It is amazing that Are You Being Served? Absolutely Fabulous, Keeping Up Appearances even Monty Python and Fawlty Towers in their own unique way, can break down cultural barriers in humor and sitcom style, but this thing utterly fails to do likewise.
And this show even has an American at the center of its cast, for crying out loud!
It is also amazing that virtually whatever Elaine Stritch offers on the stage, none of it transfers at all to any form of celluloid on either side of the ocean.
The problem may be in the thinking that she conveys the image of being overly sharp tongued, witty and classy, none of which emerges in tv or movies.
Nevertheless in this show, she isn't alone. The concept that she is an authoress is far-fetched, that as an American writer, she appeals to both sides of the Atlantic is odd, and Donald Sinden as the butler is on the same low level with her.
Two's Company presently airs on the local PBS network Saturday nights, after Keeping UP Appearances and As Time Goes By with Judy Dench. It's intriguing to watch to just observe the contrast in how English life is perceived, in this case represented by a butler, in comparison to Keeping Up Appearances astonishing depictions.
I would hardly recommend this show to anyone wanting to understand the English culture, whether sitcoms are good representation or not. I wouldn't even recommend it for a good laugh.
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