Porridge (1974–1977)

TV Series  -   -  Comedy
8.3
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Ratings: 8.3/10 from 2,206 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 4 critic

The prison life of Fletcher, a criminal serving a five-year sentence, as he strives to bide his time, keep his record clean, and refuses to be ground down by the prison system.

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Title: Porridge (1974–1977)

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Season:

3 | 2 | 1

Year:

1977 | 1976 | 1975 | 1974
4 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Series cast summary:
...
 Norman Stanley Fletcher (20 episodes, 1974-1977)
Brian Wilde ...
 Mr. Barrowclough (19 episodes, 1974-1977)
...
 Mr. Mackay (19 episodes, 1974-1977)
...
 Lennie Godber (17 episodes, 1974-1977)
...
 Warren / ... (12 episodes, 1974-1977)
...
 McLaren (9 episodes, 1974-1977)
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Storyline

Fletcher's doing five years for breaking and entering. He's quick witted and never short of a trick or two to make his life that little bit easier. Lennie Godber's his cellmate who Fletch often teases but also protects in a father-like way. The other two main characters are prison officers; MacKay's a militarily strict type, keen to adhere to the rules, while Mr Barrowclough is almost a complete opposite and easily manipulated by Fletcher. Written by Rob Hartill

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

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Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 September 1974 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Porridge  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(19 episodes) | (1 episode) | (1 episode)

Sound Mix:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The script allowed the prisoners to swear without offending viewers by using the word "naff" in place of ruder words ("Naff off!", "Darn your own naffing socks", "Doing next to naff all"), thereby popularizing a word that had been recorded at least as early as 1966. Ronnie Barker did not claim to have invented it, and in a television interview in 2003 it was explained to him on camera what the word meant, as he hadn't a clue. See more »

Quotes

[on Ingrid, Fletch's eldest daughter]
Godber: She had lovely...
Fletch: I know what she had lovely, this is her father you're talking to, Godber, so be very careful!
Godber: Eyes! I was going to say. Lovely eyes.
Fletch: That's all right then. ...
Godber: She's a canny old soul, my mum, but she only normally gives me a catalogue of family ailments.
Fletch: No news of the lovely Denise, then?
Godber: She don't talk about Denise on account of she doesn't approve of her - because she wears green nail varnish and doesn't wear a bra.
Fletch: Sounds as if your ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening titles consist of outside shots of Slade prison and of several doors and gates being closed and locked. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Simply the best.
21 January 2004 | by (Sheffield) – See all my reviews

I've seen some great sitcoms in my time - and some not so great. But this is definitely one of the great ones. The very idea of a comedy set in prison doesn't sound like it can work. But it does - and how!

Ronnie Barker is perfect as Fletch. He's nobody's fool, and doesn't suffer other people who are fools, but underneath is a heart of pure gold - he just doesn't show it very often. This is to his credit when it is displayed, for Godber (Richard Beckinsale) or Blanco (David Jason). As with everything, Barker's timing is superb, and the simplest little line can have the viewer in stitches. This man will always be the guv'nor!

Richard Beckinsale as the first-offender Lennie Godber is just as wonderful. He takes it at a slower pace, highlighting the contrast between the two characters. A gentler man for the role it is hard to envisage. And who would want to!

Not forgetting Fulton Mackay (Mr Mackay) and Brian Wilde (Mr Barrowclough) - similarly fast and slow-paced. There is never any doubt that Mackay is an authority figure over them, and can make their lives hell if he chooses to, whereas the long-suffering Barrowclough is the perfect foil, like Sgt Wilson to Cpt Mainwaring.

This is of course due first to the wonderful writing of Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais, whose names grace the credits of many wonderful shows. They have created a masterpiece. A wonderful with believable characters. Everything fits together perfectly. Not one line needs changing.

Great cast, great writers. 12/10! The best sitcom ever!


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