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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Catching Up on Dennis Waterman's Life
I knew Dennis back in 1963 when he was in Hollywood filming "Fair Exchange at the Desilu Studios." He was 15, I think, I was a few years older and in the same profession as he. During that time, I was also introduced to his mother, Rose, and his two sisters. Four years later I visited him in London, what a change, from youngsters to young adults -- both of us. I stayed...
Published on 4 Sept. 2003 by Stephen Lodge

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3.0 out of 5 stars At Times Reads like A Reply To A Divorce petition
It was unusal to have a book interspersed with the comments of friends.It seemed to be a fairly innocent device.However towards the later part of the book it seemed rather like Waterman using his friends in rebuttal to allegations made by his former wife Rula Lenska.It all seems rather strange to have an ex wife come into print to say that Waterman did not hit her when he...
Published 8 months ago by Wingate


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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Catching Up on Dennis Waterman's Life, 4 Sept. 2003
By 
Stephen Lodge "Steve" (Rancho Mirage, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Reminder (Paperback)
I knew Dennis back in 1963 when he was in Hollywood filming "Fair Exchange at the Desilu Studios." He was 15, I think, I was a few years older and in the same profession as he. During that time, I was also introduced to his mother, Rose, and his two sisters. Four years later I visited him in London, what a change, from youngsters to young adults -- both of us. I stayed with Dennis and his friend, Mike, on Hammersmith Road, in Hammersmith, for a few weeks, and had a great time. I was an actor back then and running around with Dennis and his friends proved to be a learning experience for me. Over the years I lost touch with him, and it was through this book "reMINDER," that I was able to catch up on his life and career. I found the read to be quite interesting. It brought me up to date on an old friend without benefit of transatlantic postage. The book was well written and kept my interest, old friend, or not. For me, it truly was a page-turner.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read, 22 Nov. 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Reminder (Hardcover)
Reminder is an incredibly readable and honest account of the life of one of Britain's favourite actors. I'm sure I'm not the only person who, although a Dennis Waterman fan, had no idea how fascinating his life has been - from his south London upbringing to his elevation to stardom. A funny, enthralling , sometimes sad, honest read. I highly recommend it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read from beginning to end., 3 Nov. 2000
This review is from: Reminder (Hardcover)
As a big fan of both Minder and the Sweeney I only brought it to read the chapters on those shows, which only amounts to about 20% of the book. So obviously for me these were the best parts of the text, revealing some interesting behind the scene incidents about the shows. I only wish he had written more about them. Nevertheless I decided to look at the rest and what a joy it was. Reminder is sort of part autobiography and part biography, with others he grafted with chipping in comments on the actor and his life. This may seem like a cop out, but it does make for engaging reading in what may have otherwise been a one viewpoint account.
Previously I thought Dennis was just a run of the mill actor who was just fortunate to be the sidekick of more distinguished actors in the form of George Cole and John Thaw. After reading Reminder my opinion changed as I discovered how much work he puts into each performance to make it both entertaining and dramatic. There are also plenty of anecdotes to make you chuckle along the way. So all in all, the book portrays Dennis as the sort of chap that anyone would want to share a beer over or in the words of Arthur Daley he is a Diamond Geezer. Hopefully there will be a sequel telling us more about his Minder and the Sweeney work or even better, the memoirs of George Cole must be "well overdue". Anyway this book is well worth acquiring.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely fantastic. Revealing, funny, honest, warm., 9 April 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Reminder (Hardcover)
Having been Dennis's number one fan since 1975 I didn't expect to learn much more from "Reminder" than I already know about the man........ but I was wrong. I had no idea what a huge number and range of stage and film credits he has, everything from Cinderalla's Buttons, to Sarotaga's polygamist...
I have always been appalled at the way the tabloid press have treated Dennis, particularly the rubbish they have printed about his relationship with his father and Rula Lenska. Because of the power of the press Dennis has always been in a no-win situation and largely been unable to defend himself. Contrary to the views of one of the other reviewers, this is where the inclusion of 'biographical' material from family and friends is far from being a cop-out - it actually lends a huge amount of weight to what Dennis has written. Were it not for the biographical material, it would be easy to discount some of Dennis's opinions on things that have happened in his life by saying "that's only one of the story, isn't it?". It isn't, however, because you get the views of lots of family, friends, and even ex-wives, and they don't pull any punches either.
This is a thoroughly entertaining and revealing book. I've read it twice and doubtless will read it again. It's not just good because I'm a fan, it is also extremely well written, contains lots of hilarious anecdotes and escapades, but above all, it is brutally honest. If you know nothing about Dennis Waterman as a man before reading this book, you will learn that he is an ordinary human being who, like all of us, has made mistakes in his life. Many of these have been driven by a craving for love and affection denied him in childhood. You will also learn that he is intelligent (contrary to his insistence on putting himself down) and extremely professional. He is, of course, sport mad - and this is where I must raise one dispute with Dennis - in my book it's down with the Blues, and Up the Hammers (he'll know what I mean........). Brilliant. How about another book when you reach 60, Dennis?
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT book, GREAT read, COMPELLING story!, 12 Feb. 2010
By 
This review is from: Reminder (Hardcover)
Reminder is really an excellent read. Dennis Waterman is as entertaining and enjoyable writing a book as he is acting a part. I am a newer Waterman fan, having recently discovered The Sweeney, which led to Minder, On The Up and then New Tricks. I enjoyed Dennis so much in these shows that I had to see more of him and that in turn led me to this book.

