The best thing about these film versions of sitcoms is that the plots seldom bear much similarity to the “sit” of the original series. So in Are You Being Served? for instance, you get the entire cast going on holiday together, no questions asked. Bless This House introduces Terry Scott and Peter Butterworth apropos nothing. Possibly the biggest deviation comes from this film, with the fraught five-way dynamic of the series getting the boot early on when the cast find themselves uniting to save their lodgings from the clutches of ruthless property developer Peter ‘Sir Frank is in charge of civil service pay’ Cellier. It’s a plot hardly worthy of an also-ran Children’s Film Foundation adventure, but it’s all carried off with a such an end-of-term sense of fun you hardly notice. After O’Sullivan and Bill Maynard sabotage his posh dinner date with Wilcox (consisting, of course, of prawn cocktail followed by Steak Diane), Cellier climbs into a taxi and utters the key line – “Thames Television studios, Euston Road, please” – so waving a fond goodbye to the demands of plot and a big hello to “a galaxy of Thames stars” from Bill Grundy, through Jack Smethurst and Rudolph Walker indulging in a terrible pull-back-and-reveal racial gag, Michael Robbins as an old flame of Mildred’s, to an extravagantly bearded Spike “gotta get these things OUT!!” Milligan. It’s the nearest thing there is to a Christmas special on film, really, and for that, to say nothing of the wonderfully wistful closing credits theme, we love it.Read More
Posts Tagged With 'Sally Thomsett'
NEITHER AGE nor any number of middling Martin Clunes-based rehashes shall wither the legend of Robin Tripp (RICHARD O’SULLIVAN) who used his roguish charm and cookery skills to bag a flat with incomparable pairing of Chrissy (PAULA WILCOX) and Jo (SALLY THOMSETT). This was sitcom at its very very best, with easy gags, easy plots, fanciable leads and fanciful supports, namely incompetent balding landlord George (BRIAN MURPHY) and his loopy mantrap wife Mildred (YOOTHA JOYCE). You know what went on. Climbing up drainpipes. Never quite shagging anyone. Dead budgie Christmas episode. Film spinoff with “a galaxy of stars” (“Yes, Thames Television, Euston Road please). The “Beans! Beans! Chunky chicken!” driving test. And that superlative parpy theme tune. Even more to its credit, both spin-offs – ROBIN'S NEST and GEORGE AND MILDRED – were equally outstanding.Read More