Mrs. Brown's Boys is a British-Irish award winning sitcom created by and starring writer and performer Brendan O'Carroll. The show is based on O'Carroll's stage plays about the character Agnes Browne, which were developed from books and straight-to-DVD films. The sitcom continues the stories of Agnes, now with the shortened surname "Brown", and her family who are played by real life close friends and family of O'Carroll's. After being slated by critics, the show has become a ratings success in both Ireland, where it is set, and the United Kingdom, where it is recorded. On 29 December 2012 the show began its third series. Mrs Brown's Boys is a co-production among BBC Scotland, BocPix and RTÉ.
The Catherine Tate Show is a British television sketch comedy written by Catherine Tate and Aschlin Ditta. Tate also stars in all but one of the show's sketches, which feature a wide range of characters. The Catherine Tate Show airs on BBC Two and is shown worldwide through the BBC. Collectively, the show has been nominated for six BAFTA Awards, two British Comedy Awards and an Emmy Award, and it has won two Royal Television Society Awards, two British Comedy Awards and a National Television Award since its debut in 2004.
Sykes is a British sitcom that aired on BBC 1 from 1972 to 1979. Starring Eric Sykes and Hattie Jacques, it was written by Sykes, who had previously starred with Jacques in Sykes and A... and Sykes and a Big, Big Show. Forty-three of the 1970s colour episodes were remakes of scripts for the 1960s black and white series, such as "Bus" based on 'Sykes and a Following' from 1964 and the episode "Stranger" with guest star Peter Sellers based on 'Sykes and a Stranger' from 1961. Sykes had the same premise as Sykes and A... with Sykes, Jacques, Richard Wattis and Deryck Guyler reprising their former identical roles. The series was brought to an end by the death of Hattie Jacques of a heart attack on 6 October 1980.
Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps is a British comedy television series sitcom that ran from 26 February 2001 to 24 May 2011 and starring Sheridan Smith, Will Mellor, Ralf Little, Natalie Casey, Kathryn Drysdale and Luke Gell. Created and written by Susan Nickson, it is set in the town of Runcorn in Cheshire, England, and originally revolves around the lives of five twenty-somethings. In September 2007 Little confirmed in an interview on This Morning that he had left the series. The seventh series aired following a two year hiatus in 2008 with Little's character being killed off in the first episode. Smith and Drysdale did not return for the ninth and final series with their departures being mentioned briefly in the first episode, Freddie Hogan and Georgia Henshaw were brought in as their replacements making Mellor and Casey the only original characters left in the series. Writer & Creator, Susan Nickson also left before the ninth series. The core cast have been augmented by various recurring characters throughout the series, including Beverly Callard, Lee Oakes, Hayley Bishop, Alison Mac, Thomas Nelstrop and Jonathon Dutton. The show was first broadcast in 2001 on BBC Two. The title was inspired by the 1980 hit single "Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps Please" by Splodgenessabounds.
The Morecambe & Wise Show is the third TV series by English comedy double-act Morecambe and Wise. It began airing in 1968 on BBC 2, specifically because it was then the only channel broadcasting in colour, following the duo's move to the BBC from ATV, where they had made Two of a Kind since 1961. The Morecambe & Wise Show was popular enough to be moved to BBC 1, with its Christmas specials garnering prime-time audiences in excess of 20 million, some of the largest in British television history. After their 1977 Christmas show, Morecambe and Wise returned to ITV, keeping the title The Morecambe & Wise Show.
Till Death Us Do Part is a ground-breaking British sitcom that aired on BBC1 from 1965 to 1975. First airing as a Comedy Playhouse pilot, the show aired in seven series until 1975. Six years later, ITV continued the sitcom, calling it Till Death.... From 1985 to 1992, the BBC produced a sequel In Sickness and in Health. Created by Johnny Speight, Till Death Us Do Part centred on the East End Garnett family, led by patriarch Alf Garnett, a reactionary white working-class man who holds racist and anti-socialist views. His gentle and long-suffering wife Else was played by Dandy Nichols, and his daughter Rita by Una Stubbs. Rita's bright but layabout husband Mike Rawlins is a socialist. The character Alf Garnett became a well known character in British culture, and Mitchell played him on stage and television up until 1998, when Speight died. In addition to the spin-off In Sickness and in Health, Till Death Us Do Part was re-made in many countries including Brazil, Germany and the United States. Many episodes from the first three series are thought to no longer exist, having been wiped in the late 1960s and early '70s as was the policy at the time.
