I think the main person Hancock hated was himself, so at least you can agree with him on that.
I don't really "hate" him. I do think he is overrated these days, there have been far better comedy stars - even among the cast of his shows - and I wonder why his appeal has endured among comedy fans fifty years later.
I can listen to his radio shows but all the laughs come from Sid or Bill or Kenneth. Hancock was the straight man, not a great comedy character.
Not sure if he actually hated himself or whether he loved himself too much. In my opinion he was very self-centred, screwing over or falling out with almost every one of the actors he worked with who's talents made him look good, plus his writers, and particularly his best mate John le Mes which I find pretty despicable on Tony's part,and Joan's.
He just did not get on well with people in my opinion. Like his TV character, a selfish, miserable git. Only unlike the character, also an abusive alcoholic.
I do find his character very funny, and his delivery of lines nigh on perfect. I can't claim to know him as a person, but yes, his treatment of John Le Mesurier was not the action of a friend.
Post by Andy Howells on Aug 15, 2019 4:51:43 GMT 12
Like I think I've stated before, I think Hancock was a victim of his own success, also I think he probably had issues which some people would describe as medical conditions now.
Its easy to judge him from his actions and what we know of him by todays standards, but clearly those who knew him best were also grieved and confused not only by his actions but also his change of character. Those included John Le Mesurier, Sid James, Ray Galton, Alan Simpson and Joan.
I think it says a lot that possibly the person whom he hurt the most, John Le Mesurier, still spoke fondly of him, maybe some people can never understand that, but I think that says a lot about what a warm person John was.
Post by Dave Homewood on Aug 15, 2019 19:46:14 GMT 12
The Plot Thickens.....
From The Stage - Thursday 08 July 1971
Dads Army writer wins Novello JIMMY PERRY, the creator and co-writer of BBC-1's Dad's Army has won the Ivor Novello Award for the best theme from any film, television programme or theatrical production. He wrote Who Do You Think You Are Kidding Mr. Hitler with Derek Taverner.
Bud Flanagan recorded the song for them shortly before he died and it has been used as the signature tune for all the television programmes and for the film.
This award is the fourth for Dad's Army this year. The first was from the Society of Film Television Arts for the production of the best situation comedy and was presented to David Croft, Jimmy Perry's co-writer and the producer of all the programmes. The second was from the Writers' Guild of Great Britain for the best comedy script and went to Jimmy Perry and David Croft for the second year running, and the third was from the Variety Club of Great Britain for the entire Dad's Army team.
Jimmy Perry is now working on a new situation comedy at the moment, and his co-writer David Croft is in Australia, producing and directing a new series, Here Come the Fellers with Hugh Lloyd which he has also written.
More stuff about Birds In The Bush, although I don't know if it reveals too much. I have a book, Moran's Guide To Australian TV Series, by Albert Moran, published 1994, and here is the entry for Birds In The Bush. The book has several errors throughout and this entry is no exception. I left out part of the description (at the bottom) because it says The Flying Doctors was on Channel 7, when in fact it was on Channel 9. But this is what it (mostly) says:
BIRDS IN THE BUSH
Comedy Series. Number of episodes: 13. Length: 30 minutes. Produced by: George Rockney Productions. Format: Series produced on film, in colour. Began on air: 3 May 1972. Devised/Created by: Jean Ives. Producer: Margaret Bond. Director: David Croft. Script Writer: David Croft. Cast: Briony Behets, Kate Fitzpatrick, Nicola Flamer-Caldera, Ron Frazer, Hugh Lloyd, Sue Lloyd, Elli MacLure, Kate Shiel, Ann Sidney.
Description: This comedy series concerned eight girls who managed an outback Australian property. The property was then inherited by an English water diviner (Hugh Lloyd). His Australian half-brother (Ron Frazer) joins him. The girls were all varyingly beautiful but quite inexperienced in the ways of the world. Birds in the Bush was in effect a runaway production intended in the first place for a British rather than an Australian audience. David Croft had acted and written Dad's Army for British television and several of the other key production figures were British. With British television by 1972 transmitting in colour, the series had to be produced not only in colour but on film, because ATN Channel 7's studio was not yet equipped with colour cameras. The cast was a mixture of British actors (Hugh Lloyd and Ann Sidney, Nicola Flamer-Caldera) and Australian (Ron Frazer, Briony Behets and Elli MacLure). Most surprising was the casting of Kate Fitzpatrick, who looked somewhat odd among the others. The series itself did poorly when it played on Australian television. Perhaps this was because the Carry On concept and humour had no place in the Australian comedy tradition . . .
I actually agree with most of this bloke's opinions in the whole book, thankfully and refreshingly he doesn't give that many or at least very strong ones*, but I don't know what he meant by Kate Fitzpatrick (an actress virtually unknown outside Australia, I'd imagine) looking "somewhat odd among the others", I'd have thought she'd fit right in with that lot, and this nonsense about the Carry On concept and humour having no place in the Australian comedy tradition. I think "Carry On" humour was/is just as popular (or unpopular) in Australia as anywhere else, the British and Australians have a very similar sense of humour.
* Authors opinions (in my opinion ) can turn many a good reference book sour - just give us the facts - I don't really want to know what the author opinions are in a reference book, because to me it's virtually meaningless, more so if I haven't heard of the person.
As I said, the book contains many errors, so don't take any of the information about the show as 'gospel', but I'd hazard a guess and say it's probably correct.
Post by Dave Homewood on Aug 21, 2019 21:45:56 GMT 12
Actually that is very interesting to see that David Croft was script writing solo. I had not picked up on that till now. He usually wrote comedy series with a partner.
And of particular note is this would have been his first foray into writing a comedy series since the success of Dad's Army so I am sure the television companies were expecting good results. David had of course written scripts before Dad's Army for TV and live productions but Dad's Army was a landmark point in his career. And by then he had won awards for Dad's Army scripts. So if this series was not too good or well liked, I guess there was disappointment all round. It must be quite a task to write a comedy with an ensemble of ten main cast and other guest characters.