"Rodney Come Home" was the 1990 Christmas special of Only Fools And Horses and was the impetus for the storylines to come for the 7th series. This episode saw Rodney Trotter and Cassandra Trotter hit marriage troubles, and Rodney even asking "Miss Kwik Fit" a receptionist at the local garage out for a date. Del was worried about his marriage, and also the cheap printing he was buying from Rodney's father in law Alan Parry.
It is early 1990 and 6 months have passed since The Jolly Boys Outing (25th December 1989), which was set last summer. Rodney Trotter is living back with wife Cassandra Trotter again. Raquel Turner is now living with Derek "Del Boy" Trotter at The Trotters flat. Rodney and Cassandra still have problems between them and she is still a bit angry at him for punching her boss Steven The Yuppie several months previously, even though it was a misunderstanding. Rodney says to Raquel that Cassandra threw him out for a few days. Raquel has just got back from a stage tour of America. Del Boy is selling toy dolls that play an Oriental lullaby. Albert Trotter is Del's lookout, and as usual he is moaning and using his "I fought a war for you lot" excuse.
One night, Rodney arrives home and is jealous because Cassandra is going to The Bank's badminton concert, resenting the fact that Cassandra is pursing a great career in the bank. They also argue about the fact that Rodney wants his dinner on the table when he gets in from work instead of having to cook himself. He says Cassandra is hardly ever home as she is in and out of the flat like a bluebottle with the runs. They row after Rodney says that any other women would run round after him and do him a pie and chips when he felt like it. Cassandra says to Rodney that he should go and find one of these women. Rodney storms out. He goes to the garage and gets his bike out, but leaves the door wide open and the light on, and at night time as well, virtually inviting thieves.
Back at Del's flat Del is trying to ask Raquel if she will "stamp his card". Albert has burned his beard. He exits to the kitchen to eat his dinner. Del gets to the moment where he is about to ask Raquel if she will start sleeping with him in his bedroom when an angry Rodney storms into the flat saying him and Cassandra are over for good. Trouble is he has said that 3 times in the last 6 months. Del asks Albert to set up a bed for Rodney on the settee as Raquel is still sleeping in Rodney's old room. Del has a private word in the kitchen with Rodney saying Raquel is still in the spare bedroom - so Rodney will be sleeping on the sofa. Rodney is sure that Del will soon crack the case and get Raquel sleeping with him.
A week later, at a nightclub, as Del and Raquel dance, Rodney is getting drunk with his friends Mickey Pearce and Chris, which leaves Del concerned. As Del dances, he watches Rodney making a plonker of himself with his mates. Del says he is worried about him as he spent much of his life bringing Rodney up. Del says "Michael Jackson's got Bubbles. I got Rodney".
Del calls Rodney away from his mates, wanting a word. He tries to make Rodney see sense but Rodney refuses to listen. Rodney has had several days off in the past week or so with hangovers. Del says he has booked the van in at the local garage and for Rodney to take it down there for him, seeing as he may have another day off tomorrow with a hangover. As Rodney returns to his mates, Del has another go at persuading Raquel to sleep with him. She says she sleeps with the light on still at her age. Del says if she is ever afraid of the dark in future he could hold her hand. Raquel agrees to sleep with Del in his bed from now on but tells him to keep it a secret. As Del and Raquel leave he calls across to Rodney at the bar saying he can sleep in his own room tonight. Rodney cheers and says "Nice one Del, you cracked it at last". Del looks stunned and Raquel gives a look as if to say she wishes the floor would swallow her up.
The next evening, back at the flat Rodney is getting ready to go out. Albert has a joke with him and Rodney leaves in a huff, to get changed into his suit. Del Boy comes in and asks Raquel "Where is that idiot"? meaning Rodney. As Raquel is making coffee Del has a quiet word with Albert saying that when Rodney took the van down the garage there was a young receptionist working there called Tanya and Rodney has asked her out on a date, foolishly following Mickey Pearce's advice to make Cassandra jealous. Del says the mechanic told him all this when he went to pick the van up. Del says to Albert that when Rodney tells them about Tanya, whom Del says he would not say no to, to look horrified, so it will go against the Trotter family moral code.
Rodney comes into the lounge in his suit, then says he is going out on a date with a girl and Albert fails miserably in looking horrified, more scared "Hurrrgggggggghhhh A Girl!!!!!" when Del shouts "A Girl!!!" in a horrified tone. Del almost threatens to whack Albert for acting scared rather than horrified, as Albert had kept pretending to be scared rather than horrified every time Rodney mentions he is off out tonight and it may be with a girl. Del tries to talk Rodney round, even bringing up the theory that women are dodgy and spread all sorts of diseases, and Del even resorts to calling Tanya an old bow wow from the Exhaust Centre. Rodney feels insulted and storms out. Raquel storms to her bedroom, insulted by Del's pig ignorant chauvinistic views.