The Young Ones is a British sitcom, broadcast in Great Britain from 1982 to 1984 in two six-part series. Shown on BBC2, it featured anarchic, offbeat humour which helped bring alternative comedy to television in the 1980s and made household names of its writers and performers. In 1985, it was shown on MTV, one of the first non-music television shows on the fledgling channel.
The Likely Lads is a British sitcom created and written by Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais, and produced by Dick Clement. Twenty episodes were broadcast by the BBC, in three series, between 16 December 1964 and 23 July 1966. However, only eight of these shows have survived. This show was followed by a popular sequel series, in colour, entitled Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads?, broadcast between 9 January 1973 and 24 December 1974. This was followed in 1976 by a spin-off feature film The Likely Lads. Some episodes of both the original black and white series and the colour sequel were adapted for radio, with the original television cast.
The League of Gentlemen is a British comedy television series that premiered on BBC Two in 1999. The show is set in Royston Vasey, a fictional town in Northern England based on Bacup, Lancashire. It follows the lives of dozens of bizarre townspeople, most of whom are played by three of the show's four writers—Mark Gatiss, Steve Pemberton, and Reece Shearsmith—who, along with Jeremy Dyson, formed the League of Gentlemen comedy troupe in 1995. The series originally aired for three series from 1999 until 2002 followed by a film in 2005. A three-part revival mini-series was broadcast in December 2017 to celebrate the group's 20th anniversary.
Steptoe and Son is a British sitcom written by Ray Galton and Alan Simpson about a father and son played by Wilfred Brambell and Harry H. Corbett who deal in selling used items. They live on Oil Drum Lane, a fictional street in Shepherd's Bush, London. Four series were broadcast by the BBC from 1962 to 1965, followed by a second run from 1970 to 1974. Its theme tune, "Old Ned", was composed by Ron Grainer. The series was voted 15th in a 2004 BBC poll to find Britain's Best Sitcom. It was remade in the US as Sanford and Son, in Sweden as Albert & Herbert and in the Netherlands as Stiefbeen en zoon. In 1972 a movie adaptation of the series, Steptoe and Son, was released in cinemas, with a second Steptoe and Son Ride Again in 1973. The series focussed on the inter-generational conflict of father and son. Albert Steptoe, a "dirty old man", is an old rag and bone man, set in his grimy and grasping ways. By contrast his 37-year-old son Harold is filled with social aspirations, not to say pretensions. The show contained elements of drama and tragedy, as Harold was continually prevented from achieving his ambitions. To this end the show was unusual at the time for casting actors rather than comedians in its lead roles, although both actors were drawn into more comedic roles as a consequence.
Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em is a BBC situation comedy, written by Raymond Allen and starring Michael Crawford and Michele Dotrice. It was first broadcast in 1973 and ran for three series, ending in 1978. The series follows the accident-prone Frank Spencer and his tolerant, if long-suffering, wife, Betty, through Frank's various attempts to hold down a job, which frequently end in disaster. Noted for its stuntwork, performed by Michael Crawford himself as well as featuring various well-remembered catchphrases, the series was voted #22 in the BBC's poll "Britain's Best Sitcom".
Little Britain is a British character-based comedy sketch show which was first broadcast on BBC radio and then turned into a television show. It was written by comic duo David Walliams and Matt Lucas. The show's title is an amalgamation of the terms 'Little England' and 'Great Britain', and is also the name of a Victorian neighbourhood and modern street in London. The show comprises sketches involving exaggerated parodies of British people from all walks of life in various situations familiar to the British. These sketches are presented to the viewer together with narration in a manner which suggests that the programme is a guide—aimed at non-British people—to the ways of life of various classes of British society. Despite the narrator's description of great British institutions, the comedy is derived from the British audience's self-deprecating understanding of either themselves or people known to them.
