The first life of the man who was Lord Peter Wimsey, Bertie Wooster and starred in I’m Alright, Jack!
With the death of Ian Carmichael in 2010 one of the last links was lost with the golden age of British cinema. Carmichael starred alongside Terry-Thomas and Peter Sellers in the Boulting brothers’ classic satirical comedies I’m Alright, Jack! Private’s Progress and School for Scoundrels. He summed up, on screen and in life, the kind of Englishman who was beginning to emerge after the war – educated, not necessarily upper class, upwardly mobile and a study in good manners and a sense of fair play – and thus played the straight-man foil to the distracted ravings of his wilder co-stars.
Subsequently, he became Bertie Wooster in a highly successful television series based on P.G. Wodehouse’s Jeeves stories. He also made the part of Lord Peter Wimsey his own in another long-running adaptation of Dorothy L. Sayers’ famous detective novels, and was still acting on television well into his eighties alongside Susan Hampshire in ITV’s drama series The Royal.