Did the German version of Fawlty Towers ever ‘mention the war’?

As we celebrated the 41st anniversary this past week of Fawlty Towers, I thought it would fun to take a look back at how the greatest situation comedy of all-time made the leap to German broadcaster RTL. The first ever non-English adaptation of the John Cleese/Connie Booth bit of brilliance occurred in 2001 with a pilot set […]

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And Now for Something Completely Different — Fawlty Towers, Down Under

Fawlty Towers, the quintessential British sitcom and, perhaps, the best all-around television sitcom of all-time, is headed down under courtesy of series co-creator/writer, John Cleese. Uneasy about the reception the show might get from UK audiences and critics, more than 40 years after the original was aired on the BBC, Cleese has chosen an all-Australian cast for the […]

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Basil Fawlty earns an “A” in the Science of Great Comedy

Fawlty Towers has to be the greatest 12 episodes of comedy ever. The UK version of The Office is a close second (much better, I think, than the American version, but that’s a debate for another day). In 2000, the British Film Institute selected Fawlty Towers as the best British television show. After a year-long poll looking for Britain’s Best Sitcom, the BBC […]

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Basil Fawlty enters the 21st century with tree branch in hand!

It has been (gulp!) just over four decades now since John Cleese (a.k.a. Basil Fawlty) last gave an automobile a ‘damn good thrashing’ for not starting. It was a cold October night in 1975 when Basil, in yet another attempt to climb the Torquay social ladder, left his friend Andres’ restaurant with duck in hand during […]

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1979 – The year ‘Fawlty Towers’ crossed paths with ‘Not the Nine O’Clock News’

Not the Nine O’Clock News, the late 70s/early 80s television sketch comedy series designed as a comedic alternative to the Nine O’Clock News on BBC1, featured satirical sketches on current news stories and popular culture. Produced by John Lloyd (best known for his work on such comedy television programs as Spitting Image, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Blackadder and QI, Not the […]

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Fawlty Towers’ Gleneagles Hotel to get retirement living makeover?

40 years ago this coming Saturday, the first episode of, arguably, the best comedy series ever to be shown on telly premiered on BBC2. Fawlty Towers has long been said to have been based on the experiences of the Monty Python comedy team staying at the Gleneagles Hotel in the seaside town of Torquay. The idea came from […]

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‘The Wrong Mans’ – Q & A with Mathew Baynton

With the long-awaited series 2 of The Wrong Mans returning last night and concluding tonight on BBC Two in the UK and then tomorrow night (Christmas Eve) on Hulu in America, Tellyspotting recently sat down with series co-creator/writer/star, Mathew Baynton, to talk about what’s in store for Sam and Phil in S2 and, basically, all-things comedy. Before we find […]

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Need a claret for your Downton Abbey-themed watching party?

While we are still in the dog days of Summer and the endless string of 100+ degree weather, it’s never too early to begin planning your Downton Abbey-themed event for this Autumn in the UK or for January 2014 in the States…. Wines That Rock, the company responsible for Rolling Stones Forty Licks Merlot and […]

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