BBC comedy series about Rab C. Nesbitt, a drunken, string vested layabout who lives with his long suffering wife Mary and his two sons in the working class area of Govan in Glasgow. When he's not getting drunk with his pals that include the devious, womanizing Jamesie Cotter. He's offering his philosophical outlook on life to whoever will listen.
Porridge is a British situation comedy broadcast on BBC1 from 1974 to 1977, running for three series, two Christmas specials and a feature film also titled Porridge. Written by Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais, it stars Ronnie Barker and Richard Beckinsale as two inmates at the fictional HMP Slade in Cumberland. "Doing porridge" is British slang for serving a prison sentence, porridge once being the traditional breakfast in UK prisons. The series was followed by a 1978 sequel, Going Straight, which established that Fletcher would not be going back to prison again. Porridge was voted number seven in a 2004 BBC poll of the 100 greatest British sitcoms.
Peter Kay's Phoenix Nights is a British sitcom about The Phoenix Club, a working men's club in the northern English town of Farnworth, Greater Manchester. The show was written by Neil Fitzmaurice, Peter Kay and Dave Spikey, produced by Goodnight Vienna Productions and Ovation Entertainments, and was broadcast on Channel 4 in the UK. All the music was written by Toni Baker and Peter Kay. Additional material was provided by Paddy McGuinness. Two series have been produced, which were first transmitted in 2001 and 2002. The show is a spin-off from the spoof documentary series That Peter Kay Thing, and in turn gave rise to the spin-off Max and Paddy's Road to Nowhere. It won the People's Choice Award at the British Comedy Awards 2002, and was nominated for several others. Kay is also its star, in multiple roles, and directed the second series. In September 2006, Kay revealed on BBC Radio 1 that a third series of Phoenix Nights has been written, but it is unknown when the series will be filmed. On 8 May 2007, another announcement by Kay was made promising another series will be made. However Dave Spikey, in interviews with The Sentinel and the Croydon Guardian in late-2009, claimed that neither he nor fellow co-writer Neil Fitzmaurice were aware of any plans to bring back the series.
Open All Hours is a BBC sitcom written by Roy Clarke and starring Ronnie Barker as a miserly shop keeper and David Jason as his put-upon nephew who works as his errand boy. It ran for 26 episodes in four series, which premiered in 1976, 1981, 1982 and 1985 respectively. The programme developed from a television pilot broadcast in Barker's comedy anthology series, Seven of One. Open All Hours ranked eighth in the 2004 Britain's Best Sitcom poll.
One Foot in the Grave is a BBC television sitcom series The series features the exploits of Victor Meldrew and his long-suffering wife, Margaret. The programmes invariably deal with Meldrew's battle against the problems he creates for himself. Living in a typical household in an unnamed English suburb, Victor takes involuntary early retirement. His various efforts to keep himself busy, while encountering various misfortunes and misunderstandings are the themes of the sitcom. The series was largely filmed on location in Walkford, near New Milton in Hampshire, although several clues show that the series may have been set in Hampshire – possibly Winchester. Despite its traditional production, the series supplants its domestic sitcom setting with elements of black humour and surrealism.
Ben Harper is a moderately successful family man and dentist. He is also undergoing a mid-life crisis and trying to cope with the bizarre reality of raising teenage children. His wife Susan seems quite happy, enjoys her job as a London tour guide, however at home her ability to find her way around a cookbook or pantry is less successful. Their three children Nick, Janey, and Michael are as different as chalk and cheese. Nick (19) is on his gap year, but doesn't get much further than the sofa or job centre, Janey is as sharp as a tack and 16 going on 25, while Michael is a very bright, computer-nerdish 12 year old who is just discovering girls.
Men Behaving Badly is a British sitcom that was created and written by Simon Nye. It follows the lives of Gary Strang and his flatmates, Dermot Povey and Tony Smart. It was first broadcast on ITV in 1992. A total of six series were made along with a Christmas special and three final episodes that make up the feature-length "last orders". The series was filmed in and around Ealing in west London and the final scene of series six was filmed at the Cerne Abbas giant. The setting however is implied to be South London and many references are made to Surrey. It was produced by Hartswood Films, and Thames Television co-produced the first two series for ITV. They also assisted with production of the third series onwards that aired on the BBC. After being moved to a post-watershed slot on BBC1, Men Behaving Badly became highly successful. It was voted the best sitcom in the BBC's history at BBC Television's 60th anniversary celebrations in 1996. It also came sixteenth in the Britain's Best Sitcom poll commissioned in 2004 on BBC2. It has also won the Comedy Awards' best ITV comedy, and the first National Television Award for Situation Comedy.
