12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Invaluable contribution to comedy history,
This review is from: Spike & Co: Spike, Eric and the Golden Age of British Comedy (Hardcover)
I bought this as soon as it came out, and I've been spreading the word ever since. It is amazingly thorough in its research (to cover the lives of Eric Sykes, Ray Galton, Alan Simpson, Spike Milligan and Johnny Speight, as well as the histories of Hancock's Half Hour, The Goons, Steptoe & Son, Sykes amd Till Death Do Us Part is a massive achievement), and thoroughly entertaining in the way it tells its story: the first wave of 'proper' professional comedy writers, ganging together to further the cause of their craft, creating all of the great shows of the 50s and 60s within the same cramped little set of London offices. McCann is a master of this sort of subject (his studies of Morecambe and Wise and Dad's Army were quite brilliant), and this latest, really splendid, book brings together so many fascinating strands it is absolutely gripping. I envisage re-reading and consulting this for many years to come.