristo and the Messenger are other period-centric characters played by Benny Hill.