Unencumbered by wives, jobs or any other responsibilities, three senior citizens who've never really grown up explore their world in the Yorkshire Dales. They spend their days speculating about their fellow townsfolk and thinking up adventures not usually favored by the elderly. Last of the Summer Wine premiered as an episode of Comedy Playhouse in 1973. The show ran for 295 episodes until 2010. It is the longest running comedy Britain has produced and the longest running sitcom in the world.
Keeping Up Appearances is a British sitcom created and written by Roy Clarke for the BBC. Centred on the life of eccentric, social-climbing snob Hyacinth Bucket, the sitcom follows her obsessive and determined attempts to impress in middle class society and portray herself as more affluent than she truly is. The show stars Patricia Routledge, who received two BAFTA nominations for her performance as Hyacinth. Broadcast between 1990 and 1995 on BBC One, the sitcom spawned five series and 44 episodes—4 of which are Christmas specials. Keeping Up Appearances was a great success in the UK and also captivated a large audience in the US, Canada, and Australia, but production ceased in 1995 when Routledge wanted to move on to other projects. Since its original release, all five series—including Christmas specials—are available on DVD. In 2004, the sitcom was ranked 12th in the countdown of Britain's Best Sitcom. It is regularly repeated worldwide.
Just Good Friends is a British sitcom written by John Sullivan. It starred Paul Nicholas and Jan Francis as former lovers Vincent Pinner and Penny Warrender, who meet in a pub five years after he jilted her at the altar. Three series and a 90 min Christmas special were produced for the BBC by Ray Butt. In 2004, it came 43rd in Britain's Best Sitcom.
Hi-de-Hi! is a British sitcom set in Maplins, a fictional holiday camp, during 1959 and 1960, and was written by Jimmy Perry and David Croft, who also wrote Dad's Army and It Ain't Half Hot Mum amongst others. It aired on the BBC from 1980 to 1988. The title was the phrase used to greet the campers and in early episodes was written Hi de Hi. The series revolved around the lives of the camp's management and entertainers, most of them struggling actors or has-beens. The inspiration was the experience of writers Perry and Croft: after being demobilised from the Army, Perry was a Redcoat at Butlins, Pwllheli during the holiday season. The series gained large audiences and won a BAFTA as Best Comedy Series in 1984. In 2004, it came 40th in Britain's Best Sitcom and in a 2008 poll on Channel 4, Hi-de-Hi! was voted the 35th most popular comedy catchphrase.
Linda La Hughes (Kathy Burke) shares a flat with Tom Farrell (James Dreyfus). Linda is overweight, loudmouthed and not particularly attractive. She thinks she's gorgeous and irrestible, however. She's also sex mad and obsessed with men. Tom is an aspiring actor. He's got an agent, but finds it difficult to get parts. He doesn't like Linda much, in spite of (or perhaps because of) the fact that they share a flat. She isn't completely comfortable with his homosexuality, perhaps because she finds it difficult to live with a man who doesn't find her sexually attractive.
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Fawlty Towers is a British sitcom produced by BBC Television that was first broadcast on BBC2 in 1975 and 1979. Twelve episodes were made. The show was written by John Cleese and his then wife Connie Booth, both of whom also starred in the show. The series is set in Fawlty Towers, a fictional hotel in the seaside town of Torquay, on the "English Riviera". The plots centre around tense, rude and put-upon owner Basil Fawlty, his bossy wife Sybil, a comparatively normal chambermaid Polly, and hapless Spanish waiter Manuel and their attempts to run the hotel amidst farcical situations and an array of demanding and eccentric guests. In a list drawn up by the British Film Institute in 2000, voted by industry professionals, Fawlty Towers was named the best British television series of all time.
