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A weak episode of Hancock's Half Hour meets Carry On Regardless.
on 13 July 2012
"A disparate group of individuals are poor individually, but pool their money to buy a large house, and become forever entangled in each other's business".
Carry On screenwriter Norman Hudis created this show while working on the early Carry On films, with which the series shares many themes and cast members. What to expect? A weak episode of Hancock's Half Hour meets a TV version of Carry On Regardless. I think that would be the best way to sum up these episodes.
While there are great performances from all the familiar faces, there were many fluffed lines or rushed scenes. Moreover, they occasionally fail to pull off the slapstick elements, with 'accidental' falls, for example, looking painfully deliberate. Production values aren't always high either, with wobbly and basic sets. All of this suggests a programme made quickly and economically.
The main pleasure to be here is simply the chance to see these rare episodes. This is a glimpse into a vintage era of television comedy, when the 'sitcom' began to take shape. Of the 39 episodes(two series)which were made, only 3 survive to this day (all from Series 1). All the episodes are included on this dvd and very few people will have ever seen them.
A small note of warning - the picture quality is not always great. These episodes would have benefited greatly from digital restoration and show quite a lot of small scuffs and breaks. On occasion, I thought that there must be something wrong with my video player's tracking, only to remember that this is 2012 and I'm watching a dvd on a 3D blu ray player.
Anyone hoping to see Carry On regular Bernard Bresslaw may also be disappointed. He joined the cast for the second series, a series which no longer survives.