Monday, September 19, 2005

30 Years of Basil in the Ratatouille

It's hard to believe that the BBC only made 12 episodes of Fawlty Towers, which celebrates it's 30th birthday today. For me it was John Cleese's finest hour and remains as beautiful a piece of comedy and social commentary as it ever was. It just seems there are so many gags and quotable lines, individual funny moments that they must have made hundreds of episodes, but alas, twelve is all they could muster.
All the men in my family loved Fawlty Towers, it is timeless comedy and for a family with as many cooks and waiters in it (yes, some even from Barcelona) it would have us in fits of howling, sobbing laughter as we found something eminently recognisable in it. Manuel , for myself and my siblings, was the familial archetype, a completely recognizable figure from our daily lives. For my father he was a heroic figure, a Spaniard like him, who was making his way in a world populated by the borish and the snobbish Basil, who myself and my siblings always sided with, always wanting him to win at the end of the day but knowing he was his own worst enemy. There are many a life lesson to learnt from this piece of comedy genius, like never mistake a rat for a Siberian Hamster and never ever mention the war...

6 comments:

cookiecrumb said...

You liar! You *are* a Spaniard. ("North African" -- sniff, snort!) :D
Oh, god, is Fawlty Towers that old? I still think Monty Python is fresh.

Monkey Gland said...

hey I said as a family we are a jumble of meditarraneans and north africans, which we are :-)

Anonymous said...

Recently BBC Prime arrived in Singapore and now I get to watch it all over again. Last night they showed the hysterical Ratatouille episode and yes, now my husband finally understood why I like this series so much.
umami
http://umami.typepad.com/

deborah said...

Oh I love Fawlty Towers. You have described it so perfectly here!

BTW, I tagged you for a really easy meme - you don't have to do it if you dont want to.

Brett said...

I loved Fawlty Towers! My favorite of the twelve episodes was the Germans. I nearly cry with laughter even thinking about it.

rita.girl@earthlink.net said...

Tell someone your favorite episode, then prepare to spend the next two hours saying "but what about ..." ... and you'll be convinced there were at least 100 episodes ... the sign of a great programme.
God bless, Christine in Los Angeles