T-Bag Bounces Back Episode 6: Hi-Hat

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UK Air DateFri 27/02/1987, 4.20pm
Repeat ScreeningThurs 10/08/1989, 4.25pm
Copyright YearMCMLXXXVI (1986)
VTR Date15/09/1986
Fremantle Archive Ref35292 (series ref)
Consecutive Episode Number26
IMDB LinkEpisode page

T. Bag (Tallulah Bag)Elizabeth Estensen
T. ShirtJohn Hasler
DebbieJennie Stallwood
Hi-HatBurt Kwouk
The PrincessSusan Leong

Make UpAnn Briggs
Costume DesignerRaymond Childe
Graphic DesignerAlex Forbes
Stage ManagerBobby Webber
Production AssistantJoanna Stewart
Songs ByTerry Trower
Written ByLee Pressman
Grant Cathro
DesignerJohn Plant
ProducersCharles Warren
Leon Thau
DirectorLeon Thau

Debbie arrives in China near Hi Hat’s hat shop. He has a hat for the Princess from the Royal Pagoda. The Princess likes the hat but changes her mind so Hi Hat tries to add things to it and she likes the gold bell he has but only has one and the Princess wants a whole string of bells. Hi Hat steals Debbie’s bells and she must get them back from the Princess before T-Bag does.
The High-T Website synopsis
Debbie arrives in the land of China and meets a Princess who is made about hats - especially those with bells on. When T-Bag discovers that one of the bells on the hat is what she and Debbie want, she sends T-Shirt to get it.
TV Times listing

If you would like to contribute your favourite/funniest etc quotes from this episode please contact me.

My humble hat shop

Hi Hatt: Very nice that, even though I do say so myself. Very dapper, very elegant. The height of fashion, a subtle little number. Her highness, the Princess, will be tickled pink when she claps eyes on this. Aye aye, here she comes now.
The Princess: Excuse me. Good morning, good morning, good morning.
Hi Hatt: A thousand and one greetings your Highness. Welcome once again to my humble hat shop.
The Princess: Get up, get up. Never mind all that rubbish. Where's my hat, is my hat ready?
Hi Hatt: Ready and waiting your Highness. A magnificent hat, fit for a magnificent Princess.
The Princess: Yes, yes, yes, but where is it? Oh I can hardly wait.
Hi Hatt: Ta dah!
The Princess: Oh, words fail me, I'm speechless, I don't know what to say.
Hi Hatt: Well, say something.
The Princess: Oh I love it. It's fabulous, it's fantastic, it's sensational.
Hi Hatt: Phew, thank the stars for that. Here look, try it on.
The Princess: Oh yes, I can't wait. Oh Hi-Hatt, you've worked wonders, you really have.
Hi Hatt: Just a little something I ran up.
The Princess: You're a genius, that's what you are, a genius. Oh, let me see, let me see, ohh, it's stunning, it's divine.
Hi Hatt: You like it?
The Princess: Like it? I think it's heavenly.
Hi Hatt: Really?
The Princess: I love it, I adore it, I am mad about it. Huhh.
Hi Hatt: What's up?
The Princess: I've gone off it.
Hi Hatt: What?
The Princess: Yes. No, I don't like it anymore.
Hi Hatt: What happened?
The Princess: Nothing happened, I just... no, no.
Hi Hatt: What?
The Princess: There's something not right, something missing.
Hi Hatt: What's missing?
The Princess: I'm not sure.
Hi Hatt: I know, I know, here we are. A couple of feathers, one either side. How does that tickle you?
The Princess: No, no, no.
Hi Hatt: I know, I've got it, here we are. A nice bow on top, how about that? How's that?
The Princess: Hmm.
Hi Hatt: I know, here we are, I've got it. There, just the thing. Oh, perhaps not. Bobbles, buckles, buttons, bells.
The Princess: Yes, try that.
Hi Hatt: Bobbles?
The Princess: No, no, that little gold bell there. Try that, that looks promising. Oh yes, yes, now you're talking, that's it.
Hi Hatt: Yes of course, it's so obvious. Now why didn't I think of that?
The Princess: Yes, yes.... no.
Hi Hatt: What's the matter this time?
The Princess: One bell looks silly, what I want is a whole string of them. Here.
Hi Hatt: Right, if a whole string of bells is what you want, then a whole string of bells is what you'll get.
The Princess: Marvellous. Well look, I have a whole load of shopping to do. I'll be back to pick it up within the hour. You will have it ready for me, won't you?
Hi Hatt: Certainly your Highness. No problem, no problem at all.
The Princess: Good, bye bye.

Added: 29/05/2016

What's she doing in China?

