“Come Back All Is Forgiven” is the sixth episode of the first season of Mind Your Language. It was first broadcast on the 3rd of February 1978.
Gladys, who accidentally read Mr. Brown’s date of birth off his paperwork, wishes him a happy birthday when he shows up to teach his class. His students, who also learned it was his birthday from Gladys, wish him a happy birthday and give him some gifts: he gets an apple strudel from Anna, a garlic salami from Giovanni, eau de toilette from Danielle, a gift voucher to Arod’s (a second-hand shop, not the luxury department store) from Ali, a sacred cowbell from Jamila, a copy of Mao Zedong’s Little Red Book from Su-Lee and pens from everyone else. Miss Courtney calls Mr. Brown into her office to remind him that his month’s trial is up, and since she prefers female teachers, she tells him that he isn’t suitable for the class and replaces him with Miss Hardacre.
Mr. Brown tells his students that he has been terminated, much to their disappointment. Miss Hardacre arrives soon after, and they plan to get rid of her so Mr. Brown can come back. They do so by giving her the silent treatment and laugh at her when she accidentally sits on Anna’s apple strudel. Miss Hardacre insists on taking her coffee in the principal’s office and starts spending her time looking over the school’s prospectus to find ways to reorganise it, making Miss Courtney worry that she plans on taking over the school. When Mr. Brown comes back to the school for a visit and runs into Miss Courtney, they both want to save face by not having to ask if he can be reinstated, but he immediately accepts when Miss Courtney asks him if he wants his old job back. When he returns to the classroom, the four students who bought him pens for his birthday reveal that they exchanged them and give him his new gifts: four wallets.
(The students are giving Mr. Brown the birthday presents they bought him.)
Ali: Oh no, inside you will be finding a gift voucher from Arod’s.
Mr. Brown: Really?
Ali: Yes please, and you can be buying anything whatsoever you are wishing.
Mr. Brown: Really?
Mr. Brown: From Harrods of Knightsbridge?
Ali: No please, Arod’s of Camden. Abraham Arod’s second-hand shop, nothing over £1.
(Miss Courtney has just informed Mr. Brown that Miss Hardacre will be replacing him.)
Mr. Brown: Yeah? Well, in that case, I suggest you get Miss “Much More Suitable” Hardacre to take over tonight, ’cause I’m going home.
Miss Courtney: You can’t just walk out like that!
Mr. Brown: Oh, yes I can. And I won’t say it’s been a pleasure, because it hasn’t. All I can say is… (Hangs Jamila’s cowbell around Miss Courtney’s neck.) …in India, you’d be sacred.
Mr. Brown: I have been fired. I have been given the bullet!
Giovanni: Santa Maria! She tried to shoot you?
Giovanni: A strike like-a da big onions.
Anna: Vot onions?
Giovanni: The trade onions.
Miss Courtney: You with the turban, what is this?
Miss Courtney: It is not a pencil.
Ranjeet: Looking like a pencil to me.
Miss Courtney: Let’s try again, what is this?
Giovanni: A finger.
- Muslims aren’t allowed to drink alcohol, but when Giovanni asks who wants it, Ali goes to get it like the rest of the class.
- This is the first episode that cannot possibly take place on its air date.
- In “How’s Your Father”, Mr. Brown states that he was left at an orphanage on an Easter Monday when he was about 2 weeks old. This makes it impossible for him to have to been born on February 3 – if the timeline is otherwise consistent with the episodes’ air dates, he was born in mid- to late March of 1947 or 1948 instead.