Ofah as one door

Del rescues a rare butterfly. But Denzil puts paid to that...

"As One Door Closes" was the 7th episode of the 5th series of Only Fools And Horses, airing on the 4th April 1985 with a viewing figure of 14.2 million.


Derek "Del Boy" Trotter and Rodney Trotter have put in an offer for some Louvre doors off one of Del's friends Teddy Cummings. He has to raise £2000 for them. Rodney is reading a magazine and says the other day he saw an article about a rare butterfly, and that one was spotted in Greenwich Park the other day. Albert Trotter laughs at their latest scheme, saying they have one of them for a start. Rodney says it is a sample. Del realises it is getting late and they need to go and sell their super deluxe trimming combs.

At the market, Del is trying to convince the punters to buy one of his trimming combs. One punter asks if it is sharp. Del demonstrates it on Rodney, who is busy unpacking. Del lops a chunk off Rodney's hair. The punters laugh then walk off. Del spots Denzel who says Corrine keeps promising to leave him but every time he comes home she is still there. Denzel says he is now out of work then walks off, saying he will see them around. Rodney reveals that Denzel was made redundant. Del says that means Denzel has redundancy money. Denzel overhears that and runs but with Del in hot pursuit. Del says he will make Denzel rich, saying he is his friend. In the end Del gets Denzel drunk and Denzel hands his redundancy money to Del. Del has clinched the Louvre door deal. Rodney picks them up and loads them into the van.

Del comes back to the flat in a happy mood. He says Denzel will benefit in the end. Del gets a phonecall from Brendan O'Shaughnessey who says the architect has changed his mind and wants Victorian Panel doors now. Brendan says Del can do what he wants with the doors. Del is mad, saying he knew everything was going too smoothly. Del reveals the doors were hookie. Albert goes onto the balcony and sees 5 West Indian men get out of a Rover. They are Denzel's brothers. The Trotters quickly run for it, escaping from the towerblock by a back door on the ground floor.

They go to Peckham Cemetery. Del wants to pay the grave of his late mum Joan Mavis Trotter a visit. It is in fact a monument. Del says he comes here in times of trouble, and that his late mum always seems to come up with an answer. Rodney sees a butterfly and takes the cut out of a photo of the rare butterfly in his magazine out and compares the features. He says it is one of them he saw in the magazine. Del and Albert come over and Del looks at the photo and the real butterfly. Del says he knew Mum would come up trumps. Albert gives Del his hat, Del throws it, hoping it will land over the butterfly but it misses and the butterfly flies off. Del and Rodney chase it, Del even climbs on a roof to try and get it but falls off into trees. Rodney is more worried about the butterfly than whether Del is OK.

The butterfly lands on a lily pad in a pond. Del persuades Rodney to go in and get it. Rodney does, and cups his hands round the butterfly. Del says the butterfly is a bit wet but will survive. Denzel rides nearby on his roller skates. Del says he has his money. Denzel slaps his hands on Del's saying "Great, see you down the pub later", crushing the butterfly. This angers Rodney. Del then tries to sell the spectators some Louvre doors.


Main cast

Guest cast

Previous Episode Watching the Girls Go ByEdit

Next Episode White MiceEdit


  • The idea for the script was based on a true story of a rare butterfly that John Sullivan had read about.
  • This episode contains a rare instance of the show using video rather than film for location scenes. This came about because the location sequences in some of the earlier episodes this series (most notably "Hole in One") had been pre-filmed with Lennard Pearce prior to his death. When Buster Merryfield joined the show, the earlier episodes had to be re-filmed, which left them with only enough money to film half of the location sequences in this episode. The BBC agreed to cover the budget shortfall, but on the condition that video be used instead of film, due to its lower cost.
  • Paul Barber suggested that he did the final scene on roller skates, but then had to spend two weeks learning how to skate.


  • At the scene when the Trotters visit Joan's gravestone, the bench is several footsteps away and the ground directly behind the bench is clear, yet in "The Yellow Peril" when Del and Rodney visits Joan's grave, the bench is one step away from the elaborate gravestone, and also directly behind the bench are other gravestones, clearly a different cemetery.
  • When the Trotters are in the cemetery, Del says that Grandad is in the garden of "external peace", which surely means he was cremated, yet in "Strained Relations", he was buried.

Locations seenEdit