(T-Bag sees Debbie in her saucer).
T-Bag: What's this? China. What's she doing in China? She should be back in that dreadful tomb. She must have found the fourth gold bell after all. But how?
T-Shirt (off screen): Ne-ourh, psssh, psssh. We're sinking, we're sinking, all hands on deck, neourh, man the lifeboat, neourh.
T-Bag: T-Shirt.
T-Shirt (off screen): That's was a close one, Red Leader to base, are you receiving me?
T-Bag: T-Shirt.
T-Shirt (off screen): Yes.
T-Bag: Shut up. You're supposed to be having a bath, stop larking about.
T-Shirt (off screen): Oh.
T-Bag: China?

Added: 04/04/2016

A whole string of bells

Hi Hatt: Huh, that finicky Princess and her stupid whims. One bell looks silly, I want a whole string of bells. Huh, where am I going to get a whole string of bells?
Debbie: Hello.
Hi Hatt: Buzz off kid.
Debbie: Charming. I was wondering if you could please help me.
Hi Hatt: No I couldn't, I can't even help me self, now clear off.
Debbie: Oh excuse me, please can...
Hi Hatt: What is it?
Debbie: That bell you're holding.
Hi Hatt: What about it?
Debbie: Can I have it please?
Hi Hatt: You must be joking, I'm in a big enough fix without losing this as well.
Debbie: Oh but it is important. If I'm to beat T-Bag, I've got to get all the bells.
Hi Hatt: All the bells? What bells?
Debbie: All the little gold bells. Look, I've got four of them already. See, and if only I can get that one as well, then I'd be one step nearer to the...
Hi Hatt: I'll tell you what I'll do shall I? I'll give you this bell.
Debbie: Oh thanks.
Hi Hatt: If you do me a favour.
Debbie: What's that?
Hi Hatt: I'm just finishing off this hat here see. And I need someone to try it on so I can see what it looks like.
Debbie: I'll do that for you.
Hi Hatt: In that case you can have the bell.
Debbie: Oh thanks.
(He puts the hat on Debbie's head but it's too big and covers her face).
Hi Hatt: There.
Debbie: Hey, I can't see.
(He steals the bells out of Debbie's bag whilst she can't she).
Hi Hatt: Don't worry, just keep still. Yes, that's fine. Good, nearly finished. That's excellent.
Debbie: Oh great. Well, er, I've... must be on my way. Thanks for the bell.
Hi Hatt: Thank you.
Debbie: Bye.

Added: 04/04/2017

A credit to the T. Set

T-Shirt: I hate this, it's horrible.
T-Bag: Nonsense, you look very smart, a credit to the T. Set.
T-Shirt: I want my old clothes back.
T-Bag: Don't argue. Now let's see. I don't believe it. Five gold bells. Deborah's really dropped a clanger this time. I'll just go and change and then we'll go down there and grab them fast.
T-Shirt: I'm not going anywhere dressed like this.
T-Bag: What?
T-Shirt: It's embarrassing, everyone will laugh at me, I feel a right twit.
T-Bag: Well please yourself, but hear this, that nice suit is here to stay. So you just better learn to like it.
T-Shirt: Yuuurrrhhh.

Added: 06/06/2015

Ten times

Hi Hatt: Yes?
T-Bag: There's a hat I want.
Hi Hatt: Well you've come to the right place. I'll show you what I've got.
T-Bag: Excellent. Well get on with it. I've no time to waste.
(Debbie storms down the street outside the shop but stops when she sees T-Bag).
Hi Hatt: And this is my Peaking Peak-a-boo, very popular for garden parties.
T-Bag: No that's not it.
Hi Hatt: I know the thing for you, my Bonzai Boogaloo, just the thing for the girl about town, do you like it?
T-Bag: No, that's a piece of rubbish, that's not what I'm after.
Hi Hatt: Ah well this is for you, the Cherry Blossom Bagatelle, ideal for the older woman.
T-Bag: How dare you? I've had enough of this. Where's the hat with all the gold bells dangling from it, it was right there.
Hi Hatt: Ah yes, a sublime creation you'll agree.
T-Bag: Well where is it?
Hi Hatt: Gone. Sold.
T-Bag: Sold! Sold!
Hi Hatt: Sold to the Princess no less. She doesn't call my nice hats rubbish.
T-Bag: But I wanted that hat.
Hi Hatt: Well you're just too late aren't you? First come, first served.
T-Bag: Has she paid you for it yet?
Hi Hatt: Well, not exactly, but she's going to. And when she does, I'll be a rich man.
T-Bag: I see. Well Mr Hi Hatt or whatever your name is. I am prepared to pay double what she will for that hat.
Hi Hatt: But you don't understand.
T-Bag: Alright, I'll triple it.
Hi Hatt: But it's her hat.
T-Bag: Alright, I'll give you ten times what she'll pay, I must have that hat.
Hi Hatt: Ten times.
T-Bag: Ten times.
Hi Hatt: Ooooh, I'll have to go to the Royal Pagoda and persuade her to change her mind. Mind you, that might not be too difficult.
T-Bag: Just bring me that hat.
(T-Bag disappears).
Hi Hatt: Ten times.

