11 items from 2015
Count Arthur Strong is coming back for a third TV series.
A reboot of the original radio show, Count Arthur Strong stars Delaney as an ex-variety star, while Kinnear plays Michael, the son of his old performing partner.
Co-writer Graham Linehan added: "Very happy to hear that Arthur, Michael and the gang will have more adventures. And we've got some crackers lined up for this series."
However, Linehan later suggested: "I »
So 20 years ago this week a sitcom debuted on Channel 4. Set in the fictional Craggy Island this focused on a parochial house of three priests and their house keeper. Father Ted ran for three seasons before the untimely death of Dermot Morgan who played the titular Ted. Though Morgan had apparently decided that three seasons was enough.
When the show first aired it caused a little controversy due to the nature of the show. The depiction of the Catholic church, whilst clearly absurd, was also largely a negative one. Ted is lazy and morally questionable (“that money was just resting in my account.”), then there is Dougal (Ardal O’Hanlon) who is a blithering idiot. You have Father Jack, a drunkard priest having completely lost his faculties whilst only retaining a disturbing penchant for nudity and unhealthy obsession with young girls (“More water! »
- Gary Collinson
April 21, 1995 – would that be the day the ice age ended?
It's hard to believe, but it's been 20 years since we first met Father Ted Crilly, Father Dougal McGuire, Father Jack Hackett and Mrs Doyle. We came to the Parochial House looking for a cup of tea and a Jaffa cake, and decided to stay longer than Father Stone.
Two decades on, and Graham Linehan and Arthur Matthews' sitcom is still as clever, fresh and fecking hilarious as it was back then. And it's not difficult to see why the show about three priests and their housekeeper trapped on Craggy Island has enjoyed such longevity, or to argue why it is the greatest TV comedy ever made.
It has topped countless 'all-time TV comedy' polls in the past, »
Entitled "The Cloud," the story follows the crew of Cloud Station 13 which is in orbit around Earth. The station is set up to protect the vast amounts of information humanity now hoards on its devices - the majority of which comprises selfies, pictures of kittens and porn.
The disparate group manning the hub are aren't technical geniuses, a big problem as the largely voice-activated ship is unreliable at best.
Source: The Guardian »
- Garth Franklin
The Cloud will star Adam Buxton as part of a hapless data hub crew who are floating around Earth. Their ship is designed to protect information on the internet, even if it is only just selfies, porn and funny cat photos.
The non-broadcast pilot will film in the spring. Channel 4 will announce whether it has received a full commission later this year.
Linehan recently revealed that a potential musical version of his classic show Father Ted could be a success.
The writer's current series Count Arthur Strong - which he »
The Walshes there, which BBC2 dropped because it didn't find an audience after three episodes and zero publicity. Anyway...
— Graham Linehan (@Glinner) January 20, 2015
Bemoaning the decision to drop the show, he added: "But I really struggle to grasp the point of putting out a three-episode series, giving it no publicity, and then pulling it. Befuddling.
"Ta for all the kind words on The Walshes, folks. Really appreciated. Working now to make sure it's not the last you've seen of them. »
Everyone loves second-hand bookshops, don’t they? The satisfaction of leafing through some dusty volume of antiquarian musings, the rich scent of aged leather bindings, redolent of the past… Add to all that the opportunity to indulge in some intellectual posing and impress the philosophy student lounging in the corner, and you’ve got yourself a full Saturday afternoon’s entertainment.
That is, of course, unless you happen to find yourself in one particular Bloomsbury establishment, presided over by a certain Bernard Black. Make no mistake: our Bernard (Dylan Moran) may have an aesthete’s tousled pallor, but there’s nothing remotely poetic about his attitude to running a shop. Only dimly familiar with the concept of customer service, he rules his domain with a rod of iron. »
The writer told Radio Times that he believes a musical version of the show could be a success.
"I would never bring back the TV show, because of the risk you poison people's memories of the original," he insisted.
"But if you were to come up with a completely new format, I think it would be worth doing. I have this vision of a dance number, with spinning cardinals."
Although he admitted that co-creator Arthur Mathews is "not as convinced" by the idea, Linehan added: "I think it could work."
Linehan also spoke about the likelihood of the potential project referencing child sex scandals within the Catholic Church, saying: "The jokes would have to have a little bit more edge, because you just can't ignore this stuff."
Father Ted fans recently attempted to »
NBC previously attempted to adapt the Channel 4 sitcom for a 2007 pilot, producing a near shot-for-shot remake, but Linehan told Digital Spy that he wants the network's second attempt to diverge from the UK series.
"It's one of the few things I've done that could translate," he said. "You just have to pull back on the surrealism and concentrate more on the character comedy - the Americans do character comedy so beautifully, so I think you have to adapt it to suit that.
"So I'm going over [to Los Angeles] to say to them, 'Please don't do my show' - or do my show, just a suitable American version.
"I'm really glad they're giving me the chance to pitch that to them - it's better to start off with a template that actually gives you a chance. »
Ahead of series two's launch, Digital Spy spoke to the sitcom's co-writer - BAFTA winner Graham Linehan - about the new episodes, the demise of TV criticism and why the studio sitcom is due a comeback.
"We definitely didn't know about it beforehand. They showed the BBC a couple of episodes and they liked it, I guess. So yeah, that was kind of a nice surprise for us."
The general impression seems to be that BBC One »
When an actor can make a line as simple as "father!" into a quotable highlight of an episode, he is surely a favourite to writers. It shouldn't come as too much of a surprise, then, that Graham Linehan loves working with Matt Berry.
Now, Mr Linehan has gone so far as to suggest a spin-off for Douglas Reynholm from The It Crowd.
"I'd really love to do a Douglas spinoff of The It Crowd," he said. See? We weren't lying or anything.
Elaborating a bit, he added that "I could easily spend an hour, or half an hour, with Douglas. He's my favourite way of making fun of people that I really loathe, like Rupert Murdoch and Donald Trump. I basically just have happen to him all the things that I'd love to happen to them, »
11 items from 2015
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