It is a true revelation. Being an American, I well remember Johnny Carson making Rula Lenska jokes back in the day, but had no idea WHO she was. After reading what I would consider to be a fair and honest accounting of things (since Dennis let his other Ex's contribute to the book) I can safely say I wish I never DID know who she was, and even more so I feel so terribly bad for Dennis having to have experienced that debacle. On screen he seems like such a warm, friendly and fun loving guy. It is very nice to know that he is indeed as he appears on the screen.

His whole life has been most fascinating. The Television show he did in the states back in the 60's was filmed at what is now known as Sunset Gower Studios, but was then Desilu. I was under contract with Warner Brothers records in the late 70's (our album flopped and you never heard of me) and we rehearsed in one of the sound stages there. Makes me wonder if Dennis was once working there. I can certainly picture him there as a young boy, making his mark and hanging out with Burt Reynolds and Judy Carne. COOL!

His family story was very interesting, at times both highly entertaining and very poignant as well. Honestly, I am no sports fan, but I found myself hanging on his every word including the accounts of his beloved football and golf. I was also happy to find out Dennis is a pub man and I can sure picture him with his friends over endless pints, jokes and stories.

I am one of the few who have read this book without ever knowing anything about Dennis Waterman before reading it, other than the vibe he puts out from the screen and the obvious quality of his work. From George , to Terry , and now Jerry, he has played some of my most favorite television characters and he has written a book that stands up with all his previous work.

I was amazed to learn of all his stage acting as well. This guy has been at it since early childhood and has worked with so many of the 'greats' that it had my head spinning. And all the time, Dennis seems to retain a certain humbleness that ingratiates himself to me even more.