Added: 04/04/2015

Hats are pretty old hat nowadays

The Princess: No, no, there's something not right. I just can't put my finger on what it is. I like the bells, the bells look very nice. It's the hat I can't stand. Necklace maybe. Earrings, a bracelet. Oh I don't know but I'm sure I'll find a use for them. (Loud gong). Who can that be? Come in. (Hi Hatt walks in) Hi Hatt, hi.
Hi Hatt: Your Highness, hi, looking as radiant as ever.
The Princess: Is anything the matter?
Hi Hatt: The matter? No, no, not at all, it's just... You really are looking quite splendid you know. That's a beautiful hairstyle you have there.
The Princess: That's very kind.
Hi Hatt: Yes, yes, in a way it's a great pity to hide it under a hat, ha ha.
The Princess: What do you mean?
Hi Hatt: Oh, I was just thinking aloud you know, thinking that, in a funny sort of way, hats are pretty old hat nowadays.
The Princess: Are you implying that you think I look terrible in that hat you sold me?
Hi Hatt: Oh no (he mumbles).
The Princess: You're quite right of course.
Hi Hatt: I am?
The Princess: Doesn't suit me at all, makes me look ugly.
Hi Hatt: Oh no, nothing could ever make you look ugly your Highness.
The Princess: Oh, you think not.
Hi Hatt: Except that hat, that abysmal hat. Oh it's awful, isn't it terrible? I can't imagine what ever made me make such a monstrosity. It's truly hideous, does you no favours at all.
The Princess: You're so right.
Hi Hatt: I'll tell you what I'll do. Since you're such a valued customer I'll take the hat back, no charge, and we'll forget all about it, how's that?
The Princess: That's very decent of you.
Hi Hatt: Oh it's the least I can do, the least.
The Princess: I'm most grateful.
Hi Hatt: Not half as grateful as I am, ha ha!
The Princess: What?
Hi Hatt: Grateful to have so gracious a client as your good Highness.
The Princess: You're too kind.
Hi Hatt: No you are.
The Princess: Oh Hi Hatt, if you pass any of my butlers on your way, send one up, would you? I'm proper parched.

Added: 29/05/2016

A lot of tea making experience

T-Shirt: Tea's up your Majesty, I mean your Princessness.
The Princess: Oh thank you. Hmmmm, delicious. Mmm, this is an excellent brew-up, you must have a lot of tea making experience.
T-Shirt: You can say that again.
The Princess: Mmm, wonderfully refreshing, marvellous.
T-Shirt: Want some more?
The Princess: Bluurggh. Dishwater.
T-Shirt: Eh?
The Princess: No I've gone right off it now, no more.
(A gong is heard).
The Princess: See who that is will you?
Debbie: Excuse me, I wonder if I could er... T-Shirt.
T-Shirt: Er yes. What is it? What can I do for you?
Debbie: What are you doing here all dressed up like a dogs-dinner?
T-Shirt: Shut up you.
Debbie: You look really, really silly.
The Princess: Who is it butler, who's there?
T-Shirt: Oh nobody, just some nosey busy body. Buzz off. (He slams the door shut). I soon got rid of that pest your Highness.
The Princess: Sensational, terrific, fantastic.
T-Shirt: It was quite easy really.
The Princess: No, no, I mean that cap, that cheeky little green number.
T-Shirt: Eh?
The Princess: Oh, it will go absolutely perfectly with my green and gold ball gown. Oh I simply must have that cap. I'll buy it off you butler, name your price.
T-Shirt: You want to buy this?
The Princess: I'll give you anything you want for it.
T-Shirt: Anything?
The Princess: Anything.
T-Shirt: Alright, I'll swap you my cap for those bells.
The Princess: It's a deal.
T-Shirt: Great.
The Princess: Oh I say. That's very trendy, don't you think?
T-Shirt: Er, yes.
The Princess: Oh, where's that gown?

