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24 September 2014
Only Fools and Horses

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The Brothers Trotter by Steve Clark

The Trotter's enjoying cocktails Del has always been able to manipulate Rodney into helping him with his enterprises and however reluctant Rodney was, he never quite, certainly in his teens and twenties, found enough gumption to break away.

His business with Mickey Pearce never took off and he ended up back working for Del after his job with Cassandra's father Alan Parry proved too challenging.

"There's no real wonder though that Rodney never got his own enterprise off the ground," says Nicholas. "After all, who was his role model? Del Trotter. Poor Rodney was bound to fail."

Del has always been a yuppie

Even now Rodney is dependent on Del - and psychologists might argue that that all stems back to his total dependence on his older brother as a child. Yet there's no Machiavellian streak in Derek Trotter, it's just that being a yuppie before they were even invented, means he wants to get on and better himself - and help his brother.

That might not necessarily be what Rodney wants, and frequently isn't - but Del thinks he knows best, and as far as he's concerned the end justifies the means.

Being in control is what Del is used to, as he explained to Rodney in one of the most moving scenes in the programme's history, immediately following Grandad's funeral.

"I've survived all my life with a smile and a prayer. I'm Del Boy ain't I. Good old Del Boy, he got more bounce than Zebedee."

"I've survived all my life with a smile and a prayer. I'm Del Boy ain't I. Good old Del Boy, he got more bounce than Zebedee. 'Ere pal what you drinkin'? Go on Darlin' you 'ave one for luck.

That's me, that's Del Boy isn't it. Nothing ever upsets Del Boy. I've always played the tough guy. I didn't want to but I had to and I've played it for so long now that I don't know how to be anything else."

Of course over the years Del and Rodney have had more fallings out than Boycie has sold road worthy cars - but like most sibling rivalries and disagreements they never last forever.

Rodney and Del - poles apart

Only Fools might be fiction, but the causes of their bust-ups are firmly rooted in real life - with many recognizable areas of family disputes like money and relationships.

In many ways Del and Rodney are poles apart. Rodney has his hippy tendencies and is more caring and sharing, whereas Del is an unashamed - albeit largely failed - capitalist.

Of course, one possible reason for the pair's differences could be their parentage, as it has often been hinted at that they might not actually have the same father in Thicker Than Water (1983) and The Frog's Legacy (1987).

"Del and Rodney fight like cat and dog but actually they care about each other deeply," says Nicholas. There's a very strong bond with them and if the chips were down Rodney would die for him."

That didn't surprise David Jason. "Del's heart has always been in the right place," he says. "In terms of human relationships he is a diamond because he'd give you anything ultimately and he cares for his family and his friends."

By Steve Clark, author of The Only Fools and Horses Story

« « Back to part one of The Brothers Trotter.


Del Boy   Del Boy
Rodney   Rodney
Uncle Albert   Uncle Albert
Grandad   Grandad
Raquel   Raquel
Damien   Damien
Cassandra   Cassandra
Trigger   Trigger
Boycie   Boycie
Marlene   Marlene
Denzil   Denzil
Mike   Mike
Mickey   Mickey
Sid   Sid
Slater   Slater
Alan Parry   Alan Parry

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