British TV Comedies: Cultural Concepts, Contexts and by Juergen Kamm, Birgit Neumann

By Juergen Kamm, Birgit Neumann

This assortment bargains an outline of British television comedies, starting from the beginnings of sitcoms within the Nineteen Fifties to the present growth of 'Britcoms'. It presents in-depth analyses of significant comedies, systematically addressing their accepted homes, filmic heritage, humour politics and cultural effect.

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Revoir, Paul. ‘BBC Chief Wants Return to Wholesome Sitcoms without Sex and Swearing’. Daily Mail, 16 March 2007. uk/ tvshowbiz/article-442567/BBC-chief-wants-return-wholesome-sitcoms-sex-swearing. html (date accessed 13 July 2015). Rowe, Kathleen. The Unruly Woman: Gender and the Genres of Laughter. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1995. Said, Edward W. The World, the Text and the Critic. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1983. Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. Broadcasting: Copy of Royal Charter for the Continuance of the British Broadcasting Corporation.

London: Routledge, 1990. Jackson, Paul. ‘Steptoe and Son …and Sons’. BBC Radio 4, 16 August 2012. uk/programmes/b01lv4ns (date accessed 13 July 2015). Kemp, Gerard. ‘Galton and Simpson and Eight Years of Steptoe’. Radio Times, 26 February 1970, 48–51. Langford, Barry. ‘Our Usual Impasse: The Episodic Situation Comedy Revisited’ in Jonathan Bignell and Stephen Lacey (eds), Popular Television Drama: Critical Perspectives. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2005, 15–33. Medhurst, Andy. A National Joke: Popular Comedy and English Cultural Identities.

The audience quickly latches on to the fact that in any given situation, Albert will prove more than a match for his ever-aspiring son. Frequently, therefore, the plot will involve a theatrical turn of events in which Albert succeeds in turning the tables on the hapless Harold by pulling off something that his son has set his heart on achieving. A good example of this occurs in the episode ‘A Box in Town’, in which Harold finally stakes a claim to independence by getting his own place in town. Although he can only afford to rent a miniscule bedsit, it is at least somewhere where he feels he will be free to entertain some of his old flames without having his father poking his nose in the whole time.

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