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    The Benny Hill Show

    The Benny Hill Show

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    ITV (ended 1989)
    This guide strives to be as complete a resource as possible for the third TV series to bear Benny Hill's name in the title, which ran on Thames Television (ITV) from 1969-1989, and has appeared around the world in countless formats and re-edits ever since.

    This is a guide to the original hour-long version.

    In America, the show was usually presented in a specially-edited half-hour format, which ran for a total of 111 editions (although Comedy Central did screen the hour-long format in the early-to-mid '90's, albeit with sections edited out, typically the musical guest or dance numbers). 30-minute repeats (not the same as were made for the American market) often aired in Britain when the show was "between seasons."

    Comedy Central aired the original hour-long format for Shows 32 - 58 (except for Show 40). Also, USA Network aired the shows in the original hour-long format in the late '80s/early '90s. At least Shows 54 - 58, possibly others, along with the independently-produced Benny Hill's World Tour: New York special (both channels had a few minutes cut for extra commercial time).

    In the U.S., the original hour-long shows have been issued on DVD (Region 1) under the umbrella title Benny Hill - Complete & Unadulterated. The first three sets were released with the subheading The Naughty Early Years, covering the years 1969-1971 (Shows 1-11, including three B&W episodes previously unseen in America), 1972-1974 (Shows 12-21) and 1975-1977 (Shows 22-31, plus his 1970 half-hour silent film Eddie in August). The final three sets bore the subheading The Hill's Angels Years, and covered the years 1978-1981 (Shows 32-41), 1982-1985 (Shows 42-50) and 1986-1989 (Shows 51-58). Also, the Golden Greats set that came out in 2001 (now out-of-print) included 6 episodes, Shows 46, 47, 50, 55, 56 and 58.

    In England, the original hour-long shows (complete with production slates and adcaps) have been released on DVD (Region 2) on a year-by-year basis, under the umbrella of The Benny Hill Annual, each set representing a different year. The 1970 set (Shows 3-6) contains the aforementioned Eddie in August, and the 1974 set (which only saw two new editions air, Shows 20 and 21) features his first two Thames specials from 1969. As of October 2006, the total releases go up to 1979 (Shows 34 and 35). The Benny Hill Annual sets from 1976 and 1977 onwards have adcaps but not VT slates.moreless
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    Do Not Adjust Your Set

    Do Not Adjust Your Set

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    ITV (ended 1969)
    Welcome to the Do Not Adjust Your Set guide at TV.com. British children's sitcom
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    Ours is a Nice House

    Ours is a Nice House

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    ITV (ended 1970)
    Welcome to the Ours is a Nice House guide at TV.com. "The great Thora Hird starred in this show as a Lancashire boarding-house landlady named (what else?) Thora Parker. A widowed mother of two teenagers, workshy son Alan and sensible though trendy daughter Vera. She runs a clean, respectable house ("nice, you know, none of your tat"). "The comedy sprung from Thora Parker's all-knowing, canny housekeeping for her resident boarders, the itinerant lodgers who flitted into and then out of the weekly episodes, and friends and neighbours, like next door's Elsie Crabtree, Thora's former school buddy who was always popping around to scrounge something or other and have a natter. Thora's mother, Gran, was played by veteran comedy actress May Warden, mostly sans dentures, while one of the boarders, Alf Whittle, was played by the show's writer, Harry Littlewood." (BBC Guide to Comedy)moreless
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    Cooperama

    Cooperama

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    ITV (ended 1966)
    British sketch comedy show
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    At Last the 1948 Show

    At Last the 1948 Show

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    ITV (ended 1968)
    This precursor to Monty Python's Flying Circus is a showcase of the Britain's young comedy talent of 1967. Fresh from their successful writing on The Frost Report were Tim Brooke-Taylor, Graham Chapman, John Cleese and Marty Feldman, the latter of whom made At Last the 1948 Show his television debut. Each writer brought his own forte to the scripting of At Last the 1948 Show. Feldman introduced the internal logic of sketches. "You could have everyone sitting in dustbins or dressed as carrots," John Cleese explained, "but if someone walks in who isn't dressed as a carrot, or isn't wheeled in in a dustbin, you have to explain why not…There mustn't be any inconsistent bits or contradictions…I think that's how people's minds work." Graham Chapman's comedic mind worked in strange and wondrous ways. In his obituary for Graham in 1989, Cleese wrote: "As a writer, he had two rare gifts: the ability to get us unstuck with some inspired off-the-wall conceit whilst I was enmeshed in very on-the-wall musings, and the priceless talent of knowing whether something was funny or not. I noticed this early and relied upon it shamelessly." None of these men relied on the conventions of television comedy. At Last the 1948 Show began to fool with the shape of TV comedy, a direction that would bring forth Monty Python's Flying Circus. For many years, the tapes of At Last the 1948 Show were believed to have been wiped out or erased, but copies have shown up from Britain to Sweden. One network, BBC-4, highlighted At Last the 1948 Show for a night-long selection of 1960s comedies billed as "Missing, Believed Wiped." Cleese admitted the quality of the recovered shows isn't good, but "it is fascinating to see some of Marty's first screen stuff."moreless
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    The Dustbinmen

    The Dustbinmen

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    ITV (ended 1970)
    Cheese And Egg is the leader of a gang of work-shy refuse collectors who operate a council dustcart (garbage truck) they call "Thunderbird 3." He's in charge of Smellie Ibbotson, Heavy Breathing (so named because he believes he had a way with women), Eric and Winston (an ardent Manchester City supporter). The inspector from the Corporation Cleansing Department, whom they nickname Bloody Delilah, is their sworn enemy. The foul-mouthed, beret wearing Cheese and Egg—so nicknamed because CE are his initials—is respected by the others for his brains. Together, the dustbinmen flout every rule, shirk work whenever possible and discuss (usually disparagingly) local residents by their address or some other recognizable feature, hence "Mrs 23 Valetta Street", "Mrs 14b Kimberley Terrace", "Mrs 24 The Alley" or "Mrs Manchester United". The series originated from a 90 minute Playhouse production titled There's A Hole In Your Dustbin, Delilah. Writer Jack Rosenthal drew his characters from real-life refuse collectors he had met while out and about conducting research, and he set his play in the Lancashire coastal town of Fylde, near Blackpool.moreless
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    Curry and Chips

    Curry and Chips

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    ITV (ended 1969)
    British sitcom
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    Girls About Town

    Girls About Town

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    ITV (ended 1971)
    British sitcom; pilot episode aired on October 2, 1969