Now , when I pop in an early Minder or the latest New Tricks, my enjoyment AND my deep appreciate for the great talent and person who is Dennis Waterman will forever be enhanced after reading his stirring memoir. THANKS for all you have given us Dennis and for all you keep doing. CHEERS! ( I think you should have told Rula to "shut it" !! Who knows, maybe you did eh?)
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Making Mistakes And Addmitting Them, 29 Dec. 2001
By 
Derek Stiles (Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Reminder (Paperback)
Starting out as a child actor and becomming a polished adult actor, but on the way wounding and hurting people and getting hurt him self.Being down in the dumps and going through a period of feeling like absolute rubbish , because of his personal life experiences, he climbs back into contention and becomes an established actor of repute. This book shows the reader that not every thing in the garden is rosy. Some times you get floored but always you must get up and go on.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Understanding the man, not just his characters, 12 May 2009
This review is from: Reminder (Paperback)
Like other reviewers I bought this mainly because The Sweeney and Minder were such iconic programmes as I grew up, and I was a huge Waterman fan. Latterly my children have been introduced to him via New Tricks. Like others I wasn't fully aware of the body of work he had beyond theses TV programmes. That comes over quite clearly from this book. It is also very honest about his personal life, warts and all. He is very honest in admitting his mistakes. Having finished it, I was left with the impression of a man who loves his profession, but loves living life more, and that if he had really wanted it he could have been a huge international star. The book is written in an easy going way, and the observations from friends, colleagues and family that pepper the book really give an insight into the man.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars REMINDER, 4 Feb. 2011
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This review is from: Reminder (Hardcover)
Great to read about one of my favourite actors. Unfortunately the story is only up to the late 90s so doesn't reflect the past decade when he found success again with New Tricks. Hope he plans to write a further instalment of his autobiography so we can garner further information about this fine actor.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What A Geezer., 30 May 2010
By 
A. Tomlinson - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Reminder (Hardcover)
This is a good account of Dennis Watermans life, from his humble-ish begginings to stardom. His family seemed to be fairly well connected in the showbiz game, which of course makes all the difference. For me , a fan for many years, Dennis was at his best in support roles, not as lead character,this panned out over the years, first in The Sweeney, and then ( although not intended ) Minder. He played the lead in the World Cup A Captains Tale, in which he was excellent, he was greatly helped by magnificent scripts, and terrific co stars, John Thaw and George Cole. As for the book ,it tells his story warmly and interestingly, however for me not enough space is devoted to The Sweeney, or Minder the shows that made him famous. It is a shame because the years 1974 to 1984 were the best of Dennis Waterman and im sure there are many more tales of these two masterpieces of television still to tell. Worth a read.Reminder
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why does this fine memoir appear to be out of print?, 31 Mar. 2010
By 
J.D. Chaplin (East Anglia, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Reminder (Hardcover)
Until reading this book, written with a winning candour and no little wry wit, it was my considered opinion that there were only two memoirs worth reading, namely Nabakov's "Speak Memory" and "Experience" by Martin Amis. Well I now know there are three worth reading and, having given this my full consideration, I consider "Reminder" to be by some way the best.

The phrase, "sharp pencil,tight job" springs to mind, it is well crafted and structured and, uniquely, quotes the memories of friends and colleagues verbatim, giving the reader a hotline to the opinions of the great and the good.

I deliberately read it very slowly, only 10-20 pages at a time, such is the turnover of events you need time to digest it all! There are many annecdotal treasures here but I would draw out the following gems.

- When Dennis works on a play with Sir Ralph Richardson, the late and great actor decides to refer to Dennis as "Quink" in reference to the coincidence between his surname and the "other" pen company. Good work!

- Dennis does a film with Richard Harris, who remains on the wagon throughout until the final days filming wraps, where upon he immediately opens a crate of red wine and "does the lot" with the Diirector. Thats the way to do it!

- The sections on Minder are riveting. It is tremendous fun to witness how Dennis and George Cole cannot comprehend each others rules re drinking whilst working; George favouring a no booze till the jobs done and I'm home and dry approach, Dennis favouring 3 large VATs (though George does concede this never impacts the quality of the work).

It is puzzling why this fine actor has not been honoured or feted by his industry in quite the way say that say David Jason has. I can only conclude that Minder being shown on ITV may have been deemed slightly too populist, who knows?

What does shine through in this book is how far you can go in life if you exhibit the wonderful generosity of spirit to your fellow men (and many women) that Dennis has and continues to do. I'm not suprised he spends half his time in the "Battle Cruiser", most people would after all want to buy Dennis a pint. Indeed in mentioning to people I was reading this book I discovered how many people are fans. An old friend of mine from South London, who only usually gets enthusiastic about two things (watching Chelsea and the first of many pints of strong larger)used to bang on endlessly about "Up the Junction" and Dennis(this was a man who on his own admission hated films!). What is more on mentioning the book to my old man he started talking about "how good he was as a kid" and something about "a film with trolleys".

With the richly deserved success of "New Tricks" surely it is time for this to be republished. Who knows Dennis may even get the time to update it! How will he improve on that title though? "Reminder" remains unsurpassed. It's a vexing question what he would call the update, we'll have to wait and see I suppose?

May he always raise a glass and make us smile.
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Reminder by Dennis Waterman (Hardcover - 26 Oct. 2000)
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