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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An entertaining life story
David Croft is one of the greats of British comedy and British TV. He's written sitcoms, musicals and plays; he's produced and directed some hugely popular shows; he's spotted and nurtured some of the best character actors and comic performers around; and he's contributed in many ways to the golden era of entertainment. As the co-writer of such hits as Dad's Army, Are You...
Published on 17 Nov. 2010 by V E Tully

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Remember it's a biography
This is important to bear in mind because some may pick this up more for stories and anecdotes concerning the stars of the various sitcoms that David Croft has written over the last 30 - 40 years. To remind those who may not be familiar with all of Croft's repertoire Croft has been responsible with writing partners Jeremy Lloyd and Jimmy Perry for the following: Dad's...
Published on 18 May 2006 by Rupert H. W. Barnes


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Remember it's a biography, 18 May 2006
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This review is from: You Have Been Watching - The Autobiography Of David Croft (Paperback)
This is important to bear in mind because some may pick this up more for stories and anecdotes concerning the stars of the various sitcoms that David Croft has written over the last 30 - 40 years. To remind those who may not be familiar with all of Croft's repertoire Croft has been responsible with writing partners Jeremy Lloyd and Jimmy Perry for the following: Dad's Army, It Ain't Half Hot Mum, Hi-de-Hi, 'Allo 'Allo, and Are You Being Served?

Croft chronicles his life through his childhood as the son of actress and theatrical producer Annie Croft and his estranged father and Hollywood actor Reginald Sharland, through his life in the Army during the Second World War and focussing naturally on his career as comedy writer and BBC producer.

Croft's biography to my mind should be commended for the way he deals with the tabloid controversy that occasionally marked his life; he acknowledges, hints at the content and then moves on. So if it is thrills from his mistakes in life you are looking for you will be surely disappointed.

So to explain the title (I avoided the obvious "You have been reading...") this book is thin, probably deliberately so, about the vast number of comedy characters that David Croft has worked with. There is very little mentioned of the likes of Arthur Lowe, John Inman, Windsor Davies, Gordon Kaye etc. All that is hinted at is that some were difficult, some were charming and others couldn't stand each other on set that required Croft's mediation. This is not to detract from the book which is a biography of a writer and producer; but if it detail of the characters you will be disappointed. For example several characters from the various sitcoms are barely mentioned at all - for example Kenneth Connor doesn't even get a mention!

As with a lot of biographies written by people late in life there is an agenda - a dig at BBC - specifically the John Birt reforms. Accordingly there are a few pages to get through on the state of the BBC and television today; Croft is probably right but this media politics for me doesn't sit well in the book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An entertaining life story, 17 Nov. 2010
This review is from: You Have Been Watching - The Autobiography Of David Croft (Paperback)
David Croft is one of the greats of British comedy and British TV. He's written sitcoms, musicals and plays; he's produced and directed some hugely popular shows; he's spotted and nurtured some of the best character actors and comic performers around; and he's contributed in many ways to the golden era of entertainment. As the co-writer of such hits as Dad's Army, Are You Being Served?, Hi-de-Hi, It Ain't Half Hot Mum, etc, he has many great stories and insights to share. There are no snipes and sneers - the man is a gent - but there is plenty to savour about a great time in British TV.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars could be better., 22 July 2011
This review is from: You Have Been Watching - The Autobiography Of David Croft (Paperback)
I was really looking forward to reading this book having admired David's work over many years.But,I ended being somewhat disappointed by the lake of content.I am sure most readers were eager to find out all the insight into their favourite characters from the sitcom's they liked the most with lots of behind the scenes gossip about relationship's etc.

Perhaps he should have trusted someone else to write a biography instead, like John Fisher who has done such fine work covering Tony Hancock and Tommy Cooper's careers,so do not buy this book expecting it to be like the cover.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An old fashioned look at good old variety and television..., 18 Aug. 2010
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C. FULLER (Brixham, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: You Have Been Watching - The Autobiography Of David Croft (Paperback)
I enjoyed this book because I knew so many of the names recalled in the many stories of shows both stage and television. The index is good pinpointing individuals. There are plenty of photographs and I got a feel for david Croft as a very talented and professional person. It has to be said that we will not see his like again and for all his television series I say "thank you".
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3.0 out of 5 stars A detailed read., 5 Oct. 2013
This review is from: You Have Been Watching - The Autobiography Of David Croft (Paperback)
An enjoyable book which goes into the author's life in a way that perhaps a reader wouldn't expect. I suspect that most purchasers would be most interested in the inside stories behind the TV series that made the author justly famous. These stories are covered to some extent but the majority if the book concentrates on the early life of the author and, to a large degree that of his parents - and his mother in particular. The result for me was frustration to some extent. A good book but one with flawed balance in my opinion. It could have been far better.
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5.0 out of 5 stars a great read., 18 Feb. 2013
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This review is from: You Have Been Watching - The Autobiography Of David Croft (Paperback)
a great read on the life of one of Britains most iconic comedy writers David Croft, good bless you for bringing this to us.
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5.0 out of 5 stars From Dads Army to You Rang My Lord, 29 Nov. 2014
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This review is from: You Have Been Watching - The Autobiography Of David Croft (Paperback)
A great book with a lot of Unknown facts about David Croft and Jimmy Perry classic Sitcoms. Highly recommended
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You Have Been Watching - The Autobiography Of David Croft
You Have Been Watching - The Autobiography Of David Croft by David Croft (Paperback - 29 April 2004)
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