Extract from the Trainspotting programme showing The Lady's Man listed under Michelle Gomez's biography

Some months ago I began searching for a television programme called "The Ladies' Man" or "The Lady's Man" as it's variously named in a number of Michelle Gomez's bios in theatre programmes, including the one shown for Trainspotting, as well as in a BBC press release from 2004. IMDB has no such programme listed for her and just the name and indication that it was a Granada production isn't much to go on. However, with some detective work and a bit of lateral thinking, I identified a strong candidate shortly before the world shut down to pandemia.

IMDB and the BFI catalogue both list an episode of a series called "Crime Story" that fits the bill. Titled "The Ladies Man - Archibald Hall", it was made by Granada and is alternatively known by the variant spelling. It also fits into Michelle's timeline supported by the chronology of her other productions listed in the same biographies. But unfortunately, there is very little information about this show online, no complete cast list or character list and I haven't been able to find a copy or even a clip of it anywhere.

It was, however, such a close fit that I needed to confirm one way or another whether this show is indeed a missing piece of Michelle Gomez's early filmography, so there was only one thing to do. The BFI Mediatheque finally reopened today after many months of pandemic so I booked a viewing slot and hopped on a train up to London! The journey was a couple of hours each way but well worth it because, thanks to the Mediatheque's extensive archives and comfortable facilities, I was able to watch "The Ladies Man - Archibald Hall" and can finally confirm that not only is this programme a missing piece of her filmography, it was actually a big role for Michelle so early in her screen career. As Annette, the barmaid who sees the darker side of the bogus butler after she becomes romantically involved with his former jailmate and lover, Michelle appears in several scenes throughout the film and interacts with all the main characters. Her hair is also something to behold and should probably have been credited separately.

I have now proudly added The Ladies' Man to the screen listings and I'm feeling very pleased with myself!

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