Drop the Dead Donkey is a situation comedy that first aired on Channel 4 in the United Kingdom between 1990 and 1998. It is set in the offices of “GlobeLink News”, a fictional TV news company. Recorded close to transmission, it made use of contemporary news events to give the programme a greater sense of realism. It was created by Andy Hamilton and Guy Jenkin. The series had an ensemble cast, making stars of Haydn Gwynne, Stephen Tompkinson and Neil Pearson. The series began with the acquisition of GlobeLink by media mogul Sir Roysten Merchant, an allusion to either Robert Maxwell or Rupert Murdoch. Indeed, Andy Hamilton and Guy Jenkin note on their DVDs that it was fortunate for their libel lawyers that the two men shared the same initials. The series is mostly based on the on-going battle between the staff of GlobeLink, led by editor George Dent, as they try to maintain the company as a serious news organisation, and Sir Roysten’s right-hand man Gus Hedges, trying to make the show more sensationalist and suppress stories that might harm Sir Roysten’s business empire. The show was awarded the Best Comedy Award at the 1994 BAFTA Awards. At the British Comedy Awards the show won Best New TV Comedy in 1990, Best Channel 4 Comedy in 1991, and Best Channel 4 Sitcom in 1994.
Dinnerladies is a BBC sitcom written by and starring Victoria Wood that chronicles the antics of a group of workers in a canteen in the north of England. Bren tries to maintain a semblance of order in amongst the chaos, while dealing with the canteen supervisor, slightly sex-obsessed cancer sufferer Tony. Dolly and Jean are the bickering menopausal older women, always at odds but best friends beneath it all. Then there's thick-as-two-short-planks Anita, and the terminally uninterested Twinkle, more concerned with having a good time than anything else. Making up the motley crew are military man handyman Stan, all rules and regulations, and ditzy Philippa, who never seems to get anything right.
Ria Parkinson is a bored housewife and mother. She spends her time daydreaming, and meets regularly with wealthy businessman Leonard to relieve the monotony. Husband Ben, a dentist and avid butterfly collector is oblivious to it all, and her unemployed grown up sons, who both live at home also have other things on their minds, especially girlfriends.
Bread is a British television sitcom, written by Carla Lane, produced by the BBC and screened on BBC1 from 1 May 1986 to 3 November 1991. The series focused on the devoutly-Catholic and extended Boswell family of Liverpool, in the district of Dingle, led by its matriarch Nellie through a number of ups and downs as they tried to make their way through life in Thatcher's Britain with no visible means of support. The street shown at the start of each programme is Elswick Street. A family called Boswell had also featured in Lane's earlier sitcom The Liver Birds and Lane admitted in interviews that the two families were probably related. Nellie's feckless and estranged husband, Freddie, left her for another woman known as 'Lilo Lill'. Her children Joey, Jack, Adrian, Aveline and Billy continued to live in the family home in Kelsall Street and contributed money to the central family fund, largely through benefit fraud and the sale of stolen goods.
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Bottom is a British anarchic sitcom written by and starring comic duo Rik Mayall and Adrian Edmondson as socially awkward, sexually inexperienced Richie Richard, and carefree alcoholic Eddie Hitler, two social outcasts living on the dole, trapped together in a daily grind in a squalid flat in Hammersmith, London. Perpetually skint, bored and sexually frustrated, they spend their days scheming, bickering, and being nasty and sadistic to each other. The show ran for three series, originally airing on BBC Two from 1991 - 1995, and was followed by five stage show tours across the United Kingdom between 1993 and 2003, and a feature film Guest House Paradiso. The show is noted for its chaotic, nihilistic humour and violent comedy slapstick. In 2008, Bottom came in at number 45 in a poll to determine "Britain's Best Sitcom" by the BBC. The show continues to be shown in the UK on Gold and Dave, and has been dubbed in other languages. In Spain the show is known as La pareja basura which aired on Canal+. The theme music was provided by The Bum Notes, a band that once featured Edmondson, and is a cover of "Last Night" by The Mar-Keys. Plans were made in 2012 for a BBC spin-off series, Hooligan's Island, featuring the Richie and Eddie characters from Bottom. However, that project was cancelled that October prior to production as Edmondson explained that he wished to pursue other interests.
