"Queen and Country" gets us caught up with Bill Rohan from "Hope And Glory." His ironic coping mechanism hasn't let him down since his school was bombed in the blitz when he was nine. His new threats are of the adult kind.
Constricted for two years in the military to fight in Korea, Bill winds up with sadistic Sgt. Major Bradley and a sad-eyed aristocrat whom he name Ophelia. His comic point of view he manages to share with fellow conscript Percy. They find each other. That is one of the myriad happy accidents which occur in the lives of those who don't take anything too seriously.
Together, Percy and Bill equip each other to float six degrees of separation from the absurdity. That includes that they are not shipped off to Korea as planned. Instead they teach recruits to type "like girls."
Both Percy and Bill do make it through. After he serves several months in the brig, Percy will likely marry Bill's wild-child sister who is disengaging from her marriage. He welcomes her two little kids into his life. The original meet-up was a sexual one when Percy spent this 48-hour pass at Bill's home.
Bill will marry the nurse, Sophie, who gave him emergency medical aid in the corridor of the hospital where Ophelia, after a suicide attempt, dumped him. That treatment consisted of escorting him into a vacant room and having sex with him. As in Shakespeare's comedies, all's well that ends well. Like Percy and Bill, Sophie is a playful creature.
And Bill has no illusions about the future. He understands everything will keep changing. His family and just about everyone else frame life as "the war changed things." After his military service Bill returns home and notices that, again, everything has changed. For example, his mother's lover from during the war no longer walks by and waves to her. From her look, we get it that she doesn't understand that it wasn't just the war which messed with people's heads and hearts.
Bradley winds up a psychiatric basket case in the military hospital. With an open heart, Bill goes to visit him. Bradley has only hardened in his mean-spirited persona. The psychiatrist explains that he took refuge in military rules and regulations to try to hold himself together. Obviously, that didn't work,