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"Enoch was right!"
on 13 February 2010
The L.W.T. sitcom 'Curry & Chips' was written by Johnny Speight, who obviously hoped to replicate the success of his B.B.C. classic 'Till Death Us Do Part'. But, popular though it was, it was dropped after only one season, and in recent years has been repeatedly featured on boring late-night documentaries of the '50 Questions Of Political Correctness' variety. You know the kind of thing - an out-of-context clip is shown, and then someone you've never heard of pops up to tell us that it was 'racist' and 'shown never be shown again'. Well, thanks to those nice folk at Network, we can shortly make our own minds up. The premise is this: Kevin O'Grady, ( Spike Milligan ), a Pakistani, gets a job as cleaner at Lillicrap Ltd, a factory devoted to making those rubbishy novelty toys you buy in seaside gift shops. Immediately, there is antipathy towards him ( he is given the less-than flattering nickname 'Paki-Paddy' ), even from the only other black face around, played by Kenny Lynch. To add to their prejudice, O'Grady is also half-Irish. Standing up for him is Arthur Blenkinsop ( Eric Sykes ), the foreman, who takes him to stay at Mrs.Bartok's ( Fanny Carby ) lodging house. The humour is largely at the expense of the racists themselves, and both Milligan and Sykes give funny performances. Norman Rossington, Sam Kydd, and Geoffrey Hughes lend support. Anyone easily offended probably will be. Like a lot of comedy from that era, it needs to be regarded as a period piece, and not compared to today's shows. If you liked 'Till Death Us Do Part' ( Spike reprised 'O'Grady' in two episodes of that show ), you should like this too.