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a right carry on

tv times cover - january 4th 1975
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scene from opening credits
scene from opening credits
scene from opening credits
scene from opening credits

carry on laughing 1975



the prisoner of spenda
the baron outlook
the sobbing cavalier
orgy and bess
one in the eye for harold
the nine old cobblers
the case of the screaming winkles
the case of the coughing parrot
under the round table
short night, long daze
and in my lady's chamber
who needs kitchener?
lamp-posts of the empire


Series One: January - February 1975
Series Two: October - December 1975


Not to be confused with the series of compilations, Carry On Laughing is a rather lacklustre collection of TV comedies made by ATV, then part of ITV, with 13 half hour self-contained episodes recorded during late 1974 and 1975. The series spoofed famous books, films and plays and the main aim was to try and diversify the Carry On brand into different mediums (indeed the stage show Carry On London had been a great success when it opened a couple of years previously) as cinema attendance in the UK was plummeting. The question was asked, 'Did the future of the Carry On's lie on the small screen?'

In hindsight, the answer was a resounding no. As a whole the series is well below average, and most of the episodes in the second series manage to topple Carry On Emmannuelle as the worst example of Carry On humour produced. They're that bad.

Of course, the series was flawed before it started. There was no participation from Kenneth Williams or Charles Hawtrey. Hattie Jacques only appears in one episode, whilst Sid James only appears in the first four. Although the missing members in the cast wouldn't be as noticeable if the scripts were great, unfortunately they weren't. Talbot Rothwell wasn't on scripting duties leaving the majority to Dave Freeman (whose scripts are ok) and Lew Schwarz (whose scripts aren't).

The series is also memorable for being the last time Sid James and Hattie Jacques would appear in anything produced within the Carry On Series. It's a shame that they didn't go out with a more accomplished piece, but at least Orgy and Bess is one of the better episodes.

It's fair to say that if these comedies didn't have the Carry On prefix, they would have been long forgotten about.

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