It’s March, the days are getting longer, the trees are thinking about budding, and we’re back from our long luxurious winter holidays to bring more merriment into your lives. We intend to increase the sum total of human happiness despite the impending general election, with its promised “six candidates plus an empty chair” debate.
We’ve never missed Rik Mayall more than we do right now; how the nation needs Alan B’Stard MP to remind us what politics is really all about. By now Alan would be controlling UKIP, with Nigel Farage as his ventriloquist’s dummy. We say this having noticed an uncanny resemblance between Nigel F and Archie Andrews, the famous ventriloquist’s dummy of the 1950s. Can you tell the difference? Incidentally, audiences were so easily satisfied back then that Archie Andrews and his manipulator, Peter Brough, rose to prominence on the radio.
Talking about the dim distant past, it is exactly 35 years ago that we gave up our day jobs to become full time comedy writers. Among the first of the many great stars for whom we wrote was Frankie Howerd, who like Peter Brough with his aforementioned wooden chum, was not averse to putting his hands up young men’s backs, should the opportunity present itself.
You can’t keep a good act down, as Frankie was wont to say, and to prove it we are proud to announce that ITV have commissioned yet another series of Birds of a Feather, to air early next year. By another happy coincidence, this announcement follows the analysis in last week’s edition of Broadcast – the TV trade magazine – that Birds was the top comedy series of 2014. We remain chuffed and proud that a show that first aired in 1989 continues to hit home with old and new viewers. Of course that’s mostly down to the brilliant scripts, though the actors help a bit too.