Added: 04/04/2021

It's curtains for you this time

T-Bag: T-Shirt, what in the name of buttered buns are you doing here?
T-Shirt: I've got some..
T-Bag: Never mind that now, can you believe what happened, that stupid hat maker brought back the hat, oh yes.
T-Shirt: Listen, I have to...
T-Bag:...but were the bells on it, were they? No they were not. So I can only conclude that ridiculous Princess still has them.
T-Shirt: She hasn't got them.
T-Bag: Don't argue with me boy, I tell you she has.
T-Shirt: No she hasn't, see...
T-Bag: Glory be.
T-Shirt: I got them off her, it was easy-peasy.
T-Bag: Oh you clever boy, hand them over.
T-Shirt: Just a minute, I'll do a deal with you.
T-Bag: Deal, deal, what do you mean deal?
T-Shirt: You can have these bells if I don't have to wear those stupid clothes any more.
T-Bag: Not that again.
T-Shirt: I look like a dogs dinner, silly and la-di-dah.
T-Bag: Give me those bells.
T-Shirt: Give me some proper clothes then.
T-Bag: Oh I despair, alright.
T-Shirt: Great.
T-Bag: Five beautiful bells, do re mi far so, so Dopey Deborah scuppered at last.
T-Shirt: Your majesty.
T-Bag: Oh I'd give anything to see her snivelling little face now.
T-Shirt: Your majesty.
T-Bag: Well serves her right for being such a pompous little prig.
T-Shirt: She's here.
T-Bag: Who's here?
T-Shirt: Debbie.
T-Bag: What? Where?
(T-Bag sees Debbie's shoes from underneath the curtain)
T-Bag: Cornered at last, caught like a rat in a trap. It's curtains for you this time Deborah.
Debbie: Wrong again T-Bag, you'll never catch me, I've got five of the bells, only three more to find, you'll have to do a lot better than this if you want to save your skin.
T-Bag: Eugghhh. Fudge and fairy cakes, it's your fault stupid boy.
T-Shirt: My fault, how was it my fault?
The Princess: No, no, too much green, too garish, you can have this back, I've gone right off it. Oh that's nice, oh I love it, oh that's fantastic.

Added: 04/04/2012

"I Want That Hat"
When Hi-Hat takes the hat back to T-Bag, Elizabeth Estensen opens the box a little too enthusiastically and drops it. Fortunately - consumate professional that she is - she manages to grab the hat before the box goes completely, and carries on without blinking!

"Headdress Less"
After the princess drinks the cup of tea that T-Shirt makes her, the door bell rings, the Princess says 'See who that is will you?' and as she says this her headdress falls off!

"The Saucer-er’s Apprentice"
In this and various other episodes this series, the yellow CSO cloth is often visible inside T-Bag’s saucer – i.e. the cloth used to key into it electronically images from other cameras using Colour Separation Overlay, or Chromakey. It’s particularly visible in this episode when T-Shirt uses the saucer – the cloth can be seen as he picks up the saucer from the T-Room table, then there’s a cut to a close-up of the saucer in his hand and the cloth is no longer visible (as an image has been keyed on top).

For more mistakes from other episodes, please see the Nitpicker's Guide

  • Burt Kwouk, who played Hi-Hatt, sadly passed away on 24th May 2016, aged 85.

  • The second hat that Hi-Hat shows to T-Bag (his Bonzai-Boogaloo) is the hat worn by the genie in T-Bag Strikes Again. The hat can be seen before this scene on the left-hand side stand in Hi-Hat's shop.
    (T-Bag Strikes Again, Episode 4: Scrap Harry)
  • In this episode T-Shirt takes a bath, he also does this in other episodes.
    (Turn on to T-Bag, Episode 4: Bubble Boy)
  • The 'shoes behind the curtain' trick, done by Debbie to trick T-Bag, is used again by Polly in T. Bag and The Rings of Olympus.
    (T. Bag and The Rings of Olympus, Episode 5: Vampires)
  • Debbie gets the bells stolen by the shopkeeper Hi-Hatt to sell on to the Princess, this also happens in T. Bag and The Pearls of Wisdom.
    (T. Bag and The Pearls of Wisdom, Episode 4: Grimble and Squiffy)
  • The items being collected by the girl are stolen in other episodes in other series.
    (Wonders in Letterland, Episode 6: Debbie In The Land Of R)
    (T-Bag Strikes Again, Episode 6: Dick Gherkin)
    (T-Bag Bounces Back, Episode 9: Nikdit The Thief)
    (Turn on to T-Bag, Episode 6: Scrimp)
    (Turn on to T-Bag, Episode 9: Doc Leaf)
    (T. Bag and The Pearls of Wisdom, Episode 8: Cedric Sackbutt's Search For A Song)
    (T. Bag and The Rings of Olympus, Episode 4: Rum Barbara)
    (T. Bag and The Rings of Olympus, Episode 7: Rats)
    (T. Bag and The Sunstones of Montezuma, Episode 4: Gone Fishing)
  • The DVD cover for this series mentions appearances from a few of the guest stars including Burt Kwouk from this episode.
    (T-Bag Bounces Back, Episode 1: The Ousting Of Major Happy)
    (T-Bag Bounces Back, Episode 2: Nights In Arabia)
    (T-Bag Bounces Back, Episode 3: Ivan The Horrible)
    (T-Bag Bounces Back, Episode 10: Happy Ending)