Blackadder is the name that encompassed four series of a BBC 1 period British sitcom, along with several one-off instalments. All television episodes starred Rowan Atkinson as anti-hero Edmund Blackadder and Tony Robinson as Blackadder's dogsbody, Baldrick. Each series was set in a different historical period with the two protagonists accompanied by different characters, though several reappear in one series or another, for example Melchett and Lord Flashheart. The first series titled The Black Adder was written by Richard Curtis and Rowan Atkinson, while subsequent episodes were written by Curtis and Ben Elton. The shows were produced by John Lloyd. In 2000 the fourth series, Blackadder Goes Forth, ranked at 16 in the "100 Greatest British Television Programmes", a list created by the British Film Institute. Also in the 2004 TV poll to find "Britain's Best Sitcom", Blackadder was voted the second-best British sitcom of all time, topped by Only Fools and Horses. It was also ranked as the 20th-best TV show of all time by Empire magazine.
Birds of a Feather is a British sitcom that was broadcast on BBC One from 1989 until 1998 and on ITV from 2013. Starring Pauline Quirke, Linda Robson and Lesley Joseph, it was created by Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran, who also wrote some of the episodes along with many other writers. The first episode sees sisters Tracey Stubbs and Sharon Theodopolopodos brought together when their husbands are sent to prison for armed robbery. Sharon, who lived in an Edmonton council flat, moves into Tracey's expensive house in Chigwell, Essex. Their next-door neighbour, and later friend, Dorien Green is a middle-aged married woman who is constantly having affairs with younger men. In the later series the location is changed to Hainault. The series ended on Christmas Eve 1998 after a 9-year-run. On 3 March 2009, the The Mirror reported that the classic sitcom was set for a return reporting that Lesley Joseph, Pauline Quirke and Linda Robson have all been asked by the team behind the sitcom to make another series. Quirke was reported as saying that they were up for the challenge if the writers came up with good ideas. After this speculation of a return in early 2009 nothing more was said. However, in July 2012 Lesley Joseph hinted that Birds of a Feather could return for another series following a successful stage tour.
Set in the world of fashion and PR, immature fun-loving mother Edina Monsoon and her best friend Patsy drive Eddie's sensible daughter, Saffron, up the wall with their constant drug abuse and outrageous selfishness. Numerous in-jokes and heavy doses of cruel humour have made this series a cult hit in the UK and abroad.
2point4 children is a 1990s British sitcom that was created and written by Andrew Marshall. It follows the lives of the Porter family; an average family that is persistently faced with surreal situations and sheer bad luck. The show was originally broadcast on BBC One from 1991 to 1999, and ran for eight series, ending in a special Millennium edition that would be the last due to the death of Gary Olsen, who died from cancer in 2000. The show is now repeated regularly in the UK on Gold, and in Australia on UKTV. The title of the show refers to the once average size of a UK family. There are two children in the Porter family, however Andrew Marshall has indicated that the father, Ben, could be considered almost another child, making up the "point four". The show regularly picked up large audiences of up to 14 million in the early 1990s, with an average of between 6 - 9 million, the final episode was viewed by 9.03 million people. In 1997 a remake of the show debuted in the Netherlands: 'Kees & Co' starring Simone Kleinsma.
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'Allo 'Allo! is a British sitcom broadcast on BBC One from 1982 to 1992 comprising eighty-five episodes. It is a parody of another BBC programme, the wartime drama Secret Army. 'Allo, 'Allo! was created by David Croft, who also wrote the theme music, and Jeremy Lloyd. Lloyd and Croft wrote the first six series. The remaining series were written by Lloyd and Paul Adam. The show tells the fictitious story of Rene Artois, a café owner in a small town in Nazi occupied France, who reluctantly helps the French resistance in their various schemes, the main of which is to help hide British airmen from the Germans. At the same time, he has to hide artefacts such as famous paintings for the German soldiers who frequent his café, while trying to keep his affairs with his waitresses secret from his wife. The comedy is a combination of wordplay, farce, slapstick, and sexual innuendo. Unlike most sitcoms, the episodes build on previous ones, requiring viewers to watch the series chronologically in order to fully understand the plot. In 2004, 'Allo 'Allo came 13th in Britain's Best Sitcom. A reunion special, comprising new material, archive clips and specially recorded interviews, was broadcast on 28 April 2007 on BBC Two.