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7 February 2011
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Britain's Best Sitcom

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Top 10
In 2003 you voted for your top 100 sitcoms in our primary poll. Then in 2004 the voting opened to crown one of the final top ten as Britain's Best Sitcom. Here are some interesting facts about the final ten - or you can skip straight to the winner.
Blackadder
Blackadder

The history of scheming Edmund Blackadder (Rowan Atkinson) and his downfalls from the dark ages to the present day delighted viewers throughout near 20-years of broadcast.

Interesting Facts
Corporal Jones, in the 'Blackadder Goes Forth' episode 'Corporal Punishment' was named after the 'Dad's Army' character played by Clive Dunn.

Even top comedy writers have to respect the facts of vegetable life now and again and Ben Elton seems to have got the hilarious sounding turnip confused with the thingy-shaped but unfunny sounding parsnip. In one episode Baldrick had to cook up a comic turnip for some important guests, so the props department cleverly supplied a veg hybrid which spared Ben's blushes!

Advocate
John Sergeant states why 'Blackadder' is his favourite sitcom. Read his case.
Advocate's Case More about this Sitcom See Clip  
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Dad's Army
Dad's Army

In the fictional town of Walmington-on-Sea, a ragbag collection of Local Defence Volunteers 'protect' the UK during World War Two.

Interesting Facts
The only member of the cast to have actually served in the Home Guard was John Laurie. Arthur Lowe, John Le Mesurier, and Clive Dunn were in the regular army.

A US version of Dad's Army screened in America by ABC on 10th August 1976, failed to make it past the pilot stage - perhaps because the US was never seriously in need of military invasion and didn't appreciate the old codgers' last stand concept.

Advocate
Phill Jupitus states why 'Dad's Army' is his favourite sitcom. Read his case.
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Fawlty Towers
Fawlty Towers

Intolerable hotelier Basil Fawlty (John Cleese) and his domineering wife Sybil (Prunella Scales) run probably the worst hotel in Torquay.

Interesting Facts
During the Gulf War in January 1991, it is claimed that President George Bush relaxed by watching 'Fawlty Towers' videos.

The show frequently overran its 30 minute slot. One episode - The Psychiatrist - runs at over 36 minutes!

Advocate
Jack Dee states why 'Fawlty Towers' is his favourite sitcom. Read his case.
Advocate's Case More about this Sitcom See Clip  
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Good Life
Good Life

Middle class suburbanite Tom Good quits the rat race and tries, with the help of doting wife Barbara, to subsist by turning his back garden into a farm.

Interesting Fact
It was customary to have a 'do' after finishing a run of the show. On one occasion Penelope made chilli for everybody. Late that night everybody made a mad dash to the loo - later Penelope realised one must soak the beans for a day to remove the arsenic!

Advocate
Ulrika Jonsson states why 'The Good Life' is her favourite sitcom. Read her case.
Advocate's Case More about this Sitcom See Clip  
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Fawlty Towers
One Foot in the Grave

Richard Wilson starred as the accident prone pensioner forever creating havoc for wife Annette Crosby.

Interesting Facts
The first £1m winner of 'Who Wants to be a Millionaire' was scheduled opposite the final 'One Foot in the Grave'. ITV said it was a coincidence.

The day after the last episode was screened, fans of the series began laying flowers outside Shawford Railway Station in Hampshire, where the scene of Victor being run over was filmed.

Advocate
Rowland Rivron states why 'One Foot in the Grave' is his favourite sitcom. Read his case.
Advocate's Case More about this Sitcom See Clip  
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Only Fools and Horses
Only Fools and Horses

Del Boy and his kid brother Rodney live in a tower block in London, from which they run a dodgy sales firm.

Interesting Facts
Jim Broadbent, Enn Reitel, Robin Nedwell and Billy Murray all nearly became Del Boy. But David Jason won through in the end.

Antony Hopkins is one of the show's biggest fans - he had a part written for him in 1989 - but had to pull out for Silence of the Lambs.

Advocate
David Dickinson states why 'Only Fools and Horses' is his favourite sitcom. Read his case.
Advocate's Case More about this Sitcom See Clip  
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Open All Hours
Open All Hours

Ronnie Barker and David Jason ran the cosiest and quirkiest corner shop in the land.

Interesting Facts
Stephanie Cole, Barbara Flynn, Kathy Staff, Liz Dawn and a very young Keith Chegwin all played cameos in 'Open All Hours'.

External shots for the series were filmed outside a corner shop in Doncaster and the interior was actually a hairdressing salon given a makeover by BBC designers.

Advocate
Clarissa Dickson Wright states why 'Open All Hours' is her favourite sitcom. Read her case.
Advocate's Case More about this Sitcom See Clip  
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Porridge
Porridge

Old lag Stanley Fletcher shares a cell with young idealist Lennie Godber. The pair help each other through the perils of prison life.

Interesting Fact
Porridge started life as a pilot called 'Prisoner and Escort' which was part of a series called 'Seven of One'. This also spawned 'Open All Hours'.

The famous Slade prison gate belonged to St Albans Prison - now HQ for a mineral water company.

Advocate
Johnny Vaughan states why 'Porridge' is his favourite sitcom. Read his case.
Advocate's Case More about this Sitcom See Clip  
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Vicar of Dibley
Vicar of Dibley

Geraldine Granger is the jolly, down-to-earth vicar of a small country village frequented by oddball locals.

Interesting Facts
The creator of 'The Vicar of Dibley' is Richard Curtis; the man responsible for 'Four Weddings and a Funeral', 'Notting Hill', and 'Love Actually'.

Advocate
Carol Vorderman states why 'Vicar of Dibley' is her favourite sitcom. Read her case.
Advocate's Case More about this Sitcom See Clip  
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Yes Minister
Yes Minister

Political satire based in the offices of MP Jim Hacker, whose policies and principals are forever under siege by wily civil servant Sir Humphrey Appleby.

Interesting Facts
Reportedly Margaret Thatcher's favourite sitcom, and just to be impartial, it was Tony Benn's favourite too!

Yes Minister was the first programme to win the Bafta 'Best Comedy' award three years in succession.

Advocate
Armando Iannucci states why 'Yes Minister' is his favourite sitcom. Read his case.
Advocate's Case More about this Sitcom See Clip  
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What do you think?
"There are many similarities between Ronnie Barker and David Jason on a comedy level."
John
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