Series 5, Quest 5. Sylvester Hands attempts to rob new dungeoneer, Jenna.

Sylvester Hands

By Keith McDonald

Sylvester Hands (or Sly Hands) was a cowardly vagabond whose love of drink makes him Lord Fear's biggest liability.


Sylvester Hands was a filthy vagrant who liked to steal from dungeoneers. He could pose a threat but most of the time was easily outwitted.

'Ands like feet but up the other end of yer body.

Sly Hands

Hands is introduced as a menacing and slippery character in Series 5. Brother Mace describes him as a 'sneaky little cutpurse'.

He attempts to get dungeoneers into trouble from Gwendoline the Greenwarden and Sir Hugh de Wittless.

Sylvester Hands, a beggar played by Paul Valentine. As seen in Series 5 of Knightmare (1991).
Sly Hands in Series 5 (1991)

As the show continued, he went from robbing dungeoneers of their possessions to trying to tie up dungeoneers with his magic rope.

Comic relief

As his time in the show continued, Hands became the butt of some comical schemes and plots.

One dungeoneer in a witch's robe pretends to charm his warts away. Another turns into Lord Fear and gets his boots polished.

What can I do for ya, ye magnif... mag... maggy... nif... poshness?

Sly Hands

In one of Knightmare's funniest scenes, Hands drinks a bottle of extra strong ale and passes out trying to sing '10 Dead Goblins'.

Coward with a bite

Ultimately, Sly Hands evolved into a typical coward. He was quick to run away or give in when the tide was against him.

Hands is most afraid of Lord Fear and therefore is most loyal to him. Fear appreciates this, though he is often frustrated by how limited Hands is.

Sylvester Hands, a beggar played by Paul Valentine. As seen in Series 8 of Knightmare (1994).
Sly Hands in Series 8 (1994)

Nevertheless, Hands always has the potential to be a bigger villain. He manages to restrain Romahna the Dragon Warden twice in Series 7.

He also snares one dungeoneer who doesn't use a magic ring correctly. It's a memorable end - the panicking dungeoneer backs away while Hands scampers after her and hauls her away.

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