The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin was a British sitcom starring Leonard Rossiter in the title role. The screenplay was adapted by David Nobbs from his own Reginald Perrin novels.
The original three series, all of the same name, were broadcast between 1976 and 1979, and a fourth, The Legacy of Reginald Perrin, followed in 1996.
The basis of the plot is the mid-life crisis experienced by Perrin as he becomes desperate to escape his dreary life as a sales executive at Sunshine Desserts. At the end of the first series he fakes his own suicide by leaving his clothes on a beach in Dorset and running into the sea - something that was later attempted in real life by John Stonehouse.
In the second series he remarries his wife, and they build a retail business ("Grot") which sells useless items, hoping that it will be an interesting failure. Instead, the useless items are snapped up as novelties, Grot becomes a runaway success, Reggie ends up employing all the staff from Sunshine Desserts including his former boss CJ. This causes the Perrins to fall into the same boredom that Reggie suffered before, so at the end of the second series they fake a joint suicide.
In the third series, Reggie and his wife open a therapy centre for bored middle-aged people.
The fourth series, made long after Leonard Rossiter's death, shows the effect of Reggie's legacy, a fortune left to his friends and family but with strange conditions attached.
Reggie Perrin fan site