|Directed by||David Croft|
|Story by||Jimmy Perry and David Croft|
|Produced by||David Croft|
|Original air date||Thursday 27/11/69 7.30pm|
(recorded Friday 21/11/69)
|Running time||30 minutes|
Man Hunt is the twelfth episode of the third series of the British comedy series Dad's Army that was originally transmitted on Thursday 27 November 1969.
It is eighteen months since the outbreak of World War II began and Captain Mainwaring is giving a lecture on the progress of the war, and admits that they have thrown the Allies out of Greece and Crete, but reminds them that Rudolf Hess surrendered not too long ago, so the rats are leaving the sinking ship. However, he tells the platoon that the enemy are dropping empty parachutes to confuse the people, and if they spot one, they must report it to GHQ. Jones wonders what the difference is between British parachutes and Nazi parachutes. Mainwaring's memo tells him that British parachutes are white, while Nazi parachutes are a dirty, creamy, off-white. Frazer points out that the parachutist may be miles away by the time they find the parachute, so Walker decides to bring a tracker dog to the next parade.
After the parade, Jones decides to go to the pub, but Walker has to talk to Mainwaring. He confides in Mainwaring and Wilson that he found a parachute not too long ago. Mainwaring is anxious to know whether it was white or cream. Walker can't remember, as he sold it on his stall in the guise of eight dozen pairs of ladies knickers. He, Mainwaring and Wilson now have the unenviable task of trying to find a pair among the citizens of Walmington-on-Sea. Unsurprisingly, they have no luck, except a young lady who has no hesitation in showing Wilson her blue knickers. The people they have questioned complain to ARP Warden Hodges, who leaves Mainwaring in a tough situation when a pair of knickers emerge from a letterbox.
During a stealth practice the next day, Walker brings in the tracker dog. They test the dog's sniffing power by having Jones pretending to be a Nazi parachutist. They remove Jones' jacket and allow the dog to pick up his scent. As they head up the church hall stairs, Mrs Pike arrives to remind Wilson about their téte-a-téte supper. As the platoon, Jones and the dog come charging down the stairs, they knock down Mrs Pike, revealing her underwear. Walker remembers that he sold the last pair of knickers to Mrs Pike, and they're white: it was a British parachute.
Some time later, Hodges notices a parachute stuck in a tree. He is so busy trying to get it down, that he doesn't have any problems in giving directions to Downsend Woods for a man with a peculiar accent. Just as he removes the parachute, the platoon arrive, and it isn't long before the dog picks up the scent. Hodges tells Mainwaring about the man with the German accent, and it isn't long before they spot him. They follow him to a barn containing a Pekingese Dog, a big mansion that was bombed in an air raid the previous year and into a dilapidated old barn, and capture him. However, it turns out he's a Viennese ornithologist, looking for a golden oriole egg. Suddenly, the real German parachutist comes charging in, angry that the platoon keeps running away because he is trying to give himself up.
The equivalent radio episode, which omits the hunt for the German parachutist, is entitled The Great White Hunter.