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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“…So it’s good night from me” – R.I.P. Ronnie Corbett

Sadly, this is no April Fools joke. Ronnie Corbett, the co-star of The Two Ronnies, one of the most successful and long running light entertainment shows on British television, has died at the age of 85. At its peak, over 17 million viewers each week watched the legendary sketch comedy show, which ran from 1971-1987 on […]

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‘Fawlty Towers’ in Lego – Mr. O’Reilly would be so proud

Several years ago, 21-year-old Nathan Feist, a student at Cornell University in New York, succeeded where Basil Fawlty (and, O’Reilly) failed by bringing a semblance of functionality to the most dysfunctional hotel in the seaside town of Torquay on the ‘English Riviera’. Exhibited at the BrickFair, Virginia LEGO convention back in 2014, his intricate LEGO recreation of the famous […]

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‘Twas the Night Before Christmas by….John Cleese

Much like watching It’s a Wonderful Life, A Christmas Story or Tuna Christmas, one of my annual Christmas traditions is to listen to John Cleese’s adaptation of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas. Never mind that there have been endless readings over the years by the likes of Art Carney, Bob Dylan, Elton John, Perry Como, Dick Van Dyke and […]

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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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More ‘lost’ At Last the 1948 Show episodes discovered.

The British Film Institute unearthed a valuable piece of television history this week. Two more missing episodes of the cult comedy, At Last the 1948 Show, which was a precursor to Monty Python’s Flying Circus, have been found 48 years after they aired. Named for a joke about how long it took TV commissioners to make a […]

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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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How about a few ‘Vicious’ bloopers to get you ready for series 2!

Unlike American television where broadcast networks have made a living for years producing full-length programs that have centered around bloopers filmed during the actual episode recording, program bloopers for a majority of British telly, be it comedy or drama, have always been few and far between. Having had the great good fortune over the years […]

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