The BEST Episodes of Yes Minister

Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!

Last Updated: Jan 19, 2020

Network: BBC Two

This is the story of the endless battles between the Government in the form of Jim Hacker, a brand new Cabinet Minister and the Civil Service of his department run by Sir Humphrey Appleby. Stuck in the middle of it all is civil servant Bernard Woolley.

A Question of Loyalty

#1 - A Question of Loyalty

Season 2 - Episode 7 - Aired Apr 6, 1981

Jim and Sir Humphrey pass the buck to protect each other when they appear before a select committee investigating charges of waste in Hacker's ministry, until Jim's higher loyalties are called upon.

star 8.69
116 votes
The Death List

#2 - The Death List

Season 2 - Episode 3 - Aired Mar 9, 1981

When Jim learns that when in opposition he was bugged by the secret service, he decides to bring in legislation to kerb the bugging. only to find out that he is on the death list of a group of terrorist's, and the best way to find them, is by bugging phone lines

star 8.59
155 votes
The Writing on the Wall

#3 - The Writing on the Wall

Season 1 - Episode 5 - Aired Mar 24, 1980

A rumour starts that Jim's department is about to be axed. So with help from Sir Humphrey, they try and defeat the Prime Minister's plans.

star 8.55
181 votes
Directors: Sydney Lotterby
Writers: Antony Jay, Jonathan Lynn
The Devil You Know

#4 - The Devil You Know

Season 2 - Episode 5 - Aired Mar 23, 1981

When Jim is betrayed by a Cabinet colleague over his plans to bring in jobs for British workers, he thinks about leaving Westminster and becoming a European Commissioner, But when Sir Humphrey learns who his replacement will be, he tries to change Jim's Mind.

star 8.29
202 votes
Equal Opportunities

#5 - Equal Opportunities

Season 3 - Episode 1 - Aired Nov 11, 1982

Jim decides to promote more women to high civil service positions despite Sir Humphrey's opposition.

star 8.28
85 votes
Big Brother

#6 - Big Brother

Season 1 - Episode 4 - Aired Mar 17, 1980

When the Government is planning to introduce a national database, Jim wants to bring in safe guards, but Sir Humphrey stalls until with some help from the opposition, Jim gets his way.

star 8.25
276 votes
Directors: Sydney Lotterby
Writers: Antony Jay, Jonathan Lynn
Open Government

#7 - Open Government

Season 1 - Episode 1 - Aired Feb 25, 1980

Jim Hacker wins a seat in the election and is given a cabinet post in the new government He meets the permanent secretary for his department Sir Humphrey Appleby but Jim decides to change the way things are done in the civil service so Sir Humphrey starts a plan to stop him

star 8.25
297 votes
Directors: Stuart Allen
Writers: Antony Jay, Jonathan Lynn
The Moral Dimension

#8 - The Moral Dimension

Season 3 - Episode 4 - Aired Dec 2, 1982

Jim is forced to back down about exposing bribery used to obtain a lucrative foreign contract when Bernard allows a valuable vase from a foreign government to be undervalued so that Mrs. Hacker can keep it.

star 8.24
111 votes
The Skeleton in the Cupboard

#9 - The Skeleton in the Cupboard

Season 3 - Episode 3 - Aired Nov 25, 1982

Jim uses a costly mistake from Sir Humphrey's past to escape chastising an efficient local council for being late with their paperwork.

star 8.24
118 votes
The Middle-Class Rip-Off

#10 - The Middle-Class Rip-Off

Season 3 - Episode 7 - Aired Dec 25, 1982

Jim and Sir Humphrey collide when Jim acts as an MP to sell an art gallery and museum in his district to support a popular local soccer club.

star 8.08
110 votes
The Right to Know

#11 - The Right to Know

Season 1 - Episode 6 - Aired Mar 31, 1980

Jim faces rebellion at home and in the office over the removal of protected status from a badger habitat, while he tries to circumvent Sir Humphrey's efforts to keep him ignorant of things.

star 8.07
195 votes
Directors: Sydney Lotterby
Writers: Antony Jay, Jonathan Lynn
Jobs for the Boys

#12 - Jobs for the Boys

Season 1 - Episode 7 - Aired Apr 7, 1980

Jim goes on radio to support the Solihull project a Government, union and private enterprise building scheme, that he has inherited from the last administration, but unknown to him the project is close to bankruptcy, Sir Humphrey hopes to save the deal by offering a Quango to the director of the bank involved

star 8.07
146 votes
Directors: Sydney Lotterby
Writers: Antony Jay, Jonathan Lynn
The Challenge

#13 - The Challenge

Season 3 - Episode 2 - Aired Nov 18, 1982

When Jim tackles local council administration and civil defense, he runs afoul of a BBC interviewer.

star 8.04
111 votes
The Bed Of Nails

#14 - The Bed Of Nails

Season 3 - Episode 5 - Aired Dec 9, 1982

Jim accepts an unpopular position pushing a transportation bill desired by No 10, but opposed by everyone else.

star 8.01
136 votes
The Quality of Life

#15 - The Quality of Life

Season 2 - Episode 6 - Aired Mar 30, 1981

Sir Humphrey uses Jim's promise to keep a popular city farm project open to get special permission for an additional nine floors on a proposed skyscraper.

star 8.01
197 votes
The Greasy Pole

#16 - The Greasy Pole

Season 2 - Episode 4 - Aired Mar 16, 1981

Jim has the chance of creating jobs,and saving a chemical company, when they are offered the chance to manufacture a highly dangerous chemical, but when the news gets out that it might be too dangerous, he has to back down.

star 8.01
172 votes
The Official Visit

#17 - The Official Visit

Season 1 - Episode 2 - Aired Mar 3, 1980

When the leader of an African country is killed in a coup, his successor, who is an old friend of Jim's, comes in his place. They negotiate a £50 million deal to help buy oil exploration equipment.

star 7.96
268 votes
Doing the Honours

#18 - Doing the Honours

Season 2 - Episode 2 - Aired Mar 2, 1981

When Jim learns that he can block civil servant's honours, he blackmails them into cutting their budgets, but when he hears that he might be in line for an honorary degree, he has to back down.

star 7.95
237 votes
The Compassionate Society

#19 - The Compassionate Society

Season 2 - Episode 1 - Aired Feb 23, 1981

When Jim learns that a brand new hospital still has no medical staff, but hundreds of civil servants working there, he proposes that half of the civil servants be sacked and use the money saved to open wards with medical staff.

star 7.91
132 votes
Directors: Peter Whitmore
Writers: Antony Jay, Jonathan Lynn
The Whisky Priest

#20 - The Whisky Priest

Season 3 - Episode 6 - Aired Dec 16, 1982

Jim faces opposition from all sides when he learns that British munitions have been sold to terrorist groups and he decides to start an inquiry into how it happened.

star 7.90
137 votes
The Economy Drive

#21 - The Economy Drive

Season 1 - Episode 3 - Aired Mar 10, 1980

Jim Hacker is determined to reduce the Civil Service, but he is frustrated by Sir Humphrey, and the only numbers he can alter are the numbers of tea ladies.

star 7.89
229 votes