I was privileged to grow up with this series played usually on a Saturday afternoon when originally transmitted. As a child I chuckled and that was without understanding any of the 'adult references', so when I bought this box set I could relive it all over again but with a greater understanding of the grown up stuff.
Basically, it starts with a newly appointed English teacher Mr. Brown (Barry Evans) at a night school teaching a healthy mixture of foreign students. His efforts are met with constant frustration as he is often misunderstood with the words and phrases he is trying to teach. However a wonderful relationship grows throughout the series between teacher and students where his patience with them pays off, especially when they show their loyalty towards him. For example, the rather stern school principal 'Miss Courtney' makes various attempts to replace Mr Brown but the students simply cause havoc for any substitute until their beloved Mr Brown is reinstated again.
In no way was this series designed to mock foreigners, instead it displays in a very innocent manner the barriers that can be discovered between cultures and the sheer humor that develops from misunderstanding. Arguments have been raised about country 'stereotypes' but as with all comedy a subject or person is chosen and their quirks are exaggerated a little to create the desired effect. If anything, most of the mocking is towards the English language and how aspects of it don't make sense to the rest of the world, but it's all done in a very funny way.
How could anyone not laugh when 'Miss Courtney' addresses 'Taro' (Japanese student) and asks - "Taro, how many p's in a Pound? to which he replies, "It depend on size of peas-o!". Or perhaps when the Indian lady is asked by a substitute teacher - "You there, what is the opposite of a coward?" and she replies, "A bull herd". The characters in this are simply a riot, you will love them all and my personal favorite is 'Whan Cervantes' (Spanish student). He often appears to be the thickest of the group but likes to remind his teacher - "I am plenty shmart eh? Soright!
Basically, if ever there was a comedy made for everyone it is this, and anyone who possesses a dvd player should buy this magical box set. Who knows, if we can all sit down, watch this, and have a good laugh at our petty differences then maybe the world can come closer together in the future.