Del and Albert chat and Albert says the cinema is the ABC Cinema in the high street, right opposite Cassandra's evening school and tonight she goes. Albert says Cassie may see Rodney and this Tanya girl queuing outside. Del says Rodney is doing it in the hope that will happen, he wants to make Cassandra jealous and it is down to Mickey Pearce's stupid advice, which Rodney foolishly took. Del says he needs to go to her flat and persuade her not to go to evening school. He visits Cassandra and tells her that Rodney has asked a girl out on a date, in Del's words "some tart who he has taken to see Honey I Shrunk The Kids". Cassandra cries, and Del tells her that Raquel will phone later and help cheer her up.
Later, back at the flat at midnight, as Del tries to remove the voice boxes from the Chinese dolls, he gets a telephone call from Rodney, who took Del Boy's advice, cancelled his date, saying he is a married man and in love with his wife, and has decided to wait at his flat for Cassandra, so they can reconcile. Before Del can warn him about what he just did, Rodney just hangs up the phone. Del admits to Raquel and Albert that he told Cassandra, and he has to quickly drive over to their flat to see if he can catch Cassandra and say to her that he has made a mistake before she sets eyes on "That w...wally".
Del quickly drives over to Rodney and Cassandra's flat. Cassandra returns home, only to be greeted by a smiling Rodney, but the reunion is short-lived as Cassandra kicks Rodney out of their flat, but not before throwing a wine bottle at him and whacking him in the shin with a badminton racquet. Del arrives too late.
Del and Rodney have a massive argument outside the flat. Rodney calls Del a grass for telling Cassandra. Rodney then says he changed his mind about Tanya when he got to the bottom of the lift. He made a stupid fret out of anger and frustration. Rodney has been locked out of his flat and him and Del calm down and Rodney says how they have both messed this right up. Del comforts Rodney, saying he will take him back to his flat, and they walk off together into the night.
- Derek "Del Boy" Trotter - David Jason
- Rodney Trotter - Nicholas Lyndhurst
- Albert Trotter - Buster Merryfield
- Cassandra Trotter - Gwyneth Strong
- Raquel Turner - Tessa Peake Jones
- Mickey Pearce - Patrick Murray
- Chris - Tony Marshall
- Alan Parry - Denis Lil
- Michelle - Paula Ann Bland
- Woman In Club - Jean Harrington
- DJ - Simon Evans
- Frank - Philip Blaine
Previous Episode The Robin Flies At Dawn (1st December 1990)
Next Episodes The Sky's The Limit (30th December 1990)
- Even though the episode was shown on the 25th December 1990, it was set in early 1990 as 6 months had passed since the beano to Margate in The Jolly Boys Outing. Honey I Shrunk The Kids premiered in the UK in February 1990.
- Del saying nasty things about Tanya in a ploy to make Rodney dump her and return to his wife was similar to when Del purposely mucked up Rodney's relationship with Lady Victoria 4 years earlier in A Royal Flush, as Del knew that Rodney had not a hope in hell of marrying a royal rich lady and that Special Branch would strongly disapprove of his drugs conviction.
- A line about "shaking hands with Princess Di" has been cut from the DVD Region 2 version. This was due to the tragic death of Princess Diana in August 1997. This line about Princess Di has been left in when this episode is shown on GOLD, a popular Sky TV station which shows classic UK sitcoms.
- In The Story Of OFAH from 1998, it is said that "Rodney Come Home" was the launchpad for Series 7, and Series 7 would not have had the storyline sit did if not for this episode. It was noted that "Rodney Come Home" was an unusually downbeat episode, due to Rodney's marriage problems but it did set the stage for future plots. Yet again the subject of AIDS was bought up, similar to Sickness And Wealth (5th February 1989) where Del thought he had AIDS due to stomach pains and his promiscuous past but he was diagnosed with IBS. In "Rodney Come Home" Del was his usual flippant style when he mocked AIDS and blamed women for it, although he was trying to scare Rodney out of his extra marital date.
- Broadwalk Shopping Centre (escalators, precinct, seats)
- Printing works (Rodney Trotter's office, secretary area, factory floor)
- Road outside printing works
- Rodney and Cassandra's flat (living room/dining room, kitchen, hallway)
- Garage block (Rodney's garage)
- The Trotters flat (living room, kitchen, entrance hallway)
- Nightclub (bar, dance floor, corridor to entrance/exit)
- Exteror of block of flats where Rodney and Cassandra live (entrance area)
- Hallway outside Rodney and Cassandra's flat
- Street near block of flats